Andiamo! Ciao _____(airline). Actually you don't even need to say ciao! Only, hello to lounge access on all SkyTeam Airlines and Etihad! The best part of status matching is that you do not forgo anything. You don't lose status with your current airline, you aren't locked into a long term major league contract, you lose nothing. The gist of a status match is that an airline cares so much about trying to show you their product and their program (or just steal you), that it's worth it to offer you complimentary instant elite status, even to their highest level. Alitalia is GUARANTEEING status to any elite member from a competing alliance such as OneWorld or StarAlliance. 

The beauty of this match is not just Alitalia, you'll receive top tier benefits with every SkyTeam airline including Air France, Delta, KLM, Korean Air, Aeromexico, Garuda Indonensia and more. The beast of this match is that you'll receive reciprocal benefits on Alitalia's partner Etihad even when flying economy! Lounges, champagne, business class check in, the list goes on and on no matter what cabin you're actually traveling in. Alitalia is guaranteeing a match from any competing airline and that is tremendous news. The higher the status you match from the better the match, the longer you hold your current elite status, the longer they will grant your newly minted status. The best news is that if your current status is valid past March 2016, your match will grant you status through to March of 2017. Alitalia has three tiers and if you match to either of the top two as most elite flyers who aren't the lowest tier will, you'll have Sky Team Elite Plus, SkyTeams highest level match, equivalent to Star Alliance Gold or One World Sapphire/Emerald. 

Getting matched should be very straight forward. You'll simply create an Alitalia Millemiglia frequent flyer account (if you haven't already), email a copy of your current card (digital scan or screen shot should be fine) to with your first and last name, and perhaps a few kind words about the match and your frustrations. That's it. Alitalia is promising that matches will be granted within eight days, and in all SkyTeam systems in a similar period of time. I somewhat doubt that timeframe, and in the past have found that they didn't even notify readers of successful matches despite granting them, so just check your account after about a week to see a shiny new card and status. I hope this makes, holiday, business, new year and future travels a breeze for all! 

Huge THANKS to reader Sam for the tip this morning!

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