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How to Earn Frequent Flier Miles from the Ground

Who doesn’t love traveling for free? That’s the elusive beauty of frequent flier programs. Airlines lure you in with promises of free flights, but before long you realize that your 1,000 miles that initially seemed so impressive are worth next-to-nothing when you try to book your travel plans.

If earning enough frequent flier miles to earn free travel seems out of your grasp, don’t despair. These tips will help you to collect more miles before you even step foot on an airplane.

1. Credit Cards
One of the easiest ways to earn frequent flier miles is to use a travel credit card. You can use the card for normal purchases that you would buy with cash or a debit card and earn miles in the process. If you pay the balance in full every month, you don’t end up paying anything out of pocket other than an annual membership fee that may apply. Fodor’s Travel recommended racking up miles by using the card to pay for everyday expenses like groceries, phone and utility bills, gas and eating out. If you’re wary of credit cards, there are still a select few airlines that offer debit cards, but it’s becoming increasingly less common.

Choosing a credit card that offers frequent flyer miles allows you to make your regular purchases while earning points for travel. Choosing a credit card that offers frequent flier miles as a reward allows you to earn miles for travel when you make regular purchases.

2. Eating Out
Whether you’re on the road or at home, some airlines let you earn miles by eating out at certain restaurants. United Airlines, for example, has a MileagePlus Dining Program where members can earn up to five miles for every dollar spent at a partner restaurant. The website provides an easy tool for finding participating restaurant locations in your area. Whatever airline you prefer, type in the airline name into a local search engine with the words “dining rewards program” and you’ll likely find a similar program.

3. Online Shopping Portals
If you like to shop online, you might as well get free miles in the process. TIME magazine reported that some airlines have portals that you can enter before proceeding to some of your favorite retail websites. By entering your membership number, your purchase earns you miles. Banana Republic, for example, works with Delta, Hawaiian, American, United and Southwest, according to Time. You do have to go to your airline’s website first and sign in, but it’s a small price to pay for free miles.

“Follow airlines on social media for opportunities to earn points.”

4. Surveys and Promotions
Earning 100 miles for completing a survey may not seem like a lot, but if you participate in several surveys or look for social media offers and other promotions your miles can quickly start to add up. Follow the social media accounts of your favorite airlines and watch for opportunities to earn miles. Businesses love getting their hands on consumer data, so they’re typically quick to offer free air miles in return for a few minutes of your time.

5. GroundLink
Not only can GroundLink help you get to and from the airport, but we can also help get you in the air faster through our partnerships with United and American Airlines. By booking GroundLink’s black car service through each airline’s loyalty program website, you can earn frequent flier miles for your GroundLink rides.

“GroundLink is proud to partner with United and American Airlines to offer road warriors more perks than ever during business travel,” said GroundLink CEO Liz Carisone. “From taking you to and from the airport in comfort, to helping you earn frequent flier miles faster, GroundLink wants to ensure that our passengers are receiving the best travel experience possible.”

Arrange for GroundLink’s airport car service on the United MileagePlus ground transportation page or the American Airlines AAdvantage ground transportation page and start earning miles today.

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