9 Best Frequent Flier Programs — and How to Make the Most of Their Benefits (2022)

Every airline in the United States has a frequent flier program, and if you take a few flights a year, it's absolutely worth signing up for them.

Each of these programs includes earning award points or miles that can be redeemed for free flights and upgrades. All you have to do is sign up for a free account with an airline, add your frequent flier number to your reservation, and every dollar you spend with an airline earns you points. In some cases, you can even earn points from hotel bookings, car rentals, or any purchases made with an airline-branded credit card.

But if you fly more frequently than the average person, you can earn elite status with airlines — and that's where the big-time perks come in, from free checked bags to priority boarding to free upgrades.

Find out everything you need to know about the best frequent flier programs for U.S.–based airlines.

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Alaska Airlines Alaska Mileage Plan

9 Best Frequent Flier Programs — and How to Make the Most of Their Benefits (1)

Alaska Airlines' Alaska Mileage Plan is often highly regarded by both industry pros and the frequent fliers who belong to it. In general, it's very easy to earn miles with Alaska via flight reservations, branded credit card spend, hotel stays, dining reservations, shopping, and even personal or student loans with SoFi, among other methods. (According to the airline, you can earn 30 percent more miles on Alaska than on other airlines for flights of equal length and price.) As for elite status, the airline has a four-tier system, ranging from MVP to MVP Gold 100K — perks include free first class upgrades, extra baggage allowance, and day passes to the airline's lounges, depending on the tier. Better yet, Alaska joined the Oneworld alliance, which means miles can be earned and redeemed on any of the 14 partner airlines, including Qatar Airways, Cathay Pacific, and British Airways. And Alaska has an additional partnership with American Airlines that allows elite status holders to receive reciprocal benefits on both carriers, greatly increasing domestic and international route options.

Delta Air Lines SkyMiles

As with all the major U.S. airlines, Delta's SkyMiles program offers myriad ways to earn award miles that can be spent on flights, upgrades, hotel bookings, and even bottles of Dom Perignon in its Sky Club lounges. Earning these redeemable miles, which never expire, is strictly based on dollar spend. But when you transfer over to Delta's elite program, earning Medallion status is based on a combination of miles flown (Medallion Qualifying Miles, or MQMs) and dollars spent (Medallion Qualifying Dollars, or MQDs). The four tiers of Delta's program offer a range of benefits, most notably free upgrades to Comfort+, first class, and sometimes even Delta One (the airline's lie-flat business-class seat) on domestic and short-haul international routes. Top-tier status holders are even gifted Global Upgrade Certificates, which can be redeemed for long-haul international business-class flights. Miles can be earned and redeemed on most airlines in the SkyTeam alliance, which includes 19 airlines (such as KLM, Air France, and Korean Air) that fly to more than 1,000 destinations around the world.

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United MileagePlus

9 Best Frequent Flier Programs — and How to Make the Most of Their Benefits (2)

You probably see the trend by now — on United, you can earn award miles in a variety of means, all of which revolve around spending money, whether on flights on the airline and its partners, on other travel bookings, or on airline-branded credit cards. And, of course, those miles can be used to purchase flights, hotel rooms, car rentals, and more. So let's fast forward to the elite status side of United's MileagePlus program; there are four Premier status tiers, which are earned by either the number of flights flown (Premier Qualifying Flights, or PQFs) in combination with a certain dollar spend (Premier Qualifying Points, or PQPs), or purely via dollar spend. The former option requires fewer PQPs, while the latter requires more PQPs. Benefits include free upgrades, free checked bags with a higher weight limit, and PlusPoints redeemable for international business-class upgrades. United belongs to Star Alliance, which has 26 members, including Lufthansa and All Nippon Airways (ANA).

