A Question About Gifting Lower Tier Status to Strangers

Discussion in 'Newbies' started by NewGamePlus, Apr 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. NewGamePlus
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    NewGamePlus Silver Member

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    I assume the airlines do not restrict to whom you may grant your status bonuses (ie: Delta Platinum Medallion members may gift a 1 year Silver Medallion status.) If that's correct, are these benefits ever traded or sold? Also, what's the prevailing attitude amongst frequent fliers on this sort of thing?

    Thanks in advance for any help you can provide!
     
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  2. kwai
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    kwai Gold Member

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    They are traded and sold. This is typically against the contract and accounts can be audited and closed for it. That said, many people trade and sell all sorts of things with no ramifications. YMMV.
     
  3. chrislacey
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    chrislacey Milepoint Guide

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    I'm with kwai on this. In general, selling and bartering are explicitly against the terms and conditions of the FF program. I have known people who have sold lower status to others and (so far) did not get caught, but anytime you do something against the terms and conditions...you risk both your miles/status and the other person's miles/status. These things are really more about your values and how you feel about breaking the rules. Personally, I'd rather give away lower status to a friend or colleague who would be able to receive some benefit from it.
     
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  4. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    For the DL gifts of Silver and Gold from PM and DM choice benefits, I've seen listings in coupon connection in that other place. A few people almost seem to have a side business bartering them, supposedly from family members. It surprises me because one doesn't see many postings over there of major DL stuff, mainly drink chits and lounge passes, although the DL rules on SWU use would make it tough to trade them.

    In this case, it would seem that the seller has more to lose if caught in general, since these must come from elites with at least 75K MQMs and the people wanting them would fly well under 25K or 50K or they'd already have status. Also, DL grants status matches, so that someone who has moved or otherwise is changing carriers doesn't need to get status by bartering or purchasing a "gift." Moreover, you don't need Silver for a free bag as DL offers this to everyone with their branded AmEx cards.

    Personally I think it's crazy to risk getting caught on something like this. Also, I would feel very guilty because it's simply wrong to knowingly break the rules like this.
     
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  5. DestinationDavid
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    As I mentioned in another thread about selling miles - buyer/seller beware!

    Sure, plenty of people get away with doing it, but some people do get caught. There isn't a long history here on MP yet, but if you poke around the web you can easily find stories of people who were caught selling/bartering their FF program benefits (miles, upgrades, status) and essentially lost everything. It's a risky behavior to be engaged in, though admittedly one where the chances of being caught are still rather ambiguous.

    I'm with chrislacey, with the risk of losing all you worked hard for, I'd look for a deserving friend, family member, or coworker instead. That's just my 2 cents worth, and you're free to give me change back if you don't think it was worth the price! :)
     
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  6. Gargoyle
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    Gargoyle Milepoint Guide

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    With buddy passes (employee passes), if the person using the pass misbehaves the employee gets in trouble. When you guest someone into a lounge, if they misbehave you can lose privileges. I wouldn't be surprised if there are similar repercussions if you gift status and the recipient behaves badly.

    I don't see this as an issue when you gift status to someone you know (I've gifted status to my wife and to my daughter), but if it's a commercial transaction with a stranger, you don't know who they are or what they could do.
    IMHO, the potential longterm downsides far outweigh the few dollars you gain.
     
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  7. NewGamePlus
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    NewGamePlus Silver Member

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    Thanks for all the feedback and opinions everyone! Your contributions and advice are appreciated.
     
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  8. MSPeconomist
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    I'd be somewhat afraid too that if the person is trying to barter status, they're probably engaged in other questionable, forbidden, or unethical behavior. If they get caught for anything and your FF account is linked to theirs in any way, you can be certain that your account will at least be examined very carefully.
     
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  9. kwai
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    kwai Gold Member

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    Your question is appreciated and relevant.
     
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