The Different Types of Frequent Flyer Programs

  • Evert R. de Boer


De Boer provides a full overview of various frequent flyer program (FFP) types by applying three distinct angles. First, De Boer identifies the key characteristics of the legacy, advanced and autonomous program typologies. Subsequently, De Boer finds key differences between programs across global regions, and identifies how each geography represents subtle differences to the airline loyalty model. De Boer also compares low cost carrier (LCC) programs with full service carrier (FSC) programs, and finds a number of discernible differences. Finally, De Boer offers a comprehensive overview of the typical roles and functions in the FFP function within an airline, and offers insights into how the responsibilities have evolved over time, with a resulting impact on the skills required to devise and execute a successful airline loyalty strategy.


  1. Carter, N. (2005). Qantas: Reaping the rewards of a clear FFP strategy. Presentation presented at FFP Conference 2005, Madrid.Google Scholar
  2. Citilink. (2017). Now Supergreen has joined GarudaMiles. Retrieved June 3, 2017, from
  3. De Boer, E., & Gudmundsson, S. (2012). 30 years of frequent flyer programs. Journal of Air Transport Management, 24, 18–24. Scholar
  4. Delta Air Lines. (2015). Investor Day 2015. Retrieved April 24, 2017, from
  5. Dunn, G. (2012, February 23). Are airlines positioned to make customer loyalty pay? Airline Business. Retrieved March 26, 2017, from
  6. EasyJet. (2017). EasyJet’s Loyalty Programme – Flight Club. Retrieved May 27, 2017, from
  7. Etihad. (2017). Etihad Guest reaches five million milestone. Retrieved June 8, 2017, from
  8. Gilbert, D. (1996). Relationship marketing and airline loyalty schemes. Tourism Management, 17(8), 575–582. Scholar
  9. Gudmundsson, S., de Boer, E., & Lechner, C. (2002). Integrating frequent flyer programs in multilateral airline alliances. Journal of Air Transport Management, 8(6), 409–417. Scholar
  10. Hanisch, T. (2008, May 13). Arvato services: BPM at work: Scanning and workflow integration Miles & More. Presentation presented at FFP Expo 2008, Fort Worth, TX.Google Scholar
  11. Ideaworks. (2016, May 11). Southwest and Airberlin top reward rankings but Turkish Airlines and Air China rise high. Retrieved December 11, 2017, from
  12. Klophaus, R. (2005). Frequent flyer programs for European low-cost airlines: Prospects, risks and implementation guidelines. Journal of Air Transport Management, 11(5), 348–353. Scholar
  13. Landry, C. (2008). Aeroplan: The redemption dilemma – strategic considerations of dynamic rewards. Presentation presented at FFP Conference 2008, Istanbul.Google Scholar
  14. Miles & More. (2016, March). Fact Sheet. Retrieved March 6, 2017, from
  15. Multiplus. (2017). Multiplus Spreadsheet. Retrieved March 16, 2017, from
  16. O’Toole, T., & Leininger, E. (2016, September 13). Remaking marketing organizations for a Data-Driven World. Kellogg Insight. Retrieved June 8, 2017, from
  17. Qantas. (2011, December 12). Qantas Airways limited 2011 strategy day. Retrieved January 24, 2017, from
  18. Schaeffer, C. (2009). Lufthansa: Exploiting cross-selling opportunities with partners. Presentation presented at Loyalty 2009, Vienna.Google Scholar
  19. Virgin Australia. (2017). Velocity terms and conditions. Retrieved January 10, 2017, from
  20. Weed, J. (2016, July 11). More frequent fliers pay for a first-class upgrade that once was free. New York Times. Retrieved December 8, 2016, from

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Evert R. de Boer
    • 1
  1. 1.FFP Investment & Advisory Pte. Ltd.SingaporeSingapore

Personalised recommendations