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What Year Did You Join Your First Frequent Flyer Program and What Was It?

What Year Did You Join Your First Frequent Flyer Program and What Was It?

Old Aug 9, 16, 8:13 pm
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Question What Year Did You Join Your First Frequent Flyer Program and What Was It?

I started accruing Pan Am WorldPass miles at a young age in July 1983.

Still have the statements from then. The first one was printed on heavy almost card-like stock, really nicely done.
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Old Aug 9, 16, 8:35 pm
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USAirways 1989.
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Old Aug 9, 16, 10:58 pm
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Lightbulb NWA

Northwest WorldPerks 1988
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Old Aug 10, 16, 1:00 am
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Amtrak Guest Rewards, 2008 (I believe) or, if AGR doesn't count, Virgin America Elevate in 2014
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Old Aug 10, 16, 2:05 am
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PanAm Worldpass in 1987
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Old Aug 10, 16, 5:13 am
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TAB (Aer Lingus), 1997
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Old Aug 10, 16, 6:09 am
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American December 1983. That was when the FF #s were L######. Mine starts with F. There's a thread on the AA forum that shows the evolution of the AA numbering system over time for those interested in such.
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Old Aug 10, 16, 11:28 am
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Eastern Airlines. My OnePass card shows that I joined in 1983, but that seems late. I will update if I can find an actual Frequent Traveler Bonus Program card in the drawer.
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Old Aug 10, 16, 1:02 pm
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I'm not sure exactly. While doing some house-cleaning a few years ago, I found a TWA Aviator card long after TWA had already merged into AA. I was flying cheap by flying overnight courier flights cross-country in the late 80s, so it may have been from then? And then I applied for Norhtwest WordlPerks in the early 1990s, but didn't fly Northwest again for about a decade after that (and only realized by accident at that point that I already had an account with them from a decade earlier).

So there may or may not have been other programs I signed up while flying one flight and then forgot about.

The first airline program I applied for and actually kept actively using was Southwest Rapid Rewards circa 95 or 96 when a company I was working for shuttled me several times for a work project from SoCal to Silicon Valley. That was back when a certain number of paid short-hop round trips on Southwest got you an award on Southwest for anywhere in the country they flew, with last-minute seats typically available!
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Old Aug 10, 16, 5:55 pm
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TWA may have been my first program too, but it's well possible that Western or Texas had me earlier. Delta's program is the first program in which I sort of went out of my way to vest myself, but AA has been my mainstay program longer and more extensively than the others when it comes to my most active accounts still in use.
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Old Aug 10, 16, 8:40 pm
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AA in 1990. Though I didn't fly them until years later. I had to have the account to log into EAASY SABRE.
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Old Aug 11, 16, 4:32 am
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AA in 1993.
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Old Aug 11, 16, 7:25 am
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Aeroplan in 1992. Since I was flying back and forth from university, I figured that I might as well get something for it.
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Old Aug 11, 16, 9:56 am
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Mine was either Southwest or Midway - I forget which. I was flying MCI-MDW from time to time and the FFP was literally paper-based: a punch-card type thing. I'm not kidding. If you flew a few round-trips, you got a free one. (I know this was the mechanic of Southwest's program for years, but I don't recall if they were the one that had the physical cards you had to carry around. This was late '80's.)

Other than that, my first major FFP was AAdvantage in 1993. Flight attendants walked through the cabin with paper forms to fill out: I did so on a TATL trip, made Gold shortly thereafter, and still consider AA my "home" program to this day...even though I've cycled through years of Star Alliance (including some UA 1K years).
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Old Aug 11, 16, 4:49 pm
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Northwest and Republic in 1986.
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