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Infrequent Star Alliance / Sky Team points collecting
I fly often in the One World Alliance (60-70 segments a year) and have a BA gold card. I have not been collecting with other schemes. I now find myself infrequently flying the odd sector with non One World airlines, usually Star Alliance. These have been so few that I haven’t bothered accumulating points before. However, I now plan more of these in future and want recommendations for which airline scheme to credit points to from infrequent Star Alliance travel. I am based in London and would ideally use the points for travel to Asian destinations, so would be prepared to save up for a while / top up by other means (e.g. I already have various air miles credit cards). But what’s a safe bet to bank miles in Star Alliance (or even Sky Team, if it comes up) with such a vague idea about when / how I would redeem them? As I travel so much I guess I should make every single flight work for me!
Well for SkyTeam airlines, I’d say Delta’s program is good as long as you’re redeeming on partner airlines and not on Delta. Furthermore, their miles dont expire. AirFrance/KLM FlyingBlue is pretty decent since there are always Promo awards which can be useful. Lastly, Korean Air is a solid choice – great redemption rates for US-Europe on partners and usually great availability for premium cabins on their own planes.
For Star Alliance, United could work but they changed their award routing rules recently. However, no fuel surcharges on any partners. Hopefully they’ll fix the new award pricing engine. As it stands, its a hot mess. Aeroplan is another option but they just announced an increase in change fees and there are fuel surcharges on a bunch of airlines. Singapore is a good option, especially since they dont release premium cabin awards to partners but miles have a hard expiration of 3 years.