British Airways

In the case of Oneworld the cheapest status is obtained with British Airways through their Executive Club. The requirements to have mid-tier or one-world Sapphire status can easily be obtained and at an economical rate using American Airlines First class flights. This status which would require the equivalent of 75,000 Loyalty Points with American Airlines can be obtained depending on the routing from as little as 800 GBP if based in the UK to $413 on the West Coast from San Jose to Los Angeles or vice-versa with the addition of four British Airways flights. Here is an example from the East Coast from New York/Washington to Raleigh earning tons of Tier Points.

These examples may change over time, but using segments within the US with partner airlines such as American or Alaska allow you to accumulate TPs at a very affordable rate.

British Airways really encourages flights over 2000 miles, giving 140 TPs per each segment compared to 40 or 80 TPs for shorter hops.

Alaska recently published some tempting fares from New York to Vancouver or vice versa that allow 2 connections earning 220 TPs each way for an affordable rate per TP. East Coast to Hawaii with a west coast connection would give you 560 TPs for around $1500 so with a vacation you can almost have mid-tier status.

BA status does not give you upgrades on American Airlines which is one common goal for flyers but it does grant lounge access and priority boarding as well as better seating options.

Alaska Airlines

Alaska Airlines joined Oneworld in 2021 presenting an opportunity for US-based flyers to join a very lucrative mileage program that is not based upon spend but instead on the traditional format of mileage flown.

Alaska has four levels MVP MVP Gold , MVP Gold 75K and MVP Gold 100K these map over to Oneworld Ruby (MVP), Sapphire (MVP Gold) and Emerald status (MVP Gold 75/100K).

Alaska Airlines is the perfect program if you plan on flying in Business Class or Premium Cabins on a variety of airlines. They are unique because you can credit oneworld partner airlines as well as an eclectic mix as varied as LATAM, El Al, Condor, Icelandic and even Singapore Airlines.

Until 2023, this came with one big caveat: you had to fly the required segments (2 for MVP, 6 for MVP Gold, 12 for 75K and 24 for 100K) with Alaska, but as of 2024 this is no longer a requirement so that this can be a great way to obtain status by flying what is convenient for you .

But Alaska does not play nicely with many of its partners with many partners taking weeks to credit or do not credit at all, forcing you to manually request credits, which is why it’s always a good idea to keep your paper boarding passes that show your Frequent Flyer information.

Similar to Aeromexico and Delta, our recommendations are to make sure your Alaksa number is in the reservation at time of booking, then at check-in, and also print your Boarding Pass to ensure that the number is there and then be prepared to fight and retro-claim the miles.

If you are based in Germany or Switzerland you can fly to a variety of holiday destinations with Condor and accumulate 200% of distance flown as EQMs. While these flights feature a Euro-Business cabin, they present a good value mileage wise, especially on longer flights to the Canary Islands or Egypt. For instance on a €600 flight to Armenia in Eurobusiness you would earn 7740 EQMs.

On Alaska mileage is earned on flown miles and even the most discounted economy fare will earn 100% miles.

If we use this economy ticket as an example:

JFK-SEA-ANC for $248 or 7738 miles

JFK-SEA-ANC for $248 or 7738 miles. These book into X class Saver (basic economy), which means no upgrades nor Preferential seats and assigned seats at the gate even as an Elite... 

Using the figure of  7738 miles per round-trip:

  • MVP in 3 RTs or USD 744

  • MVP Gold in 6 RTs  and some change USD 1488

  • MVP 75 in 18 RTs USD 2480

Now of course, that’s in Economy and can take a long time to complete so it’s best to look for Business Class fares as they earn at least 150%

American Airlines

American Airlines Loyalty Points are a type of rewards point that can be earned by flying on American Airlines, using a credit card, or engaging with airline partners. You can redeem Loyalty Points for flights, upgrades, gift cards, and other rewards.

Here are the ways to earn American Airlines Loyalty Points:

  • Similar to Delta Airlines, the maximum number of Loyalty Points you can earn per flight is 75,000.

  • Using an American Airlines credit card: You can earn Loyalty Points for every dollar you spend on an eligible American Airlines credit card. 

  • Engaging with American Airlines partners: You can also earn Loyalty Points by shopping, dining, or staying at hotels that are partners with American Airlines. Until July 2023 you could earn massive amounts of LPs via Hotel Bookings, this loophole has been severely curtailed and is not as lucrative as before.

  • You can also obtain Loyalty Points for certain transactions such as online subscriptions which at times can give 5000+ LPs for under $100 at times.

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