American Airlines Offering Double Elite Qualifying And Redeemable Miles!

American Airlines just announced that they are offering double elite qualifying and redeemable miles between Chicago (ORD) or Dallas (DFW) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO).

This promotion is valid for AAdvantage members whose address on file with AA is in California, Illinois, or Texas. The promotion period is surprisingly long from yesterday until the end of March 2012.

Apparently AA is trying hard to fight against Virgin America that has started to operate somewhat schedule on these routes, although the main competitor remains to be United.

Here’s the frequency between these routes on December 19th, 2011 taken from ExpertFlyer.

                                                                    American          United               Virgin   

Between Chicago and Los Angeles          9                              11                           3

Between Chicago and San Francisco      6                             11                            3

Between Dallas and Los Angeles               18                            4                             3

Between Dallas and San Francisco           13                            3                             3


The key of this promotion on the issue whether you qualify for it or not is:

Note: This offer is valid only for AAdvantage members with an address on file with AAdvantage Marketing programs in California, Illinois or Texas.

My advice would be to temporarily move your address to one of the qualifying states. Ask a friend, relative, associate, or whoever if they wouldn’t mind getting some direct mail from AA for the next six months.

Registration is for the promotion before taking flight and the flights ticketed before 27th of October are not eligible for this promotion.

You need to book a roundtrip and open jaws are eligible as well. You can book for example Los Angeles – Dallas – Miami (destination) – Dallas – San Francisco. You just need to make sure i.e. that the Los Angeles – Dallas- Miami is NOT the same flight number.

Often airlines advertise “direct” flights using the same flight number even when they have stops. If it has only one flight number it is not eligible for the double EQM’s or RDM’s. In this example the Miami – Dallas Los Angeles – Dallas and Dallas – San Francisco are eligible for the promotion. You get the regular miles for the Dallas – Miami – Dallas portions.

My hunch is that itineraries from San Francisco and Los Angeles that have the final destination in Florida offer the best bang for the buck if one needs to do few runs to maintain/achieve a higher AAdvantage status.

Here’s calculation how many elite qualifying miles (EQM’s), double elite qualifying miles (DEQM’s), redeemable miles (RDM’s), and double redeemable miles (DRDM’s) you could earn on the itinerary mentioned above.

                       EQM’s                 DEQM’s           RDM’s               DRDM’s                

LAX-DFW             1235                       1235                       1235                         1235

DFW-MIA            1121                         X                             1121                           X

MIA-DFW            1121                         X                             1121                           X

DFW-SFO             1464                        1464                      1464                        1464

                       4941                     2699                 4941                  2699

Assuming that the passengers doesn’t have any status,  the above mentioned itinerary would earn 7640 elite qualifying miles and the same number redeemable miles. AAdvantage Gold, Platinum, and Executive Platinum members earn their status RDM bonus too.

We should know in about a week whether United decides to match this or not.

Here’s the American Airlines fine print for this offer:

Offer only applies to AAdvantage members with an address on file with AAdvantage Marketing Programs in California, Illinois or Texas. AAdvantage promotion is valid for round-trip travel on purchased, published fare tickets on American Airlines marketed and operated nonstop flights between Chicago (ORD) or Dallas/Fort Worth (DFW) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO) from October 27, 2011 through March 31, 2012. A round trip is defined as two one-way trips booked in a single reservation under one ticket number. Reservations containing open jaws are eligible. A maximum of one round trip is permitted per reservation. Reservation must be booked on or after October 27, 2011, to be eligible. Bonus elite qualifying miles earned in conjunction with flight activity during 2011 will count towards your 2012 membership year; bonus elite qualifying miles earned in conjunction with flight activity during 2012 will count toward your 2013 membership year. This offer does not increment the member’s elite qualifying points or segments. Double elite-qualifying miles and double flight miles will be calculated at 100% of the base miles earned for the flights between Chicago or DFW and Los Angeles or between Chicago or DFW and San Francisco only. Promotional miles associated with this offer will be posted to the account of the traveling AAdvantage member within 6-8 weeks after qualifying activity posts to your account. Promotion does not apply to travel on mileage award tickets or fares that are ineligible for AAdvantage mileage accrual. Flights operated by our codeshare partners or oneworld alliance carriers are not eligible for this promotion. This offer cannot be combined with other AAdvantage promotions. Registration prior to travel is required.