The KrisFlyer and Shangri-La Golden Circle Infinite Journeys partnership offers a fast track to KrisFlyer Gold status to those with Golden Circle Jade status, which is automatically available for holders of the American Express Platinum Charge Card.
How the status match works
There are no Shangri-La hotels in New Zealand and they are also fairly limited in Australia (Sydney, Brisbane and Cairns), so unless you are a complete globetrotter, it’s unlikely you have Golden Circle status through stays, nor an abundance of Golden Circle points to transfer to KrisFlyer.
As a result, here is the most likely scenario:
If you have the Amex Platinum Charge card, you have automatic Gold status with four hotel chains: Starwood Preferred Guest, Hilton Honors, Radisson Rewards, and Shangri-La Golden Circle (called ‘Jade’ instead of Gold).
The partnership between Singapore Airlines and Shangri-La means that you can match your Golden Circle Jade status to KrisFlyer Silver – but there aren’t too many benefits to that (see below). Do note that our readers have told us this first status match can take up to eight weeks to match.
Where the real value lies is in upgrading your status to KrisFlyer Elite Gold by taking three Singapore Airlines or SilkAir flights within four months of your status match. They can be in any booking class except G (group bookings). They must be flights bought with cash, i.e. not award flights. (If you are lucky enough to hold Golden Circle Diamond status by merit of another method, you only need to take one flight).
Now, if you are looking to take advantage of this from New Zealand, Singapore Airlines have direct flights from both Auckland and Christchurch to Singapore, as well as between Wellington and Singapore via Canberra (or via Melbourne come May 2018).
That’s right – a return Economy flight from Wellington to Canberra/Melbourne, plus one more one-way leg on this route, will score you Star Alliance Gold.
If you are wanting to take those three (or one) qualifying flights from a Singapore base, then Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta and Bangkok are close and cheap options.
The status match also works the other way around for those who hold KrisFlyer PPS Club and Elite Gold status. You’ll get an instant match to Golden Circle Jade and be upgraded to Diamond after one stay at a Shangri-La property.
Reports are that the status match in both directions is instant and that it will be valid until the end of the month you have applied (plus one year).
What constitutes the three-flight requirement?
This is the really generous part of the promotion—it just means three different legs or, put another way, three different flight numbers.
So, you could book a return trip on Singapore Airlines from New Zealand to Hong Kong via Singapore in any class and it would qualify!
Benefits of KrisFlyer status
At this level, you really don’t get too much:
- 25% bonus KrisFlyer miles on flights
- Priority reservation waitlist
- Priority standby
- Waived or discounted service fees
- Complimentary Standard Seats when you fly in Economy Class on Singapore Airlines and SilkAir
Gold is where it is at. You’ll get:
- Access to KrisFlyer, Air New Zealand, Virgin Australia and other Star Alliance lounges
- Higher checked baggage allowance
- Priority check-in
- Priority security
- Priority boarding
- Priority baggage handling
Star Alliance Gold members get access to the Air New Zealand International Lounge in Auckland
Of course, if you’re a Platinum Charge cardholder, you have Virgin Australia lounge access anyway (even though it is not officially advertised as a benefit for NZ cardholders).
You could then use your KrisFlyer Gold status to status match to other airlines.
Note that you cannot take advantage of this program more than once. The FAQs state:
Can I register for a membership status match benefit more than once?
No. You may only register for the membership status match benefit once.
Benefits of Golden Circle Jade status
Ongoing reciprocal benefits of tie-up
The only real valuable benefit is that you can double-dip, and will earn 500 bonus KrisFlyer miles for Shangri-La stays.
It is not really worth transferring miles/points in either direction; it is just better to keep them in their respective accounts as they will lose value when transferring. Here are the transfer ratios anyway:
- 1:1.25 from Golden Circle to KrisFlyer
- 12:1 from KrisFlyer to Golden Circle
If you have the Amex Platinum Charge card, then you should have automatic Golden Circle Jade membership with Shangri-La. Use that to now status match to KrisFlyer Elite Silver using the link below.
Then, to take it a level up, take three Singapore Airlines or SilkAir flights within four months of status matching and you’ll qualify for KrisFlyer Elite Gold.
That means you’ll enjoy Gold benefits across the whole Star Alliance network, plus Air New Zealand and Virgin Australia lounge access, and you can status match to other airlines within the alliance and outside of it too.
And make sure you put your KrisFlyer number on any Shangri-La bookings to get 500 bonus miles.