Best *A FF program for me??

Discussion in 'Other Airline Frequent Flyer Programs' started by Kiwi Flyer, Nov 21, 2006.

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  1. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    It really depends on your flying pattern (few or many trips, cheapest economy, mid economy, business or first), and also what you want the most (status benefits, upgrades, awards). If you can provide more info (perhaps in a new thread) then I'll be happy to answer as best I can.
     

  2. gaia

    gaia Member

    Dec 1, 2003
    125
    0


    Thank you Kiwi Flyer.

    I've achieved Qantas LTG & have requalified for Platinum this year which will last me until at least end of August 2008. I’m quite happy with Qantas and will continue to fly them. I’m not interested in joining AA and if I’m going to fly some *A flights then I would initially do so as much as possible to get top status asap.

    Most of my travel is within Asia and sometimes I can't get OneWorld flights eg into Shanghai. I fly Dragonair when I have to, but they're converting their Elite FF programme to Marco Polo on 1 January, so I'll probably join that just for the Dragonair flights.


    I'm based in Melbourne and regularly travel to the following places on average in order of frequency:

    HKG: Up to 10 times per month
    PVG: 4 times per month
    BKK: 2 times per month
    PEK: 1 time per month
    AKL, KUL, MNL, SIN, TPE, WGN: 1 time each per 3 months

    My most recent pattern is to fly MEL-HKG & then to the other Asian destinations but I want to rethink this as the 2 HKG entry stamps they insist on putting in chew up my passport at a great rate.

    Out of MEL I almost always book Qantas discount Y and upgrade with points to J with a reasonable success rate. Usually CX Y around Asia but sometimes J when the J prices are close to the Y prices eg Finnair BKK-HKG & BKK-SIN. (Similarly LAN AKL-SYD.) Singapore air SIN-KUL but this is such a short distance. Dragonair Y from HKG-PVG & HKG-PEK.

    I’m considering Jetstar Starclass MEL-BKK & then Thai BKK-PVG as a possible future routing.

    I joined Air NZ in 1991 and used to credit my Ansett flights to it. In recent times I’ve flown LAN Chile J to AKL and Qantas Y AKL-WGN, although now that I have LTG would consider Air NZ Y MEL-AKL-WGN-MEL.

    I’m relatively knowledgeable of the QFF program & how to make best use of it, but have little knowledge of any of the *A programmes. I used to be in Thai Royal Orchid when I lived there in the 1990s but my experience was that their systems weren’t good then.

    What I’m after from a FF programme is in order of priority:
    • Priority checkin queue
    • Lounge access
    • Upgrades with points
     
  3. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
    4
    priority check in
    priority waitlist
    lounge access
    extra baggage allowance

    All come standard with *Gold status. link


    For a discount flyer mainly around asia, NZ airpoints probably not for you (unless you are happy flying via AKL?).

    I would go with either SQ (Singapore Airlines) Kris Flyer or TG (Thai) Royal Orchid Plus, whichever airline you are likely to fly the most. Note both SQ & TG have non-earning fares. The SQ ones are well noted on the SQ website and thus easily avoided. Both Kris Flyer and Royal Orchid Plus have moderate *G qualification levels - 50,000 miles in a year. Kris Flyer uses member year (a bit like QF except based on the date of first attaining status rather than the date you opened an account). ROP uses calendar year (or for a higher threshold rolling 12 months). Both KF and ROP participate in *A mileage upgrade scheme (currently LH/LO/OS/LX/TG/SQ/OZ/UA/NH). KF mileage upgrades are much cheaper than on QFF. ROP provides a free upgrade voucher to top elites on their birthday (for use within a year on TG metal).

    For the times you fly in paid business or first on SQ, you can get PPS credits at the same time as getting mileage (and status) on another FFP. PPS status is better to have on SQ than Gold Elite (KF *G).
     
  4. SydTgFlyer

    SydTgFlyer Newbie

    Nov 24, 2006
    4
    0
    Are you sure about this? My understanding is 50,000 miles in a calendar year or 80,000 miles in the first year of membership plus the next calendar year after.

    I've been chasing this recently as you might know from FT as I have 80,000 miles from Nov-05 to Nov-06 but only 49,000 miles from Jan 06 - Dec 06 :(.

    Rgds
     
  5. gaia

    gaia Member

    Dec 1, 2003
    125
    0
    I decided to go with ROP and joined on 7 December. By the end of this week I'll have 25,000+ points which helps not a bit for Gold status as I need to get 50,000 in calendar 2007 or 80,000 from 7 December 2006 to 31 December 2007. But as I intend to be earning 20,000 + per month on ROP in the first few months of 2007 *G should be reached soon enough.

    I flew Jetstar Starclass twice in the last 10 days MEL-BKK and returned in TG Y. I'm doing MEL-BKK-HKG-BKK-MEL on Friday all in TG Y as JQ Starclass is fully booked.

    From the TG website:

    >>Gold Status and Benefits

    This top tier status is attained with Qualifying Miles earned during 3 evaluation periods.

    50,000 Q Miles Miles from the date of enrolment up to December 31 of the same year, or 50,000 Q Miles during the first complete calendar year after enrolment.

    80,000 Q Miles from the date of enrolment up to December 31 of the next complete calendar year.

    40 international flown sectors on THAI within any 1 calendar year.<<
     
  6. Altair

    Altair Active Member

    Aug 22, 2006
    809
    82
    Wellington
    The 50K you do in calendar 2007 will get you gold. You do not need to do 55K (80K-25K) in 2007 to get it. The 80K is only of benefit if you do 31K or more in the first year and leaves you <50K in the second year to get you Gold. ROP is good in that you only have 3 tiers, but I think there are plenty of *G in ROP.
    I am actually thinking of going to Asiana as their miles do not expire and they have generous lengths of time for status validity, 3 years. It just takes longer to get there around double the number of miles but taken from the lifetime of membership.
     
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