Most travelers choose credit cards based upon the number of free miles they get when they apply for the card. Keep in mind that there are several crucial things you need to consider. Some of them include the number of miles you earn per dollar spent, interest rates, and what airlines you use the most. You may also get other perks with your card including free memberships to AARP, discounted Global Entry, and free entrance into the airline lounge. Also some credit cards offer travel insurance or insurance on products you purchase. If those things are important to you, make sure you read all the details.
Roughly 7% of flights are paid for with points or miles, according to PWC. So there’s obviously value in committing to a carrier. You just have to find the right one.
To help you earn more free flights and other assorted perks, WalletHub compared the 10 largest domestic airlines’ loyalty rewards programs across 23 key metrics, ranging from the value of a rewards point or mile to blackout-date policies.
Here are the best frequent flyer programs:
- Delta SkyMiles
- United Airlines - Mileage Plan
- JetBlue Airways - TrueBlue
- Southwest Airlines - Rapid Rewards
- Hawaiian Airlines - HawaiianMiles
Key Points to Remember When Selecting a Program
Delta Air Lines and JetBlue Airways are the only two major airlines whose miles do not expire because of inactivity.
8 of the 10 largest airlines do not have blackout dates for tickets purchased with miles.
5 of 10 major U.S. airlines will retroactively credit loyalty program members with miles for a flight up to 12 months after the fact.
7 of the 10 largest U.S. airlines allow rewards program members to earn and redeem miles with partner carriers.
*The following airlines do not have frequent flyer partnerships with other airlines: Southwest, Spirit and Sun Country.
Airline miles cost an average of 61% more than they’re worth when purchased rather than earned.
*Sun Country Airlines does not sell miles.Back to Top
Detailed Scoring for 2019’s Best Frequent Flyer Programs
Keep in mind that if you are not loyal to one airline, you might want to use a non airline affiliated credit card. Cards such as Capital One let you accumulate miles that you can use on many different airlines. The other nice thing about these cards is that you don't have to have the total miles to cover a trip. You can book the trip and then use the credits you have to pay off what ever portion of the trip you like. They are good for any type of travel including tours and cruises.
To help you figure out the best frequent flyer program for you, visit
1FREQUENT FLYER MILES CALCULATOR2MAIN FINDINGS3DETAILED SCORING
4ASK THE EXPERTS5METHODOLOGY Frequent Flyer Miles Calculator
From: Custom Calculator Feb 27, 2019 | Alina Comoreanu,