March 1983-April 1985 — USAir officially launches its Frequent Traveler program.
April 1986 — In Southmark v. United Airlines, Southmark brought a class-action suit against seven major airlines, attempting to force them to permit the transfer of frequent flyer mileage to employers. The court dismissed the complaint for failure to state a cause of action. In other words, the court held that the airlines were not required to provide an employer with employee account information regarding miles and benefits earned by the employee through frequent flyer programs.
April 1987 — Holiday Inn Priority Club introduces the first hotel guest program affinity credit card.
April 1987 — Continental and Eastern merge their frequent flyer programs to form OnePass.
April 1987 — Delta completes the acquisition of Western Airlines and merges Western’s Travel Pass program into Delta’s Frequent Flyer program.
April 1988 — Without explanation, the IRS suspends consideration of plans to tax frequent flyer benefits.
April 1992 — In hopes of halting an exodus of passengers to U.S.-based airlines (and their enticing frequent flyer programs), Aeromexico launches a program of its own, called Aeromiles. The Aeromiles program rewards members with free travel on the Aeromexico system, which at the time primarily flies between Cancun, Acapulco and Mexico City.
April 2003 — The U.S. Department of Transportation approves a codeshare/frequent flyer alliance between Continental, Delta, and Northwest, leading to the largest such alliance to date.
April 2005 — American AAdvantage expands its award offerings to include hotel stays, hotel point transfers, and Diners Club point transfers.