American Airlines AAdvantage

American Airlines completely overhauled its loyalty program in 2022, streamlining AAdvantage into a simpler process. Award miles, which you can use to book flights, have largely remained the same. You can earn those in the traditional ways, like booking travel or using your airline-branded credit card, at a rate of five to 11 miles per dollar spent, depending on your status level. But earning status has changed entirely. Now, American Airlines frequent fliers have just one revenue-based metric to meet in order to achieve elite status: Loyalty Points. They're essentially linked to dollars spent either on American Airlines flights or those of its partners (American is part of the Oneworld alliance), or dollars spent on an airline-branded credit card, but the math for each transaction can get a little complex. Once status is achieved through spend, elites can enjoy most of the same perks as before the loyalty program overhaul — free domestic upgrades, systemwide upgrades for international business class, extra baggage allowance, and multipliers for earning award miles and Loyalty Points, among many others.

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Hawaiian Airlines Hawaiian Miles

9 Best Frequent Flier Programs — and How to Make the Most of Their Benefits (3)

Hawaiian Airlines has a fairly strong frequent flier program, but we're ranking it lower on the list due to the fact that it's really only beneficial if you live in Hawaii or fly there very, very frequently. As with the big U.S. airlines, redeemable miles can be earned via a variety of travel bookings or spend on branded credit cards, but the key here is that they have a very good redemption rate — that is, you can spend fewer miles on more expensive flights. Though Hawaiian doesn't belong to one of the big three alliances, it does have partnerships with a number of airlines, including JetBlue, Japan Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic. You can both spend and redeem miles with those partners. In the elite part of the program, Hawaiian offers two tiers — Pulani Gold and Pulani Platinum — which are earned based on segments flown or the number of miles flown. Perks include free upgrades, lounge access, and discounted award bookings.

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards

You guessed it — frequent fliers on Southwest who are enrolled in the Rapid Rewards program can earn award points by booking travel or using an airline-branded credit card. But earning status on Southwest looks a little different than on some other carriers. On most airlines, you can expedite the process of earning status by booking more expensive first-class or business-class seats. Southwest, however, only has one class of seats. But it does have three different fare types for those seats: "Wanna Get Away" tickets have lower base fares and fewer points earned per dollar, while "Anytime" and "Business Select" tickets have higher base fares and more points earned per dollar. But overall, the gist is the same — you can qualify for status based on spend or on segments flown. Southwest has a three-tier system: A-List, A-List Preferred, and Companion Pass. While the two A-List tiers include typical perks, such as priority boarding and a dedicated customer service phone line, Companion Pass is the real highlight. If you reach this tier of status, you can designate a companion who can fly with you for free (though they'll still have to pay for taxes and fees).

JetBlue TrueBlue

9 Best Frequent Flier Programs — and How to Make the Most of Their Benefits (5)

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JetBlue's TrueBlue loyalty program is on the leaner side when it comes to perks, both for award points and elite status. Award points are earned in all the usual ways — travel bookings, credit card spend, and so on. But while points can be earned on airline partners, including American Airlines, with whom it has a codeshare agreement, and Emirates, they can only be spent on JetBlue flights. (Eventually, JetBlue TrueBlue members will be able to redeem them on American flights, too, but that program is still rolling out.) Award points can, however, be pooled with family and friends, allowing anyone in your group to tap into the group's pot to book free flights. As for elite status, there are just two tiers, Mosaic and Mosaic+, with the latter being a temporary tier for the 2022 calendar year. Achieving status requires earning a certain number of Mosaic Qualifying Points (based on dollar spend), either alone or in combination with segments flown, or spending a certain number of dollars with your airline-branded credit card. Perks include free checked bags, free inflight alcoholic beverages, and same-day flight changes. The downside of this program is that there aren't free upgrades to Mint, JetBlue's premium class, except for Mosaic members, who receive four upgrade certificates (they're not redeemable on JetBlue's new route to London, though). JetBlue Mosaic and Mosaic+ members do, however, receive some reciprocal benefits on American Airlines due to their codeshare agreement.

