American Airlines Lowers Elite Status Requirements For 2021


American Airlines today announced some temporary changes to its AAdvantage frequent-flier elite tier qualification in 2021.

AAdvantage members can qualify with fewer Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) and Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQDs) than usual, and all EQMs and EQDs earned from the flight activity in the fourth quarter of 2020 are rolled over to 2021 (they essentially count twice both for 2020 and 2021).

You can access AA’s page for program updates here.

Lower Elite Status Requirements

Fourth Quarter Rollover

All EQMs and EQDs earned from flight activities in the fourth quarter are rolled over to jumpstart qualification next year.

Waived EQD for Credit Card Spending

American will waive the EQD requirement for up to Platinum Pro if member swipes affiliated credit cards for $30,000 or more.

Executive Platinum Rewards Threshold Changes + Rewards Flexibility

Executive Platinum members can choose their additional rewards at lower mileage thresholds than usually in 2021.

Platinum Pro and Executive Platinum members can choose from several rewards starting in 2021, from systemwide upgrades to bonus AAdvantage miles.


Unfortunately, the travel will be depressed in 2021 too, and I don’t think it is in AA’s best interest to dump elite members that may find their ways to competitors when “free” of frequent flier program pull.

I don’t think that this is adequate elite support.

American needs to be more creative in 2021 if they wish to have any chance of averting the almost inevitable bankruptcy court under an enormous $42B debt load.

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