Mileways, the Munich-based social app for frequent flyers, just got a little more useful. The iOS app has added integration with AirHelp, the flight compensation startup co-founded by Morten Lund, to make it easy for travellers to claim compensation should they face delay, cancelation or overbooking when flying to and from the EU.
The AirHelp partnership builds nicely on the Mileways proposition. The startup’s iOS app wants to be a one-stop-shop for flyers to help them keep track of and share flight information with their social network, and collect air miles that can be redeemed at a number of partners services, including Airbnb, Sixt, and Uber — with more partners coming soon.
Features include the ability to share travel details with friends (or switch to private mode), follow other travellers, get alerts when your flight is delayed, view weather forecasts, and find and book accommodation. In addition, there are a bunch of more generic social features, such as photo sharing and commenting on your friends’ trips.
Like the AirHelp app itself, the process of filing a compensation claim is somewhat automated. Data entry is minimal since the Mileways app already has most your flight details; you simply enter your name and booking code, and AirHelp’s “automatic flight compensation technology” kicks in.
First it will alert you when you may be entitled to compensation, and then assist you with filing the claim using its own airport, weather and airline data in order to consolidate the legal work required to make it stick. If the claim is successful, AirHelp keeps 25% of the compensation amount.
When I met Mileways co-founder Alexander Lueck at last year’s Disrupt Europe London meetup, he showed me an earlier version of the app and asked what I thought. My slight criticism was that I thought Mileways needed to provide more utility — it felt more vitamin pill, less pain killer — to incentivise users to go to the trouble of entering their travel details or syncing flight bookings. One way it’s doing that is obviously the redeemable air miles. And with today’s AirHelp integration, it’s added another reason for frequent flyers to use the app.
(Update: Mileways has a direct competitor in Hamburg-based iOS app Flying.)