I realize that this varies from program to program and depends on various factors. But just as a general rule of thumb what is the ratio of miles you have to pay to free miles in a typical program?
For example, if I fly from round trip New York to LA coach every weekend on American, about how many times will I have to do that before I get a free trip?
With some addition research I answered the question myself. The typical ratio is betwen 10:1 and 20:1 with 12:1 to 15:1 being most typical. In other words you generally need to make between 12 and 15 flights before you get one free flight.