Changes coming to United's frequent flier program - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Changes coming to United's frequent flier program

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Starting next year, United Airlines' frequent flier program will start favoring its biggest-spending customers. (Source: CNN) Starting next year, United Airlines' frequent flier program will start favoring its biggest-spending customers. (Source: CNN)

(CNN) - Starting next year, United Airlines' frequent flier program will start favoring its biggest-spending customers.

Instead of basing awards on the number of miles traveled, they'll be based on the cost of the flight.

A basic program member will get five miles for every dollar spent. And premier-level members will get between seven and 11 miles.

That's obviously great if you're a last-minute or corporate traveler, who spends a lot on flights. But not so good if you tend to be more price-conscious.

Delta announced a similar plan, which will also go into effect next year.

And JetBlue and Southwest already base their rewards on cost rather than miles.

American is currently the only major holdout and many industry experts believe it'll fall in line soon.

It's just the latest change to an industry that's become known for nickel and diming customers for everything from carry-on bags to extra leg room.

So how should you get the most bang for your buck?

Travel experts say you might consider building up credit card points to buy airline tickets, instead of trying to rack up rewards with just one carrier.

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