-The new program starts 11/24/14.
-If you currently have Aegean Gold you’ll need to fly 12K miles+4 Aegean flights or 24,000 miles without Aegean flights between 11/24/14-11/23/15 to keep your status. And you’ll have to keep doing that every 12 months thereafter.
If you don’t do that you will be downgraded to Silver on 11/24/15. You’ll then have a year as Silver to either keep that level, move up to Gold, or fall down to blue status.
-If you have a Gold card with a 2016 or 2017 expiration date the jury is out as to whether you’ll be able to get Star Gold benefits like lounge access when showing the card to another airline.
-There’s little value to be had in the new program if you won’t be flying Aegean.
Originally posted on 09/22:
Aegean purchased fellow Greek airline Olympic Air last year, and proves once again that mergers are never good for consumers.
For the last several years the Aegean program has been an easy way to get Star Alliance gold status.
Once you flew 20,000 miles and got gold status, the terms and conditions stated it wouldn’t expire as long as you took one Star Alliance flight every 3 years. Plus Aegean Star Alliance gold status got you and a guest free access to domestic United lounges, something that even top-tier United status does not do.
But the Aegean and Olympic programs are being combined and their terms will be changing. From now on you will need to re-qualify for gold status every year. I called Aegean (+302106261000) up a few times (thanks Google) and all the reps confirm that major changes are coming though they are coy about what exactly they are.
Some people have Aegean gold cards that expire in 2016 or 2017 but they wouldn’t say what will happen to them or if the status will end sooner than that. They just say that emails will go out next month detailing the changes. But one rep confirmed that from now on you’ll need either 4 Aegean/Olympic flights+12,000 miles or 24,000 miles per year to earn gold status.
As discounted economy fares on airlines like United only earn half credit in the Aegean program, it effectively kills the program for most. Though United first class fares do get triple miles in the Aegean program, so perhaps there will be some use for some folks. United domestic first class does not give lounge access, but flying it with Aegean Gold does of course.
I’ll make an update to this post when the full details come out.