Spirit Airlines Free Spirit

We'll be honest, Spirit's Free Spirit loyalty program is pretty basic. But if you find yourself flying the airline a lot, the program's perks can certainly improve the quality of your travel experience. There are just two tiers of elite status, Silver and Gold, which are earned through Status Qualifying Points (SQPs). Earning is pretty straightforward — every dollar you spend earns one SQP that goes towards your status. Once you hit the earning benchmarks, you're rewarded with perks like free seat selection, free checked and carry-on bags (Gold only), and free beverages and snacks (Gold only). The biggest downer about Spirit's program is that status holders aren't given free upgrades to the airline's "premium" cabin, the Big Front Seat. On the plus side, points earned in the program can be pooled with family and friends and redeemed for free flights, just as with JetBlue.

Frontier Airlines Frontier Miles

Frontier ranks last on our list primarily due to the fact that it has a more limited international route network than Spirit (though it does have more domestic routes). It also lacks premium seats — there is "stretch seating" with extra legroom, but those seats are otherwise the same as standard economy. But as with Spirit, the perks for the airline's elite status holders do make a big difference in the quality of your travel experience. Frontier has a three-tier system — Elite 20K, Elite 50K, Elite 100K — which are earned by dollar spend, flights flown, or distance flown. Status provides benefits like free carry-ons and checked bags, free seat assignments, and priority boarding, depending on the tier. Where Frontier does eclipse Spirit, however, is that status holders can score free upgrades to "stretch seating." It, too, offers family and friends points pooling for flight redemption.

FAQs

Is there a frequent flyer program for all airlines? ›

Every major U.S. airline has a loyalty program, and if you like, you can join them all. But rather than earning small quantities of miles spread over multiple rewards programs where they may never amount to an award flight, it makes sense to focus your spending and flying to one or two.

What are the benefits of frequent flyer programs? ›

Typical awards include a free ticket, food and beverage perks, or a free upgrade from economy seating to higher seating class. Some airlines also offer "elite" programs which provide check-in and boarding priorities, and "affinity" credit cards which earn mileage credits when you use them for purchases.

How do I get the most frequent flyer programs? ›

  1. Focus on Where You Fly.
  2. Consider Airline Partners.
  3. Get a Points or Miles Bonus.
  4. Choose the Right Credit Card.
  5. Dine Out.
  6. Use Shopping Portals.
  7. Fly.

What airline is best to have status on? ›

Winner: Alaska Airlines

Alaska wins again this year, thanks to strong performance across all of its MVP levels. Whether you're an ultra-frequent flyer or not, you can't go wrong with earning MVP status on Alaska.

What airline is easiest to get status? ›

American Airlines comes out on top if you're looking for the easiest way to spend toward airline elite status. You can spend just $30,000 on an American Airlines card and get AAdvantage Gold elite status without stepping a foot on a plane.

Are frequent flyer programs worth it? ›

Yes, airline miles are worth it. Whether you earn airline miles through an airline's frequent flyer program or from a credit card with miles, you're earning something of value in return for money you would be spending anyway.

How does frequent flyer type of programs help the airline growth? ›

The concept behind frequent flyer programs is that the airlines want their passengers to become lifetime customers. It is much more costly for the airlines to get new customers than it is to retain the ones they already have.

What airline has the oldest frequent flyer program? ›

However, it was Texas International Airlines that gets the credit when it comes to the first frequent flyer program based on miles. In 1979, it started to use mileage tracking to give its passengers rewards.

How long does frequent flyer status last? ›

When you are designated as a Frequent Traveller, you receive a silver status card, which is valid for a minimum of two years, as well as a high-quality bag tag in the status colour.

Is Delta or United Status better? ›

In the competition of Delta versus United, there isn't a clear winner. Delta charges less baggage fees and makes basic economy more tolerable for a frugal traveler. United, on other hand, has a stronger loyalty program and a stronger presence when it comes to global connections.

Which is better Delta or United? ›

The quick answer is that Delta is the superior airline in terms of customer service, free flight changes, and overall experience. United is the more budget-friendly option, depending on what extras you need. Both airlines are enormous and have tons of flights around the world.

