Cathay Pacific Eliminates Award Waitlisting

This is a disappointing decision, as it eliminates one of the main incentives to book award tickets through Cathay Pacifics frequent flier program.
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles has ended the waitlisting for award winners

Cathay Pacifics Asia Miles frequent fleer program will no more allow standard award tickets for waitlisting as of October 22, 2021.

In order to give context, award tickets on Cathay Pacific metal in all 4 classes were available through the Asia Miles program in the past. You could waitlist for award space on a flight if it didn't have one. If an award spot became available, you would automatically be granted it.

This feature was great for situations when you could not confirm an award seat immediately. Instead of checking back daily (or multiple times per day depending on your persistence), you could trust that the system would work and that you'd be informed when an award seat becomes available.

Cathay Pacific refers to this change as part of a larger plan to simplify award offerings.

Cathay Pacific has stopped allowing award waitlisting

This is a big deal.

This change removes the main reason to book Cathay Pacific award tickets through Asia Miles rather than through a partner frequent flier program. Booking through a carrier's frequent flyer program is a great way to get an award, especially in first class.

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles has several transfer partners with major transferable point currencies. Award pricing isn't as competitive as Alaska Mileage Plan and American AAdvantage.

The advantage of booking through Asia Miles is that:

Sometimes, the program has more access to award seats than other partner programs.

You can waitlist for an award in cases where there aren't enough award seats

The change eliminated one of these two benefits, which is quite disappointing. I'm not certain what Cathay Pacific's motivation for this change is. The ability to waitlist is a great feature, which many will appreciate. It costs very little and can be used by almost anyone.

Are they worried about the possibility that waitinglists could make it easier to book awards and reduce revenue?

This negates the advantage of booking via Asia Miles

Bottom line

Cathay Pacific Asia Miles has stopped allowing waitlisting for award tickets when there is not immediate confirmable upgrade space. Waitlisting is always a good feature, as it makes it easier for you to confirm your award space.

Cathay Pacific's elimination of this feature is a shame. It makes Cathay Pacific more likely to offer Cathay Pacific awards via American AAdvantage or Alaska Mileage Plan.

What do you think of Cathay Pacific ending the waitlisting for award nominations?