Official clarification from American regarding double EQPs counting towards 2012 Elite Rewards

Last night I made another post about American’s excellent business class fares to China, which are especially rewarding when you factor in that you earn triple elite qualifying points towards status. One China trip would put me over the edge for the 2012 Elite Rewards (which earns me 70,000 bonus AAdvantage miles), so it seemed like a good enough deal.

However, as I also discussed in that post, it seemed like AAdvantageGeek had a different interpretation of the promotion than I did based on the clause “This offer does not increment the member’s prize eligible mileage balance or Million Miler status”, which led him to believe the following:

Do the bonus elite-qualifying points count toward AAdvantage Elite Rewards?

No. From the terms and conditions “This offer does not increment the member’s prize eligible mileage balance”. Speaking of AAdvantage Elite Rewards, the deadline to register is December 15, 2012. Go here for more info to to see the list of gifts for this year.

I’ve sought official clarification from American, and I’m happy to report that the double elite qualifying points do count towards the 2012 Elite Rewards:

Yes, the bonus EQPs earned will count towards reaching the Elite Rewards threshold goals. The T&C in question, which refers to “prize eligible miles” simply refers to Redeemable Miles – those that can be used to exchange for award travel.

So you can keep planning your business class tickets to China. 😉


  1. @lucky – Odd, I checked this morning. I must have messed up. I now see $2395 for 2 nts, so that’s still decent for biz class 😉

    Also, ITA calculates the mileage at 16600. Great Circle Mapper @ 16646 and Mile Mapper @ 16648. You posted 17,206. Since none of the others get you to 50,000 needed for Platinum, can you please say how you got your mileage figure?


  2. @1K – Ideally I’d like to leave from SEA, but I can’t find a reasonable fare Nov 16-26. I don’t have status, so I’d need to travel during those dates.

    @lucky – No, based on your original post, just LAX-ORD-PEK. Did you add a DFW segment to get to 17206?

  3. Glad I didn’t read AAdvantageGeek’s post, because double EQPs counting towards Elite Rewards seemed obvious to me when I read the offer (and thus I highlighted that in my own blog post on this). Never even realized that was in question!

  4. @lucky – Thank you. I do see that now. I found a routing, albeit ~$2600 from SEA DFW ORD PEK that nets 18036 base miles.

    Any hotel recommendations in PEK?

  5. @ Lucky – Fairmont. I’m checking to see if I have an certs left. There seem to be some reasonably priced alternatives, though.

  6. Can you confirm that double EQP would count toward the 10k required to complete a plat status challenge? Thinking about getting in on this, but the lack of specific language regarding EQPs is making me nervous.

  7. Can you confirm that double EQP would count toward the 10k required to complete a plat status challenge? Thinking about getting in on this, but the lack of specific language regarding EQPs is making me nervous…

  8. @ Todd — Lots of great hotels in Beijing. I especially like the St. Regis and Park Hyatt if they’re within your budget, and if you book through Fine Hotels & Resorts or Virtuoso you can get additional benefits.

    @ Anon — I’m seeking official clarification on this as well, and will let you know.

  9. Ben… Thanks for getting the clarification. I’m very glad the EQ-points count. Otherwise there would be less incentive for EXPs to fly more before by the end of the year and American probably realizes that. However, the low fares out of SFO to PEK are gone (using any connection). I’m holding a reservation for $2595 and need to decide whether I’ll pull the trigger tonight before it expires. Don’t really have the vacation time but really want the Eleite Rewards of 70K miles! Thanks for your help.

  10. @ Mary Beth — Shoot, the fare does seem to be gone. Wish I had some brilliant insight, but only you can decide if it’s worth it given your financial situation, mileage situation, etc. It’s definitely not a bad deal, especially if you can upgrade to first class and are interested in visiting Beijing.

  11. Hey Luckster,

    Is there any such thing as an AA Elite Reward when doing an ExPlat Challenge? I am presently booked through my challenge amount of 55k points, but this deal will increase that significantly on the mileage side. Do they have an adjusted threshold where I might get some sort of Reward? Thanks!

  12. @Lucky – Thanks for the terrific insight and all the help. In the end, I didn’t pull the trigger on this deal. I’ll just wait for the next great one to come along.

  13. @ theblakefish — They don’t, sorry. If you get to 100K you get eight more systemwide upgrades though.

  14. Lucky – any way to check if double EQPs will count towards the 55K 1K re-qual? Based on the T&Cs of that offer, it distinctly said any bonus/promo EQMs won’t count – but nothing about EQPs. Thanks.

  15. Hi Lucky;

    I think for you, 90% of the pleasure is the voyage to/from the destination, as opposed to time at the destination.

    I’m in a similar situation as you, but other than CX first (or hopefully SQ first, which I’m trying in 2013), I’d rather be on the ground than in the air. So, now that I’m Exp, I can’t see buying a trip that I don’t need just so I’d have enough miles to get another one in the future. I’d just as soon have one less set of flights.

    Will you be spending much time in China? Maybe I’m wrong.

  16. @ beachfan — Seems the fare is gone and I didn’t book in time, so guess I won’t be going to China. I was planning on spending a few days there.

  17. I decidedd to go to Beijing so I could see the Terracotta Warriors. I bought the ticket I had on hold. It was SFO-DFW-ORD-PEK-ORD-LAX-DFW-SFO for $2601 in Business and I’ll ask for an upgrade using a system wide upgrade. I had put this reservation on hold yesterday (11-5-12) and had until 11:59pm to purchase today (11-6-12). The fares are now gone but they honored my reservation on “hold” for $2601 from SFO. I bet another good fare will come back when they realize the EXPs have no incentive to go for the Elite Rewards now.

  18. @Mary Beth – what dates will you be there? I’ve booked two trips, 11/17-20 (only one day in Beijing); and 12/3-7.

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