American Airlines has always presented their Executive Platinum members with a set of electronic systemwide upgrade vouchers, commonly called eVIP Upgrades by AA old timers but a lot of these upgrades find themselves wasting away as members are unable to find a good use for them.
American Airlines AAdvantage has previously extended upgrades in member accounts until July 31, 2022 but even though this is still a full seven months away, the large cutback in international routes within AA’s network make using them even more challenging than ever before.
These systemwide upgrades can be used to upgrade any flight into the higher class of service providing there is availability.
The flight can be in the future, as long as the eVIP upgrade is confirmed and withdrawn by the time it officially expires the member is good. But what is there left to upgrade these days?
American Airlines has canceled all routes to Asia except for a single flight to Tokyo from/to Dallas. Not even Tokyo-Los Angeles is still available at this point. Hong Kong, Seoul, Sydney… all gone due to the entry restrictions there.
Traveling to South America and Europe is still possible but the ever more Covid variants around the corner and countries adjusting their rules all the time that’s a gamble as well.
Plenty of members including myself have used the upgrades for domestic flights rather than international. Under normal circumstances a terrible waste but better than letting them expire entirely. Last year I was able to at least upgrade two friends of mine on a cross country trip so at least they got something out of it.
You can check on the balance of your Systemwide Upgrades in your online account under Wallet:
I have two upgrades left and no firm plan to return to North America by the summer so what I did for now is request another domestic trip, Las Vegas-Dallas-Fort Lauderdale through them. It will give me priority over other Executive Platinum members who just want to use their complimentary upgrades. Right now these flights haven’t even been confirmed and are instead waitlisted.
This week I’m flying to the U.S. west coast from Thailand via Japan but the only option with American Airlines would have been a horrible connection through Dallas, making the trip almost 30 hours long instead of 17 hours. Instead of using my upgrades I have instead booked Japan Airlines First Class on miles.
American Airlines valuable Systemwide Upgrades for Executive Platinum members are sitting in many members accounts without a real valuable purpose for them. It’s likely that a lot of them will expire as many aren’t flying international anymore as much as before. Or not at all in many cases.
Are you an Executive Platinum in this situation? How are you using your upgrades?