How do I get United silver status without flying? ›

United: Earn Status Without Flying

Thanks to United's partnership with Marriott, Marriott Bonvoy Titanium and Ambassador elite members can register to get free United Premier Silver status. See details in our Marriott Bonvoy Complete Guide.

Does Delta have frequent flyer program? ›

Earn miles for flying Main Cabin or above and on everyday purchases. Use those earned miles toward travel on any Delta Air Lines flight, toward a Delta Vacations® package with no blackout dates or for rewards like upgrades and premium drinks at Delta Sky Club®. You know the rewards of travel.

Does Delta have a good mileage program? ›

Delta SkyMiles are above average in value as far as airline miles go. Its miles are only worth less than JetBlue and Southwest, and it beats out other legacy carriers, like United and American, in terms of value.

How do I build air miles? ›

You can earn airline miles in many ways, including booking flights or spending money with a travel credit card that offers rewards in the form of miles.
  1. Earning miles through flights. ...
  2. Earning miles with a credit card. ...
  3. Earn by buying, transferring or pooling airline miles. ...
  4. Earn through shopping portals and dining programs.

Does Delta have lifetime status? ›

With Delta SkyMiles' million miler program, members can earn lifetime status with all published elite tiers, though you better be ready to be loyal for a very long time. Delta's lifetime elite status is based on the number of Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQMs) that you earn through all means.

Can I buy elite status on American Airlines? ›

American Airlines' AAdvantage program has just rolled out some status buy up offers based on 2021 elite activity. It's pretty normal for airlines to offer promotions for buying the next elite tier, though admittedly the past couple of years have been a bit unusual when it comes to airline loyalty.

Can you buy status with airlines? ›

Buying & Gifting Status

With some American-based airlines you can earn elite miles with the purchase and use of a credit card (like Delta and United) and with others (US Airways) you can buy status out-right for a set price. US Airways values their lowest level of status at $1,299 and their highest at around $4,000.

Is it worth it to only fly one airline? ›

Sticking with one airline means fewer options when searching for flights, which can lead to higher fares and less convenient flights. Yet frequent flyer and elite status programs reward loyalty, so you'll have an easier time earning free flights and perks if you mostly stick with one airline or alliance.

How do loyalty programs make money? ›

Loyalty program monetization through surveys

One way to increase your business' loyalty program profits is to offer market research surveys to your members. Companies invest in market research to gauge the market and identify what consumers would like to see from them going forward.

How often do you need to fly to be a frequent flyer? ›

It all depends on the frequent flyer program of your choice, its rules and flights, that you take, but the rule of thumb is, that with just 3-4 flights a year you can think about yourself as a frequent flyer, who's entitled to certain perks.

How can airline loyalty programs be improved? ›

Loyalty programs must innovate for value
  1. Go beyond airline seats. ...
  2. Encourage late-booking redemptions. ...
  3. Move to dynamic redemptions. ...
  4. Rethink how to price and manage redemption seats internally. ...
  5. Take a more customer-value view of redemptions. ...
  6. Become more relaxed about redemptions on partner airlines.
Oct 10, 2018

What are the most commonly used loyalty programs in the US? ›

Top 5 loyalty programs in the USA
  • 1.Sephora. Sephora utilises a tiered loyalty system called 'Beauty Insider' program where one loyalty point is received for every dollar that is spent in store, or online. ...
  • 2.Starbucks. ...
  • 3.Amazon Prime. ...
  • 4.Walgreens. ...
  • 5.Target.
Jul 4, 2018

Why do airlines like frequent flyer schemes? ›

A strong product offering by an airline will entice people to join and become active in the airline's frequent flyer program, while a strong program with many redemption options along with aspirational redemptions will entice members to fly with the airline. The two are intrinsically linked.

What is the oldest airline still operating today? ›

Delta Air Lines - March 1925

Delta Air Lines was not the first US airline, but it is the oldest still in operation. The carrier started life as Huff Daland Dusters, an aerial crop dusting company founded in Georgia.

