Big Changes Coming for United, Delta Frequent Fliers

Photo (cc) by Robert S. Donovan

In 2014, Delta and United Airlines frequent fliers will have to redeem a lot more miles to sit in premium seats. And they are not too happy about it.

Beginning Feb. 1, the miles required by United for international travel in first and business class will increase as much as 87 percent, with the biggest increases coming for seats on United’s partner airlines.

Delta plans to implement some minor reward hikes in February, followed by some larger increases on June 1, Bloomberg Businessweek reports.

Both airlines had already announced they’re implementing minimum spending levels in 2014 for those who wish to maintain elite status, Businessweek says.

Here’s what some of the changes mean to customers:

  • The miles for a first-class trip with a United partner from the U.S. to the Middle East will rise from 150,000 to 280,000, Businessweek says.
  • “Saver Hawaii economy and all awards to Alaska increase up to 40 percent,” MileCards says in a post that charts all of the United changes.
  • “Saver business/first class awards to Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and Africa increase up to 17 percent,” that website said.
  • Round-trip business class flights on Delta from the U.S. to Europe will increase by 25,000 miles to a total of 125,000 miles in June.
  • Round-trip business class flights on Delta from the U.S. to Asia will increase by 20,000 miles to 140,000 miles.

The airlines say the increases are fair given higher costs and better service.

The changes have prompted a lot of complaints on online frequent-flier forums. Your best course of action if you have lots of miles: Redeem them before the increases take effect.

What do you think? Have the airlines found yet another way to make us feel more like cattle and less like valued customers? Or have some frequent fliers come to expect too much? Share your thoughts in the comments below or on our Facebook page.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Read Next
3 Good Things About Recessions
3 Good Things About Recessions

We don’t wish difficulty on anyone, but there can be an upside to a down cycle.

New Ways to Save Money on Insurance of Every Kind
New Ways to Save Money on Insurance of Every Kind

Tech startups are making it easy to find the best rates for all kinds of insurance policies — and get covered fast.

7 Surprising Things That Damage Your Credit Score
7 Surprising Things That Damage Your Credit Score

A seemingly small stumble can cause your credit score to plummet.

Secret Ways to Save on Netflix
Secret Ways to Save on Netflix

These little-known savings tactics can help whittle down what you pay for your streaming video subscription — every month.

This Chase Card Is Great for Groceries and Cash Back on Everything
This Chase Card Is Great for Groceries and Cash Back on Everything

You could earn more than $600 cash back in your first year just from grocery shopping.

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Most Popular
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again
9 Things You’ll Never See at Costco Again

The warehouse store offers an enormous selection, but these products aren’t coming back.

11 Things Retirees Should Always Buy at Costco
11 Things Retirees Should Always Buy at Costco

This leader in bulk shopping is a great place to find discounts in the fixed-income years.

Over 50? The CDC Says You Need These 4 Vaccines
Over 50? The CDC Says You Need These 4 Vaccines

Fall is the time to schedule vaccines that can keep you healthy — and even save your life.

11 Senior Discounts for Anyone Age 55 or Older
11 Senior Discounts for Anyone Age 55 or Older

There is no need to wait until you’re 65 to take advantage of so-called “senior” discounts.

11 Household Items That Go Bad — or Become Dangerous
11 Household Items That Go Bad — or Become Dangerous

When you get the impulse to stockpile these everyday items, pay close attention to their expiration dates.

8 Things You Can Get for Free at Pharmacies
8 Things You Can Get for Free at Pharmacies

In this age of higher-priced drugs and complex health care systems, a trip to the pharmacy can spark worry. Freebies sure do help.

These Are the 4 Best Medicare Advantage Plans for 2020
These Are the 4 Best Medicare Advantage Plans for 2020

Medicare Advantage customers themselves rate these plans highest.

7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast
7 Ways to Boost Your Credit Score Fast

Your financial security might soon depend upon the strength of your credit score.

The 10 Most Commonly Stolen Vehicles in America
The 10 Most Commonly Stolen Vehicles in America

A new model parks atop the list of vehicles that thieves love to pilfer.

19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree
19 High-Paying Jobs You Can Get With a 2-Year Degree

These jobs pay more than the typical job in the U.S. — and no bachelor’s degree is required.

5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free
5 Ways to Get Amazon Prime for Free

Hesitant to drop $119 a year on an Amazon Prime membership? Here’s how to get it for free.

10 Reasons Why You Should Actually Retire at 62
10 Reasons Why You Should Actually Retire at 62

If you can, here are several good reasons to retire earlier than we’re told to.

3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free
3 Ways to Get Microsoft Office for Free

With a little ingenuity, you can cut Office costs to zero.

26 States That Do Not Tax Social Security Income
26 States That Do Not Tax Social Security Income

These states won’t tax any of your Social Security income — and in some cases, other types of retirement income.

14 Things That Are ‘Free’ With Medicare
14 Things That Are ‘Free’ With Medicare

These services could save you money and help prevent costly health problems.

5 Keys to Making Your Car Last for 200,000 Miles
5 Keys to Making Your Car Last for 200,000 Miles

Pushing your car to 200,000 miles — and beyond — can save you piles of cash. Here’s how to get there.

5 Things That Make Life More Meaningful for Retirees
5 Things That Make Life More Meaningful for Retirees

Retirees agree: These are the things that give them purpose and fulfillment in their golden years.

10 Things You Should Never Do With Bleach
10 Things You Should Never Do With Bleach

Does the pandemic have you reaching for bleach more than ever before? Learn the ins and outs of using this powerful disinfectant.

15 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now
15 Amazon Purchases That We Are Loving Right Now

These practical products make everyday life a little easier.

View More Articles

View this page without ads

Help us produce more money-saving articles and videos by subscribing to a membership.

Get Started

Add a Comment

Our Policy: We welcome relevant and respectful comments in order to foster healthy and informative discussions. All other comments may be removed. Comments with links are automatically held for moderation.