Make Sure Your Frequent Flier Miles Survive the Continental and United Merger

Last Updated May 9, 2010 11:34 PM EDT

If you're a frequent business traveler, then you probably guard your Frequent Flier miles like a bear protects her young. Recently, I warned you about some shenanigans airlines pull to rob you of your miles.

This week: Some advice on how to ensure you are properly credited for your miles as Continental and United merge.


According to Consumer Reports, Continental and United have already started to combine their rewards programs. Consumer summarized the stuff you need to worry about -- and the things you don't:

  • Continental and United both now use the Star Alliance reward group, so you can now earn points on either airline's flights.
  • Chase runs both credit-card reward programs, so you don't have to do anything special during the transition to monitor your account.
  • Make sure both airlines have up-to-date information about you, and that information is consistent. This way, your miles will merge properly.
  • Consider cashing in miles before the deal goes through. After the merger, the cost of flights and the number of points needed to earn stuff could go up.
  • Make your voice heard. Both airlines will be working to consolidate and combine the plans, so it can be important to let them know what aspects of the plan they should keep.
Photo by Richard Moross