Best airline club

Discussion in 'Airport Lounges' started by rogermark, May 14, 2007.

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  1. rogermark

    rogermark Newbie

    May 11, 2007
    1
    0
    Hello everyone
    We need advice as to the best airline club to join
    We have recently returned from around the world trip on Star Alliance carriers
    We need to pick a Club which will give us access to all Star Alliance lounges and hopefully give us some credit for the miles recently travelled
    We are economy class travellers but would like to get into a lounge when the opportunity is there
    Roger and Pat
     

  2. Optics

    Optics Member

    Mar 14, 2006
    321
    0
    Melbourne
    Welcome to QFF :) .

    I am not an expert in this, but do not believe you will find any club that will credit you for miles flown before joining. Pity, but you should have joined prior to taking an ATW trip.

    Deciding on the best club to join will depend on your future flight requirements (airline, routes etc), what you want out of the membership and whether you want to link membership to credit card spend etc. Provide some details and there is a wealth of experts here that can assist.
     
  3. littl_flier

    littl_flier Active Member

    May 1, 2007
    898
    0
    Brisbane
    Hi Roger and Pat, welcome to AFF.

    Neither am I an expert of this but my advice is to join the club of the airline that you anticipate you will fly with the most in the future. Generally, no airlines will give you access to all of their partner lounges without having status with them first. By joining the airline you fly with the most, this will give you maximum benefit. Whilst I can't recomend any in particular, some may have access to partner *A airlines, similar to the way that Qantas Club members can use the lounge when flying BA and AA.

    As for crediting points, quite a few airlines will credit points for flights flown but usually within a time frame that is around 1 month.

    Hope this helps and sorry to provide really general advice but some is better than none. :)
     
  4. dot

    dot Active Member

    Mar 2, 2007
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    Hi Roger & Pat, welcome to AFF. I would have thought you would need to be a member of the frequent flyer program before your flights for them to count toward any rewards (including lounge access).

    You should also check on the class that your recent trip was booked under - deep discount flights may not earn any miles/points. To quote the SQ Krisflyer site:
    The Krisflyer site also talks about presenting your krisflyer card at check-in and making the booking in the same name as your krisflyer acount - all of which suggests to me that you will have little chance of redeeming miles flown prior to becoming a member. I am no expert, but I would imagine Air NZ, United, Thai etc would have similar restrictions in place. If I were you, I would contact the airline you flew most of your miles with in your AWT as they would be most likely to credit you with points/miles earned prior to membership.

    Past flights aside - I guess the best club to join will depend on where you intend to fly and with whom in the future. Certainly going with a Star Alliance or One World partner program will give you the most choice worldwide, but if most of your flights are going to be on Emirates and only the occasional QF or NZ flight, then Emirates might be the better way to go... it';s all about maximising your miles/points earning capacity so that you can maximise the rewards.
     
  5. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
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    Brisbane / Sydney
    #5 Keith009, May 14, 2007
    Last edited: May 14, 2007
    Quite a few FFPs allow retroactive credit of miles for flights flown up to a reasonable period of time before the commencement of membership. I know for a fact that Krisflyer allows flights flown in the 6 months prior to joining the program to be credited. [Claim form here if you happen to take an interest in Krisflyer: https://www.singaporeair.com/saa/en_UK/docs/krisflyer/Customer_Service/KFRetroActiveMileageClaimForm_Dec06.pdf]

    Best to compare the FFPs with the carriers/fare classes you were booked in and projected earn/spend ratio therein before banking your miles IMHO.

    AC, UA, US, NH and NZ offer paid lounge memberships however I have no idea what other lounges you're able to access other than the lounges of the respective carriers. Alternatively, AC 's Star Alliance Gold tier ('Aeroplan Elite') can be achieved with 35 000 status miles and allows access to all designated Star Alliance Gold lounges.

    Now paging the *A experts.... :)
     
  6. littl_flier

    littl_flier Active Member

    May 1, 2007
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    Brisbane
    Both QF and Singapore offer credit for prior flown flights and as QF009 pointed out, there is some leeway but they are obliged by their T&C at KrisFlyer Terms & Conditions -- Singapore Airlines to offer at least 30 days. Take this up with the consulant if you join by phone.

