American Airlines tweaks frequent flier program

700UW

Corn Field
Nov 11, 2003
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http://www.chicagotribune.com/business/breaking/chi-american-airlines-frequent-flier-program-20140408,0,4346949.story
 
 
American Airlines on Tuesday announced changed policies and a revamped program for redeeming frequent-flier miles, a mixed bag of good and bad news that affects how customers can cash-in reward miles and whether they get free checked bags, among other changes.

American, the newly merged carrier of American Airlines and US Airways, is trying to quickly create a consistent traveler experience for customers, said Suzanne Rubin, the American Airlines executive in charge of the loyalty program.

 
 
 

eolesen

Veteran
Jul 23, 2003
15,399
9,241
The loyalty program is our labor agreement, defining what we get in return for giving your employer money instead of someone else.

Obviously, it works, because we continue to put up with shabby lounges, airplanes, and occasionally surly service in exchange for the points and elite status, rather than flying on another airline who has invested in their lounges, airplanes, and has employees who don't carry huge chips on their shoulders for what's happened or what the future might bring...

None of the changes are really all that bad. I've got lifetime Gold status, so the bag allowance could affect me at some point, but I rarely check more than one bag, so it's a moot point. Plus, I've managed to stay at Platinum or higher for the last eight years, so they won't apply now.

The only expected tweak they haven't acted on creating the fourth tier between 50K and 100K. That's a pretty large leap to achieve, and US already has a 75K tier, as do AS, DL and UA.
 

ChrisUS

Senior
Aug 20, 2005
448
71
What they haven't announced yet is that they are doing away with the OW awards that AA currently has.  :-(  Never fails, every merger they pick the worst of the two policies and use that one and claim it is the best. ( For them, yes) 
 
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eolesen

Veteran
Jul 23, 2003
15,399
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I think it will be hard to drop the one-way awards, especially if they've increased mileage burn rates, and allowed AA to drop the free stopovers that we used to be able to do.

I'm looking at a routing right now that goes AAA-BBB-CCC-AAA for my son, and under the old rules, I'd burn up 25,000 miles for that routing with the free stopover. Today, it's between 37,500 and 50,000 depending on how many stops he makes along the way.
 

dash8roa

Senior
Oct 25, 2003
378
138
Any word if the US award (sic) processing fee will be in the AA award program? $25.00 per domestic ticket and $50.00 per international ticket with the customer doing the choosing of flights without using a res agent.
 

eolesen

Veteran
Jul 23, 2003
15,399
9,241
I just did an award booking online... free, aside from $10 per person for the PFC's.

Why should I have to pay $25 to use miles I already paid for?...
 

dash8roa

Senior
Oct 25, 2003
378
138
eolesen said:
I just did an award booking online... free, aside from $10 per person for the PFC's.

Why should I have to pay $25 to use miles I already paid for?...
 
The $25.00 and $50.00 fee for redeeming miles was brought to you by the airline that for a some time charged for water.
Nice way to treat your best and frequent customers. As of now, AA does not charge these outrageous fees, but I wonder what will happen when the new award levels go into effect later this year.
 

ChrisUS

Senior
Aug 20, 2005
448
71
I'd pretty much count on the fees. I was speaking to US DM on the phone and he told me the OW option would be going away soon.  We are going on a cruise in the Fall and I want to non rev down ( have several days to get there) and want to use DM on the way back.  The flights I want show a 12,500 mile seat but apparently only one on an empty flight.  :-( 
 

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