Frequent Flyer program advice needed

Discussion in 'Transportation' started by Lesley Wake, Mar 11, 2018 at 2:03 PM.

  1. Lesley Wake

    Lesley Wake DIS Veteran

    Mar 16, 2017
    So right now I have a frequent flyer program with Alaska Airlines; it made sense since a couple years ago I was traveling a lot on the west coast for work, so I really built up the points. I was able to use those for my September trip to Disneyworld. I was able to get nonstop flights each way (Virgin America and Delta-booked before they cancelled the partnership between Alaska and Delta). I also went ahead and got the Alaska credit card to help save more miles as well as free checked bag (worked with Virgin, not Delta). Since then the work travel has dried up, so I haven’t been traveling as much.

    Now I’m looking at airfare for my December trip and discovered Alaska/Virgin America no longer have a direct flight from LAX-MCO; that is really important to me for time and convenience sakes. Meanwhile American has multiple direct flights per day, at much better times (ie increase my WDW time). The flights thru American allow you to earn miles for Alaska, but you can’t redeem Alaska miles to book.

    So do I,
    a) keep Alaska account, booking American flights to add some miles to the Alaska balance. Right now I have a little over 34,000 miles, enough for round trip most places in US (including Hawaii, though I don’t have any upcoming plans to go anywhere)
    b) create new American account and start earning miles that way.

    Also, I’m thinking I should cancel my Alaska credit card since it has an annual fee and I’m not really able to use the benefits to travel anymore. But then, should I get a new American CC, since I can get a $200 statement credit plus extra miles for signing up.

    What do you guys think?
  2. SmallMama

    SmallMama Mouseketeer

    Jul 5, 2017
    I am no expert and just start out with the churning points/ CC. Anyways, i would use my Alaska miles for a great vacation to Hawaii or visit somewhere you wanted to go direct then cancel my CC since it is not worth keeping. I would open the AA CC( i have the card as well) to start earning miles you can used and you can always book Alaska through them. I used my AA to get three one way direct flight from ORD -> MCO with over 27,000 miles remaining for another trip I am planning next year. The AA also give you 10% mikes back on the miles you used for the first year of the card. It made sense for me to get the card since I will be using them the most, and you cannot beat free check bag andfree carry on no matter the ticket you chose.
  3. JimMIA

    JimMIA There's more to life than mice...

    Feb 16, 2005
    I used to use an American Airlines Citibank credit card for just about all household purchases and built up an enormous number of miles that way (DW did her part! :rolleyes: ) But in the last few years, I have found AA increasingly difficult to book points flights on, and the cost has increased greatly.

    There is a website called The Points Guy, or something like that, and I have heard that he advises against "hoarding" points. Get 'em; use 'em is his advice.

    We switched most of our household purchases to a Costco Citibank Visa which gives us good, old-fashioned CASH back at the end of the year. I have found CASH much more loyal than airline "loyalty" programs.
    Hopefully likes this.
  4. rwdavis2

    rwdavis2 DIS Veteran

    Oct 2, 2007
    Most experts say to just book the least expensive fare since getting flights via points is becoming more difficult and costs more points. Forget loyalty to the points.

    For example, I bet it's extremely difficult to get a first class seat on United because they cut the cost of a fist class fare so much it's within more peoples' reach to pay for it. It used to be about $3-4 thousand coast to coast round trip now I get buy one for $1000-$1300.
  5. OKW Lover

    OKW Lover Retired and living 2 miles from The Castle. DIS Lifetime Sponsor

    Apr 29, 2004
    Perhaps I missed it in the original post, but what airport is the OP flying from? If its LAX then Delta has ~3 daily non-stops (better than direct!) between LAX and MCO.
    MillauFr likes this.

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