Reader Question: Using Different Frequent Flier Programs For Lounge Access & Collect Miles?


A LoyaltyLobby reader sent us a question that is of interest for many of us regarding using two different frequent flier programs for crediting miles and elite benefits.

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Here’s the email from the reader:

I am flying with TK to BKK in U class and United won’t credit miles for that class.

Therefore I’ve decided to use my Turkish FF number to get at least some miles.

Do you think I can access the TK lounge in Istanbul by showing them my United Premier Gold status through my United app – even though the boarding pass won’t show any status?

On the way back home from BKK i’m flying in V and will change my FF number to United in the “manage” ticket online TK website.

Theoretically, airlines can have two frequent flier numbers on the PNR; one for the benefits and another one of the crediting the miles. In reality this won’t work.

There isn’t an issue doing what the reader suggests on his email. You can just show the program card (physical or on app) which you would like to use for lounge access (at the door) while keeping the other number on file for crediting purposes.

Just make sure that the agent in the lounge won’t change the frequent flier number where the flight is credited. You need to emphasize that you are using the Star Alliance Gold status from United only for lounge access and nothing else.


I used this method most recently in July when I used BA Gold (Oneworld Emerald) for Finnair Platinum (Emerald) lounge access in Helsinki while crediting the Finnair HEL-TLV business class flight to my Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan account.

You just need to make 100% clear to the lounge agent that you are only using the other frequent flier program for lounge access purposes and not to change it to the PNR.

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