The EL AL Matmid frequent flyer program tends to be one to avoid. With high redemption charts, fuel surcharges on award tickets, and a membership fee to join ($25), you are much better using your American Airlines miles if you ever want to book an award on EL AL.
But I also do not think it ever hurts to sign up for frequent flyer programs when it is free to do. I have amassed a nice collection of cards over the years doing exactly that. Soon, an EL AL Matmid frequent flyer card will be added to my collection. Kosher Kouponz is running a promotion over the next four days where you can sign up for membership into the Matmid Club and the $25 joining fee will be waived. Additionally, 30 points will be deposited as a welcome gift in your account (to give you an idea of how far 30 miles will go, the cheapest flight redemption options with EL AL are flights to Cairo or Athens. Those run 500 points…)
But membership into the Matmid Club does offer a couple noteworthy benefits. First, you can take advantage of 11 pounds of additional weight allowance in your checked bags when you fly on EL AL. Second, you can check award space online so you know what is available when you call AA to book.
The joining process was not all that straightforward for me. I requested the free membership through Kosher Kouponz, validated my account by clicking through on a link in an e-mail they sent me after registering, then clicked on the “My Purchases” link on the Kosher Kouponz home page. The page indicated that I had purchased the Mitmad Club deal and I clicked on “View” under the “Action” menu.
A .pdf file opened with an invoice that included a link that took me to EL AL’s website, embedded with a promotion code that presumably would have auto-filled on the Matmid Club sign-up page. Instead, I got this message:
To get around this, I copied the promotion code then went to the EL AL homepage and selected Join Now from the Frequent Flyer menu. On the sign-up page, I entered the promotion code and it worked–I was able to register for the program, though nowhere were the 30 bonus points mentioned (on the contrary, it stated zero points would be given).
You never know when this might come in handy, so take a few minutes now and just sign up! And may I kindly request you sign up through this link? That will supposedly earn me $3, though I have my doubts…
(Tip of the hat to Gary)