American Airlines AAdvantage Now Offering Status Match (Challenge) For Air Berlin Topbonus Elites

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American Airlines AAdvantage is the latest oneWorld frequent flyer program to offer Air Berlin Topbonus members a status match combined with a challenge all the way to Executive Platinum.

During the past couple of months ever since Air Berlin filed for insolvency and after their Topbonus program stopped accepting redemption requests, competing programs one by one rolled out match offers.

John has previously written a comprehensive article about current match offers within the oneWorld alliance (read here).

There were several reports on Flyertalk about AAdvantage responding positively to requests for status matches so I decided to follow up and send a request to American Airlines myself. If you consider doing so as well you can follow the same steps.

  1. Request information from AAdvantage through their web contact form.

Keep the request simple:

After sending it off you get an automated confirmation that the request was received and it took about three more days until I received an answer from AAdvantage Customer Service.

Dear Sebastian,

We are pleased to offer you an Executive Platinum Challenge that comes with temporary Executive Platinum status for the duration of the 90-day challenge.

The Challenge requirements and timeframe are as follows:

*Earn 35,000 Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) AND $4,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQD)

OR

*Earn 40 Elite Qualifying Segments (EQSs) AND $4,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQD)

If requested we can include flight activity from the past two weeks or you may choose a future date up to two weeks from the date of this email. Please reply as soon as possible with your desired start date within the above specified period and include a copy of your current Air Berlin Topbonus membership card.

If this challenge is met, your status will be extended through 31 January 2019. In addition, we will deposit four Systemwide Upgrades into your account.

Regards,

Advantage Customer Service
American Airlines

I have no intention of following through with this match myself as I’ve no extensive paid travel scheduled at this time and my primary program is British Airways Executive Club anyway.

Since I submitted a request for a match with Topbonus Platinum to see if they would also match to Executive Platinum they didn’t sent offers for Platinum and Gold, however the requirements are in line with those of previous status match promotions and reports on Flyertalk suggest the following steps for individual status:

  • AAdvantage Gold: 7,500 EQMs or 8 segments & 1,000 EQDs
  • AAdvantage Platinum: 12,500 EQMs or 16 segments & 2,000 EQDs
  • Advantage Executive Platinum 35,000 EQMs or 40 segments & 4,000 EQDs

The Elite Qualifying Dollar (EQD) requirement is a factor one should consider this carefully. While it’s certainly possible to book oneWorld partner flights where AAdvantage is unable to verify the spend it’s not entirely clear if this means that the requirement is automatically waived. I wouldn’t count on that!

Conclusion

American Airlines AAdvantage is certainly one of the better programs around to match your Air Berlin Status to. Their award chart is still somewhat decent and earning options are alright as well. I’m currently holding Lifetime Gold status with them (not really a big deal – it’s oneWorld Ruby) and have been using AAdvantage since 2002.

If you have immediate travel on American Airlines, especially in the U.S. then a match could be worth it even more as you can avail yourself to the complimentary domestic upgrades and your chance of getting upgraded as EXP (Executive Platinum) are quite high.

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