Is there a 10 million mile club? ›

A US businessman has been rewarded for his loyalty to one single airline company after accumulating 10 million air miles. Thomas Stuker, a sales consultant, reached the milestone after a flight from Los Angeles to Chicago.

Who owns frequent flier miles on company purchases? ›

Your company owns any points earned from charges made on their corporate card, but you own the frequent flier miles you're logging. If it's your name on the plane ticket and your butt in the seat, those are your miles. It's up to you to claim them, of course.

Which airline points never expire? ›

Miles and points expiration terms by airline

As you can see, just a few airlines — Delta, JetBlue and United — guarantee that their points do not expire. Southwest points also don't expire as long as your account remains open and in good standing. Alaska Airlines' two-year expiration policy is also quite generous.

Which airline frequent flyer miles do not expire? ›

Delta SkyMiles, United MileagePlus, Southwest Rapid Rewards, HawaiianMiles and JetBlue TrueBlue points don't expire. On the other end of the spectrum is Spirit Airlines, where miles expire three months after they are earned.

What does AA platinum status get you? ›

Platinum status is the second-lowest tier in the American Airlines AAdvantage program and offers complimentary auto-requested upgrades, a 48-hour upgrade window, 60% elite mileage bonus, complimentary Main Cabin Extra and Preferred seats, and 2 free checked bags.

Can you transfer miles between airlines? ›

The straight answer is no, you can't transfer airline miles to another airline. But you can book award flights on other airlines if they're travel partners.

What airlines are in Star Alliance? ›

Air Canada, Air India, Air France, Alitalia, Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, KLM, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Swiss International Airlines, TAP Portugal, Turkish Airlines, and United Airlines.

Who is considered a frequent flyer? ›

It all depends on the frequent flyer program of your choice, its rules and flights, that you take, but the rule of thumb is, that with just 3-4 flights a year you can think about yourself as a frequent flyer, who's entitled to certain perks.

What does frequent flyer mean on boarding pass? ›

Frequent-flyer programs, or FFPs, are loyalty schemes run by airlines or airline alliances. Every time customers fly, they accumulate points to be used on future travel as well as other benefits.

How much is 60000 American Airlines miles worth? ›

However, you can find cash prices for only $109 each way — which is really, really cheap. That's $654 for three round-trips. If you deduct the $33.60 in taxes you paid for award flights, you realize your 60,000 miles are worth $620 in cash.

Is Delta affiliated with United? ›

First Delta and Northwest merged in 2008. United and Continental got together in 2010, while US Airways and American completed their union last year. As a result, the nation's three remaining legacy carriers have become pretty much the same, Scott McCartney wrote in The Wall Street Journal.

How much does 1000 American Airlines miles cost? ›

American Airlines Miles vs. The Competition
Rewards ProgramAverage Mile ValueValue of 1,000 Miles
American Airlines AAdvantage1.34 cents$13.4
Delta SkyMiles®1.29 cents$12.9
Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards1.37 cents$13.7
Alaska Airlines1.18 cents$11.8
1 more row
Mar 24, 2022

Can you use United Club passes at Star Alliance lounges? ›

Paid Lounge Membership Customers

Eligible paid memberships are United Club and Air Canada Maple Leaf Club – Worldwide. You will need to show your boarding pass for a Star Alliance member airline operated flight together with your valid paid lounge membership card, displaying the Star Alliance Lounge Logo.

How do I get a Star Alliance Gold Card? ›

With only 40,000 miles needed over a 24-month period, Star Alliance Gold status is relatively easily obtained. Better yet, to keep this status, you only need 30,000 miles in the subsequent 24-month period.

What alliance is Delta in? ›

Our SkyTeam partners (an alliance of 18 airlines serving over 175 countries and 1,150 destinations across the globe) all offer a unique suite of benefits including access to partner lounges around the world).

WalletHub compared 10 airline rewards programs to pick the best frequent flyer programs for three travel budgets. Join the best frequent flyer program.

