Overview of New American AAdvantage Program

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American Airlines announced their new combined AAdvantage program earlier this week as they continue to merge with US Airways and combine into one airline.  Here’s a look at what the new program entails:

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How to qualify:

The AAdvantage program has 3 elite status levels – Gold, Platinum, Executive Platinum – and 3 ways to qualify for status with miles, points or segments.

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You earn elite-qualifying miles and segments based on actual miles or segments you fly on qualifying paid tickets. On January 1, 2015, the segment qualification requirement for Executive Platinum will move to 120 for the 2016 membership year.

Complimentary Upgrades:

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We know 500-mile upgrades are new for Dividend Miles Preferred members, so we’ll add 500-mile upgrades to your account (based on your Dividend Miles Preferred-qualifying activity) to get you started. You can use these upgrades on flights over 500 miles or to upgrade a travel companion. If you are an AAdvantage Gold or Platinum member, you’ll earn four 500-mile upgrades for every 10,000 elite-qualifying miles you fly.

Systemwide upgrades:

If you qualify for Executive Platinum, you’ll receive 8 systemwide upgrades for use, when available. If you’re Chairman’s Preferred, you’ll also receive 8 systemwide upgrades, when we combine programs in the second quarter of 2015. Upgrades are valid for one-way travel on any US Airways or American marketed and operated flight (up to 3 segments) and you can give them to anyone, even if you’re not traveling with them.

Here’s what else is new for Dividend Preferred members:

Right now

January 2015

Second quarter of 2015 (when programs are combined)

Right now

Here’s what else is new for American AAdvantage members:

January 2015

Second quarter of 2015 (when programs are combined)

Bottom Line

Combing loyalty programs of two major airlines isn’t an easy task that can be done overnight. I’m sure there will be hiccups along the way, but once the programs are fully merged, I think they will have a great program. You can view the full list of changes on their site here.

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or suggestions expressed on this site are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. For details on current offers visit the card issuer’s site.

About The Weekly Flyer

The Weekly Flyer writes about travel from a business traveler perspective. He travels the world every week accumulating points and miles along the way.

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