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Best US Frequent Flyer Programs in 2023

 

A 2023 study compared the 10 largest United States airlines’ loyalty rewards programs across 21 key metrics and rank them from best to worst.

The rankings for the best airline rewards programs are based on a trio of annual airfare budgets: Light ($472), Average ($4,659) and Frequent ($8,846).

As a result, the best overall frequent flyer programs are well-rounded and positioned to satisfy the needs of loyal airline customers of all types.

Best Frequent Flyer Programs of 2023

  1. United Airlines – MileagePlus
  2. Alaska Airlines – Mileage Plan
  3. Delta Air Lines – SkyMiles
  4. Hawaiian Airlines – HawaiianMiles
  5. American Airlines – AAdvantage

The research by WalletHub, features a custom calculator that allows travelers to personalize the results based on their own budget.

Here are some of the highlights of the 2023 study:

Best Frequent Flyer Program: United MileagePlus is the best frequent flyer program of 2023, beating last year’s winner Alaska Mileage Plan.

Savings Available to Frequent Flyers: The average airline rewards program saves frequent flyers more than 9% on airfare, and these programs are all free to join.

Reduced Rewards in 2023: Seven of the 10 largest airlines are offering less rewards value in 2023 than in 2022, and they have reduced their rewards an average of 20.89%.

Earn and Redeem with Partner Airlines: Six of the 10 largest U.S. airlines allow program members to earn and redeem miles with partner carriers.

Best Airline Credit Card: The JetBlue Plus Card is 2023’s best airline credit card, according to WalletHub’s editors.

Hawaiian Airlines offers the most rewards value, at $15.37 per $100 spent. Alaska Airlines comes in second, with $14.14 per $100 spent.

Seven of the 10 largest airlines are offering less rewards value in 2023 than in 2022.

Seven major airlines have miles that do not expire because of inactivity: Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue Airways, Southwest Airlines, and United Airlines.

Best Frequent Flyer Programs for 2023

Airline Rewards Program Best For Overall WalletHub Score Number of Destinations
United MileagePlus Overall & Redemption Policies 76.08 349
Alaska Mileage Plan Partner Coverage & Rewards Value 73.38 123
Delta SkyMiles Redemption Policies 71.58 302
HawaiianMiles Most Additional Features & Rewards Value 63.99 31
American Airlines AAdvantage Airline Coverage 61.97 346

 

 

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