The Air India SBI Card family has seen a lot of changes since 2013 when they were launched. The most recent change was earlier this year when Air India moved the needle on how many points you can earn for Air India purchases. As per Air India, then they moved up from 20 miles/INR 100 to 30 miles/INR 100 for yourself and 10 miles/INR 100 for everyone else. Here are the rules from then:
You can now earn 30 Reward Points for every Rs. 100 spent on Air India tickets booked through airindia.in, Air India mobile app, when ticket is booked for self; 10 Reward Points for every Rs. 100 spent when ticket is booked for others.
These were the rules for the Signature Variant of the card, and there were 15 Reward Points/INR 100 for the Platinum Variant (for Self) and 5 Reward Points/INR 100 for others.
Now, Air India is introducing a new method from December 1, 2017, to compute these points to ensure everyone gets as many miles as they should. The full set of rules is here, but here are the important pieces. A similar notification is issued for the Platinum Card as well:
Upto 30 Reward Points are processed in 2 separate credits. 10 Reward Points are credited as soon as the transaction is posted. 20 Reward Points are credited within 45 days of transaction posting as per the below T&C’s:
1. Flying Returns Membership Number (9 digit FFP No) should be recorded in the ticket at the time of issuance of ticket.
2. Correct FFP number (9 digit FFP No) as mentioned on the Air India SBI Card plastic should be mentioned.
3. Flying Returns Membership Number should be enrolled with Flying Returns as per their T&C for KYC.
4. The name on the ticket should exactly match with the name in Air India SBI Card profile and Air India Flying Returns profile. All the details including First Name, Middle Name, Last Name, spelling and order of the name should match.
5. SBI Credit Card accountholder name (Correspondence Name) will be used for name matching.
6. Name embossed on the card plastic will not be considered for name matching.
7. Cardholders who have initials in their Air India SBI Card account name, Air India FFP profile name or on tickets shall be ineligible.
8. There will be no retroactive settlement of claim for credit of accelerated points.
9. 20 reward points are contributed by Air India. The decision of Air India will be final and binding in this regard.
The essence of this exercise is, that Air India is taking over the credit of the bonus points to themselves, rather than have SBI Cards do this for them. Hence, they will, perhaps, manually, skim through all issued tickets to ensure only the passenger who books the tickets for themselves gets the benefits rather than, perhaps, travel agents, and family and friends who would offer to book Air India tickets for you since they’d get the higher miles.
What do you think of the new rules for earning bonus Air India miles for the use of your credit card?