Earn and Redeem Your Airmiles with Airline Alliance Programs

If you have been accumulating your daily spending on an airmiles credit card (read our useful card reviews here!) in hopes of redeeming an air ticket, here's some useful information for you on earning and redeeming your airmiles with airline alliance programs.

 

WHAT ARE AIRLINE ALLIANCES?

Airline alliances are agreements between airlines to offer passengers an extended network of destinations across the globe by code-sharing their flights. For example, if you want to fly to a destination where there's no direct flight from Singapore e.g. Warsaw, Poland, you can utilise an airline alliance where you can fly from Singapore to Copenhagen DK with Singapore Airlines and then change to a Polish Airlines flight to fly to Warsaw. This can be booked on the same ticket under Star Alliance.

 

This allows more options for the passenger when choosing his/her travel route, to select different transfer stops rather than a direct flight which may be too long.

 

The best advantage may be that you can accumulate your airmiles across airlines within the same alliance, as long as you are enrolled in any of its airline's frequent flyer program. This will no doubt let you earn your airmiles much faster! You can also redeem your airmiles for an air ticket of an airline under the same alliance with terms and conditions of course.

 

So now that you know more about airline alliances, let's get to know more about the 3 big airline alliances that most of the airlines belong to.

 

1. STAR ALLIANCE

Staff representatives from Star Alliance airlines join hands in front of an EVA Air Boeing 777-300 ER to welcome the Taiwanese carrier into the Star Alliance family. EVA Air, which joined Star Alliance on June 18, 2013, is part of Taiwan's Evergreen group

The Star Alliance network is the leading global airline network, with the highest number of member airlines, daily flights, destinations and countries flown to. It was established in 1997 as the first truly global airline alliance to offer customers convenient worldwide reach and a smoother travel experience. This is the alliance that our national carrier, Singapore Airlines belongs to, therefore if you are enrolled in the KrisFlyer program, you can automatically earn and redeem airmiles within this alliance.

There are currently 28 member airlines in this alliance and they have more than 18, 500 daily departures in total. They serve 192 countries and 1,330 airports, with 641.10 million passengers per year.

 

Current Members (as at 29 September 2015): 

  • Adria Airways JP
  • Aegean Airlines A3
  • Air Canada AC
  • Air China CA
  • Air India AI
  • Air New Zealand NZ
  • ANA NH
  • Asiana Airlines OZ
  • Austrian OS
  • Avianca AV
  • Avianca in Brazil O6
  • Brussels Airlines SN
  • Copa Airlines CM
  • Croatia Airlines OU
  • EGYPTAIR MS
  • Ethiopian Airlines ET
  • EVA Air BR
  • LOT Polish Airlines LO
  • Lufthansa LH
  • Scandinavian Airlines SK
  • Shenzhen Airlines ZH
  • Singapore Airlines SQ
  • South African Airways SA
  • SWISS LX
  • TAP Portugal TP
  • THAI TG
  • Turkish Airlines TK
  • United UA

 

2. ONE WORLD

SriLankan_Airlines_oneworld_joining_event_photo_66000x4000

 

The oneworld® alliance brings together 15 of the world's leading airlines and around 30 affiliated carriers. Together, these airlines operate more than 14,000 daily flights to some 1,000 destinations across the globe. Oneworld was launched in 1999 by founding alliance members American Airlines, British Airways, Cathay Pacific and Qantas.

The alliance has since grown with Finnair and Iberia joining in 1999, LAN in 2000, Japan Airlines and Royal Jordanian in 2007, S7 Airlines in 2010, airberlin in 2012, Malaysia Airlines and Qatar Airways in 2013, and TAM Airlines, US Airways and Sri Lankan Airlines in 2014.

 

Awards

Oneworld is the current holder of an unprecendent six of the eight leading international "best airline alliance" titles:

  • Skytrax World Travel Awards 2014 World's Best Airline Alliance.
  • Air Transport News' Best Airline Alliance 2014.
  • Business Traveller's Best Airline Alliance 2013.
  • Premier Traveler's Best of 2013 Readers' Survey Best Airline Alliance.
  • Global Traveler's GT Tested Reader Survey 2013 Awards Best Airline Alliance for the fourth year running.
  • World Travel Awards 2013 World's Leading Airline Alliance for the 11th year running.

 

Current Members (as at 29 September 2015): 

  • airberlin
  • American Airlines
  • British Airways
  • Cathay Pacific
  • Finnair
  • Iberia
  • Japan Airlines
  • LAN
  • TAM
  • Malaysia Airlines
  • Qantas
  • Qatar Airways
  • Royal Jordanian
  • S7 Airlines
  • SriLankan Airlines
  • oneworld airline affiliates

 

3. SKYTEAM ALLIANCE

2014 SkyTeam flight attendants

 

SkyTeam was founded in 2000 by four airlines, namely Aeromexico, Air France, Delta Airlines and Korean Air. It has since grown to 20 member airlines, providing passengers comprehensive access to an extensive global network with 1,057 destinations in 179 countries, plus more frequencies and more connectivity than ever before. The alliance has daily departures of approximately 16,270 and serves 665.4 million passengers per annum.

 

Current Members (as at 29 September 2015): 

  • Aeroflot
  • Aerolineas Argentinas
  • AeroMexico
  • Air Europa
  • Air France
  • Alitalia
  • China Airlines
  • China Eastern
  • China Southern
  • Czech Airlines
  • Delta
  • Garuda Indonesia
  • Kenya Airways
  • KLM
  • Korean Air
  • Middle Eastern Airlines
  • Saudia
  • Tarom
  • Vietnam Airlines
  • Xiamen Airlines

 

BQ definitely recommends choosing a frequent flyer program and airline alliance and sticking to it for maximum airmile benefits. Two factors will help in your decision to choosing one, first being which are the airlines you fly on most frequently and also which are the destinations that you fly to frequently as the different alliances are strong in connectivity in different parts of the world. Check out our post on  Travel Tips that Singapore Travellers Should Know — Budget & Premium Airlines, Travel Search Engines, Air Mile Credit Cards and Deals! 

 

We hope that this article has been useful to you, do subscribe to our website and facebook for the latest updates on promotions and useful tips on saving money!

 

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