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Sammygrll Apr 12th, 2007 05:20 PM

How do you earn your flight miles?
For those of you that travel do you earn miles for upgrade and free flights?
There's so many options..I just dont know what to do!
We have a points credit card, where we earn poits for things we buy.
And my DH and I will be traveling to Italy, flying Lufthansa, so I signed up for their miles program. But we also fly on Jetblue and Aloha what do you do?
Any kind of CC that incorporates ALL kinds of miles? Or just do it all seperately and try and fly their partners??

Any ideas?? Thanks!

GoTravel Apr 12th, 2007 06:04 PM

I get miles using my ATM/Debit card with US Airways, flying with US Airways, and by my credit cards.

GoTravel Apr 12th, 2007 06:04 PM

Sorry, American Express and Capitol One cards specifically. They use all airlines.

nytraveler Apr 12th, 2007 06:11 PM

Earn a lot of them flying (busines travel) and use AmeEx for all business expenses - and those miles can be used for many airlines and hotels - as well as merchandise (recently got free IPOD and digital camera with some of extra miles).

Using AmEx gets you double miles for flights - one with airline program and one with AmeEx.

Wherenow Apr 12th, 2007 06:31 PM

Just about everything goes on the Amex card to cover my non-United travel expenses. I easily do 100K a year on UA so upgrades are not much of a problem, except out of SFO or IAD where everyone seems to be 1K or has a million + miles in their history.

What works for me with Amex, is that there are enough choices in terms of airlines, that if needed, I can usually swing a freebie or free companion tix using the Amex. We've used the Amex for Qantas to Australia and Virgin Atlantic to London and never a problem getting seats...and plan to use it for a vacation to Italy in '08.

Depending upon your goals, you do need a strategy, and what works for one won't work for all. I've always felt the rationale is "goal driven".

Maggi Apr 12th, 2007 08:28 PM

I find that sticking to one airline works best for me. In our case, Northwest has the most flights out of our home airport. We use the Northwest Visa card (my husband and I each have a card) and get lots of extra miles for each of us on their website through cell phones, shopping via the Worldperks mall, etc. We have been able to fly free every year for the past six years to Hawaii (twice), St. John, St. Barts, Costa Rica and this year to Virgin Gorda and Puerto Rico. I book my flights 330 days in advance to make sure I get what I want and so far have had no problems securing flights. I've had to work at it, but it's worth it to me to be able to travel more.

NeoPatrick Apr 12th, 2007 08:52 PM

Lots of ways. I only do AA miles and get lots through both my personal and my business Citibank AAdvantage cards.
I also get quite a lot from their I-Dine program. And just last week I got 2500 miles for signing up for Netflix, something I've been putting off for ages, and now was glad I did since AA took them on as a "partner".

I've gotten miles from using ATT and then Earthlink for phone service and even have gotten quite a few for sending flowers. I have my Marriott rewards for hotel stays all automatically transferred as AA miles too.

I'm happy with only AA miles as so far they or their partners go everywhere I want to use miles for -- primarily Europe, but in the past I also did free trips to Asia and to Australia/New Zealand with AA miles.

alya Apr 12th, 2007 11:09 PM


Good for you - I'm sure you'll both enjoy the service but I have to comment on the fact that they are offering 2500 miles to new subscribers?

How rude is that? - we signed up for Netflix in 2003 and have been loyal customers for nearly 5 years and have recommended them to friends - not family since they don't offer the sevice in the UK and have never been offered any reward.

I'll contact them tomorrow and see what they are offering (worth a try :-) ) although we were thinking about looking into the Blockbuster alternative anyway.

Happy watching!

lcuy Apr 13th, 2007 12:46 AM

I use credit cards that give me cash rebates...from 1% to 5% on purchases. f
I then buy my air tickets with the credit cards and earn even more rebates, plus get FF miles for the trip!

I get a lot of miles from the actual travel, and try to stick to the same airlines/partner alliances if possible so that I get premier status. Then I earn even more miles and get upgrade offers based on my status.

It works for me- I have premier status on UAL, Hawaiian, and Continental this year.

gail Apr 13th, 2007 04:47 AM

My husband has miles on 6 different FF programs - unavoidable because he travels on business to odd places served by different airlines. Bulk of his travel is on AA or Delta and he also collects "frequent sleeper" points from Marriott and Hilton which post as airline miles as well.

However, I have USAirways FF account with Visa card on which we charge our son's tuition and college expenses. One year's cost gets him a free ticket home. We use this card for charging all of husband's business expenses and our family travel - so we end up with quite a few miles/year.

