I am technically a US hub captive, but since I have been loyal to United since college they have always been my star alliance choice. I have put up with United and starnet blocking. I actually have fairly good redemption success including 2 coach tickets to SYD, 2 F tickets to SFO on US, and a few random bookings for friends.
I’m also a Delta lover because my family is from ATL and it’s blasphemy to not like Coke or Delta (but I pass on Home Depot and UPS). Delta implemented a tiered system last year right before I booked 2 tickets to DUB. I got 2 coach tickets for 90,000 miles each when a low ticket would have been 50,000 and a low BE ticket would have been 100,000. the only F tickets were more than I had in my bank and the 2 coach tickets at 90k wiped me out.
Now US Airways is following Delta. Usually in the race to the bottom it’s the other way around. US implemented charging for all beverages in flight and no one followed. Now that Delta and US have tiered programs I wonder if any other airlines will follow suit. The image posted above does remind me of the DL calendar that never shows the same tier for the same day 2 refreshes in a row. It seems like DL and US have the same development team judging by other things they seem to do at the same time (e.g. adding partner mileage numbers) so it wouldn’t surprise me if US’s calendar is a joke also. Oh well. I’ll keep all my *A miles on United especially since they are adding elite upgrades.
I’ve been flying Airtran more than I’d like recently, but they actually have a fairly interesting program. I now have enough credits for a 1 way trip on FL, but I’m in no hurry to book anything on them if I don’t have to.