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Travel How do I earn elite status with an airline alliance?

15:06  14 november  2019
15:06  14 november  2019 Source:   thepointsguy.com

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You can often parlay elite status with one airline into benefits with other alliance partners, but earning status outright is another story. You can earn miles and elite credits for flights on member airlines , and even receive some reciprocal elite benefits if you have status with an alliance partner.

It’s true… earning airline elite status is mainly for those who rack up the many thousand butt-in-seat miles from regular work travel. But there are actually ways for less frequent flyers to earn status . I ’m aware of a couple different routes, including using a foreign program to more easily earn alliance

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Reader Questions are answered twice a week by TPG Senior Points & Miles Contributor Ethan Steinberg.

With the end of 2019 approaching, many travelers are working on plans to cement their airline elite status for 2020 and beyond. However, if you frequently find yourself traveling internationally, you might be more concerned with earning elite status with an alliance of airlines rather than one single program — like Star Alliance Gold or Oneworld Sapphire. TPG reader Ken wants to know how exactly to earn elite status with an airline alliance …

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Reach elite status in 2 ways. Here's how : Earn Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQDs) plus Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) or Elite Qualifying Segments (EQSs) oneworld® member airlines . Codeshare flights with an American Airlines flight number. Plus, Full-fare Economy, Business and First tickets on

Find out how to earn elite status with your airline alliance of choice to enjoy benefits like lounge access and free checked baggage with multiple carriers. From premier access and priority boarding to finger foods in luxe airport lounges, elite status can make a big difference in your airport experience.

I’ve always wondered, how does one build status with airline alliances (like Oneworld, Star Alliance or SkyTeam)? -TPG READER KEN

The main reason that alliances offer elite status is so you can enjoy elevated benefits on partner airlines, even if you aren’t flying with the carrier on which you originally earned elite status. The good news for Ken is that he doesn’t need to take any extra steps to earn elite status with an alliance. Once he’s earned status with an airline that’s a member of an alliance, he’ll automatically have elite status with that alliance.

Let’s take a look at how this breaks down for the three U.S. legacy carriers.

United is a member of Star Alliance, the oldest and largest of the three major airline alliances. United elites enjoy the following Star Alliance elite status:

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Earning elite status with your preferred airline can make travel more comfortable and more Your first million miles earn you a lifetime of mid-tier United Premier Gold status (and Star Alliance Gold) How to Reach the 1 Million-Mile Mark. Unlike with regular elite status , these lifetime thresholds can’t

TPG reader Mauricio has elite status with American and wants to know how he can get the matching benefits on an AA partner, as he explained in While you’re traveling, it also doesn’t hurt to carry with you your physical elite status card from your US airline , which also shows your alliance status on it.

  • Premier Silver: Star Alliance Silver status
  • Premier Gold (and up): Star Alliance Gold status

Star Alliance Gold can be a very useful status to have, as it grants you access to most member airlines’ business-class lounges regardless of the class of service you’re traveling in (restrictions apply).

American Airlines is the largest airline in the world and a member of the Oneworld alliance. AA AAdvantage elites enjoy Oneworld status at the following rates:

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For Star Alliance airlines as well as Air Dolomiti, Azul, Eurowings, Edelweiss, and Olympic: Preferred partner PQP: Award miles divided by 5. For example, if you earned 360 award miles for your flight, you’ll receive 72 PQP if you flew with a preferred partner, and 60 PQP if you flew with a MileagePlus

How many of those other elite credits you earn will depend on your fare class — you can consult United’s Premier status qualification requirements for If you want to earn PQDs, make sure you fly United metal or take Star Alliance flights ticketed by United. If you’ve flown enough with Lufthansa to

  • Gold: Oneworld Ruby
  • Platinum and Platinum Pro: Oneworld Sapphire
  • Executive Platinum: Oneworld Emerald

Oneworld Emerald confers some great benefits, including access to the Qantas first-class lounge at LAX on international economy tickets operated by Oneworld carriers.

a close up of a metal fence: Oneworld Emerald elites can access the Qantas first class lounge in Los Angeles on eligible economy tickets. (Photo by Katie Genter/The Points Guy.)© The Points Guy Oneworld Emerald elites can access the Qantas first class lounge in Los Angeles on eligible economy tickets. (Photo by Katie Genter/The Points Guy.)

Last but not least is Delta, which is a member of the SkyTeam alliance (though lately it’s been more focused on expanding through individual airline partnerships). Delta Medallion elites earn SkyTeam elite status at the following rates:

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Before we talk about why and how to earn elite airline status , let me tell you this: the ‘loyalty' in loyalty programmes is for suckers. Skyteam elite status I value far below the rest because of the lack of ‘premium' carriers they have compared to the other alliances and their somewhat stingy lounge policy

Earn Miles or Points. Forgot to add FFP number to your flight ticket? How many miles do I get? The more you fly on the Star Alliance network, the faster you will earn sufficient miles or points to Collect your miles and points across our 26 member airlines and achieve Star Alliance Silver or Gold Status .

  • Silver Medallion: SkyTeam Elite
  • Gold Medallion (and up): SkyTeam Elite Plus

Most travelers will earn alliance elite status through their primary airline and never think twice about it, but there are a few notable exceptions where it’s worth factoring this into your calculations. If you want to earn Star Alliance lounge access but don’t spend the $8,000 a year required to earn United Premier Gold (and therefore Star Alliance Gold status) in United’s new program, you might be better off crediting your United and Star Alliance flights to another airline, like Turkish Airlines Miles & Smiles instead.

Bottom line

If Ken has already qualified for elite status with his preferred airline, he’ll automatically enjoy elite status and partner benefits within the alliance that that airline is a part of. For most travelers this will be more than sufficient, but if you’re looking to earn a higher tier of status within the alliance, you might even want to consider crediting your flights to an airline outside of the U.S. to get there faster.

Thanks for the question, Ken, and if you’re a TPG reader who’d like us to answer a question of your own, tweet us at @thepointsguy, message us on Facebook or email us at info@thepointsguy.com.

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Looking to earn elite status with an airline ? Here are tips and tricks to do it faster. Alaska Airlines is one of the few programs left that offers a standard status -match program, and it’s open to elite members of AeroMexico, Air Canada, American, Delta, Frontier, Hawaiian, JetBlue, Southwest

These challenges work very simply: rather than earning elite status by flying a large number of miles over the course of a year, you can fly This is extremely helpful from an elite status standpoint, since having elite status with a single airline in each of the three alliances has largely the same effect as

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