Oneworld Ruby Benefits (& Other Things You Should Know About the Status)

Members of oneworld airlines’ frequent flyer programs have a chance to earn an alliance-wide status on top of each individual airline’s status. Unlike Star Alliance and SkyTeam which have two tiers of alliance-wide statuses, oneworld has three: Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald.

This article looks in detail at the easiest to achieve of the three – oneworld Ruby. Continue reading to find out what benefits the status comes with, how you can get it, and, most importantly, whether it is even worth getting.

Oneworld Ruby Status
Oneworld Ruby members can use business class check-in counters.

What Is oneworld Ruby Status?

All major full-service airlines’ frequent flyer programs give their members a chance to earn not only rewards like free flights but also frequent flyer statuses which come with a variety of perks on the program’s airline.

The status is typically earned by collecting a specific number of status miles (as opposed to award miles) or flying on the program’s airline and its partners a specific number of times.

In addition to perks on that specific airline, those who earn a status with an airline belonging to oneworld also get alliance-wide benefits. I.e. they can enjoy some perks across all oneworld airlines, not just the airline they earned the status with. The specific benefits depend on the oneworld status achieved.

Oneworld Ruby is the lowest tier of the statuses and thus comes with only a limited set of perks.

oneworld Ruby Benefits: Three Benefits of Varying Value

Being oneworld’s lowest tier status, Ruby is comparable with Star Alliance Silver and SkyTeam Elite. It offers slightly more valuable perks than the former while it lacks some of the perks offered by the latter. Still, I’d say that for the lowest tier alliance-wide status, it is decent.

Namely, the oneworld Ruby perks include:

  • Priority (business class) check-in: Even when flying in economy class, you will be able to use the business class check-in queue when flying with oneworld airlines which generally means shorter waiting time.
  • Advance/preferred seat selection: To a varying degree, you will be able to select a seat free of charge in cases where non-status holders would have to pay a seat reservation fee. The extent to which you will be able to enjoy this benefit – or if you will be able to enjoy it at all – will depend on the specific oneworld airline you will be flying. For example, British Airways offers free seat selection (excluding exit row seats) to oneworld Ruby members from seven days before departure.
  • Waitlist and standby priority: If you ever find yourself having to standby for or placed on a reservation waitlist for a flight that you want to take, being a oneworld Ruby member will put you higher on the list. That said, not all member airlines offer this perk alliance-wide and even if they do, you will still be competing against higher-tier status holders.

All in all, I consider the waitlist and standby priority to be close to a useless perk. That’s mainly because chances are that even if you theoretically have priority, in practice, you will be competing against Sapphires and Emeralds.

On the other hand, the ability to use business class check-in is definitely a nice perk to have as it can save you a good amount of time over time.

Similarly, while not fully alliance-wide, the ability to reserve some seats free of charge on some oneworld airlines can save you some money over time without having to play roulette with automatic seat assignment/choosing from seats available during check-in.

British Airways Oneworld Ruby Seat Selection
British Airways is one of the airlines that allows oneworld Ruby passengers to select seats in advance.

Ruby vs. Other oneworld Statuses: How Do They Differ?

While oneworld Sapphire and oneworld Emerald are considerably more difficult to earn than oneworld Ruby, they also come with much more attractive perks.

Of course, both of them offer the same perks as Ruby except they they get higher priority on waitlists and standby lists. On top of that, oneworld Sapphire also offers:

  • Priority baggage handling and boarding
  • Business class lounge access
  • Extra baggage allowance

Oneworld Emerald offers all of the above and:

  • First class check-in counters access
  • First class lounge access
  • Security and immigration fast track access

Oneworld Status Benefit Comparison

How to Get the oneworld Ruby Status

With oneworld Ruby being an alliance-wide status, it is not something you earn directly. Instead, it is offered as one of the perks that come with an airline status earned with one of the alliance’s airlines. Typically, to get Ruby status, you will need to earn the lowest-tier frequent flyer status with your oneworld airline of choice.

Below is a table with all of the oneworld frequent flyer programs and the statuses in each that map to oneworld Ruby.

Mileage ProgramStatusQualification CriteriaRetention Criteria
Alaska Airlines Mileage PlanMVPAt least 2 Alaska Airlines flights and either 20,000 status miles or 30 segments on Alaska Airlines and its partners in a calendar year
American Airlines AAdvantageGold40,000 Loyalty Points in a 12-month period starting on March 1
British Airways Executive ClubBronze300 Tier Points and at least 2 flights on British Airways in a membership year
Cathay PacificSilver300 Status Points and at least 1 flight on Cathay Pacific in a membership year
Finnair PlusSilver30,000 points or 20 flights on Finnair and its partners in a membership year
Iberia PlusPlata1,100 Elite Points in a 12-month period starting on April 1
JAL Mileage BankCrystalEither 30,000 FLY ON points (incl. 15,000 on JAL Group flights) or 30 flights (incl. 15 on JAL Group flights) and 10,000 FLY ON points in a calendar year
Malaysia Airlines EnrichSilver30 Elite Points in a year
Qantas Frequent FlyerSilver300 Status Credits in a membership year; 7,000 total Status Credits for lifetime250 Status Credits in a membership year
Qatar Airways Privilege ClubSilver150 Qpoints in a rolling 12-month period135 Qpoints in the last 12 months or 270 Qpoints in the last 24 months
Royal Air Maroc Safar FlyerSilver20,000 status miles incl. 10,000 on RAM flights or 15 status flights incl. at least 2 on RAM18,000 status miles incl. 10,000 on RAM flights or 13 status flights incl. at least 2 on RAM
Royal Jordanian Royal ClubSilver JAY15,000 status miles or 14 segments in a rolling 12-month period12,000 status miles or 12 segments in a year
SriLankan FlySmiLesClassicAt least 1 flight on SriLankan Airlines and either 20,000 Tier Miles or 20 segments in a yearAt least 1 flight on SriLankan Airlines and either 15,000 Tier Miles or 15 segments in a year

Is oneworld Ruby Worth Getting?

With the only practical perk that you will be able to enjoy truly alliance-wide being access to business class check-in desks, oneworld Ruby is not worth chasing in itself. That said, if you happen to fly enough to get it, it is definitely nice to have as it will save you some time and maybe even some money on seat reservation fees.

Additionally, while the Ruby status in itself is not worth going out of your way to get, the actual airline statuses also come with more perks when flying on the program’s airline. For the lowest tier statuses, this might mean getting a couple of lounge passes, for example.

As such, when making the decision of whether or not to take an extra flight you otherwise wouldn’t take to get oneworld Ruby, you will also need to take into account these airline-specific perks which vary greatly depending on the frequent flyer program you use.

Oneworld Alliance - Qatar Airways
Regardless of which airline you earn your Ruby status with, its valid across all oneworld airlines.

Summary

Oneworld Ruby is the alliance’s lowest tier status. Rather than being earned directly, it comes as a perk with low tier statuses in the alliance’s member airlines’ frequent flyer programs.

With only three relatively low-value perks, the status is not worth chasing in itself. That said, when combined with the airline-specific perks you might get in your frequent flyer program of choice, there might be situations in which you might want to go out of your way a bit to get the status.

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