Rumor: American Airlines to Eliminate Close-In Booking Fees, Make Other Award Rule Changes
Signing up for credit cards through partner links earns us a commission. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.
INSIDER SECRET: You can change the date or time of an American Airlines award flight for free as long as the origin, destination and cabin of service stay the same…but that all could be changing soon.
If you want to guess what move American Airlines is going to make next just take a look at what the other major US airlines are doing because they’re sure to follow suit. After JetBlue, United Airlines and Delta raised checked baggage fees, American Airlines did the same. Delta eliminated its award chart years ago and now prices award flights dynamically. Now United Airlines is ditching its award chart this fall and not long after that announcement was made, American Airlines confirmed it’s moving toward dynamic award prices.
But not all of these moves are always negative. Delta doesn’t charge an extra fee for booking last-minute award tickets and United Airlines is eliminating its $75 close-in award booking fee on November 15, 2019, when it drops its award chart (although before then you might be able to avoid the fee using this trick).
Now there is a rumor, from Twitter account xJonNYC, that American Airlines is planning to get rid of its close-in booking fee.
While this is just a rumor at this point, this account has a history of being a reliable source for American Airlines news. Currently, American Airlines charges a $75 fee for award tickets booked within 21 days of departure, although this fee is waived if you have any level of American Airlines status. By itself this is a positive change, but the rumor is that the fee is being dropped in conjunction with an adjustment in the rules for changing awards.
Right now American Airlines has a very generous award change policy that is much better than what Delta or United Airlines offers the typical non-elite flyer. As long as your origin, destination and cabin stay the same you can change the date or time of your flight for no charge (no changes are allowed for Economy Web Special awards).
I’m interested to see the specifics of these rumored rule changes. At the end of the day it will most likely end up being a mixed bag and will align American Airlines’ policies closer to those of Delta and United Airlines.
For the latest tips and tricks on traveling big without spending a fortune, please subscribe to the Million Mile Secrets daily email newsletter.Featured image by Philip Pilosian/Shutterstock.
American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ CardAPPLY NOW
American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card
Earn 10,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles and receive a $50 statement credit after making $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
No Annual Fee
Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for each $1 spent at grocery stores, including grocery delivery services
Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
Earn 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
Save 25% on inflight food and beverage purchases when you use your card on American Airlines flights
The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.99% – 24.99%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.
15.99% – 24.99% (Variable)
3% of each balance transfer; $5 minimum.
Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)