SkyTeam Makes It Easier To Request Missing Miles

Filed Under: SkyTeam

There are three major global alliances — Star Alliance, SkyTeam, and oneworld. In general I’d say that Star Alliance has the best collection of airlines, while oneworld has the most valuable reciprocal elite perks. Meanwhile SkyTeam is sort of just the alliance of leftovers.

Saudia 777

Overall I’d say SkyTeam airlines are improving, as they’re largely refreshing their longhaul fleets with fully flat business class seats. Still, I don’t think SkyTeam has historically done much in the way of innovation.

China-Airlines-Business-Class-777 - 8
China Airlines 777 business class

However, SkyTeam has just announced a very cool new functionality that we haven’t seen before. SkyTeam has introduced an online retroactive mileage credit tool that works in real-time to validate retroactive mileage requests, giving you your missing miles instantly. Per the press release:

SkyTeam, the global airline alliance, has introduced an online, retroactive credit tool to make it easier for frequent flyers to keep their account balances up-to-date. Already available across most of SkyTeam’s 20 members, the tool works in real-time to validate retroactive requests for eligible flights in a matter of clicks.

The new tool eliminates the need for manual processing of post-travel claims such as when a Frequent Flyer Program (FFP) number has not been entered into a reservation. Customers simply log into their FFP account, enter their flight details and the system validates the request in seconds. Eligible flights are credited to their account automatically and retroactive requests can be made as little as one week after the date of travel – the shortest time frame in the industry.

This is fantastic. I’ve written in the past about the struggles that I’ve had with getting Qatar Airways to credit miles to my American AAdvantage account. The miles typically don’t post automatically, and then requesting missing miles gets complicated. You have to wait 30 days before you can request missing miles, then you can submit a request, then they often ask for more info, and then they take up to 30 days to process the claim. It’s ridiculous that they don’t have a better setup in 2016.


So I’m a huge fan of any tool that allows them to verify flights in real-time so that systems between airlines are communicating better. Kudos to SkyTeam, and hopefully Star Alliance and oneworld roll out a similar functionality soon.

(Tip of the hat to The Points Guy)

  1. I agree with you in regards to planes that there may not be any innovation within Skyteam. However, in the mileage game, I know Air France/KLM/Delta use the concept of rollover miles which is great! In addition, both Flying Blue and Skymiles have dynamic variable pricing for flight redemptions on their metal. I’m not 100% sure if other airlines do it but I know AF/KL/DL do.

  2. So basically it is something like Star Alliance and Lufthansa system, which btw already exists for a longer time?

  3. UA had this functionality for ages. I’ve submitted a retro-credit req for both UA and ANA metal, both validated immediately and miles posted instantly.

  4. @henry LAX
    The major point of this tool is to retrocredit when you fly airline X and credit the flight to airline Y’s frequent flyer program, and the fact that it works for the majority of the 20 airline members

  5. Star Alliance offers an Online Retroclaim functionality for almost all of its member Airlines since early this year. So nothing new or innovating Skyteam is doing here. This is only an announcement so lets see when and if it is really implemented…

  6. I actually think Skyteam has done more than any other alliance to integrate the passenger experience with their “Sky Priority” product which is a consistent branding and set of premium passenger lanes and desks across all of the member airlines. Sure, it is not as exciting as first class lounge access with oneworld, but neither of the other alliances has made as much of an effort to offer a consistent product experience across the alliance.

  7. Skyteam is unpopular on blogs, but being in the Northeast, they’re my #1-3 choices for Europe and right up there with *A. Only OW is a clear last place for me.

    AF is a great business class, as is AZ, ahead of both *A and OW for TATL (except for SQ, but their schedule doesn’t ever seem to work for me). Both are respectable in coach as well for that length of flight. DL itself does an average if not solid business class, but they also serve a number of secondary cities from JFK (Nice, Venice, etc) – avoiding a connection after an overnight is a really underrated option in my book. For awards, AF can be a little goofy and AZ is pretty stingy with business class space.

    Don’t get me wrong, *A is solid – I particularly love LX business class, with the added benefit of ZRH being the best European hub that I’ve experienced. SQ is absolutely awesome if the schedule works. If we shift to award travel, I will say LX and LH in particular do make it easy to find business class if you want it.

    If anything, for a Europe-focused traveler (which I am), OW is the parts bin. AA doesn’t serve a lot of secondary cities, and the ones they do are extremely seasonal. BA is average in most respects, but LHR sucks. AB has no idea what’s going on. And if we’re talking awards, OW falls even further.

    We have a lot of choices to Europe from Boston (and JFK which is an easy connection). I find myself opting for the Skyteam carriers most of the time. Then again, I wrote all this to realize every alliance is the best in a particular niche, this just happens to be the niche (US-Europe) that I care about.

  8. It would actually be nice if an alliance had the same seats across its member airlines. It would sure make things easier. I, for the life of me, don’t understand why KLM and Air France, which are part of the same company, don’t have the same seats.

  9. Nice. After a couple of weeks of back and forth emails with DL to get credit for a CZ flight last year, this is a welcome feature. Hope it works as advertised.

  10. They need to fix one problem: entering an AF FB number on other SkyTeam flights does not seem to stick. I’ve had this problem several times with Vietnam Airlines ( number entered at the time of booking but mysteriously drops out ).
    Same with Aeroflot. That said, they do credit the miles very quickly , often within 24 hours of the flight

  11. Didn’t see link to request partner airlines on Delta’s website. Still need to fill out a comment/complaint form. Any idea?

  12. Ben, I like your posts in general, but you’re so far of point. Amazing to see such lack of knowledge;

    ‘Sky team the alliance of leftovers’ ‘Non innovating’
    Sky team hosts the airlines that disrupted the aviation industry by forming the first joint ventures. The beginning of alliances. Northwest(Delta) and KLM.

    Furthermore was Sky Priority the first in seamless, recognizable priority benefits for elite members on all members.

    I can go on for a while, but I hope you will rethink your statements as they are so incorrect.

  13. Sky Team improving? You are kidding, right? The disconnect between sky team is getting bigger and bigger. Delta ticket stock, Korean Air operated Business class ticket. First flight DL …. Delta agent: ” Sorry, we can only check you in for the first flight, you have to pick up luggage in LA and check in at Korean air.” Korean Air counter closed, waited an hour until open to check in, again….

    Same happened on Aeroflot, Air France, KLM, Europa, Alitalia and Delta partner Virgin Atlantic….

    That’s not an alliance, why not call it competition… or do I need to mention the contradicting lounge access policies? I try to avoid flying Delta metal outside the US to get lounge access when flying in coach…

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to participate in the discussion, please adhere to our commenting guidelines. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *