Summer travel season is almost upon us, and there is a new airline atop the list of best frequent flyer programs, according to WalletHub.
Alaska Airlines’ Alaska Mileage Plan takes first place this year, dethroning last year’s champion, United Airlines’ United MileagePlus.
The Alaska Airlines program earned its lofty position for being the best program overall and for offering the best rewards value. It is also one of seven major airlines that offer a frequent flyer program in which miles do not expire due to inactivity.
For 2022, the top five frequent flyer programs are:
- Alaska Airlines — Mileage Plan
- United Airlines — MileagePlus
- Delta Air Lines — SkyMiles
- Hawaiian Airlines — HawaiianMiles
- American Airlines — AAdvantage
In addition, WalletHub notes three airlines — Alaska Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines and Delta Air Lines — are offering more rewards value this year than they did in 2021. The three airlines are “sweetening the pot by an average of roughly 10%,” WalletHub says.
Looking to redeem with partner airlines? WalletHub says six airlines in the survey will let you do so. In order of the airlines with the most partners, they are:
- United Airlines
- Delta Air Lines
- Alaska Airlines
- American Airlines
- Hawaiian Airlines
- JetBlue Airways
In compiling its rankings, WalletHub compared the loyalty rewards programs of the 10 largest domestic carriers. The programs were rated based on 21 metrics, including everything from the value of the rewards to blackout-date policies.
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