The Guide to American Airlines Executive Platinum
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Table of Contents
- Changes to AA Executive Platinum status in 2023
- American Airlines Executive Platinum perks
- How to become Executive Platinum on American Airlines
- How much is American Airlines Executive Platinum status worth?
- What else to know about American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status
- American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status recapped
American Airlines boasts the largest airline loyalty program with more than 115 million members. But only the most loyal members can achieve American's top-tier elite status: American Airlines Executive Platinum. For their loyalty, American rewards Executive Platinum elites with perks including first-class upgrades, lounge access, free checked bags and a 120% mileage bonus.
From all of the perks of this top-tier elite status to how you can earn it yourself, here's what you need to know about American Airlines Executive Platinum status.
Changes to AA Executive Platinum status in 2023
The AA status program got a shake up this year, but the news is generally positive for members aiming at the Executive Platinum level.
"Loyalty Choice Rewards” are now known as “Loyalty Point Rewards,” and these milestone perks can be accessed after earning 15,000 Loyalty Points. Members no longer need to fly a specific number of qualifying segments to unlock this perk.
In other positive news for frequent flyers / high spenders, Executive Platinum members who earn 550,000 Loyalty Points will get to pick two additional rewards from the following list:
A systemwide upgrade.
25,000 bonus miles.
$200 trip credit (or $250 for AAdvantage credit card holders).
The ability to gift Platinum status to someone else.
A Flagship First Dining visit pass.
American Airlines Executive Platinum perks
Sure, the bag tags are a nice flex. But the real reason to earn American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status is the perks.
Here's an overview of the benefits of American Airlines Executive Platinum:
Accelerated mileage earning rates
120% mileage bonus: Earn 11 AAdvantage miles per qualifying dollar spent on American and JetBlue Airways or a 120% status bonus on qualifying partner airlines.
First-class upgrades: Top priority for unlimited complimentary upgrades on flights within North America — including upgrades on award tickets. Upgrades clear up to 100 hours before flight departure.
Companion upgrades: Complimentary upgrades for one companion traveling with you on the same flight.
Upgrades on Alaska Airlines: Unlimited first-class upgrades on Alaska Airlines, clearing as far out as 120 hours before departure.
Free bags: Get three free checked bags on American and Alaska Airlines, two free checked bags on JetBlue, and an extra baggage allowance on other Oneworld airlines.
Board first: Board in Group 1 boarding.
Speed through the airport: Get priority check-in and priority security (where available) when flying American, JetBlue, Alaska or other Oneworld partners.
Top-tier lounges: Enjoy the best-available lounge when flying on qualifying routes — including American Airlines Flagship Lounges and Oneworld first class lounges.
Lounge membership discounts: Save $100 off the standard price of an Admirals Club membership.
Best available economy seats: Select extra-legroom or preferred seats for free. Plus, get complimentary extra-legroom seats on JetBlue and Alaska.
Free alcoholic drink and snack: Upgrade didn't clear? You'll still get a free alcoholic drink and snack in economy.
Complimentary same-day flight change: Get free confirmed changes to another flight on the same day.
Guaranteed availability: Book at least 24 hours before a flight and get guaranteed seats — even on sold-out flights.
The American Airlines Executive Platinum phone number is 800-843-6200. Dialing it will connect you with the Executive Platinum service desk where you can talk with representatives about reservations, upgrade options, award claims, general AAdvantage account inquiries and more.
» Learn more: How to access American Airlines Admirals Club lounges
How to become Executive Platinum on American Airlines
To earn American Airlines Executive Platinum, an AAdvantage member must earn 200,000 Loyalty Points in a status qualification year. That qualification period runs from March 1 to the end of February of the following year.
This is a simplification from the previous elite status earning system. The old system required that an AAdvantage member earn a set number of Elite Qualifying Dollars (or EQD) as well as either Elite Qualifying Miles (or EQM) or Elite Qualifying Segments (of EQS).
Under the new Loyalty Points system, you can potentially earn American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status without flying a single mile or spending a single dollar on flights. That's because you can earn Loyalty Points from several non-flying activities, including:
Booking hotels, renting cars or booking cruises through AAdvantage partners.
Booking vacations through American Airlines Vacations.
Dining through AAdvantage Dining.
Shopping through the AAdvantage eShopping portal.
Spending through AAdvantage retail partners.
Taking advantage of offers through SimplyMiles.
How much is American Airlines Executive Platinum status worth?
In the most recent NerdWallet analysis, American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status had a raw estimated value of $29,008. Yes, that means folks with Executive Platinum could walk away with nearly $30,000 more "freebie" benefits from American Airlines, assuming they would have paid cash for those things.
Of course, the more you travel, the more value you get, and NerdWallet's $29,008 figure is based on the assumption that you would be flying (or spending) enough to even earn Executive Platinum elite status in the first place. To determine this valuation, NerdWallet performed a comprehensive analysis of all of the perks offered by each airline's elite status. Of course, the value of any elite status depends on how much you actually use the elite status perks and personal factors like where you live.
