After a series of what can only be deemed as setbacks for frequent fliers, Continental Airlines announced a reversal of an impending policy change before it was to take effect.

The airline had sought to follow United, US Airways and Frontier airlines in eliminating the minimum mileage that passengers had been credited for their flights.  The airline standard has been to award a mimimum of 500 miles no matter how short the flight actually was giving some fliers some compensation for the many short haul flights that exist.  Now Continental will give all of their elite level OnePass members while those that don’t fly at least 25,000 miles a year will earn actual mileage.

As an elite frequent flier with American (lifetime Plantinum) I think this is a fair deal.  The idea of loyalty programs is to reward your best customers and who can argue that someone who flies at least 25 ,000 miles a year isn’t in the best customer category?

However that being said, I have to admit to feeling that with all the changes that the airlines have made in the last year that it has been hard to see what perks I am receiving for my loyalty to American.  Frequent fliers are in a bit of dilemma as flying is the most efficient method of travel in most cases , but with rising costs, additional hassles (like security), jam packed flights and diminishing perks the airlines are fast approaching a tipping point to where flying will be the domain of just a few.

So as much as I love my frequent fliers miles and my premium status I look forward to the day when most of my business can be conducted via a video feed eliminating the need to get on a plane.  At  the rate technology is moving that day may not be too far off which will be very bad news for the airlines indeed.

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