Which Star Alliance FF Plan is Right For Me?

Discussion in 'Star Alliance' started by Lufthansa Flyer, Feb 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Lufthansa Flyer
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    Lufthansa Flyer Gold Member

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    Thought I would start the topic as we had a similar one on another site. Feel free to ask for advice for which Star Alliance (*A) plan may be best suited for you. Please provide the following info:

    1. Home Airport

    2. Typical Class of Travel (First, Biz, Steerage)

    3. Number of Miles typically flown in 1 year

    4. Typical # of Segments Flown in 1 year

    5. What are you looking for out of a ff program? Upgrades? Lounge access? Mileage Redemption?

    6. Typical destinations that you travel to

    7. Any other pertinent facts that you feel will help us, help you.......


    We'll do our best to present some ideas that may make sense for you........
     
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  2. WaterSki
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    WaterSki Silver Member

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    I'll throw this one out there on behalf of my father. Which FFP would you all recommend for the following traveller:

    1. Boston
    2. Economy
    3. 25,000 miles/year
    4. 18 segments/year
    5. Extra legroom seats, free bags, mileage redemption.
    6. Mix of south and midwest, occasional ski trip out west.
     
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  3. misman
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    misman Gold Member

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    Sounds like UA would be best with those requirements. For the first year, he should buy E+ access, but will automatically get it after making Premier at 25K. For trips to the south, he can fly US/CO and still credit the miles to UA if the airport is not serviced by UA.
     
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  4. Lufthansa Flyer
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    Lufthansa Flyer Gold Member

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    Definitely agree on the UA program, he doesnt fly that much so every 2 yrs or so he'll have enough miles for a redemption fare, plus UA allows you to buy "accelerated" miles when you book a trip that add more miles to the same trip. They're not Elite qualifying, but he can accumulate more miles faster.
     
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  5. misman
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    misman Gold Member

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    and last I knew, non-UA/CO elites have to pay for E+
     
  6. scubaflyer
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    scubaflyer Silver Member

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    Chris, are you going to hurt me if I say US? I think it fits all of the criteria except the 'extra legroom seats' (which is kind of bias, since not many programs offer this). You could try to find a US Chairman who hasn't used his Silver nomination and would be willing to make your dad an automatic Silver Preferred/*Silver member ;).
     
  7. White_Cloud

    White_Cloud Member

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    Happy to explore what the experts here have to say:

    1. Home Airport:
    Singapore (SIN)

    2. Typical Class of Travel (First, Biz, Steerage)
    Economy

    3. Number of Miles typically flown in 1 year
    <50k

    4. Typical # of Segments Flown in 1 year
    16

    5. What are you looking for out of a ff program? Upgrades? Lounge access? Mileage Redemption?
    Upgrades and Lounge access

    6. Typical destinations that you travel to
    Annual SIN-LAX-SIN if not bi-annual.
    Regional flights to CGK, BKK
    Annual Europe sector flight.

    Thanks!
     
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  8. Lufthansa Flyer
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    Lufthansa Flyer Gold Member

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    Typically it takes at least 50k-75k to qualify for star gold (bmi is among lowest thresholds at 58k to qualify and 38 k each year to renew) But bmi is a risky choice because of potential upcoming changes that may change just how good bmi's plan is. virgin may be buying bmi, or lufthansa may be looking to off load the carrier. They own controlling interest.
    What airline o you fly most? For any upgrade shot you need to be an elite member of the ff program for the airline you fly. If it's for lounge access, the ultimate easiest for star gol is Aegean airlines. I think you can get gold for 35k miles or something in that area. At least star gold in bmi or Aegean will get you into most *a lounges around the world even if flying on economy tickets. Look at the Aegean program and le me know what you think,
     
  9. ACMM
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    ACMM Gold Member

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    Air Canada *A gold can be obtained with heir Elite status of 35000 miles; however, in 2011 they adds a wrinkle requiring a min number of miles and segments on AC metal.

    [Sent from my milePoint enabled iPhone]
     
  10. TRAVELSIG
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    TRAVELSIG Gold Member

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    I believe the AC 2011 requirement is the same as the UA 2012 requirement: 4 segments on own metal (which incidentally is the same as the BA requirement prior to their new program).
     
