Southwest tops frequent flier program satisfaction surveyed 1600 members of frequent flier programs to find out which programs people are happy with. The results? Southwest wins by a mile, with US Airways losing almost every category.

  •  Southwest Rapid Rewards is #1 in satisfaction with 62% of members very likely to recommend the program. United leads 2014MileCardsMileSatisfactionRanking.Infographic (2)among the U.S. global carriers with 55%. US Airways is last, at 43%.
  • US Airways miles are 2x more likely to be considered worthless than those of global peers United, Delta, and American.
  • Nearly half say they earn most of their miles on the ground via credit cards and other methods. Chase Ultimate Rewards and American Express Membership Rewards cardholders are most satisfied.
  • United MileagePlus members are the most loyal. 41% of United members say they nearly always choose United because of its miles.
  • Members do not trust airline programs to deliver on promises. Airline programs are deemed less trustworthy than banks, cable, and telephone companies.
  • Delta’s website is named the toughest for finding and redeeming awards.

I totally agree with the results—I would recommend Southwest Rapid Rewards to anyone trying to earn domestic tickets, especially if they don’t care about upgrades. With our credit card spend alone we earn almost enough for a one-way ticket every month. That being said, I’m not surprised people don’t trust airline programs to deliver on promises—it seems like there are devaluations every month!

Readers, which program is your favorite?


  1. I love US Airways Dividend Miles!! While I have rarely cashed in miles directly with them, I’ve booked some fantastic deals with partner airlines using my miles (1st & business class to Europe). Also, 100% mileage bonus (Chairman’s Preferred) and unlimited space available upgrades are great. Their card has been hassle free and I get double miles if I purchase my ticket with it.

    Personally, I hate flying Southwest and try to avoid them if at all possible. I hate their seating policy and prefer to use my miles for international travel which isn’t an option on them.

    If I can’t fly US Airways I’ll try for American (now one in the same). I used to fly United as my back up as I received full credit on US Airways for those flights.

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