The Benefits of Frequent Flyer Programs

If you're someone who doesn't travel often, it's going to be difficult to accumulate frequent flyer rewards to reap the benefits. Some frequent flyer programs have an expiration date on their miles if your account has been inactive for some time, but that's not the case if you earn rewards.

Some airline loyalty programs offer plenty of benefits that go beyond free seats and points towards vacation. Here are some benefits of frequent flyer programs that go beyond a free vacation or a discount flight.

Generous Rewards

One of the biggest benefits of frequent flyer programs is that they provide generous rewards. These rewards are easy to accumulate, especially at the beginning. Most loyalty programs offer their members unlimited reward seats. That means members can redeem rewards for any available seat on a flight. This is beneficial for those who love to travel because your rewards will increase the more you travel.

No Blackout Dates

Most people don't want to join frequent flyer programs because they had a bad experience with blackout dates. But that's not the case with all frequent flyer programs. Blackout dates invalidate the miles and points that you earned because you're forbidden from using those rewards on certain dates.

One practice that major airlines use is to have blackout dates for peak seasons and holiday travel days. This is not good news for travelers who accumulated rewards that can't be used on the days that they need them the most. But members who use frequent flyer programs don't have to worry about blackout dates since most programs have eliminated them. You have the freedom to use the rewards you want, whenever you want.

Rewards Don't Expire

Maybe you're one of those people who booked a vacation that wasn't your first option because you didn't want your miles to go to waste? That's not the case with a frequent flyer program. Having your hard-earned rewards points go to waste can be discouraging. Major airlines that have expiration dates on miles can be off-putting.

Frequent flyer programs eliminate expiration dates on rewards points. That means you can plan for that weekend getaway or two-week vacation next year without having to worry about your rewards vanishing.

Every Reward Counts

The frequent flyer program bases the rewards you earn depending on how much you spend. You're willing to earn a lot more money if you're always traveling because you can enjoy the correlation between the amount you're paying for your flight and the amount you're receiving in reward points. Most major airliners reward their members when they want to upgrade to business or first-class seats.

Easier Check-In

One of the biggest benefits of frequent flyer programs is that the airline maintains all of your information which makes for an easier check-in. When you book a flight with your desired airline, you'll only need your username and password. You don't have to look for your traveler number if you're someone who uses TSA PreCheck.

You also don't need a passport number if you're someone who flies overseas often. Joining a loyalty program can save you time when booking a flight and checking in. It'll also provide you with plenty of other benefits.

Flight Amenities

Major airlines vary on the ways they allow passengers to use their rewards to pay for upgrades. Some have rewards for additional flight amenities such as extra bags, in-flight drinks, and security fees. Check with your airline to see what your rewards can get you. While it might not be enough to cover an overseas flight, you could probably bring luggage big enough to hold your entire wardrobe at no extra charge.

Trade Rewards for Experiences

Some airlines allow you to trade your rewards for experiences such as concerts, festivals, sporting events, all-inclusive vacations, and more. Tickets to a football game, a seven-day cruise, or a chance to experience a music and arts festival is just some of the experiences you can take advantage of through your loyalty rewards program. You might even have the chance to bid on event and vacation packages.

Keep in mind that some of these experiences may cost you more rewards than you accumulated. That means it could take time to accumulate these rewards to afford some of these experiences. But free flights may sound better than a three-night vacation in Napa Valley. It all depends on your preferences.

Trade Rewards for Products

You can also trade your rewards for free merchandise, products, subscription services, technology, and more. You can also use your frequent flyer program to subscribe to your local newspaper or regional magazine. You'll have to accumulate hundreds of thousands of points to afford something such as a smart speaker or a smartwatch, for example. When you notice that you accumulated rewards, but you don't have time for a quick trip, check out your airline's website to find out what else you can use them for.

Everything is in Black & White

The great thing about loyalty reward programs is that everything is in writing. It's one of the most straight-forwarded approaches to accumulating rewards. Since the amount of reward points required depends on the flight, members can earn a lot of points through purchasing tickets when they're offered at discount prices.

Make traveling easier by joining a frequent flyer program with the airline of your choice.

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Posted on Apr 04 2019

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