I have been a Premier Executive (50k+ miles a year) on United for the past three and a half years, and was a Premier (25k+ miles a year) for a year and a half prior. United's frequent flyer program is terrific: in five years of membership, I've accumulated 500,000 miles (used quite a few, of course, but steadily rebuilding).
I must say that as much as it's a rewards program, it's also a loyalty program: even on short flights, I fly United 80% of the time because I genuinely like flying with them. Star Alliance has proved to be a boon for United, at least from my perspective, because it allows me to fly BMI
, US Airways, Lufthansa, Singapore, SAS, and Thai (plus the others, but haven't flown them yet) and still earn miles. Or, better yet, redeem miles for premium cabin tickets on SQ
I've also had a fair amount of experience flying Northwest, and a lot of flying on American. Before I changed my loyalties to United, I was an AA
-exclusive frequent flyer for 12 years, except when the destination required an alternate carrier such as PIA or Emirates.
"The education of a man is never completed until he dies." - Gen. R.E. Lee