'Airline loyalty programs should encourage real loyalty.' Really?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by sobore, Aug 27, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. sobore
    Original Member

    sobore Gold Member

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    http://www.chicagotribune.com/trave...elpkctnxf-a20130827-20130827,0,2569186.column

    A new frequent flyer study from Deloitte and Touche, claiming that airline programs aren't as effective as they could be, has generated a lot of ink and pixels. Set aside the truism that nothing is ever quite "as good as it could be," the conclusions seem pretty skewed from reality, as shown by a few examples.

    "Airline loyalty programs fail to engage." Deloitte says that a "remarkable" 72 percent of high-frequency business travelers belong to more than one airline program. Zounds! Earlier, when I was a high-frequency business traveler, I belonged to four: American, PanAm, TWA and United. Yes, I used United when I could, but often flew others for better schedules or fares. Now, I still belong to the programs of all three network lines that serve my home airport in Medford, Ore. -- Alaska, Delta and United -- as well as a few others I joined for access to some information.

    Read More: http://www.chicagotribune.com/trave...elpkctnxf-a20130827-20130827,0,2569186.column
     
  2. RonaldP

    RonaldP Member

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    The article reinforces my view of consulting and analysis firms. Heck, I've been on three trips by air in the past three years, and I belong to 3 airline plus Amtrak's program. Two cross country on one airline, one SJC>LAX on another, and the third because I think I will soon be cranking out the miles. So that 72% belong to more than one seems suspiciously low to me. I may well put all my miles on the third program, but I'm not quitting the others, and might well fly them or other airlines at things evolve (only one airline is nonstop for the rout I'll be flying).
     
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  3. LarryInNYC

    LarryInNYC Gold Member

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    Your statements reinforce, rather than contradict, the gist of the article. You belong to many FF programs and they don't seem to induce loyalty in your choice of flights -- as suggested by the consulting firm.
     
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  4. Dozer

    Dozer Silver Member

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    I'm loyal to United and Hilton. They are not always the cheapest but I stick with them anyway to rack up the rewards loyalty.

    I recently qualified for that AA frack track and was confirmed for it. But after serious consideration, i wont be doing it, status is only good if you actually use it. And for me personally, Star Alliance and united just makes sense and offers the rewards and route I need.
     
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  5. Mirror74

    Mirror74 Gold Member

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    As I am based in Central Europe, where OneWorld is not too strong, I have same considerations and attitude... but I am not so happy with Hilton Honors as yourself, as their spring devaluation was just abnormal and IMOP destroyed the reasoning behind the program... they have just gone too far... so I have switched my hotel loyalties from Hilton (where I have Diamond status) to Marriott and Hyatt... as will decide next year with who I will remain most loyal... :)
     
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  6. Mapsmith
    Original Member

    Mapsmith Gold Member

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    Loyalty to a Frequent Flyer Program is also tied to the flights and flight costs that airline has. If your preferred Loyalty Program Airline decides to eliminate a destination that you frequently fly to, then you have to find an alternative airline.

    Look at AA and the west Coast. Flying from (or to) Tucson to the San Francisco Area now requires a flight on United or connections through LAX or DFW. AA does not fly to LAS from TUS except through DFW or ORD? So if I need to go to any of those destinations I have to look at alternate airlines.

    The fortress hubs may be hurting Loyalty Programs more than other Loyalty Programs.
     
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  7. moongoddess

    moongoddess Silver Member

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    I don't think there's any doubt about that. How can you be loyal to an airline if it doesn't take you where you need to go?

    As an aside, this is something I wish the government would focus more on, instead of just examining mergers and the like. Airports where the majority of the gate slots are held by only one airline hurt competition. The fact that Star Alliance is twice the size of Oneworld or Sky Team is also problematic (although that's a harde thing to fix).
     
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  8. Mirror74

    Mirror74 Gold Member

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    Not quite... and difference between them (in terms of size) is slowly diminishing...
     
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  9. StevenGerrard

    StevenGerrard Silver Member

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    i am specialists in loyalty. I know what motivates loyal behavior. :p
     
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  10. Mirror74

    Mirror74 Gold Member

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    Good amounth of bribery (read: good value awards)? :D:D
     

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