The jockeying for elite passenger revenue continues. Earlier this year, most of the major carriers announced double “elite qualifying mile” promotions, specials that drastically reduced the number of airline miles that one needed to fly to enjoy special perks. Usually, one needs to fly at least 25k miles to start earning low level perks such as bonus miles, preferred seats and upgrades.
With those promotions over in the spring, everyone reveled in their fortune of finding a shortcut to elite status this year — until this month, when American Airlines and United Airlines relaunched their promotions. Now, scrappy passengers (myself included) are racing to top off their frequent flyer accounts to reach even higher levels of status, a fall season full of mileage runs, lost sleep and airports.
The latest in a spate of elite promotions comes from US Airways. The Arizona based carrier just announced massive reductions in earnings tiers, now requiring only 7,500 flown miles to reach low level elite status. That’s only 30% of what you would normally have to fly. Their top tier of status, Chairman Elite, can be reached with only 30k miles.
Why the race to lock in elite passengers this year? Business travelers are one of the most reliable, return customers for airlines, and the better that they can be catered to (via elite status,) the more likely they’ll stay with an airline. In today’s global recession, they’re an important demographic to hold on to.
Check out US Airways’ page for more details on the promotion.
[Thanks to moody75 for the tip]