In our previous guide we covered which fare classes you should book if you plan on upgrading with Qantas or Virgin. In this guide, we cover Singapore Airlines’ KrisFlyer and Cathay Pacific’s Asia Miles programmes.
Using your points for a flight upgrade is one of the best ways to maximise their value, but not every ticket can be upgraded – with restrictions on fare class and upgrade availability.
This is a good guide to bookmark if you’re going to make a booking which you’re planning to try and upgrade using your KrisFlyer Miles or Asia Miles.
Upgrading with Singapore Airlines’ KrisFlyer
If you intend on upgrading from Economy to Premium Economy or Business, only tickets purchased in Economy Standard (M, H or W booking classes) and Economy Flexi (Y, B or E booking classes ) on flights operated by Singapore Airlines or SilkAir are eligible.
Premium Economy tickets booked in S, T, P or L class, and Business Class tickets booked in Z, C, J or U class are eligible for upgrade award redemption
Premium Economy Lite and Business Lite fares are not eligible for redemption upgrades.
You cannot use points to upgrade from Economy or Premium Economy to First.
To see how many points you need to upgrade to each class check the table here. Note that the table shows one way upgrade prices only.
Your flight also needs to be operated by Singapore Airlines or Silk Air to be upgradeable under this table.
Star Alliance Upgrades with KrisFlyer
You can use your KrisFlyer miles to get an upgrade with 26 different Star Alliance member airlines. However, each airline has a different policy about which fare classes it will upgrade.
This table will tell you which fare class each airline will allow you to upgrade, and the relevant conditions/exceptions for each.
Note that upgrades are only available to the next higher class of service. Double class upgrades are not permitted.
Upgrading with Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
Asia Miles is a diverse points programme which has dozens of airline and hotel partners. If you’re new to Asia Miles, check out our beginner’s guide.
However despite having plenty of airline partners, you can only use Asia Miles to upgrade with Cathay Pacific and Cathay Dragon.
You can find the upgrade chart here.
Eligible fare classes are summarised them in the table below.
Unlike KrisFlyer, double upgrades are not allowed. You will only be able to upgrade from Economy to Business if the flight you’re on does not have Premium Economy.
|Which fare classes you can upgrade...|
|Economy to Premium Economy||Premium Economy to Business||Economy to Business||Business to First|
|Cathay Pacific||Y, B, H, K, M, L, V||W, R|
Y, B, H, K, M, L, V
J, C, D, I
|Cathay Dragon||Not applicable||Not applicable|
KrisFlyer is flexible in offering upgrades with partner airlines.
Their recent change of policy also means it is easier to get to Business Class from Economy, even when Premium Economy is offered on the same flight.
Asia Miles however have an offering more on par with Qantas and Virgin Australia, in only allowing upgrades on their own metal.
If you book through a travel agent and you intend on upgrading with points make sure you check the airline’s policy to ensure you’re in the right fare class.
Have you used points to upgrade with Singapore Airlines or Cathay Pacific? Let us know in the comments below.