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When the world can travel again after the coronavirus pandemic recedes, members of American Airlines’ loyalty program will have two new ways to earn miles, and one new way to redeem them. As of April 1, 2020, AAdvantage members are able to earn miles on all Alaska Airlines flights. They can also earn and redeem miles on Royal Air Maroc, a new Oneworld alliance member.
Earning on Alaska flights
Previously, AAdvantage members were able to earn miles only on American Airlines-marketed flights that were operated by Alaska Airlines. Now, American Airlines enthusiasts can collect miles on any Alaska flight, no matter which airline is marketing or operating the flight.
This opens up a huge opportunity for earning miles, particularly for West Coast-based travelers. Under normal circumstances, Alaska Airlines operates more than 113,000 flights per day to 115 destinations.
The latest update extends the partnership between American Airlines and Alaska Airlines. Just six months ago, the partnership looked like it was heading for a bleak future. Members of the airlines’ loyalty programs would no longer be able to redeem their miles on the other’s flights starting in March 2020. Then, less than a month before these airlines officially sunset their redemptions, Alaska Airlines announced its intention to join the Oneworld alliance and embark on a new codeshare agreement with American Airlines. Now, this has expanded even further to include more Alaska flights.
Earning and redeeming with Royal Air Maroc
As of April 1, 2020, Royal Air Maroc has officially joined the Oneworld alliance. AAdvantage members can now earn and redeem miles on Royal Air Maroc flights. These flights will count toward earning American elite status, and elite members will get special benefits when they fly Royal Air Maroc.
When operating a normal service schedule, Royal Air Maroc serves more than 80 locations in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and elsewhere. Check American’s partner award chart to figure out how many miles are required for a Royal Air Maroc flight.
» Learn More: The complete guide to American Airlines partners
The bottom line
New and expanded partnerships means American Airlines loyalists have more options for earning and redeeming their miles once travel becomes more advisable. The earnings on Alaska flights makes the AAdvantage program even more valuable for domestic flyers.
Meanwhile, the Oneworld alliance continues to grow, increasing the number of international flights that American AAdvantage members have access to booking with miles. These updates to American’s partnerships might mean adjusting your travel rewards strategy, whether that’s taking a look at American’s branded credit cards, booking more Alaska flights or deciding whether to save miles for a future Royal Air Maroc flight.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2020, including those best for:
Airline miles and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card
Flat-rate rewards with no annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Premium travel rewards: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card
Planning a trip? Check out these articles for more inspiration and advice: Find the best travel credit card for you Which American Airlines credit card should you get? Earn more points and miles with these 6 strategies