You Have a Once a Year Chance to Make Frequent Flyer Programs Hear What You Think

Voting in the Freddie Awards is now open!

Since 1988 these awards have recognized the best in loyalty. The Freddie Awards are the most coveted award for airline, hotel, and credit card loyalty programs because they’re voted on by the members who earn and redeem their currency and interact with the program all year long.

It’s your chance to vote, speak your mind, and let the heads of the programs — and their bosses — know who did well over the last year.

Programs have mentioned in the past that decisions at the margin have been made with these awards in mind, bonuses recognized as best might be repeated and programs close to winning may try a little bit harder the following year. A program that does well year in and year out in customer service but drops a notch in one year gets an important signal to pull their act together.

2015 award ceremony at the Delta Flight Museum in Atlanta

2016 award ceremony at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas

The first Freddie Awards ceremony I attended was in 2003 in Colorado Springs. I won a door prize of four nights at a Wyndham Resort (I used the nights at El Conquistador, now a Hilton property).

I went as a spectator, a frequent traveler with an interest in the results. Of course I cast my own ballot and my preferences frequently aren’t even close to those expressed by members of the program overall. This isn’t an award bestowed by ‘experts’ but by the members themselves.

In 2004 I attended in New York City. 275,000 people voted. I critiqued the results, though concluded:

more likely than not [the voters are] right and I’m wrong. Or at least that’s what I remember as the lesson of Condorcet.

Now millions of votes are cast. But the tradition is the same. I’ve helped to put on these awards for several years now, but I’m only a caretaker – what matters here is the voice of the loyalty program member.

Introducing the Freddie Awards to Program Leaders from Around the World

Vote today! Who are you voting for?

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. Great . Let’s tell AA what we really think. Omitting all profanity of course.

    On a side note – the average monthly spend on my AA Executive Master Card has been about $7,000 until recently. From Jan 1 until today it has been $0.00. I intend to maintain that new level until I cancel the card – and that will be soon. For those who may not know this – the annual fee amount for any unused portion of the year is prorated back to you. not because AA is thoughtful and conscientious – but because it is a legal requirement.

  2. So you’re still going with the USA flag to indicate “English”?

    Oh so the loyalty programs listen do they? Hmmm, let’s see…

    AAdvantage wins Best Program (Americas region) in 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015 – all the while devaluing in myriad ways – some of them no-notice and some stealth (i.e., stingy availability).

    One has to wonder about the voters, too, with 2015’s best credit card winner being the WN Chase card? Huh? Sure the sign-on bonus is fine but for actually earning WN points there are objectively better earning cards!

    I understand your vested interest in it of course but as with the Oscars, etc. it’s all a waste of time and resources.

  3. @Eric “I understand your vested interest in it of course” if you’re asking a question, please ask it, but to be clear I do not earn money from the Freddie Awards.

  4. AA, Delta and United get nothing. Zero. I’ve had enough of these clowns destroying great programs and turning them to garbage.
    #1 Alaska Air
    #2 Southwest
    #3 Jet Blue

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