Crediting your flights to the right Frequent Flyer Program

Alaska Airlines Boeing 737-900ER photographed in April 2016 by Chad Slattery.

Last edited on 15 July 2021

Before I started chasing miles, I used to blindly credit my flights to Frequent Flyer Program (FFP) of any airline that I was flying. Whenever I flew Qatar Airways, I would credit to Privilege Club and whenever I flew Emirates, I would credit to Skywards.

I would check my FFP account years later and found that after 8 flights, I only had a tiny fraction of the miles required to redeem for an Economy flight.

“These frequent flyer programs must only be beneficial to the filthy rich”, I thought.

I now know that those are two of the most unrewarding FFPs out there and really wish that I have started paying attention sooner.

I am actively accumulating miles to the following FFPs, in order of preference:

  1. Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
  2. Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  3. Qatar Airways Privilege Club
  4. Singapore Airlines Krisflyer
  5. Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles
  6. Delta Air Lines SkyMiles

These six FFPs cover almost any airline in the world right now.

Where to credit my flights

wheretocredit.com lists all the FFPs that you can credit your flight to and how much miles you will be getting.

All you have to do is enter the airline that you are flying with and its fare class.

For example, if you are flying Singapore Airlines Premium Economy with Fare Class R from Singapore to Los Angeles, you would receive 100% with Alaska Airlines, Singapore Airlines and long list of other FFPs.

However, as I value Alaska’s miles higher than the rest, that option gives me the most value. Besides, Alaska Airlines reward me with more miles for this fare class if I have a higher status with them.

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How many miles will I be getting?

All you have to do is calculate the distance (I use gcmap.com) that you will be flying and multiply it by the %tage that you see on wheretocredit.com.

For round trip flights of the above example, the total distance that you will fly is around 17,539 miles.

As a bottom-tier member, you will be receiving about 17,539 miles with Alaska Airlines, if you choose to credit to them. That is worth S$386 according to my valuation.

Considering that you paid $1,328 for these flights, you will be getting back about 29% of that amount back in miles!

As a comparison, you would receive only S$298 worth of miles if you credit to Singapore Airlines Krisflyer.

Reminder: You can redeem Alaska miles for fantastic Business and First Class flights on Cathay and Japan Airlines.

Get even more miles with the right card

By using the right credit card, I will receive 5,312 miles (worth S$96) for the above ticket.

It pays to be loyal to Alaska

If you continue to credit your flights to Alaska’s Mileage Plan, you can achieve MVP or Gold membership. This increases your mileage accrual quite dramatically. As an Alaska Gold member, I receive 200% of miles for flights like the one that I mentioned above.

This means that I will get about 35,000 miles (worth S$772), which is a whopping 58% of the price of the ticket!

Stack your purchase to receive cashback

By clicking through ShopBack to Singapore Airline’s website, you can get around 2% to 5% cashback.

Bottom line

To summarize, pay $1,328 for one of the best Premium Economy seats in the world for round trip, direct flights to the other side of the world and receive at least S$508 (38%) worth of cash and miles in return.

That is how you win the Miles Game.

Singapore Airlines Premium Economy (Read my review)

9 thoughts on “Crediting your flights to the right Frequent Flyer Program”

  1. Hi,
    I was checking if it is better to credit CX flights to Asia Miles or Mileage Plan for my upcoming C class flight from HKG to FUK. AM award 4000 miles (CX website) while MP award 2858 miles (wheretocredit.com). Seems like in this case, it is better for the miles to go to Asia Miles ?
    Btw, wheretocredit.com seems not accurate about the miles award for CX flights to Asia miles.

    Reply
    • I think instead of just looking at which program gives you the most miles, you should also think about how you plan to redeem the miles and for which route (how cheap/expensive on miles + any taxes/fees that comes with the redemption). True, wheretocredit is not always accurate. Gotta double-check on the airline’s website.

      Reply
      • Thanks for the prompt reply. Currently I have no miles in both AM and MP, its a clean slate for me, just wondering which FFP should I start to credit those oneworld flights…. Most of my points still rest in my credit card. I know its easier get miles for AM whereas for MP, we either have to credit revenue fare or buy.
        If you are in my shoes with a clean (empty) slate, would you still go for MP ?

        Reply
        • If I fly enough revenue flights on Alaska’s partners this year, i’ll credit them to Alaska. I’d also consider the cost to purchase Alaska miles to top-up any differences to make an award redemption.

          Reply
          • Thanks for sharing….I only came across your blog late last year and enjoy it a lot. Keep up the excellent work !

  2. How do you actually credit the miles to Alaska mileage plan? What’s the procedure? For example if I book Singapore airlines ticket do I have to tell the booking agent beforehand ? If I am booking ticket myself online, is there any place in the SQ booking page for me to specify where I want to credit the miles?

    Reply
    • There should be an option on SQ’s booking page to enter your Alaska membership number. Regardless, always make it a point to tell the check-in agent at the airport and double-check that your Alaska membership details are clearly stated on your boarding pass.

      Reply
  3. Thanks for the tips. So even if you are flying with Singapore Airlines, you will still accrue the mileage with Alaska, since the Alaska is higher in the order of priority, right?

    Reply
    • Hi Alvin! I credit my SQ flights to AS because of 5 important reasons listed in the page below.

      https://suitesmile.com/blog/what-is-alaska-miles-why-do-i-value-it-more-than-krisflyer-how-to-accumulate-them-how-to-use-them

      Reply

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