Frequent Flyer Programs Comparison Chart

The airline frequent flyer programs below are listed in rank order according to our research. The number of miles or points they award for flights often depends on the class of the ticket (or, in the case of Spirit Airlines, the passenger's membership status). Miles and points on most airlines expire within two years unless there's some kind of activity on the account. The minimum number of miles or points required for an award ticket is generally good for a one-way, economy-class ticket within the continental U.S. Other destinations and fare classes and select dates cost more (click through for details). Airlines with more destinations, nearby hubs, and many partners provide more opportunities to earn and redeem miles or points. Visit our full frequent flyer programs comparison for more information.

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Frequent Flyer
Program

Miles/Points Earned
on Flights*

Other Ways to Earn
Miles/Points

Miles/Points
Expiration

Minimum Required
for Award Ticket

Blackout
Dates

Destinations

USA Hubs

Partner
Airlines

American Airlines AAdvantage

100-150% of miles flown

Credit card, dining program, online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

18 months of inactivity

12,500 miles

Yes

330+

Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, and D.C.

25 (Oneworld and 10 others)

United Airlines Mileage Plus

100-250% of miles flown

Credit card, dining program, online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

18 months of inactivity

10,000 miles

Yes

350+

Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Newark, San Francisco, and D.C.

35 (Star Alliance and 10 others)

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

100-150% of miles flown

Credit card, dining program, online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more>

24 months of inactivity

7,500 miles

Yes

90+

Anchorage, Los Angeles, Portland, Seattle

14

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards

6-12 points per dollar spent

Credit card, dining program, online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

24 months of inactivity

70-120 points per dollar (depending on ticket price)

No

90+

Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Las Vegas, Orlando, Phoenix

0

Delta Air Lines SkyMiles

100-150% of miles flown**

Credit card, dining program, online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

Never

12,500 miles

No

320+

Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York, Salt Lake City

26

JetBlue Airways TrueBlue

3 points per dollar spent on base fare (6 if booked on JetBlue.com)

Credit card, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, points for purchase, and more; online shopping portal forthcoming

Never

5,000 points

No

80+

Boston, Fort Lauderdale, Long Beach, New York, Orlando, San Juan

31

Virgin America Elevate

5 points per dollar spent on base fare (1 point per mile flown on Virgin Atlantic or Australia)

Credit card, online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, points for purchase, and more

18 months of inactivity

2,500 points

No

20+

San Francisco

5

Frontier Airlines EarlyReturns

25-150% of miles flown

Credit card, dining program, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

18 months of inactivity

10,000 miles

No

75+

Denver

4

Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles

100% of miles flown

Credit card, dining program (CA/AZ only), online shopping portal, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

18 months of inactivity

7,500 miles

No

25+

Honolulu, Oahu

8

Spirit Airlines Free Spirit

50-100% of miles flown

Credit card, dining program, partner hotels or rental cars, special promotions, miles for purchase, and more

3 months of inactivity

10,000 miles

No

50+

Chicago, Fort Lauderdale, Dallas, Detroit

0

*Without status
**Beginning 2015, 5-11 miles per dollar spent on base fare, depending on member status