Star Alliance -One of the Top 3 Airline Alliances
Benefits of Airline Alliances
Airline alliances are great for many reasons: several individual airlines create a large network, allowing travelers more benefits and flying choices; credit flying miles to partner airlines (although some at less than 100%); redeem frequent flyer miles on partner airlines (sometimes even cheaper!) and accumulate points; frequent flyer status; allow RTW (Round The World ticketing)…to name a few.
Star Alliance is one of the world’s top 3 airline alliances, now comprised of 28 member airlines, including: Adria Airways, AEGEAN AIRLINES, Air Canada, Air China, Air New Zealand, All Nippon Airways (ANA), Asiana Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Avianca, Brussels Airlines, Copa Airlines, Croatia Airlines, EGYPTAIR, Ethiopian Airlines, EVA Air, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, SAS Scandinavian Airlines, Shenzhen Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways (SAA), Swiss International Air Lines (SWISS), TAP Portugal, Thai Airways, Turkish Airlines and United.
How to Redeem Star Alliance Miles for Flights
Now that you’ve earned your points and have them banked safely in your mileage account, when it comes time to use them it can be a bit daunting! I’ve been an avid points enthusiast for over 20 years, and with the constant changes, I’ll admit it’s a bit difficult to keep up with the constant changes. For example, airline ABC charges 25,000 points from Continental USA to Hawai’i, while airline XYZ can charge 45,000, for the same route. Or to get even more complex: Airline ABC charges 75,000 points from USA to Europe, but if you booked using ABC’s partner airline, XYZ they’ll only charge 50,000 points. That’s where you have to be an educated consumer and study each airline’s award charts. There’s usually a sweet spot in any airlines chart that you can take advantage of.
Honestly, each time I’m planning a trip I Google “Best use of British Airways points for Europe”, and then just read and study for the next few hours. Or, if you don’t want to do that, you can hire a company for around $150-$250 per ticket to book it for you, which can end up saving YOU a lot of money in the long run!!
For example, did you know that flying across the pond on British Airways’ metal, you’ll incur fuel sur-charges; however, if you use one of their partner airlines you won’t, but YOU need to know which one’s those are. Can you see how complex this can be? Don’t fret-it get’s easier in time. While I don’t memorized each of these scenarios I am familiar with many and it’s easy enough to look it up on the internet.