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Miles & Points: The Week’s Best Frequent-Flyer Deals (Week of December 5, 2014)

SmarterTravel

Following is our regular summary of the latest travel news and best frequent traveler promotions reviewed during the past week.

If it was a good deal—or a notably bad deal—from an airline, hotel, or car rental loyalty program, you can read all about it here, and plan your travel accordingly.

United Downgrades Elite Perks

Hard on the heels of upping the requirements to qualify for elite status in its MileagePlus program, United has announced a series of cutbacks to elite members’ perks.

Alaska Air Enhances Mileage Program for 2015

Alaska Airlines finally gets the mileage program right. Are you paying attention, Delta and United?

For Sale: Delta Elite-Qualifying Miles

Through December 31, Delta SkyMiles members can purchase up to 10,000 Medallion-qualifying miles that will count toward the 2014 requirements for earning status during 2015.

Alaska Air to Add Fees for Extra Legroom Seating

Beginning next year, Alaska Airlines will charge extra for coach seats with extra legroom, like those in exit rows and bulkhead rows. What once was free …

United App Awards Miles for In-Store Purchases

Just in time for Christmas, United has released a new app that allows shoppers to earn miles for purchases at 50 national retailers.

Solved: The Mystery of the 787 Smoking Batteries

The NTSB this week weighed in with a final analysis of the 787’s battery system issues, and apportioned blame for the problems among Boeing, the FAA, and GS Yuasa. Case closed?

United Named ‘Airline of the Year’ by Global Traveler

And somehow the publication managed to award the honor with a straight face, too.

Buy 50,000 US Air Frequent-Flyer Miles for $89

Barclays has just announced an uncommonly generous sign-up incentive for the US Airways MasterCard: 50,000 miles after the first purchase and payment of the card’s annual $89 fee.

Earn 30% More Miles on Air Canada Flights

Aeroplan members can earn a 30 percent mileage bonus on select Air Canada flights booked by January 11, 2015, and flown between January 7 and April 30, 2015.

Win 10 Million Wyndham Points

Enter by December 12 for a chance to win 10 million Wyndham Rewards points.

Somebody has to win, right? Might as well be you.

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