Will 2014 Be a Happy New Year For You?

This is the time of year in which FlyerTalk members have mixed feelings: those who have achieved elite level status in frequent travel loyalty programs are thrilled or pleased that they have at least another year to enjoy that status; while others dread checking their frequent travel loyalty program accounts on January 1 to see that big “goose egg” which indicates that it is yet time again to start over in working to earn and achieve elite level status for yet another year.
However — starting tomorrow — many members of the Delta Air Lines SkyMiles and United Airlines MileagePlus frequent flier loyalty programs will find it significantly more difficult to earn and achieve elite level status for 2015 due to the new minimum spend requirements announced earlier this year.
Confusion still reigns pertaining to how frequent travel loyalty program miles and points are credited while traveling starting in December and completing in Janaury, as evidenced by the following discussions on FlyerTalk:

There is a lot of which happened in 2013 pertaining to FlyerTalk, including:

  • FlyerTalk celebrated 15 years since the launch of its current iteration
  • Member number 500,000 officially joined FlyerTalk
  • Content was posted for the 20,000,000th time on FlyerTalk

…and although I have stated in the past that I do not believe in posting a retrospective article at the end of each year, it does seem that the year 2013 has generally been unkind to the frequent traveler overall with perceived devaluations, reduced award opportunities, an increased amount of frequent travel loyalty program miles and points need to be redeemed for the same awards, increasingly restrictive policies, and more complicated rules.
In the meantime, here are some discussions about the new year which FlyerTalk members are posting their comments:

As I posted in the greeting I used last year, for 2014:

  • May you travel to every desired destination on your list;
  • May you spend quality time trying new things, openly engaging new experiences, and doing everything you have always wanted to do at each destination;
  • May your travels result in lifetime memories and stories to leave the listener engaged and envious enough to compel them to create their own travel adventures;
  • May your frequent travel loyalty program miles and points never expire;
  • May you continuously be awarded elite status every year;
  • May you always have lounge access at every airport and hotel property;
  • May your upgrade requests always be granted;
  • May you dine well on your favorite food and drink as well as sample new flavors and tastes from all around the world; and, most importantly
  • May your travels always be safe, interesting and fun — yet filled with adventure and spirit

I look forward to seeing you in 2014 — and thank you for reading The Gate for the past 7.5 years!

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