The Dividend Miles program will cease to exist as of 11:59PM CT on Friday, March 27, 2015. And your last chance to book an award through US Airways Dividend Miles is 11:59PM CT today, Wednesday, March 25, 2015.
One of the things that’s exciting about the frequent flyer program integration is that elite members will finally have full upgrade reciprocity between American and US Airways. This means that AAdvantage members will no longer be at a disadvantage when trying to upgrade on US Airways, and (former) Dividend Miles members will no longer be at a disadvantage when trying to upgrade on American.
As I explained yesterday, the new elite upgrade process will look as follows:
|American Airlines Operated And Marketed Flights||Gold||Platinum||Executive Platinum|
|For flights 500 miles or less||Unlimited, auto-requested complimentary upgrades||Unlimited, auto-requested complimentary upgrades||Unlimited, auto-requested complimentary upgrades|
|For flights over 500 miles||Use earned or purchased 500-mile upgrades||Use earned or purchased 500-mile upgrades||Unlimited, auto-requested complimentary upgrades|
|Upgrade window||Confirmed as early as 24 hours before departure||Confirmed as early as 72 hours before departure||Confirmed as early as 100 hours before departure|
But if you actually want your upgrades to clear, there’s one important important mistake you won’t want to make. And this is a mistake a lot of people seem to be making, based on the number of questions I’ve received about it.
In order to have your upgrades clear in advance you have to make sure your flights are marketed and operated by the same airline.
In other words, if you’re flying American, make sure your flight is also marketed by American, and not a US Airways codeshare. The same applies for US Airways — if your flight is operated by US Airways, make sure it’s also marketed by US Airways, and not an American codeshare.
If you’re booked on a codeshare then you’ll only be able to request an upgrade within 24 hours.
Why is this? Because even though the AAdvantage and Dividend Miles programs will soon be integrated, the airlines are still operating on separate reservations systems. So until the programs are integrated, you’ll only get your upgrades when the flights are operated and marketed by the same airline.
In general, don’t book your US Airways ticket on aa.com
In general, don’t book your American ticket on usairways.com
While being booked on a codeshare can seem like a minor distinction to a consumer, it could be the difference between you getting your upgrade and not. If you book a codeshare you’ll only be able to request an upgrade within 24 hours of departure, which greatly reduces your chances of clearing.
Have you made the mistake at the “new” American of booking a codeshare and then not being eligible for an upgrade?