Airlines Owe Frequent Flyers 27M Free Trips

Thoroughly filed in the ‘old news’ department, there’s a USA Today article up complaining about just how gosh darn difficult it is to redeem your frequent flyers miles these days. There’s no new information in the article, except a statistic we didn’t know that makes airline stinginess seem even worse: growth in frequent flyer programs increases at a rate of about 13% per year, even as it gets harder and harder to do anything with your points.

But there’s some other interesting statistics in the sidebar about frequent flyer programs, one of which we (like Upgrade Travel before us) thought worth highlighting.

• If travelers converted all their miles into free travel simultaneously, airlines would be liable for 27 million free trips.

The mind boggles. Twenty seven million free trips are owed to consumers right now, yet airlines are making it harder than ever before to get just one of those. Talk about an industry stretching itself thin as a wafer.

Frequent fliers turn a skeptical eye to the skies [USA Today]