Frequent flyer miles are a customer loyalty service that is offered by airlines. Flyers may acquire miles (points) through trips with that airline that can be put towards services that airline provides, whether it be free trips or varying status levels within that airline's flight program. Upgrades within the airline are also possible with higher levels of points.
The main way to earn frequent flier miles is by flying with that airline. But just flying with that airline for the sake of miles might not be the most cost-effective way of acquiring frequent flyer points. It is more important to follow steps while looking to add on to your current miles.
- Be aware of promotions within the airline. These promotions may be as simple as cheaper flights, or double points. But you may also come across discounts that appeal to those who are interested in mileage runs.
Mileage runs are groups of flights within a very short time span that are done for the primary purpose of acquiring miles. Destinations on these flights are often irrelevant. Just because a mileage run occurs over a longer distance does not mean that it is better. The goal is to get frequent flyer miles quick, while limiting the spending. A good mileage run looks to equate to no higher than 3 cents per mile, with anything less then that being ideal. For example: If you acquire 40,000 frequent flyer miles, and only have to spend $400, that would be an overly effective milage run. Mileage runs are good for airlines, because often times travelers will come from all over the country in order to take advantage of this opportunity to receive cheap frequent flyer points.
Along the lines of promotions..
- Be aware of opportunities outside of the specific airline forum. Know what is out there and take advantage of it. Many times airlines will partner up with other services. These services will then help accrue frequent flier miles. Whether it is gas, groceries, or clothes, make sure to see if you can gain points. There are two different types of credit cards you can use to make these purchases. The first one is an airline specific card that only counts points and miles towards that airline. The other type of card is bank specific, and can be used towards any participating airline.
- Packaged deals with airline tickets, hotel rooms, rental cars, etc. are also great ways to earn frequent flyer points. If you are traveling, be aware of any set up deals that may help. In order to gain more business, business will set up deals with other companies to ensure that when one company receive business, the other company (with another service) will also receive business. Be on the lookout for these deals.
Some things to remember while getting more frequent flyer miles..
- Miles often cannot be converted or exchanged. Therefore, consolidation is a key factor. If you are primarily interested in travel, then make sure you use all those points towards travel, instead of putting most towards travel and the rest to rental cars. Consolidation is the key to faster attainment.
- Track your points and rework trips around airline deadlines. If you are set to travel the first week in April, but the airline runs a promotion for double points in March, set that trip up for the very end of March. Be cautious of when you are traveling and what the airline is running around that time.
- Pay attention to the limitation of the points. Acquiring frequent flyers miles is important, but only when they can be of use to you. You do not want to waste time and money by acquiring points that you cannot use
- Know when your points expire. Be aware of all the fine print on any trip or deal the airline is offering. Know of the possibility of blackout dates, and how those can be avoided. Once again, in order to be effective at acquiring frequent flyer miles you must not waste your time or money.
Overall, the way to maximize frequent flyer miles is to make sure you get the biggest return from your purchases, travel and dollar. The biggest amount of points may not be the most effective. Pay attention to what you are spending and how much you are getting in return.
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