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  11. ACMM
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    9-22-2011 8-48-31 AM.jpg
     
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  12. TRAVELSIG
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    TRAVELSIG Gold Member

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    Thanks ACMM for posting.
     
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  13. ACMM
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    ACMM Gold Member

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    :)

    It has always been an anomaly that AC is one of the few to have such a low requirement for *A gold (35000 miles) ... so I think that is why they added the additional requirement... for me I fly them almost 100% so not a big deal for me... but it is always good to look around at other programs, I agree :)
     
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  14. TRAVELSIG
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    TRAVELSIG Gold Member

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    Yes, well I am still with Miles&More (LH)- and the requirement there is 600K miles in two years on their own metal (not star) for top tier status: so the grass is always greener on the other side!

    As a long time ex-AC SE (when I used to fly AC a lot)- it makes complete sense that at least a portion of the flown business is on the metal of carrier issuing the FF membership.
     
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  15. ACMM
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    Did you mean to say 600K !! :eek:

    [Sent from my milePoint enabled iPhone]
     
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  16. catgirl
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    catgirl Gold Member

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    What about crediting to Aegean? Still *A and doesn't 20K eqms = *A Gold? That will give you lounge access with being able to pick an airline in the alliance to fly.
     
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  17. TRAVELSIG
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  18. ACMM
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  19. White_Cloud

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    Thanks for the bmi note. I wonder if I should be fortunate or unfortunate that the airline I fly the most is SIA with the occassional Garuda and Thai. All very good airlines but SIA being extremely stingy with mileage and perks. If upgrades are the primary priority for these airlines, would Aegean still be an option?
     
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  20. TRAVELSIG
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    It is flown miles however does include bonuses as follows:
    paid Business Class 100% bonus (i.e. fly 1000 miles in business receive 2000 credit including bonus)
    paid First Class 200% bonus (i.e. fly 1000 miles in paid first receive 3000 credit including bonus)
    25% bonus for top level elite

    However- discounted tickets often receive total mileage credit of 50%, 25%, or in Europe as low as 125 miles per flight segment.

    Benefits are good. It is a boatload of miles however.
     
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  21. Lufthansa Flyer
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    Lufthansa Flyer Gold Member

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    for the OP, I don't know if being based in Singapore is going to allow him metal time on AC to qualify. but its a great program for reasonably easy elite status, thats for sure! :)
     
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  22. ACMM
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    Cannot disagree with your concern.

    [Sent from my milePoint enabled iPhone]
     
  23. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I'm using A3 and my experience has been good so far. You get 1000 sign up status and redeemable miles. *A silver requires 4000 (3000 with the sign up) and was posted almost instantly for me. *A Gold is 20,000 miles (19,000 after the sign up) and the *A Gold card seems to be good for several calendar years, although status miles count for a year from the first miles, not on a calendar year basis. I've flown Aegean in the past and have a good impression of their customer service in general.

    As someone has pointed out, A3 earning rules for status miles are good for premium cabins but not so good for deep discount fares. (The latter is true for many non-USA carriers.)

    For the SIN based person, SQ would also be a natural choice as they make many more award and upgrade seats available to their own FFs than to *A partner people. However, OPUPs are rare and like LH, they don't do a lot for their own Silver-equivalent. Be sure to look at the SQ/SIN lounge access rules carefully. SQ provides a separate lounge in SIN T3 for *A Golds and sends *A Golds in T2 to a contract lounge which is considered inferior to the SilverKris lounges for SQ's own people. The SQ FF program has complicated rules, so you might have to invest some time in learning their language before making a decision.
     
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  24. TRAVELSIG
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    Well said. If the OP qualifies for PPS however- the top tiers of Singapore Airlines program- (which has a revenue requirement) it is one of the better programs around.
     
  25. MSPeconomist
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    At less than 50K miles annually and all in economy, I'm assuming that our SIN based person will not and the main advantage of the SQ FF program for him or her would be the possibility to use SQ miles for upgrades and award tickets from the inventory that SQ keeps for their own FFs.
     
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