A few years ago, Aegean Airlines, a small Athens-based airline and a member of the Star Alliance, used to be the easiest airline to achieve Star Alliance Gold status. It required just 12,000 miles in one year on any Star Alliance partner to earn Star Alliance Gold status. A lot of people used this to earn the status this way, even though most, if not all, of their flying was with an airline other than Aegean Airlines. They then revised their eligibility requirements, requiring either 12,000 miles per year with four flights being on Aegean Airlines, or 24,000 miles per year, regardless of what Star Alliance carrier you are flying with.
Benefits of Star Alliance Gold Status:
Star Alliance is the biggest of the airline alliances and has a lot of great partner airlines, including Singapore Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Air New Zealand, Thai Airways, and Lufthansa, to name a few. The benefits of Star Alliance Gold is the same, no matter what airline you’re using it on, though there may be additional benefits with the airline you have earned Star Alliance Gold status with. The stated benefits are as follows:
- Lounge access across the entire Star Alliance network, as long as you are flying a Star Alliance partner. This means, as a Star Alliance Gold holder, you will receive lounge access in Colombia when flying with Avianca, in Los Angeles when flying with United, in Cape Town when flying with South African Airways, you get the idea.
- Extra baggage allowance
- Priority check-in
- Priority boarding
Asiana is a Korea based airline, operating a select few longhair routes, mostly to the United States and Europe, as well as Sydney and an extensive network within Eastern Asia. Their frequent flyer program, Asiana Club, requires only 40,000 miles to earn their Diamond status (which gets you Star Alliance Gold status), but they give you 2 years to earn this many miles. There is no minimum required amount of flying on Asiana to receive this status.
If you do happen to fly with Asiana Airlines and are flying 50,000 miles a year on Star Alliance, you will receive Diamond Plus status, which will give you added benefits beyond the Star Alliance Gold benefits, including access to the first class lounge if you are flying with Asiana Airlines in business class.
Couldn’t Asiana Airlines add a minimum amount of flying on their airline, like Aegean Airlines did?
Short answer: Yes, life is full of unexpected events.
Long answer: Yes, but they probably won’t. Why? Asiana’s main competitor is Korean Airlines, as much of their passengers are going to/from Korea. Korean has the same thresholds in order to reach their status levels. Therefore, while Asiana could change the requirements, they probably will not as its would not make sense from a competitikon standpoint.
In comparison to other airlines:
With just 20,000 miles per year, you will earn Star Alliance Gold status with Asiana (in 2 years). In order to earn Star Alliance Gold status with other airlines, you would need the following:
- Singapore Airlines: 50,000 miles flown on Singapore Airlines, SilkAir or Star Alliance partners
- United: 50,000 miles flown on United or other Star Alliance partners
- EVA: 50,000 miles flown on EVA or other Star Alliance partners
Asiana is a great way of earning Star Alliance Gold status with minimal flying. It give you Star Gold benefits across the entire Star Alliance network with added benefits if you hold status and are flying with Asiana.