Frequent Flyer FAQ

Get answers to your questions about frequent flyer programs with SmarterTravel.com's Frequent Flyer FAQ.

Getting Started With Frequent Flyer Programs

  1. What is a frequent flyer program?
  2. Which program should I join?
  3. Should I join more than one program?
  4. What is the cost of joining, and what do I get?

Earning Miles by Flying

  1. How much is a mile worth?
  2. How many miles do I earn per flight?
  3. Can I earn miles on an airline other than the one I'm flying on?
  4. When do the miles I've earned appear in my account?
  5. How do I track my miles?
  6. Are miles valid on flights I've already taken?
  7. What are some other strategies for earning the most miles by flying?

Earning Miles on the Ground

  1. What are some ways I can earn miles by doing things other than flying?
  2. How do I choose credit cards that allow me to earn miles?
  3. At what online stores or services can I earn miles?

Qualifying for Privileges

  1. What is elite status and how do I qualify for it?
  2. What are the different levels of elite status?
  3. Are elite status members granted special airport privileges?
  4. Can I get travel upgrades?
  5. Do non-air travel miles count toward elite status?

Redeeming Miles

  1. How do I redeem my miles and what can I get for them?
  2. Which awards are the most valuable uses of my miles?
  3. When does it make sense to buy a ticket instead of using miles?
  4. Can I pay part miles and part cash for an award?
  5. How long do miles last before they expire?
  6. What should I know about special restrictions on award travel such as blackout dates?
  7. Can I redeem miles for non-travel awards?
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