credit cards

Frequent flyers selected Alaska Airlines Visa Signature as the winner of the 2011 Frequent Traveler Award for Best Loyalty Credit Card. The award marks three consecutive years that Alaska Airlines has landed at the top of the influential travel survey's results, earning the inaugural FTA in 2010 and the final Freddie Award for the same category in 2009.

Alaska Airlines Visa Signature cardholders can use the airline's website to view available award seats in real time, with redemption levels for super saver awards as low as 7,500 miles.

Best airline credit cards: the Freddie Award

The Frequent Traveler Awards resumed a tradition that might have ended with the final Freddie Awards ceremony. From 1988 until 2009, Inside Flyer founder Randy Petersen organized reader polls for awards ranging from best frequent flyer award redemption to best overall customer service. Past winners of the Freddie Award for best airline credit card in the Americas include:

  • Starwood Preferred Guest American Express (2006-2008)
  • Diners Club - Club Rewards (1997-2005)
  • American Express Membership Rewards/Membership Miles (1992-1996)
  • American AAdvantage & Marriott Honored Guest Rewards (1989-1991)
  • Diners Club - Club Rewards & Ramada Business Card (1988)

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan won the final Freddie Award in 2009, shortly before Petersen announced his intention to retire the influential awards program. Though Petersen refused offers to sell the Freddie Awards, a group of writers and business professionals founded the Frequent Traveler Educational Foundation to carry on the awards' tradition.

About the Frequent Traveler Awards

Like the Freddies, the Frequent Traveler Awards weight hundreds of thousands of traveler votes to account for program size and influence. The FTEF held their 2011 award ceremony on April 28 at Citi Field in New York City, revealing their polls' top rated programs to an audience of press and travel industry professionals.