We Are Now One Week From AAdvantage D-Day

by Miguel R. Quinones

AA Repaint

As much as the topic has been discussed, I am surprised at the number of people who are either unaware of the March 22 American Airlines AAdvantage devaluation or who are unaware that said devaluation is one week away from taking effect. Most premium cabin rates are going up post-devaluation, many of them significantly, so if you have a large balance of AA miles and have future trips already in mind, you should definitely try to book an award prior to the devaluation.

If you want to know which awards you should definitely book pre-devaluation, this article might help you. However, keep in mind that some awards can wait.

You will be able to perform the same modifications that AA usually allows for free on awards, such as date and route changes, without triggering the post-devaluation rates, so even if your plans are somewhat in the air, it might be a good idea to secure something now and then eventually try to modify your award if necessary.

Another factor to keep in mind is that you need to complete your booking by March 21st in order to secure the pre-devaluation rates. Simply placing a hold on an award on or before said date will not result in securing the pre-devaluation rates if the award booking is subsequently completed on or after March 22nd.

On the other hand, with so many people trying to book awards before D-Day, I imagine that telephone wait times at AA will be exceptionally long beginning on Saturday and continuing all the way throughout March 21st. Therefore, if your award booking will require a phone call (remember that most AA partner awards cannot be booked online), try to complete your booking by Friday, March 18th.

If you have any questions regarding the AA devaluation, feel free to ask them in the comments section. I will try to respond as soon as possible.

Need assistance with your next award trip? Please consider the PMM Travel Consulting or Juicy Miles award booking services for all your redemption needs.

The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.


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Tim March 15, 2016 - 3:44 pm

Can you help me understand how many miles it will take to travel from LAX to the Maldives post devaluation via Qatar Airlines in First or Business class. Thank you!

Miguel R. Quinones March 15, 2016 - 3:58 pm

Hey Tim! It will take 70k miles in business class, 115k miles in first class per passenger each way.

Tim March 15, 2016 - 4:33 pm

Thanks. Clearly that is super painful in first, but relatively less painful in business.

tony March 15, 2016 - 4:32 pm

if there is no F class on JFK-HKG on a JFK-HKG-BKK flight can i book at F class r rate now and later update JFK-HKG as it opens up?

Miguel R. Quinones March 15, 2016 - 4:50 pm

tony, my understanding is that at least one segment has to be available in first class in order to be able to book a first class award at the corresponding first class rate. Therefore, at least the HKG-BKK segment needs to be available in first class in order for you to be able to book a first class award and then modify it later without triggering the new rates.

Jodi March 15, 2016 - 4:51 pm

I am Exec Plat on AA and have a trip coming up from Lax-Milan returning Naples-Lax. Def want to fly business or First. I have a ton of AA miles as well as systemwide upgrades. Trying to decide before the devaluation what I should do. Thoughts?

Thank you,

Miguel R. Quinones March 16, 2016 - 7:52 am

Jodi, if you have that trip to Europe coming up, you should certainly try to complete a booking before the devaluation if you want to indeed book an award. However, if you can find an economy class fare for around $1,000 or so with confirmed upgrade availability, that is what I would go with.

William March 15, 2016 - 9:19 pm

It’s not like there’s ever any J/F availability on TATL AA metal anyway.

AAdvantage died long ago.

Miguel R. Quinones March 16, 2016 - 7:49 am

That is not entirely true William. I would say that over the last couple of months long-haul J/F availability has been as good as it has been in years. Even flights to Sydney, Hong Kong and Auckland have become available.


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