Would make more sense to consolidate onto 1 or 2 airlines, but it is not practical for us. I understand the calculations that show we would be better off with "cash back" credit card, but to us that does not feel as good as that get-something-for-nothing free ticket, even though I know it is not free.

NeoPatrick Apr 13th, 2007 06:33 AM

alya, it is not the least bit uncommon for many companies to offer bonuses for people to sign up. Sure, past loyal customers don't get those bonuses. That's just a part of life. I've had an AAdvantage Citibank card for years, yet I have to constantly drool at those ads offering something like 7500 miles for new customers signing up for it.

I've been known to switch our long distance service four of five times over the past ten years, each time getting a new bonus for doing so. We hardly use long distance, so I really don't care which one we use. But when they offer 10,000 miles to switch -- I switch. And when they have a new partner and another bonus a year later -- I'll switch again.

jcb Apr 13th, 2007 06:59 AM

I too use the AA credit card and the Southwest credit card for all my purchases. In addition, I have opened brokerage accounts, used Idine, shopped through AA shoping, etc to get AA miles. These are all things I was going to do anyway, I just did some research to see if miles could be obtained as well. There is also Dealer Miles when you purchase a car or purchase an extended warranty (my parents got miles for this).

I have been checking this site for a couple of years to maximize my miles - it's VERY good.

Although I don't have one, the Starwood AMEX (?) seems to be a good credit card for obtaining miles on several airlines/hotels. You can accumulate miles and then transfer them to the airline/hotel program of your choice.

FYI, you can cancel your AA card then reapply after 60 days (or 90 days) for another new card. You will be eligible for the new deal which is 20,000 miles (I think). Obviously, canceling and reapplying may affect your credit score, so I'm not neccessarily advocating this.

NeoPatrick Apr 13th, 2007 07:39 AM

jcb, I think you have to wait a lot longer than that to reapply and get "new account miles" with an AAdvantage credit card. Their website isn't specific other than to say "new cardholders only".

I have gotten Marriott free night award certificates plus enough points for another free night several times by accepting a Marriott Rewards credit card and using it a few times. Then before I have to pay an annual fee (after the first year) I cancel it. I wait for a new offer and get a new one -- more certiicates and points. But when I recently did that, I finally called to find out where my certificate was. They checked and said I had received them in the past and this would be for NEW account holders only. When I asked why they sent me the offer since it didn't apply to me, they had no answer. So in any case, -- I've been "found out".

jcb Apr 13th, 2007 07:55 AM

Patrick - actually, I have done it more than one time, and I am pretty sure it is 60 days. There have been several long discussions on Flyertalk about it. I think I've seen it as well on some Citi information - I'll try to find it again and post it.

jcb Apr 13th, 2007 11:47 AM

I looked at the Citi website, and could not find any info defining "new account"

Here are a couple of flyertalk threads that discuss credit card bonus miles.

bashawdi Apr 13th, 2007 12:02 PM

Most of my miles come from shopping. I frequent both United and USAirways shopping links where I get miles for nearly everything that I buy online once I login with my ff#.

The rest come from flying, hotel stays, rental cars and using the cards to maximize our miles.

We're in various frequent flier programs and sticking with one airline never seems to work for our plans.

alya Apr 13th, 2007 07:55 PM

Patrick - you know what will happen, we'll cancel the Netflix subscription and they'll offer a reward to re-subcribe.

The Boston Globe does it all the time.

I'm ready to move to Blockbuster anyway since recently Netflix haven't been mailing DVD's as promptly as they should. Last week it took them 4 days to ship a movie when they are supposed to turn it around in one working day.

Maggi Apr 13th, 2007 09:04 PM

Alya, we've been with Netflix a long time and the turn around is very good. But what I don't like is that many of the movies in my queue are listed as "Long Wait". Does that happen with Blockbuster too, or is it just that we are longtime customers and they aren't trying to please us anymore?

mrwunrfl Apr 13th, 2007 09:05 PM

Sammygrll, you should join the United FF program, not Lufthansa (unless you are planning frequent travel to Germany). The miles you earn on Lufthansa can go to your United account. Lufthansa and United are partners in their FF programs.

United is also a partner with Aloha.

I earn miles by flying and by maintaining a status where I earn double miles.

alya Apr 13th, 2007 09:40 PM


I'm not sure but it does feel that way.

We tend to get movies on the day they are released because we have learnt to add them to the queue as soon they hit the big screen.

We will probably try Blockbuster since 3 of us drive past the store everyday and it would be intersting to find out how it works when you exchange a movie instore - Will we get the new releases?? :-?

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