Big Changes Coming To American Airlines AAdvantage In 2023

Big Changes Coming To American Airlines AAdvantage In 2023

American Airlines, today announced major changes for its AAdvantage frequent flyer program in 2023 and there are a few advantages and disadvantages for members.

Changes In American Airlines AAdvantage Program

As of 2023, American will introduce a new mileage program with changes that will affect AAdvantage members when flying on American flights.

Among the changes, below are the primary ones that will affect members:

  • Introducing Loyalty Point Rewards
  • Earning status devaluation for AAdvantage Gold tier
  • Removing the previous 75,000 miles limit
  • Basic Economy ticket mileage earning devaluation
  • Introducing fully dynamic mileage awards

American Airlines AAdvantage Loyalty Point Rewards

Until now, American’s AAdvantage program has been offering its elite members Loyalty Choice Rewards when they reach a certain threshold. However, this rewards program will be overhauled as of March 2023 to “Loyalty Points Rewards.”

Starting in March 2023, AAdvantage will adopt a similar rewards threshold system to JetBlue TrueBlue’s “Perks You Pick.” Members do not have to be AAdvantage elite status to choose rewards as the threshold decreased to 15,000 Loyalty Points (125,000 in the past) and increased to 5,000,000 Loyalty Points (750,000 before).

Best of all, you can earn Loyalty Point Rewards without a single flight segment requirement and also by credit card spending with American Airlines co-branded credit cards. You will earn miles and Loyalty Points when you fly, use AAdvantage credit cards or travel with AAdvantage partners. For each eligible AAdvantage mile, you will earn 1 Loyalty Point.

So what are the rewards you can choose when you reach those thresholds? Let’s explore one by one below:

  • 15,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • Priority privileges and Group 4 boarding
    • 5 Preferred Seat coupons
  • 60,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • Avis Preferred Plus status
    • 20% Loyalty Point bonus when spending with American Airlines Vacations, SimmplyMiles, eShopping, AAdvantage Dining and American Airlines hotels
  • 100,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • Avis President’s Club status
    • 30% Loyalty Point bonus when spending with American Airlines Vacations, SimmplyMiles, eShopping, AAdvantage Dining and American Airlines hotels
  • 175,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • 2 systemwide upgrades
    • 20,000 bonus miles (25,000 miles for AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
    • 6 Admirals Club One-Day Passes
    • Carbon Offset
    • $250 donation to select nonprofit organization
    • 15% award rebate
    • 2 Gifts of AAdvantage Gold status
    • 35,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless Experience (AAdvantage credit cardmembers)

From 250,000 Loyalty Points, you are able to choose two choices from the following benefits:

  • 250,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • 2 systemwide upgrades
    • 20,000 bonus miles (30,000 miles for AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
    • 6 Admirals Club One-Day Passes
    • $200 trip credit ($250 for AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
    • Carbon offset
    • 2 Gifts of AAdvantage Gold status
    • Bang & Olufsen product (requires two choices)
    • 1 Flagship Lounge Single Visit Pass ( 2 passes for AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
    • 35,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless Experience (AAdvantage credit cardmembers)

From 400,000 to 750,000 Loyalty Points, you are able to choose two choices from the following benefits:

  • 400,000, 550,000 and 750,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • 1 systemwide upgrades
    • 25,000 bonus miles
    • Admirals Club membership (requires two choices)
    • $200 trip credit ($250 for AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
    • Carbon offset
    • Gift of AAdvantage Platinum status
    • Bang & Olufsen product (requires two choices)
    • 2 Flagship Lounge Single Visit Pass
    • 1 Flagship First Dining visit pass
    • 40,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless Experience (AAdvantage credit cardmembers)

And from 1,000,000 Loyalty Points and above, you are able to choose one choice from the following benefits:

  • 1,000,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • 4 systemwide upgrades
    • Carbon offset
    • Gift of AAdvantage Platinum Pro status
    • Up to 100,000 miles back on award redemptions
    • 150,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless Experience (AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
  • 3,000,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • 6 systemwide upgrades
    • Carbon offset
    • Gift of AAdvantage Executive Platinum status
    • Up to 300,000 miles back on award redemptions
    • 350,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless Experience (AAdvantage credit cardmembers)
  • 5,000,000 Loyalty Points Rewards
    • 10 systemwide upgrades
    • Carbon Offset
    • Gift of AAdvantage Executive Platinum status
    • Up to 500,000 miles back on award redemptions
    • 550,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless Experience (AAdvantage credit cardmembers)

The threshold increased to 5 million will significantly impact AAdvantage elite members since even those with no tiers can receive lucrative benefits.

AAdvantage Gold Requirement Devaluation

With the introduction of a wide range of Loyalty Points Rewards, Americans increased the requirements for AAdvantage Gold status from 30,000 to 40,000 Loyalty Points. Since base members earn 5 miles per dollar spent, you would need to spend at least US$2,000 extra to reach Gold status starting March 2023.

American Remove 75,000 Miles Limit

When American Airlines moved to revenue-based miles earning, the AAdvantage program placed a limit on award miles earned. This restricted those who purchase high-class fares but with the removal of the 75,000 miles limit, they are free to earn as much as they spend on American flights.

Basic Economy Fares Earn Lesser Miles

American Airlines will decrease the mileage earning rate for Basic Economy class from 5 miles per dollar down to 2 miles per dollar. This is a huge downgrade as it is will less rewarding and members now have to spend more to get the same amount of miles.

AAdvantage Introduces Dynamic Award System

The biggest impact on the AAdvantage program should be the award redemption system. This can be terrible but thankfully the program did not touch the redemptions on partner airlines. Meaning, only flights on American Airlines will be affected by the dynamic award pricing.

For example, a one-way flight from Los Angeles to London generally costs 22,500 miles up to 65,000 but this will vary when the program changes to dynamic award pricing.

In the meantime, a one-way business/first class cabin generally costs as high as 135,000 miles but I can see that some award tickets are exceeding 200,000 miles. Luckily, as I mentioned above, partner airlines’ redemption will not be affected and the 85,000 miles seat you can see below is on British Airways first class.

The details are not revealed on how the pricing will change but American hinted that there will be a new simplified chart coming in 2023.

Summary

As of 2023, the American Airlines AAdvantage program will be significantly changing in terms of renewed Loyalty Point Rewards, mileage earning rates on Basic Economy fares, Gold status requirements and removing the 75,000 miles limit.

There will be more Loyalty Rewards choices and members without elite tiers (Platinum Pro and Executive Platinum) now can pick a choice reaching certain thresholds. However, there are more drawbacks as Basic Economy fares now earn 2 miles per dollar spent instead of 5 miles and the Gold status requirement increased from 30,000 points to 40,000 points.

AAdvantage also plans to change the award redemption to fully dynamic pricing though further details are yet to be released.

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