Best Frequent Flyer and Hotel Guest Programs Chosen Among 3.6 Million Ballots in the 2020 Freddie Awards

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Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards was named frequent flyer Program of the Year for the fifth straight year while Marriott Bonvoy took top honors among hotel programs in the Americas region for the eleventh consecutive year and Chase Bank wins the popular credit card category with their Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card

Freddie Awards

For this 30th year of the Freddie Awards, we are delighted to once again allow frequent flyers throughout the world to voice their choice of frequent travel programs that truly rise up in excellence,

In a virtual presentation, Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards was named frequent flyer Program of the Year and Marriott Bonvoy took the same top honors among hotel programs in the Freddie Awards results released on Thursday April 30th. Internationally, the Norwegian Reward program and Accor Live Limitless took top honors in the Europe/Africa region and Virgin Australia Velocity and Accor Live Limitless took top honors in the Middle East/Asia Oceania region.

More than 3.6 million ballots were cast worldwide by members of travel loyalty programs to determine the winners in recognizing the best of travel loyalty programs for the 30th year. The Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards win marks the fifth straight year of the Program of the Year honor while Marriott’s loyalty program has now won the Program of the Year honor for eleven consecutive years. Also impressive is the nine consecutive years streak that American Airlines AAdvantage has won Best Elite Program in the Americas.

In the popular credit card category, Chase Bank was a big winner by issuing the Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards Premier credit card in the Americas. American Express Membership Rewards took top honors in the Middle East/Asia Oceania region while Norwegian Reward won in the Europe/Africa region with their credit card issued by Bank Norwegian. All three are repeat winners of this honor.

Also announced were the 210 Award for programs whose value vote rating was trending higher (rising stars). Winners in this category included Air Canada Aeroplan and Accor Live Limitless in the Americas region, TAP Air Portugal Miles&Go and Choice Privileges in the Europe/Africa region and Air Arabia Air Rewards and Wyndham Rewards in the Middle East/Asia Oceania region.

The Freddie Awards represent excellence among travel loyalty programs around the globe and rate the best programs in six categories: Program of the Year, Best Promotion, Best Redemption Ability, Best Customer Service, Best Elite Program and Best Loyalty Credit Card. Voters had six weeks to vote and were permitted to vote for programs in one of three global regions: Americas, Europe/Africa and Middle East/Asia Oceania. Voting also was available in nine different languages.

The awards were announced by Freddie Awards Founder, Randy Petersen during a virtual presentation.

"For this 30th year of the Freddie Awards, we are delighted to once again allow frequent flyers throughout the world to voice their choice of frequent travel programs that truly rise up in excellence," Petersen commented. "This is not an elitist view of these programs but rather the 'best' are determined by the votes of those who spend a great deal of their life on the road and in the air.”

The Freddie Awards honor quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the overall merits of each program as reflected in a "Value Vote." Value Voting asks the voter to assign a number between one and three to the program for which he or she votes. To be eligible to win a Freddie Award, however, a program must receive at least two percent of the category vote.

The Freddie Awards are named after the late Sir Freddie Laker, who attracted fame (and a knighthood in the United Kingdom) for pioneering low-cost air travel across the Atlantic in the 1970s.

Sponsors of the virtual presentation included iSeatz—loyalty tech solutions, luggage maker Knack and BoardingArea—required reading for frequent flyers. The Freddie Awards were custom designed by Society Awards.

The results were presented virtually and may be viewed online at freddieawards.com/.

THIS YEAR'S WINNERS ARE:
AMERICAS
Airline Category
Program of the Year — Southwest Airlines - Rapid Rewards
Best Elite Program — American Airlines - AAdvantage
Best Promotion — Avianca - LifeMiles 
Best Customer Service — Southwest Airlines - Rapid Rewards 
Best Redemption Ability — Southwest Airlines - Rapid Rewards 
210 AWARD — Air Canada - Aeroplan

Hotel Category
Program of the Year — Marriott Hotels - Marriott Bonvoy
Best Elite Program — Hyatt - World of Hyatt
Best Promotion — Marriott Hotels - Marriott Bonvoy
Best Customer Service — MGM - M life Rewards
Best Redemption Ability — Marriott Hotels - Marriott Bonvoy
210 AWARD — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless 

Credit Card Category
Best Loyalty Credit Card — Southwest Airlines - Rapid Rewards from Chase Bank

EUROPE/AFRICA
Airline Category
Program of the Year — Norwegian Air – Norwegian Reward
Best Elite Program — Aeroflot – Aeroflot Bonus
Best Promotion — Norwegian Air – Norwegian Reward
Best Customer Service — Norwegian Air – Norwegian Reward
Best Redemption Ability — TAP Air Portugal - Miles&Go
210 AWARD — TAP Air Portugal - Miles&Go

Hotel Category
Program of the Year — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless 
Best Elite Program — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless
Best Promotion — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless 
Best Customer Service — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless 
Best Redemption Ability — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless 
210 AWARD — Choice Hotels – Choice Privileges

Credit Card Category
Best Affinity Credit Card — Norwegian Reward - Bank Norwegian Norwegian Card

MIDDLE EAST/ASIA OCEANIA
Airline Category
Program of the Year — Virgin Australia – Velocity  
Best Elite Program — Virgin Australia – Velocity 
Best Promotion — Virgin Australia – Velocity  
Best Customer Service — Virgin Australia – Velocity  
Best Redemption Ability — Virgin Australia – Velocity 
210 AWARD — AirArabia - AirRewards

Hotel Category
Program of the Year — Accor Hotels – Accor Live Limitless 
Best Elite Program — Marriott Hotels - Marriott Bonvoy
Best Promotion — Marriott Hotels - Marriott Bonvoy
Best Customer Service — ITC Hotels - Club ITC 
Best Redemption Ability — ITC Hotels - Club ITC
210 AWARD — Wyndham Hotels – Wyndham Rewards

Credit Card Category
Best Affinity Credit Card — American Express Membership Rewards

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Randy Petersen
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