American Airlines announced a while ago that it would change its AAdvantage program to include minimum spending requirements for elite status, and now those changes have taken effect.
January 1 was the starting date for the new AAdvantage rules, which brings American’s program into line with its major competitors. So here’s a reminder for AAdvantage members who need one.
Members now have new requirements for achieving AAdvantage elite status, most significantly including a minimum spending requirement for each level. And speaking of elite levels, there are now four instead of three.
The new level is called Platinum Pro, in between regular Platinum and Executive Platinum. Platinum Pro benefits – in addition to the regular Platinum perks – include unlimited complimentary upgrades in 500-mile upgrade markets; nine award miles per dollar (an 80 percent bonus); a 72-hour upgrade window; and two free checked bags. Platinum Pros will have the same Oneworld Sapphire status that Platinums have.
Here’s a chart showing the new elite levels, which require minimum spending of Elite Qualifying Dollars as well as minimums for Eilte Qualifying Miles OR Elite Qualifying Segments.
Except for the addition of the Platinum Pro level, the miles/segments requirements are the same as they were before. Elite Qualifying Dollars are based on the ticket price plus carrier-imposed fees, but not government taxes and fees. The number of miles accumulated per Elite Qualifying Dollar ranges from 5 for non-elite AAdvantage members up to 11 for Executive Platinums.
Later this year, American said, upgrade prioritization rules will be updated to include not only elite status level, but also the number of Elite Qualifying Dollars accumulated in the last 12 months; and Executive Platinums will be able to use free 500-mile upgrades for award flights on American.