Travel

Outrageous frequent flyer perks for preferred airlines customers
Airlines these days are trying to lure in preferred customers with frequent flyer rewards programs that have some pretty unusual perks. IdeaWorks, an airline consulting firm, recently reviewed the programs of over 150 airlines to find the world’s most unique rewards and come up with a list of some of wackiest. They almost make it worth it to spend $10,000 and more on a first class flight.   

dog_sledding_istock

"Mush, Mush"

Airline: airBaltic – BalticMiles
Reward:  Dog sled riding in Latvia. Two people enjoy a three mile ride in a sled pulled by huskies. In the Spring and Autumn months a wheeled cart is used.  
Price:  13,574 miles/points 

(iStock)

yacht

I'll Take a Yacht with That

Airline: Etihad - Guest
Reward:  Have an Azimut 68-Foot Yacht delivered to your door. With a price higher than 385 million miles, or $3.5 million, this is the most expensive frequent flier reward identified by IdeaWorks. The yacht offers accommodation for six guests in three cabins and the price includes delivery.  
Price:  385,806,128 miles/points

(Azimut Yachts)

beer2352rwf

Beer Tasting 

Airline: American – AAdvantage
Reward: Take a Brussels beer-tasting tour to discover why Belgium is famous for exceptional beer.  The tour offers the ideal method to visit some of the country’s finest breweries, learn about Belgium’s beer heritage, and of course . ..to taste great beer.  
Price:  14,700 miles/points

(iStock)

hongkongspa

Spa-tacular 

Airline: Cathay Pacific – Asia Miles
Reward: Spa treatment at the Langham Palace in Hong Kong. The “Traveller’s Retreat” package includes a 120-minute body scrub using sea salt and exclusive oils, Chuan Signature massage, and Thalgo marine algae extract facial for one person.
Price: 30,000 miles

(Chuan Spa)

habitat_istock

Build a House

Airline: Delta Air Lines – SkyMiles
Reward: Auction – Habitat for Humanity Home building in Thailand. SkyMiles members were invited to bid on this charitable volunteer trip during 2009. Two people designated by the winning bidder would join Delta employees, and President Jimmy Carter, on a trip to Thailand to build homes.  The activity includes four days of home building and two days of cultural experiences in Thailand.  
Price:  Winning bid was 401,001 miles

(iStock)

cake_istock

Let Them Eat Cake

Airline: Icelandair – Saga Club
Reward:  A “Happy Marriage Cake” from the onboard menu. The “Hjónabandssaela,” or in English a "Happy Marriage Cake,"  is a traditional Icelandic oatmeal cake with rhubarb jam. Oddly enough, it's not served at weddings.
Price:  650 miles (approximate $3 price offered by Saga Shop Kitchen)

(iStock)

clooney_ap

Get a Piece of Clooney

Airline: Air Canada - Aeroplan
Reward:  A leather vest autographed by George Clooney. Aeroplan scores double for this rare item because proceeds from the sale also benefit a charity. All of the proceeds from this redemption will go to War Child Canada.
Price:  177,000 miles/points

(AP)

cockpit_istock

Take the CEO to the Cockpit

Airline: airBaltic – BalticMiles
Reward:  Auction – A flight simulator experience with airBaltic CEO, Martin Gauss. BalticMiles members were invited to bid on this reward featuring the carrier’s CEO during 2012. The winner of the auction will enjoy a first-ever reward experience of receiving flight simulator instruction from an airline CEO. The auction attracted 505 bids. 
Price:  Winning bid was 211,000 points

(iStock)

shave_istock

Get a Clean Shave

Airline: AviancaTaca – LifeMiles
Reward:  Get a hot lather shave in New York City. Celebrate the classic male institution of a hot later shave with a straight edge blade at a premier barber spa in Manhattan.
Price:  8,250 miles/points

(iStock)

virgin_galactic

Become an Astronaut 

Airline:Virgin Australia – Velocity
Reward:  Take a Virgin Galactic Sub-Orbital Spaceflight. Experience zero gravity and look back at mother Earth with a Virgin Galactic sub-orbital spaceflight. Climb to 50,000 feet with Virgin Mothership Eve and then feel the power as the roar of the rocket traveling over 3 times the speed of sound. When the rocket motor switches off, experience the silence of space before floating weightless in the cabin with fellow astronauts.  
Price:  25,000,000 points/miles

(Virgin Galactic)

manchesterc_AP

Become a Soccer Star

Airline: Etihad - Guest
Reward:  Raffle – Train with Manchester City Football Club. Etihad offers an ongoing raffle and prize drawings for the the chance to train at the Etihad Stadium with the stars of Manchester City.
Price:  100 miles for each raffle entry

(AP)

circus_istock

Join the Circus

Airline: Virgin Australia - Velocity
Reward:  Have your own circus experience. This reward offers an opportunity to fulfill the dream of running off to join the circus.  Based in Katoomba, less than two hours from Sydney, Australia, is the Candy Stripe Circus. Walking on stilts, flying high on the trapeze, and juggling are part of this very unusual course curriculum.
Price:  15,500 points 

(iStock)

istock_sock_pile

Get a "Sockscription"

Airline: Lufthansa/SWISS/Austrian – Miles & More
Reward:  Clean socks delivered to your door. The “sockscription” plan from Blacksocks.com delivers three pairs of the same socks right away, and follows up with identical deliveries at four months and eight months. The reward includes postage worldwide; there are no additional charges.
Price:  21,000 miles/points

(iStock)

wolf_istock

Run with the Wolves

Airline: SAS Scandinavian Airlines - EuroBonus
Reward: Hang out with Wolves in Sweden. This reward provides the opportunity to socialize with, and get really close to, these fascinating animals.  Not only will participants get to touch the wolves, but some may have the chance to feel a pair of big paws resting on their
shoulders.
Price:  31,802 points/miles

(iStock)

ap_necker_island

Vacation at Sir Richard Branson's Private Island

Airline: Virgin Atlantic – Flying Club
Reward:   7-Night Stay at Sir Richard Branson’s Private Island. Necker Island is Sir Richard Branson’s private island, set amidst the turquoise waters in a stunning and unspoiled area of the Caribbean.  
Price:   1,000,000 miles for two people

(AP)

Outrageous frequent flyer perks for preferred airlines customers

Airlines these days are trying to lure in preferred customers with frequent flyer rewards programs that have some pretty unusual perks. IdeaWorks, an airline consulting firm, recently reviewed the programs of over 150 airlines to find the world’s most unique rewards and come up with a list of some of wackiest. They almost make it worth it to spend $10,000 and more on a first class flight.   

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