To help you earn more free flights and other assorted perks, WalletHub compared the 10 largest domestic airlines’ loyalty rewards programs across 21 key metrics, ranging from the value of a rewards point or mile to blackout-date policies.. To find out which airline miles program is best for you, try out the frequent flyer miles calculator below.. Scoring CategoriesMaximum ScoreAmerican AirlinesDelta Air LinesSouthwest AirlinesUnited AirlinesJetBlue AirwaysAlaska AirlinesSpirit AirlinesFrontier AirlinesHawaiian AirlinesSun Country Airlines Frequent Flyer Program - AAdvantage programSkyMilesRapid RewardsMileagePlusTrueBlueMileage PlanFREE SPIRITmyFrontierHawaiianMilesSun Country Rewards Number of US Destinations 10.009.689.084.0910.002.304.041.613.760.102.34 Number of International Destinations 5.004.562.080.245.001.360.361.040.400.120.52 Partner airlines earning and redemption 3.001.661.930.003.040.361.860.000.040.430.00 Number of US destinations of partner airline 4.003.241.480.002.853.634.000.000.211.050.52 Number of International destinations of partner airline 3.001.591.360.003.000.572.550.000.050.340.23 Value earned - Light Flyer 20.009.288.8112.118.761.7019.885.1118.7720.000.38 Value earned - Average Flyer 20.005.858.647.648.601.0819.885.0111.8420.000.24 Value earned -Frequent Flyer 20.006.617.447.377.404.4819.894.9711.2020.000.17 Earning Limits 3.000.003.003.000.003.003.003.003.003.003.00 Earn miles when booking through 3rd party websites 7.007.007.007.007.007.007.007.007.007.007.00 Retroactive flight credit for members 4.001.711.141.711.711.711.710.000.570.190.00 Retroactive flight credit for non-members 1.000.000.731.000.001.000.000.000.450.270.18 Booking blackout dates 6.006.006.006.006.006.006.006.006.006.006.00 Advance booking 3.002.392.390.402.502.372.393.001.262.371.47 Short-notice booking fee 3.003.003.003.003.003.003.000.000.003.003.00 Layover in award flight 5.000.005.000.005.005.005.005.000.005.005.00 Award-ticket redeposit fee 3.003.003.003.003.003.003.000.000.003.003.00 Miles expiration 6.003.006.006.006.006.006.000.006.006.006.00 Expired mile reactivation 1.000.001.001.001.001.001.000.001.001.000.00 Ease of achieving elite status 3.000.311.701.691.881.982.322.862.143.000.00 Transferring miles between accounts 1.000.000.000.000.001.000.000.001.000.000.00 Membership perks - Light Flyer 6.000.330.001.500.000.500.000.000.002.490.00 Membership perks - Average Flyer 6.000.334.661.504.990.504.490.661.993.490.00 Membership perks - Frequent Flyer 6.004.995.492.494.993.664.992.162.493.990.00 Purchasing Miles 3.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.000.00 Score not based on consumer spending 74.0047.1455.8938.1360.9850.2853.2329.5132.8841.8738.28 Light Flyer Score 100.0056.7464.7151.7369.7452.4873.1134.6251.6564.3638.66 Average Flyer Score 100.0053.3269.2047.2774.5751.8577.6035.1846.7165.3638.52 Frequent Flyer Score 100.0058.7468.8247.9873.3758.4278.1136.6446.5765.8638.45. Who benefits more from airline rewards programs: consumers or the airlines themselves?. Frequent Flyer : Spends $6,994 on annual airline travel.. Partner airline earning and redemption (max score: 3 points). We collected the total number of partner airlines that allow you to both earn and redeem miles.. Amount Spent: We used the aforementioned consumer spending profiles to determine how much Light, Average and Frequent flyers spend on airfare each year.. Redemption Value : In order to determine the redemption value of a mile earned from each airline, we divided each airline’s average ticket price in dollars by the average number of miles needed for an award flight.. Value Per $100 Spent : To calculate the overall value each type of flyer would earn per $1 spent, we multiplied the number of miles earned by the respective airline’s redemption value and divided by the consumer’s annual spend.. For example, assuming that an airline offers 3 miles per $1 spent and its miles are worth two cents apiece, a “Light” flyer would earn roughly $19.26 in free airfare over the course of a year ($321 * 3 *0.02).. Earning Policies (total score: 15 points). Redemption Policies (total score: 20 points) a. Booking blackout dates (max score: 6 points)

Air travel can be stressful, so we've rounded up 25 things you should do before your next flight so you can relax and know that you're totally prepared.

