Generous New American Airlines Elite Status Benefits (Bonus Miles, More Upgrades) Come With A Higher Qualification Requirement

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Generous New American Airlines Elite Status Benefits (Bonus Miles, More Upgrades) Come With A Higher Qualification Requirement

AlexGenerous New American Airlines Elite Status Benefits (Bonus Miles, More Upgrades) Come With A Higher Qualification RequirementMillion Mile Secrets Team

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American Airlines has announced a few additional benefits their Executive Platinum elites can earn in 2019.  But they are also changing the Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQDs) requirement to qualify.  This change will start for the qualifying year of 2020, which means that you will need to spend more next year (2019) to maintain that elite status.

If you want to be sure you’re get the most out of all those miles you’re earning, check out our complete guide to using American Airlines miles.

Enjoy More First Class Upgrades With American Airlines Executive Platinum Status Starting in 2019

American Airlines Is Increasing the Spending Requirement for Executive Platinum Elite Status

Top tier elites on American Airlines will now have to spend a little bit extra to maintain their elite status going forward.

The Elite Qualifying Dollar (EQD) requirement for AAdvantage® Executive Platinum status is increasing from $12,000 EQDs to $15,000 EQDs for the 2020 membership year.  This is an increase of $3,000 EQDs or 25% more EQDs than previous years, which represents a very significant shift!

In addition, the ability to earn EQDs by spending on a Barclays American Airlines credit card is largely disappearing soon.

See related:   Looking for American Airlines Admirals Club lounge access?  Then check out the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®.

But Executive Platinum Elites Can Earn More New Benefits

It’s not all bad news, American Airlines also added more benefits to the Executive Platinum elite status tier, making it more valuable.  Upon initial qualification for Executive Platinum elite status, folks will continue to receive 4 systemwide upgrades.  Additionally, those that continue to reach milestones of 150,000 EQMs, 200,000 EQMs and 250,000 EQMs can choose a reward for their continued loyalty.

For each tier you reach you can select one gift:

  • 150,000 EQMs
    • 2 systemwide upgrades
    • 40,000 bonus American Airlines miles
    • Gift of American Airlines Gold status (40% elite mileage bonus, 1 free checked bag, 24-hour upgrade window)
  • 200,000 EQMs 250,000 EQMs
    • 2 systemwide upgrades
    • 40,000 bonus American Airlines miles
    • Gift of American Airlines Platinum status (60% elite mileage bonus, 2 free checked bags, 48-hour upgrade window)

This means that folks who reach 250,000 EQMs in 2019 can earn as many as 10 systemwide upgrades throughout the year, which is very generous.  This is an increase of 2 systemwide upgrades from previous years (which maxed out at 8 potential upgrades).  However, I also have to be honest, the 250,000 EQMs in a year is likely outside of the reach for most fliers.

All Changes Begin in 2019

The EQD spending requirements for Executive Platinum status will begin in 2019 for earning elite status in 2020.  But you can still earn Executive Platinum status for the 2019 membership year as long as you reach the previous requirements by December 31, 2018.

The new bonus tier perks for 150,000, 200,000, and 250,000 EQMs can be reached starting January 1, 2019.

How does the increase in spending requirements affect your likelihood to work toward Executive Platinum Status next year?

Looking for more American Airlines miles?  You can collect bunches with the sign-up bonus from the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard® or the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®!

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More system wides are useless when you can never use them…I received 8 this year and haven’t been able to clear a single one. AA is flying down hill in customer service and every time I think they are at the bottom they get worse! As much as I dislike United, they will get my company’s $75k in 2019!

Thinning the herds. Great!

More SWUs are only valuable if you can use them. The last two years I’ve had them left over because they wouldn’t clear on transcontinental flights. Sure, if I want to fly an old 737 and have a layover somewhere I can use it but who wants to do that? A few years back there was always a seat or two available and made it worth getting to Exp. With the reduction in redeemable miles and the lack of availability to use SWUs I’ve moved over to United and this will be the first time in almost 10 years that I won’t requalify for Exp and I’m ok with it.

Isn’t that picture from an Air France cabin?

The author is mistaken. Everyone must meet the EQD threshold of $15,000. That must be augmented with either the EQM or segment qualification option.

You are correct, the post has been updated.

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