Is American Airlines Executive Platinum status worth it?
Sure, an estimated $29,008 in value for American Airlines Executive Platinum status is a huge figure, and it's far higher than the $8,300 value you'd get from competitors, including Alaska 100K elite status (which is the highest tier of Alaska MVP elite status) or the $13,053 value of United Premier 1K (the highest tier of United MileagePlus). Both United and Alaska tied for first place in NerdWallet's ranking of best ultra-tier elite status program.
So if American's top elite status tier, Executive Platinum, is worth double (and even triple) the estimated value of those two programs, why isn't it the best ultra-elite status program in NerdWallet's rankings? That's because of the brutally-high cost to earn it in the first place.
You'd need to spend an estimated $50,633 to get Executive Platinum elite status. The other airlines generally don't require nearly that much spending (e.g. on Alaska, you'd need to spend an estimated $12,000 to earn top-tier elite status).
With that in mind, American Airlines Executive Platinum status is actually the least-valuable top-tier airline status out of the major U.S. airlines given that you have to spend so much just to earn it.
The good news: Of all of the AAdvantage elite status levels, American Airlines Executive Platinum provides the highest return per dollar spent to earn that status.
Value of benefits
Cost to earn
Return on cost
The cost analysis assumes you earn elite status through flying activity. American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status can cost as little as $0 extra if you earn Loyalty Points through activities you'd otherwise do — such as through credit card spending.
» Learn more: The best airline credit cards right now
What else to know about American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status
Earn Loyalty Point Rewards
American Airlines has added rewards that you can earn once you've surpassed the Loyalty Point threshold to earn Executive Platinum. For example, once you earn 250,000 Loyalty Points, you can choose two of the following Loyalty Point Rewards:
Two systemwide upgrades.
20,000 bonus points (or 30,000 bonus points for AAdvantage credit cardholders).
6 Admirals Club day passes.
Admirals Club membership (requires both choices).
$200 trip credit (or $250 trip credit for AAdvantage credit cardholders).
$250 donation to select nonprofit charities.
Two gifts of AAdvantage Gold status.
Bang & Olufsen product (requires both choices).
One Flagship Lounge single visit pass (or two single visit passes for AAdvantage credit cardholders).
35,000 AAdvantage miles toward a Mastercard Priceless experience.
The Loyalty Point Rewards continue well past that as well. You can keep earning more rewards as you reach more certain milestones up to 5,000,000 points.
» Learn more: What you need to know about American Airlines upgrades
Elite status earning is no longer calendar-based
American Airlines used to have a standard calendar year elite status earning period. Under that system, elite status depended on the flying that you completed in the prior calendar year. But American shook this up with the move to its new Loyalty Points program.
Now, AAdvantage elite status is based on your earnings from March 1 through the end of February of the following calendar year. That elite status is valid through the end of March of the year after that.
Here's an example: If you earn 200,000 Loyalty Points between March 1, 2023, and Feb. 29, 2024, you will qualify for American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status through March 31, 2025.
American Airlines Executive Platinum status (typically) must be earned
Many airlines will entice potentially valuable flyers to switch loyalty by providing a status match. However, American doesn't offer a status match program. And even its now-paused status challenge program let AAdvantage members challenge for up to Platinum elite status only.
With that said, American has previously given away elite status to some members out of the blue. Some AAdvantage members have reported getting emails offering complimentary, "no strings attached" elite status.
Also, American Airlines offered lucky World of Hyatt Globalists American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status near the end of 2019. Unfortunately for current World of Hyatt elites, we haven't seen American Airlines do so since.
No lifetime American Airlines Executive Platinum status
American Airlines offers lifetime status through its Million Miler program. However, AAdvantage Platinum status — the program's second tier — is the highest elite status tier that a traveler can lock in for life.
You'll earn this distinction after flying two million qualifying miles. For every million miles after that, you'll be rewarded with four systemwide upgrades.
American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status recapped
American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status offers the best perks that American Airlines has to offer — short of its invitation-only ConciergeKey status. These top-tier elites enjoy first-class upgrades, can check up to three bags for free, earn bonus miles, get to select the best seats for free, and have priority at check-in, boarding and security. In fact, it's the most valuable, ultra-tier elite status program of any major, U.S.-based airline.
The big downfall of American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status is simply how tough it is to earn. NerdWallet estimates you'd have to spend more than $50,000 just to reach American's Executive Platinum status. Unless you're a big-time jet setter (with a big-time budget), don't get too attached to trying to reach American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status.
Then again, with the switch to the Loyalty Point qualifying system, American Airlines Executive Platinum elite status might actually be slightly easier to earn now than in past years, particularly for some high spenders and those who know how to work the system. But even those folks should beware of the many exceptions to earning Loyalty Points.
How to maximize your rewards
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