Combining points from different Airlines?

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by dala212, Jul 28, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. dala212

    dala212 Member

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    Hi Folks! I am new here so be gentle. I have a question.... I have FF points on Delta, AA, United..... I know they belong to different programs.... here is the question, I now fly several different European Airlines, so can I become a member of say AirItalia and get points and later combine the points with the American partner airline? Same with Lufthansa and Olympic. OR should I just keep putting the points into my US airlines? hope this make some sense.
  2. NYBanker
    Original Member

    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Yes, your question makes sense.

    To maximize milles, you really should pick one default carrier for each alliance, and stick with that carrier's points program whenever you fly in the alliance. There are few/no options to dip into miles from multiple carriers for a single award ticket....concentrating your miles eliminates that issue. Having 5,000 on Alitalia, 10,000 on klm and 10,000 on DL gets you essentially nothing. Having 25,000 on any one of those gets you a free economy ticket.

    Further, if you fly enough, you could reach elite status on one of the carriers, which would give you some degree of enhanced benefits within the alliance (business class check in, etc).

    There are a few exceptions to this general rule (about sticking with one carrier within an alliance for miles accrual), but they are only applicable in unusual circumstances.

    As to which carrier within the alliance, you should look at who you will be flying the most. They're the most likely candidate, but you should also look at award different carriers within each alliance may charge different prices in miles for the same flight than other carriers do.

    Whenever possible, you should pick the alliance that you would like to concentrate on. If possible to concentrate you flying so that you get status on one or two alliances would generally be a good idea.

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