In early August I wrote about how American is offering “over-qualifying” Executive Platinum members additional systemwide upgrades.
One of my favorite perks of being an Executive Platinum member is the eight systemwide upgrades you receive for achieving the status each year, which requires either 100,000 elite qualifying miles, 100,000 elite qualifying points, or 120 segments.
In past years American has published Elite Rewards. Basically they’ve offered incentives to those who over qualify for a given status level. In other words, it takes 100,000 elite qualifying miles or points to qualify for Executive Platinum status, though they offered bonuses for passing 125,000 and 150,000 elite qualifying miles or points. That’s smart, because they want to incentivize incremental travel.
This year they’re not offering any “published” Elite Rewards (it might have to do with airlines reporting record profits with little effort), though anecdotally they do seem to be offering Executive Platinum members who over-qualify additional systemwide upgrades. To find out if you’re eligible you have to call AAdvantage customer service.
In my case I called in August after I had passed 175,000 elite qualifying miles, and was offered an additional four systemwide upgrades.
In the meantime it seems like American has actually become more consistent with this offering, and is offering the following bonuses on systemwide upgrades this year:
- Two additional systemwide upgrades for passing 150,000 elite qualifying points
- An additional two systemwide upgrades for each 25,000 elite qualifying points beyond 150,000
It’s worth noting that this bonus only applies when over-qualifying on elite qualifying points, and not when over-qualifying on elite qualifying miles (the assumption is that those earning lots of elite qualifying points are paying more than those earning lots of elite qualifying miles).
I’ve now passed 200,000 elite qualifying points for the year, and figured I’d try my luck and see if this is indeed a consistent policy.
When I called earlier today I had a total of 10 systemwide upgrades in my account (the eight for achieving Executive Platinum status, the four extras, and then I’ve redeemed two).
I phoned up, and the friendly AAdvantage agent briefly put me on hold. When he returned a few minutes later, he said he had already placed two extra systemwide upgrades in my account, bringing my total back to 12. He also noted that if I passed 225,000 elite qualifying points I’d receive an additional two systemwide upgrades.
While it was more hit or miss at the beginning of the year, it seems like American is now pretty consistently offering bonus systemwide upgrades using the above metrics. If you’ve over-qualified for Executive Platinum status and haven’t yet requested your bonus upgrades, don’t forget to call.
If you’re an over-qualifying Executive Platinum member, what has been your experience with earning bonus systemwide upgrades?