How bad were my 2015 predictions?


I probably should have just swept these predictions under the rug and forgotten about them.  In January, I published my predictions for 2015.  Every one of my 2014 predictions had come true, at least partially, so I was feeling pretty cocky at the time.  I don’t have that feeling now!  Let’s looks at my 2015 predictions…

2015 predictions

Gary, from View from the Wing, will grudgingly admit that Delta SkyMiles should no longer be thought of as SkyPesos.

Here’s how I explained this prediction:

Delta has made it harder to earn SkyMiles, so there will be fewer in circulation, and therefore the miles people have should be more valuable (due due to less competition for award flights).  At the same time, Delta has massively improved their online award search engine, introduced the option of one-way awards, and appears to have increased saver level award availability.  Gary will continue to dislike the fact that you can’t book international first class awards with Delta SkyMiles, but he’ll come to accept that the value of the miles for economy and business class awards are in-line with the rest of the industry.

It never happened.  Even though I’ve continued to get very good value from my SkyMiles, it is probably due to living near a Delta hub.  Plus, thanks to my high level elite status, I’m free to book awards whenever I see them available at a low price even if I’m not sure I’ll take that trip.  And, since Delta announced that they will be moving further towards revenue based redemptions as of June 1, 2016, any chance of Gary saying something nice about the program was pretty well torpedoed.

New 40K and/or 50K offers will spring up from lessor known banks.

I wrote:

As the public becomes more and more aware of big signup bonuses that are available from Barclaycard, Chase, etc., smaller banks will realize that comparable big signup offers are their best way to gain customers.

I wasn’t entirely wrong here.  There were 50K offers from some regional banks.  And, there was the 100K offer from City National Bank.  Still, I thought we would see a few nationally available offers, but I can’t remember having seen any.  Let’s call this one partially right.

Citibank will add one or more new transfer partners to their ThankYou Rewards program.

I wrote:

In 2014, Citi added the ability to transfer ThankYou points to a number of airline programs (as long as you have a premium ThankYou card such as the Premier or Prestige card).  An up to date list of transfer partners (for all transferable points programs) can be found here.  My best guess is that they’ll add British Airways Avios.  The addition of American Airlines would be awesome, but I think it is unlikely.

They didn’t add British Airways Avios.  And, as predicted, they didn’t add American Airlines.  However, Citi did add 3 new partners:

Despite being wrong about British Airways, I think its safe to say I nailed this one!

Target will continue to allow REDbird credit card loads at least until August 2015

I wrote:

Many people believe that the ability to reload REDbird with credit cards will die very soon.  My guess is that it will last a while.

The deal lasted a total of 7 months, which was quite a bit longer than most people predicted, but credit card loads died in May.  I was completely wrong about “August” or later.

Target will roll out REDbird country-wide in October 2015

I wrote:

Currently the product is only available in select test markets.  See “How to find REDbird.”

I was wrong.  The Target REDcard still hasn’t been rolled out nationwide, but it has been hobbled to the point of uselessness for those who would like to use it for earning miles & points.  See: I’m calling it. REDbird is dead bird.

In the fourth quarter of 2015, Amex will add the ability for REDbird customers to enroll in Amex Offers.

I wrote:

Serve users have had this ability for a while now and Bluebird users gained the option only recently.  See also: The complete guide to Bluebird, REDcard, Serve, and SoftServe.

It didn’t happen.

Final Tally

Out of 6 predictions, I got 1 right and 1 partially right.  If we calculate the score as 1.5 out of 6, that gives me a rate of 25% correct.  That’s pretty bad.  Luckily my predictions for even numbered years tend to be really good (based on 1 recent example), so my predictions for 2016 ought to be spot on.  Stay tuned.

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[…] I proved that my odd-numbered-year predictions are not so good, but we know that I’m really good with even-numbered-year predictions.  In other words, my 2014 […]


In 2016 will we be “happy” with the direction of frequent flyer programs?


You’re on par with Miss Cleo – “Caww me now!”


Well, 25% is a far cut above most stockbrokers,:)

[…] Happy new year everybody! I made some predictions last year, so I review ‘llthem below.  I didn’t have a great batting average, but I think I still beat Frequent Miler, who is only able to predict the future 25% of the time. […]


“They didn’t add British Airways Avios. And, as predicted, they didn’t add American Airlines. However, Citi did add 3 new partners:
Virgin Atlantic
Virgin America
Despite being wrong about British Airways, I think its safe to say I *nailed* this one!” -FM

Sorry, but you didn’t “nail” this one. Your prediction that Citi would add transfer partners is not really a prediction; it’s more of a given. It’s like saying that it would snow in February. No one actually knows for certain that it will definitely snow, but it’s common and very likely. Same for Citi: everyone knew Citi would add partners but the real question was which ones. Your prediction of adding BA was completely wrong.

I’d give you a half. So, your real tally should be 1 out of 6. 17%.