Airline credit cards like the United Explorer and American's Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select offer cardholders perks similar to elites, including free checked bags and priority boarding.. Once you settle on an airline, double-check the aircraft type and seat map on the carrier's site to make sure you're flying the plane you want.. Keep all your information in one place by using App in the Air or TripIt , two apps that do things like consolidate your flight statuses, check-in times, gate numbers, and nearby lounge locations, and will update you on schedule and gate changes.. Check your bag's dimensions at home and make sure they adhere to your airline's limits.. If you're flying during the pandemic, you'll want to check your airline's guidelines for travel as well as your destination's requirements for incoming visitors.

Frequent flyer programs can help you earn free flights, but they can also be confusing and overwhelming. This step-by-step guide tells you what you can expect.

Is learning about frequent flyer programs worth your time and effort?. Then, enter your frequent flyer number when you buy tickets so that you'll earn reward miles or points.. And airlines often give card members free checked bags, which can be a value of $30 each way for you and others on your reservation, depending on the card .. Although rewards are sometimes called miles, nowadays you typically earn rewards based on how much money you spend, not how far you fly.. If you get to an elite frequent flyer level, you’ll often earn miles at an accelerated rate when you fly.. If you don't have enough rewards to cover a flight, you can buy points or miles from the airline, but this is almost always a bad deal because they cost more than they’re worth, on average.. Free flights: Use your airline’s booking website to see what a particular flight will cost if you pay with reward miles or points vs. cash.. Ultimately, airline programs differ so much in earning and redeeming miles — and achieving elite status — that you’ll have to learn the rules of the particular programs you choose to join.. You can become a frequent flyer by signing up for an individual airline’s frequent flyer program.. What is a frequent flyer number?. Individuals can have multiple frequent flyer numbers depending on the number of airlines they typically fly.. You can become a frequent flyer by signing up for an individual airline’s frequent flyer program.. What is a frequent flyer number?. Individuals can have multiple frequent flyer numbers depending on the number of airlines they typically fly.

Miles, points and cash back oh my! We've looked at them all and have ranked the ten best rewards cards for this month. Here's what you need to know.

: Chase Freedom Flex℠ : Best All-Around Cash Back * : Best Cash Back for Online Shopping Discover it® Cash Back : Best First-Year Welcome Bonus * : Best Flat Rate Cash Back Rewards * : Best Hilton Rewards Card : Best Hyatt Brands Rewards Card * : Best Mid-Tier Hilton Rewards Card : Best for Delta Passengers United Club℠ Infinite Card : Best for United Passengers Aeroplan® Credit Card : Best for Regular Air Canada and Star Alliance Passengers : Best Premium Flex Rewards Card Chase Sapphire Reserve® : Best Chase Rewards Card : Best Mid-Tier Flex Rewards * : Best for Rent Rewards. 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, our premier rewards program that lets you redeem rewards for cash back, travel, gift cards and more 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service, and unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.. Receive 5 tier qualifying night credits towards status after account opening, and each year after that for as long as your account is open Earn an extra free night at any Category 1-4 Hyatt hotel if you spend $15,000 in a calendar year Earn 2 qualifying night credits towards tier status every time you spend $5,000 on your card Earn up to 9 points total for Hyatt stays – 4 Bonus Points per $1 spent at Hyatt hotels & 5 Base Points per $1 you can earn as a World of Hyatt member Earn 2 Bonus Points per $1 spent at restaurants, on airline tickets purchased directly from the airlines, on local transit and commuting and on fitness club and gym memberships. Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you’ll get Capital One’s best prices on thousands of options Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs. A rewards credit card can maximize the value of many of your credit card purchases by allowing you to earn rewards—in the form of cash back, points or miles—when you use the card.. As a means of incentivizing credit card use among qualifying cardholders, credit card issuers provide rewards on qualifying credit card spend and “return” some of the value of this fee to the purchasing consumer in the form of cash back.. Travel rewards cards offer points or miles and are often co-branded with airline or hotel partners to earn credit card points or miles with travel loyalty reward programs.. A travel rewards credit card earns points or miles on qualifying purchases, which can often be redeemed either in partnership with an airline or hotel loyalty reward program or with the card issuer’s reward program for travel, including for airline tickets, hotel stays or cruises.. Travel rewards cards offer similar earning structures to cash-back rewards cards but earn points or miles instead of cash back.. Though traditionally miles were earned for spending with the airline, co-branded credit cards offer the ability to earn airline reward program miles as reward for spending on a credit card nearly anywhere.. Typically for the best rewards cards you’ll need excellent credit but student cards often offer rewards and some secured cards designed for those building or rebuilding credit even offer rewards, too.

