This year is the first time in two years that I’ve been a Silver Elite on Northwest WorldPerks. With all my Shanghai travel in the past years, I had managed to be either Gold or Platinum for a while. There are a ton of benefits for being any level of airline elite, the one that I’ve found that I miss the most is the dedicated phone number. Calling the Gold and Platinum line, you had a live person on the phone within 15 seconds. The Silver line? A phone menu, then a three or four minute wait to reach somebody. Alas, life is so hard.