New AAdvantage Program Being Announced Soon?

While not yet set in stone, there are rumors that American will announce the new AAdvantage program soon, and that it will take effect starting in March 2015.

AAdvantage-Status

JonNYC at TravelingBetter passes this on, calling it a “very strong rumor.” He’s right 99% of the time, so when he notes something it’s always worth paying attention, in my opinion. Here’s his post:

Some may have seen this post on FT:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/23690307-post289.html

And while I dismissed that report (have since PM’d that FTer to apologize) rumors now rampant that new program rules will take effect March 2015 (somewhat surprisingly, I’d say– and not 100% confirmed.)

Several sources are calling this “AAdvantage stays AAdvantage” and it is being depicted as “largely good news” with some AA folks on the inside describing themselves as “very relieved.” But, no confirmed details that I can share at this juncture. AND, still could change up a bit.

But, in any case, these rumors point to an announcement much sooner than I would have expected..

Much like JonNYC, my initial thoughts are:

  • A combined AAdvantage program by March 2015 is much quicker than I was expecting, so that would be really surprising
  • Rumors that “AAdvantage stays AAdvantage” and that the new program is “largely good news” are very exciting

Anyway, while I wouldn’t necessarily hold my breath, I’ll certainly be refreshing the interwebz for the immediate future waiting for an announcement.

What do you think a combined AAdvantage program would look like?

Comments

  1. “…starting in March 2014” – I’ve heard of changes without notice, but retroactive changes are a bit much!

  2. On the phone last week, an EXP agent told me that the programs would be combined “next spring”. I didn’t think much of it at the time. I sure hope they find a way to combine qualifying miles between US and AA so I can guarantee that I won’t have to fly 17 hours in coach to HKG.

  3. Overheard a US Agent at the Club in CLT telling another passenger that programs would combine in March-15. My orphaned 40K US miles will be useful soon!

  4. I have an insider knowledge that they will poise their program just like the avios. i.e. 4.5k/9k/12.5k/20k/etc. which will be an amazing development in my opinion. I cannot wait since I have a boatload of 300k in AA and those short hops would be best. I have no BA miles so definitely an amazing change for me.

  5. @gene I’m in the same exact situation as you are. I currently have a coach award to HKG; hoping to upgrade with the merged miles. Let’s just hope that the following occurs to make it as painless as possible :
    1) The existing AAdvantage change fee policy survives
    2) No award chart devaluations

  6. Ivan Y –

    I hope what you are saying is true, but since AA recently and without notice upped some economy mileage redemption requirements to 30k-50k miles ONE WAY on high demand/peak travel days, I would think that reducing the amount of miles required to travel on AA going forward is counter-intuitive

    Would also like to see the ‘stickers’ stick around instead of going to a status-based system of upgrades.

    The AA program as it exists now works for me just fine, maybe a couple of tweaks here or there could improve things

  7. There is nothing in his post that says ‘tomorrow’. Just someone else in FT who said October 17.

    What source told you tomorrow is the day?

  8. i interpret “largely good news” as “not going EQD route and not basing RDM on fare”.

    The Not basing RDM on Fare piece may backfire on HVF since the same $8000 JFK-LHR would earn 75000 miles at DL/UA for a top tier elite versus less than 20K at AA 2015.

  9. @erndog

    I agree with you on the stickers. The staus based upgrades are fine but goin down the road UA did with unlimited IMO devalued those upgrades and indeed the first class cabin for most domestic routes.

    Would be interesting to read tomorrows announcement.

  10. ps : i would love the creation of a 75K tier to match UA and DL. that’s a huge gap of elites that AA isn’t properly awarding with just GLD PLT EXP.

  11. I’ve always wondered how JonNYC is a connected to AA to get such accurate and seemingly unpublic info. Lucky, do you (or anybody else) know what his connection is to AA and how he gets such insiteful scoops?

  12. Any word on what the changes may entail. Was waiting until next week to start a trail preferred. Should I do it tonight ?

