Reader Question: Etihad or Emirates or Qatar or Oman?


A LoyaltyLobby reader sent us an email which to airline to choose to fly between Munich and India 6 to 12 times a year in business class.

Emirates Etihad Qatar Oman Air

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Here’s the email from the reader:

I am currently flying business class between 6 and 12 times per year from Munich to India (mostly Mumbai). So far I have always taken Lufthansa because it offers a direct flight, at least to Mumbai and New Delhi.

However with the recent changes to the Miles and More program and the way more attractive company-rates it got me thinking to try out one of the ME carriers. Which one would you suggest to to not just try but intentionally stick with? I’m feeling that Etihad is going down these days with its loyalty program and Qatar on the rise with its QSuites but I don’t know much about the worth of the Emirates or Oman Airways program.

I have flown with Emirates, Etihad and Qatar many times and I believe once on Oman Air in economy from Dubai to Muscat.

Emirates is by far the biggest of the three. Etihad is currently in big trouble and going through serious restructuring. It is difficult to see what is left of the airline when everything is said and done.

Qatar has heavily invested in Qatar Airways that is only of the four airlines here that is part of an alliance (Oneworld). Oman Air offers very attractive fares but they are quite niche airline and to be frank I am not familiar with their frequent flyer program at all.

Emirates has Skywards frequent flier program. Miles are useful when used towards upgrades. Fuel surcharges on award tickets are very high. Flights could be credited to Alaska’s program too.

If the reader chooses Qatar Airways, I would credit the flights to either American Airlines AAdvantage or BA’s Executive Club. Qatar has “enhanced” their Privilege Club few times recently to the point that the number of miles required for free flights is borderline ridiculous.


This is good dilemma to have. Basically to choose between four quality airlines. My personal choice would be Qatar Airways due to their affiliation with Oneworld.

There is obviously an option to be entirely free agent and buy entirely on price and schedule and just credit the flights as they come.