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List of programs with benefits even at Basic status?

List of programs with benefits even at Basic status?

Old Feb 11, 19, 8:22 pm
  #1  
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List of programs with benefits even at Basic status?

This seems to be an ignored/undocumented topic (no results from either Google or forum searches) but I thought it might help the non/mid-frequent travelers like myself or simply those who love a "golden hello". And maybe we can create a wikipost?.

Many years ago I had just registered on a frequent flyer program before my first flight on an airline (I think a Oneworld member, so maybe BA, QR or CX) and I was allowed priority boarding at the gate. On a separate occasion I remember receiving a complimentary upgrade to Premium Economy; although I believe that wasn't an "official" benefit, I think just being a registered FF member helped me get it.

Looking at a few airline websites that I fly, here are a few examples I found:

CX Marco Polo Green ($100 enrolment fee): Marco Polo counters, Priority Boarding, Some extra baggage allowance, Redemption benefits for lounge and extra legroom.
BA Executive Club Blue: Priority waitlist, Member-only offers for magazine subscriptions and special redemption deals
SG KrisFlyer: Boarding Pass Privileges all year round, which include "Exclusive discounts on hotel stays, car rentals, restaurants, boutiques, shopping malls and other tourist attractions".

What have you found, and have you also experienced any "unofficial" benefits?
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Old Feb 12, 19, 12:49 am
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In the US, on many airlines, you can get 1 free checked bag and priority boarding by getting the airline's co-branded credit card.

Fee is usually in the $75-$100 range; often (not always) waived the first year.
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Old Feb 12, 19, 10:59 am
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Originally Posted by TanyaHelenaP View Post
which include "Exclusive discounts on hotel stays, car rentals, restaurants, boutiques, shopping malls and other tourist attractions".
There are TONS of companies that claim "exclusive" discounts just for signing up for their official spam , both airlines and non-airlines. I don't think it should be counted on a list like this, because it'll so overwhelm the list, and because it's so pervasive (but generally useless to "stack", ie the discounts are usually not all that "exclusive", and can be gotten from lots of diffeent sources).

Also, you said "program", not "airline program". Well, "programs" (unqualified) includes hotel programs and car rental programs. Lots of hotel programs give you free internet if you sign up for their program and then book through their program site (at brands that don't give free internet to everyone), such as Hilton Honors. Lots of car rental programs give you upgrade possibilities if you sign up for their free rental program, such as Avis Preferred.

The obvious unstated "benefit" of most airline programs is the ability to collect and use airlines miles (you can't do that if you don't belong to the airline program at all).
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Old Feb 13, 19, 4:41 am
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Of course, but I think "Priority Boarding" and certain Lounge access benefits are quite unusual for Basic status right?
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Old Feb 13, 19, 3:42 pm
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Originally Posted by TanyaHelenaP View Post
Of course, but I think "Priority Boarding" and certain Lounge access benefits are quite unusual for Basic status right?
Yes, but that's just one of the three you listed (CX).

BA Blue's priority waitilists is better than nothing, but only would be noticeable in a very few situations I think.

A couple fundamental questions arise though:

1. If you collect miles with another airline in the same alliance, whose miles don't expire (with activity every so often), is it worth it to switch to one of these airlines (where miles do expire with no recourse after a few years in the case of the Asian airlines) just to get these benefits when flying that airline, or is earning miles you can keep more worth it?

2. If you redeemed miles from another airline, do you need to switch your FFN to this airline to get these benefits, or can you just flash a card (is there a card these days, even)?

Last edited by sdsearch; Feb 13, 19 at 3:49 pm
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Old Feb 14, 19, 9:14 pm
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Originally Posted by TanyaHelenaP View Post
Of course, but I think "Priority Boarding" and certain Lounge access benefits are quite unusual for Basic status right?
but the problem with "priority boarding" on CX is that everyone has it. on my last flight from HKG, there were more people in the supposed priority line than people in the non-priority line. i counted them. it was ridiculous.

and the discounts you mention that SG has are the same you can get a hundred other ways. they are by no means exclusive.

all of these supposed benefits are a worthless bunch of marketing baloney.
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Old Feb 16, 19, 11:51 am
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Yeah, that's the problem with benefits available to anyone who signs up, when there is no restriction on who signs up. Everyone signs up and everyone gets the same benefit, so it's not that much of a benefit by then.

When the benefit is that something is free (internet access at hotels) if you sign up, but paid if you don't, then that's one thing. But when the benefit is to give everyone who signs up access to something that's limited (boarding or lounge), it just causes overcrowding, and isn't much of a benefit at all.
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