AAdvantage or UA Mileage Plus?

7 replies

swapozflyer

Member since 13 Mar 2014

Total posts 20

AAdvantage or UA Mileage Plus? I'm an Aussie who relocated to US for the next 2 years. I am considering whether to join AAdvantage OR UA Mileage plus considering that I will return to Australia in the next 2 years? Any recommendations / thoughts on which one is better?

reno

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 20 Sep 2013

Total posts 316

I do not know your location with in the US but i would do the one with the airline you intend to fly with most,eg the city where your in may be serviced better by one than the other..but join booth.The respective programes are similar.

watson374

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 17 Aug 2012

Total posts 1,285

Probably AAdvantage if you're looking at retaining QF as your TPAC airline of choice, but keep your options open. Take into account your American port, the airline(s) you will actually fly in the US and so on.

KG

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 10 May 2011

Total posts 249

UA recently massively devaluated their award chart (ok, some flights between Australia and Asia actually came out better, but on the whole a big set back). In terms of burning points AA is your better program and as said, if you still want OW status this is the program to go for. Also agree with statement that it is important to see which airlines provides best connections from your home base and what flying you will do over the two years. Lastly I would look into credit card sign up bonusses, which cards would you consider applying for (and are you likely to be approved for as an Australian citizen on a temp US visa I would guess?). The majority of points in the US are "eraned" by churning credit cards, and if you are able to do so, I would check which mileage programs you can direct these sign up bonusses towards.

TheRealBabushka

Member since 21 Apr 2012

Total posts 2,059

swapozflyer,

I agree with Robert. Where you will be based is an important criteria to decide your frequent flyer programme.

I would also consider the following:

  • Your objective of having a frequent flyer account - 1) Flight redemption or 2) Status?
  • Existing Frequent Flyer account and your status with that programme - If you're QFF Gold, it might be easier to retain that for the next 2 years, assuming you'll be visiting Australia over the holidays etc.
  • Any Qantas Club arrangement you have in place (any work/professional membership discounts) - Might be cheaper than purchasing United Club or Admirals club passes. Qantas Club members can access Admirals Club for International and Domestic flights.
  • Aegean's Miles and Bonus programme - With US-based airlines, elite frequent flyers do not get automatic access to lounges for domestic flights that do not preceed/procede from an international flight (Mexico (except Mexico City) and the Caribbean flights are considered "domestic" flights according to Aadvantage.
  • Will I be flying enough to even bother? The good thing with airlines in the US is that you can purchase one day passes to lounge, which means you don't have to bother joining a programme if you will fly infrequently. If you don't fly enough your ability to earn sufficient miles for redemption is significantly reduced.
  • Can I get a US based credit card that will accelerate my mileage accrual and/or give me lounge access such as the Citibank Aadvantage card?

Hope this helps.

 

 

reno

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

Member since 20 Sep 2013

Total posts 316

Swapozflyer,

TRB is on the money on all points. His very last point, i would look into because the Citibank card TRB refers to will give you a 30 to 50g points start with AA and AA for a time was matching this.Check it out i know 2 people who received 100,000 pts that kicked in on there first flight plus the aditional pts for ther first flight.Its available to new citibank USA new credit card customers the AA match was for new members of the AA program only that appears you would be.So some out there are not confused i do believe this offer is only available to US cit/residents.  

swapozflyer

Member since 13 Mar 2014

Total posts 20

Thanks guys for the inputs! Appreciate it!

I actually live in NYC and both UA and AA are accessible so am open to either. Agree on the massive UA downgrade to points redemption. I also understand that they have a lot more Premier 1K (elite for UA Mileage Plus) members than the number of Executive Platinum (elite on AA) members

Going by inputs so far, I am considering AAdvantage (given I can leverage benefits on QF and the great connections QF has to US cities)

QFcrew

Member since 19 Nov 2012

Total posts 10

You can keep using your QFF GOLD. You just need one return trip JFK/LAX/SYD per year to maintain your minimum sector requirement on QF services ie 4 sectors. AA is a prefered member of QFFF with cabin and status bonuses plus a 500 point minium earn.

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