Frequent Flyer mistakes made early on

I remember the first time that I hit status on any airline. I became Silver in the Scandinavian Airlines program.

This would normally be an exciting achievement – except I reached it on my trip home from my overseas assignment.

In Swedish you can say “Kan kalla mig för idiot, det har jag ingenting emot.” or “You can call me an idiot, I don’t have anything against that.”

I was totally new to the frequent flier world and therefore didn’t realize how worthless my Scandinavian Airlines miles would be living in the United States.

It was however pretty exciting to have that Elite card for the very first time and spurred me on to start trying to achieve status and pay attention to promotions and loyalty programs.

Have any of you made big frequent flyer blunders as well?

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  1. I let my United account lapse. I moved out of Chicago (United territory) to Orlando (Delta at the time) and wasn’t watching my account. All my miles were gone and could never be recovered. I don’t know how many miles I had, but it was about 8 years’ worth. Very sad.

  2. Here is a real stupid one I JUST did, that I could kick myself for!
    During Christmas, it was late at night and I was shopping on ebay, when there was an offer to “win” an XBOX SENSOR for $2, I clicked accept and then I was locked in and was too lazy to get up and get my credit card to pay for it, so I just clicked BILL ME LATER. Well, little did I know that they ran a HARD pull on my credit report (Equifax). Can you believe that? all for $2 and me being lazy. bummer. Then a few days later I received some sort of email that gave me a $10 credit with bill me later and clicked to “apply” it, now I have an $8 credit and a HARD PULL on my credit card. 🙁

  3. Thanks for the Bob Hund reference!

    Not sure if this was a mistake or not but early in my career I was buying full fare tickets for every trip, on the company’s dollar. I got the Skymiles AMEX card for double miles on all purchases. Between the double miles and the flying miles I had more than enough for the 5k miles upgrade, so all my flights were in F (unless it was full already). And it was nice to volunteer my F ticket whenever they needed (I was still single then…) Looking back on it now I probably could have done better to use my reward miles toward something really awesome, but it sure was nice always flying F.

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