  13. Ben – what would you say are the chances of AA pulling something like UA did, and adjusting million miler balances upwards to reflect different criteria between AA and US?

  14. @Shaun – Not sure his connection, but it’s not always reliable. Last November he said an announcement was imminent (saw the story on that in Lucky’s ‘related posts’ above.

    But this one feels more ‘real.’

  15. @ Jordan — American and US Airways are merging, and as of now have separate loyalty programs (AAdvantage and Dividend Miles). As part of the merger they’re going to be combining loyalty programs, which is what I meant by a “combined AAdvantage program.” Hope that makes sense!

  16. > Let’s just hope that the following occurs to make it as painless as possible :
    > 1) The existing AAdvantage change fee policy survives
    > 2) No award chart devaluations

    I bet we’ll be screwed on fees. Parker has practically stated he loves them. Having no change fee on awards is really only fair considering how hard it is to find them. (The comparisons to cash tickets just don’t hold water.)

  17. @ Adriano — I highly doubt they’d include all miles ever earned with US Airways, if that’s what you’re asking. And I say that purely from a technology standpoint. Can’t imagine that’s practical for them.

  18. @ Robert — Nope, no clue. I doubt anything will take effect immediately, so I wouldn’t necessarily rush.

  19. @Shaun – I dont know him but people like Jon usually know someone who works at the airline in question. What he knows is not public knowledge but also probably pretty well known inside the company. If they want to roll this out in Q2 of 2015, beyond their business people knowing about it their whole IT department would also know most of the details. I dont know who his source is but for something like this I don’t think he needs to know a C level exec to be getting good info.

  20. @ Ivan

    wow, switching to an avios style redemption program would be nice indeed. Although I have noticed that of late, the Avios availability has reduced significantly as well, so may be I should be careful what I ask for.

  21. I find it so interesting everyone on here seems to be *hoping* for an Avios-type redemption program. When BA introduced Avios wasn’t everyone Chicken Little on here?

    And while low-mileage awards for short hops would be great, wouldn’t that also mean exponentially larger mileage requirements to, say, redeem for Cathay first transpacific?

  22. About a week or so ago, AA suddenly pulled (almost) all award seats on AA metal for transatlantic flights (maybe others, but I was monitoring closely for a summer 2015 trip to the UK). One day there was lots of daily availability in Y, J, and F (but of course not on the 77W’s). Then all of a sudden it was all gone.

    I wonder if this was in preparation for a new Aadvantage announcement. I can only hope that more availability will pop up after the announcement — maybe even something on the 77W’s (one can always hope!)…

    Lucky, does this make any sense as a possible explanation for the award space disappearing?

  23. @Nick

    agreed! i don’t know what people are so happy about! avios are insanely expensive for tpac f!

  24. Perhaps the start of the announcements have begun? I just got an email from my US Airways Barclay Mastercard stating I will still receive the 10k miles anniversary bonus but as AAdvantage miles after the merger is complete! Woohoo!

  25. @Todd

    I noticed this on flights from DFW to Asia. I was monitoring DFW to Shanghai or Hong Kong, and there had been business class saaver availability on the non-stop flights. Suddenly they are ALL gone.

    I highly doubt they were redeemed, but more like pulled. I was trying to book a flight for next September to China but now can’t (I want business saaver level).

  26. @Ryan — Yeah, it was quite amazing. There was tons of availability on AA metal for pretty much all classes on a whole mess of days throughout the summer on nonstops from various US cities to LHR– the only thing I never saw was premium cabins on the 77Ws. Then one day roughly 10 days ago they ALL just vanished. Definitely pulled. But why? 🙁

  27. @ Ivan Y – we should agree on different names so people wouldn’t get confused 🙂

    ~ Ivan Y without any insider knowledge.

  28. @Todd again.

    Oh by the way, I noticed the business milesaaver for the DFW to Asia flights are available up until March 31. There is lots until then, and then nothing after that through today. Maybe they are changing award redemptions after March 31 for business saver at least??

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