There are many ways to earn and use Hilton Honors points. Here are some hints and tips on how I most often earn points and spend them.

Then, I discovered I could earn even more points through credit card purchases.. Hilton bases your level on the number of nights you stay each year in their properties unless you have a Hilton Honors American Express Card.. Then you can earn points that will increase your status level by making purchases on your card.. While there are many ways to earn and use Hilton Honors points, here are some hints and tips on how I most often earn points and spend them with my Hilton Honors American Express Card.. Silver status gives you a 20 percent bonus on Hilton Honors Base Points earned from your Hilton Honors stay.. The more points you earn, the more your status increases, and the higher your status, the more points you earn.. For example, when you charge at a Hilton hotel or resort, you can earn 7 times Hilton Bonus Points for every dollar you spend on your American Express.. When you request to reserve a room for one night and are told there aren’t any rooms available, it may mean they don’t have any reservations for only one night.. For example, if you’re road tripping and staying only one night in one hotel before moving to the next, it’s better to earn points and spend the points on hotels where you’ll stay at least five nights.. However, Hilton doesn’t charge the resort fees when you pay for your stay with 100 percent reward points.. I pay for everything I can with my card and then pay the outstanding balance weekly.. So be sure to pay your monthly balance on time or early to avoid interest to make earning points on the Hilton Honors card economical.

Bad weather, staffing shortages or other factors can impact on-time departures. Get expert tips on how to handle flight cancellations or delays.​

The chaos and unpredictability of air travel this summer was taken up a notch with London Heathrow airport’s July 12 announcement that it would limit the number of passengers it serves through mid-September.. Heathrow CEO John Holland-Kaye said in an open letter to passengers that, “as departing passenger numbers have regularly exceeded 100,000 a day, we have started to see periods when service drops to a level that is not acceptable: long queue times, delays for passengers requiring assistance, bags not traveling with passengers or arriving late, low punctuality and last-minute cancellations.”. The flight from Heathrow to Italy was canceled, and their bags have disappeared: “It’s three weeks later and their luggage is still lost,” she says.. But many Americans are eager to travel this summer, even with the potential air travel headaches.. If you’re one of them, it will help to know what to do in case your flight is delayed or canceled.. Book flights earlier in the day, with a direct carrier.. Changing a flight at the last minute will sometimes mean checked baggage will be left behind, trailing your new itinerary.. “Agencies have direct access and clout with airlines,” Decter says.

Most foods are safe for pregnant women and their babies.. Women who are pregnant need more of these nutrients than women who are not pregnant:. Your body gets the water it needs through the fluids you drink and the foods you eat.. Some higher intensity sports are safe for some pregnant women who were already doing them before becoming pregnant.. Is the food and water safe?. If you drink alcohol or use drugs and cannot quit, talk to your doctor right away.. Women who are abused often don't get the prenatal care their babies need.. This can be even more harmful to you and your baby.

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