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How Alliances Work

What’s The Point?
How Loyalty Programs Work
Credit Cards and Credit Scores
Types of Miles & Points
Identifying Your Travel Goals
How Alliances Work
Credit Card Strategy For Beginners
Earning Miles & Points
Hotels Matter Too
What’s Next?

In order to maximize your travel opportunities, its often helpful to understand a bit more into how airline and banks work together. By understanding these partnerships you will be able to make the most of your travel opportunities.


Most legacy airlines (meaning the big-name carriers, as opposed to the smaller or low-cost airlines) are affiliated with other legacy airlines, this can be through individual partnership agreements or through alliances.


Therefore it is possible for you to fly on Airline A and earn miles on Airline B. When you decide to redeem your miles, you can often use Airline B’s miles to fly on other airlines including Airline A.


There are some major Alliances that you need to be aware of, each Alliance is comprised of several Airlines.


The Star Alliance is the largest alliance, and is comprised of the following airlines.

In addition several of the Star Alliance airlines also share a frequent flyer program, Miles and More.


Oneworld Alliance


This alliance is not as big, but continues to increase in size.

Skyteam Alliance


The other alliance is the Skyteam alliance, several Skyteam airlines share a frequent flyer program with FlyingBlue.


Other Airlines


In addition there are several other airlines that are not part of a particular alliance necessarily, but have partnerships with each other, or with other airlines, sometimes even those in the big alliances. These are

For example Alaska Airlines partners with several other airlines such as Delta Airlines, American Airlines, this is even though Delta is part of Skyteam and American is in oneworld.


As you can see with all these alliances, you now have many more options for redeeming your miles than you may previously have thought.


Generally speaking you can’t transfer miles from one airline to another, so the best strategy is to accrue miles on one or two key programs that are within each alliance. So for example if you have accumulate 50,000 Air France FlyingBlue miles, theres no way to combine them with 50,000 Korean Air Skypass Miles even though they are both part of the SkyTeam alliance.


You can redeem your miles with the partners of your program, but you will have to follow the rulses of the program that you have signed up with. So you must remember the miles you have will dictate which award chart you follow. So if you Air France Flying Blue miles you have to follow the terms and conditions of their program, no matter which airline you end up flying.


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