     
  7. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
    4,432
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    Brisbane / Sydney
    I've confused manual mileage claim during duration of membership [duration for which is 6 months prior to claim and for any partners] with retroactive claims for flights flown before membership [30 days and SQ only flights]. :oops:
     
  8. littl_flier

    littl_flier Active Member

    May 1, 2007
    898
    0
    Brisbane
    Don't worry QF009, I know of a friend that managed to get her past three months of flights credited when she joined QFF. Let's just say, she had a great telephone consultant.

    Bottom line is, you may be able to back-credit some points but depending when you flew, you may need to hurry!
     
  9. dot

    dot Active Member

    Mar 2, 2007
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    There you go - I learn something new every day. Maybe I am too cynical - I expected the airlines to be using any means possibly to minimise their liability...

    Like AAMI refusing to cover me because my car had a dealer tart up kit on it (badges and seat covers!)... but then that's another story.
     
  10. JohnK

    JohnK Veteran Member

    Mar 22, 2005
    39,956
    8,525
    BNE, SYD and CNX
    I was lucky with QF in that flew with them in April 2003 and did not join QFF program until mid May 2003 as I was flying again end of May 2003. I got credit for the April flights and also an end of May QFF review date!
     
  11. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
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    4
    #11 Kiwi Flyer, May 15, 2007
    Last edited: May 15, 2007
    Welcome to AFF rogermark :)

    There are generally 5 ways to access airline lounges

    1) paid first and business class
    2) paid airline club membership
    3) sufficiently high elite status
    4) as a guest of one of the above
    5) other paid entry (eg for one off visit, or priority pass membership)

    Club membership in itself doesn't give mileage earning. For that you need to join a frequent flyer program (FFP).

    The best FFP for you depends on lots of factors. But first, can you please provide more detail on the RTW trip? There are lots of RTW fares, alliance product, or specific combination of airlines, or something a consolidator has cobbled together, or even some round trip fares allow routing via both hemispheres (a psuedo-rtw). The possibility to earn mileage for your recent trip will depend on exactly which product you have and the specific airlines flown.

    There is some incorrect information posted in this thread, which I'll try to correct.
     
  12. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    Actually most (but not all) FFPs do allow retrospective credit for flights taken before joining. However, where offered they are usually limited to flights on the home airline (ie will not credit flights on partner airlines) and within a short period (one month is common, 6 months less so).

    Yes. One key element is whether the main benefit to you will be awards ("free" flights), upgrades or elite status benefits), and based on your travel patterns how easily (or not) these can be achieved.
     
  13. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    This is incorrect. For example paid United Airlines Red Carpet Club (RCC) or paid Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge (MLL) membership will give access to almost all *A airline-operated business class lounges when flying same day on *A. There are limited exceptions - eg in SIN the SATS Premier Lounge is available instead of SQ's Silver Kris Lounge. There are some airports that use contract lounges where RCC & MLL membership will not give access. However there are far more lounges with access for RCC & MLL members than, for example lounges available to Qantas Club members without One World Sapphire or Emerald status.

    Each club has its own rules and partnership agreements, and some may be better than others in terms of providing access in airports you fly from (or to). Costs of membership can also vary enormously.
     
  14. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    As stated above, FFPs generally allow a limited retrospective crediting.

    That may not matter. For example if the RTW purchased was the YRWSTARx fare (and not Star Alliance Special Economy RTW), the booking classes used are generally "M" which is a high economy booking class (normally 100% miles). This is a contrast to the One World Explorer LONEx which books into a low economy booking class (often much less than 100% miles).
     
  15. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    You called? :)
     
  16. Keith009

    Keith009 Established Member

    Mar 6, 2005
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    Brisbane / Sydney
    KF to the rescue on *A enquiries as usual. :p
     
  17. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    This thread reminds me that no matter how well travelled I am, I shouldn't assume things are the same as what I know for most airlines/airports/lounges/etc.

    When it comes to travel there is a lot of variety - and that is a good thing.
     
  18. simongr

    simongr Enthusiast

    Jul 10, 2006
    14,229
    1,742
    You also have to be prepared to accept that you will never always guarantee lounge access on every trip - as I found out this week.
     
  19. Kiwi Flyer

    Kiwi Flyer Senior Member

    Sep 24, 2004
    5,453
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    Many airports I use are too small to have a lounge.
     
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