The fun about having a blog called “Points to be Made” is that if I want to rant or say anything ludicrous, then it still fits the title. This post comes from Mike who writes the blog “Ik Vlieg Veel” (That means “I fly a lot” to you and me!). We've been in contact since we met at TravelMagic, and his interests in airlines are closely aligned with mine…first class and anything but Skyteam. Given my preference for OneWorld (though that's recently been waning) and his for Star Alliance, it seems only appropriate that he argues his case!
Over to you Mike…
If there is one thing that annoys me with the people of the Netherlands, it's that most of them value KLM and their Flying Blue account waaay too much. Schiphol being extremely dominated by SkyTeam doesn’t mean you should automatically fly SkyTeam… There are other options you know !
A quick count shows that there are also 13 Star Alliance airlines flying in and out of Amsterdam every day and most times offering better products, connections and prices but somehow the Dutch (business) traveller seems to disregard this and is focussing only on achieving KLM's PLAT4LIFE (when we all know that's going to fade away soon anyway.)
Being Dutch, being a frequent traveller, being opposed to anything SkyTeam:
My 10 Reasons to choose Star Alliance over SkyTeam when being based in The Netherlands
Statistics say that 37% of Americans can’t point America on a map so I don’t even want to think about the percentage when asked: Where is Holland? Being such a tiny country actually causes loads of Dutchies to fly from Airports such as Brussels or Dusseldorf.
From where I grew up it was 31km less to drive to DUS than to AMS airport. (Plus much cheaper!) So instead of flying back via Amsterdam…stick with the program and choose your Star Alliance option for a greater experience.
2) More airports to choose from
Schiphol isn’t the only airport in Holland! Star Alliance offers you the chance to also fly from Rotterdam Airport. It’s cheaper in costs such as parking, less crowded and it’s an airport that is still very much developing and re-inventing itself. (and attracting attention from the other Star Alliance airlines)
So when your preferred flights might be fully booked from Amsterdam : Star Alliance gives you the option to fly from Rotterdam when SkyTeam doesn’t.
3) Blue is not the new orange
Orange is who we are! We are a nation who love to dress up completely in orange 1 day a year. Our national soccer team is orange … and what colour is our national airline? Royal Blue!
It would have been so much more awesome if KLM were orange, just to represent our great nation… but the closest to orange that KLM gets at this moment is that their service resembles Easyjet more and more.
4) Business Class is the new First class…..
Want to fly in awesome first class products? SkyTeam isn’t the way to go: China Southern (flown twice), Korean air (flown once), Air France and China Airlines will offer you a first class product on select routes.
None of them rank very high on the #AWESOME list of products to try before you die.
Star Alliance on the other hand offer you the world's very best products : Lufthansa, Singapore … just to name a few and best of all those products come with great ground/lounge product to really offer you an experience of a lifetime. ( I mean… KLM Crown Lounge or Lufthansa First Class Terminal?)
Most of the times if you are not flying KLM you will have to connect somewhere. So let me ask you this question : Where would you prefer to transfer: Guangzhou? Moscow?
or even worse: Paris CDG airport ? Or would you prefer an airport like: Vienna, Singapore, or Zurich ? According to Skytrax top airport of the world: 7 out of the top 10 airports in the worlds are Star Alliance Hub airports ! Making you transfer experience as good as it can be !
6) Loyalty programs
Delta's Skypesos, Flying Blue's surcharges and taxes, inability to speak English at 1 of the Chinese partners … and so on … all make it not so attractive to start collecting your points on a SkyTeam airline. Star Alliance on the other hand has a few little gold mines when it comes to earning and burning! Such as the Aegean Airlines gold fast-track or US Airways monthly 100% miles promotion… When was the last time we saw Flying Blue offer a 100% bonus on buying miles?
7) Better prices
SkyTeam seems to be 1 mega joint venture company: Air France/KLM, Delta, Alitalia, China Southern are somehow all 1 big Joint Venture so when they do their pricing it’s all in line with each other. Being the ‘’underdog’’ at Schiphol you will find that on long haul destinations you can get much better deals using Star Alliance over SkyTeam.
8) If you truly love yourself you always want the best for yourself
Star Alliance makes it easy on you: Choose Star Alliance and you have the best. Choose SkyTeam and you will be wishing you had better. Why settle for China Southern when you can fly Singapore? Why transit in Moscow when you can transit in Vienna?
9) With Star Alliance you have always been their SkyPriority …
And not just since 2 years when the marketing department at SkyTeam decided to make you their priority! Global alliance-wide recognition and benefits have been included since day 1 with Star Alliance. Remember what they say: Once you have Star gold you will never go back to… Elite plus ! You simply can’t compare the two.
10) Star Alliance will strike back!
It may not be right now. But I know that Star Alliance will make a very glorious comeback at Schiphol. With most of their members flying into Amsterdam the airport I just know that behind the scenes Star is making plans to really kick some SkyTeam butt at Amsterdam Airport! Deep down I know we are going to see improved facilities and upgraded processes to make life as a Star Alliance passenger even more comfortable.
There you have it, my 10 very much biased reasons to choose Star Alliance over SkyTeam.
Mike – A Dutch Gold member of Star Alliance.