400 GP points or 500 AA miles for someone trying to achieve lifetime AA Plat?

Discussion in 'Hyatt | Gold Passport' started by jfhscott, Aug 28, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. jfhscott
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    jfhscott Silver Member

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    Oh, a dilemna.

    I'm Hyatt Diamond, and trying to get Lifetime Plat on AA. Given current trends without manipulation, I'll likely get to 1.9 MM AA lifetime miles prior to the 12/1/11 witching hour for non BIS miles to count for LT Plat. Some clever shenanigans can somewhat close the 100,000 AA mile gap.

    If only to top off my account for 2012 Diamond, I anticipate a couple matress runs during Hyatt's 3Q promotion, likely $70-ish HP's near Dulles, which will get me about 400 GP stay-points if I so choose. Given my priority to push thru to LT plat, should I opt for AA miles? What if I must sacrifice 600, or 800 GP points? Clearly at some point, I should earn GP points and tranfer to AA, but that seems wasteful.

    I'd be satisfied if I end up with 1.98 MM AA miles prior to 12/1, as incidental AA travel can close the gap over a few years. But I've sworn off crude mileage running to close that gap - it just does not fit my lifestyle any more.

    Anyway, I'd appreciate comments. None are right; none are wrong.
     
  2. Stealth Traveler
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    Stealth Traveler Silver Member

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    It seems like you will get more use out of your Hyatt stays/points immediately vs LT AA Plat...so I guess it really just depends on what your near-term or mid-term travel goals are.

    Any AA Visa cards you can still sign up for? Rental car bonuses to help top it off without digging into your Hyatt account? Did you happen to buy a glitter cover or Palm puck recently to get 89k+ miles? :) I will tell you on the Starwood side, there will be some people with decent account sizes who may transfer (with the 5k for every 20k transfer bonus) to possibly top off their AA account for LT status, so GP points to AA shouldn't be seen as wasteful...if you plan on using your LT Plat status more compared to your Hyatt stays. I don't think you can go wrong either way in this situation!
     
  3. jfhscott
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    jfhscott Silver Member

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    Thank you for the input and thoughts.

    My strategy already has me depleting my SPG points, which clearly have a more favorable points to miles exchange rate than GP. Given that I have a SPG Amex, I can restore them over time, too.

    UGH.

    I just don't know how much I will use LT Plat - I could end up a harmless LT plat who seldom uses it. I'm 42, and life is at a true inflection point . . . note the lack of wife and kids in the avatar. But LT plat cannot hurt in any scenario. But I'm not gonna defer what I consider important with my BIS on AA to make LT Plat happen.
     
  4. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    How many OW BIS miles have you flown over the last two or three years?
     
  5. jfhscott
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    jfhscott Silver Member

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    3 RT's. All domestic, perhaps 8000 miles. And I suppose there is some discretion to shift some of my other travel to OW. But all of this means:

    (1) I'll have a tough time getting LT Plat based on BIS miles post 12/1, and

    (2) I might not particularly need Plat to be in my bag of tricks, especially when I have Gold, and will likely opt for premium class when I redeem miles.

    But somehow, I just hate to have this door close on me and I'm to the point that I'd give my left . . . um . . . kidney for Aadvantage miles.
     
  6. Counsellor
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    Counsellor Gold Member

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    Forget contributing body parts. Instead you might want to look into this:

    http://www.aa.com/i18n/AAdvantage/earnMiles/beyondTravel/charities/main.jsp

    You can get 10 miles per dollar for contributions to any one or more of three charities, USO, Komen for the Cure, or National Foundation for Cancer Research.

    And you can get a deduction on your taxes as well.

    Contributions can be in cash (credit card - use your Citi AA credit card for more AA miles), or if you have capital assets (like stock or mutual funds) that have appreciated and you've held the asset for a year or more, you can contribute the asset itself and get credit for current fair market value. You get the charitable deduction and the miles and never have to pay capital gains tax on the appreciation.

    If you're going to transfer capital assets instead of using cash/credit card, you'd have to contact the charity to arrange this and ensure you get the miles, though.
     
  7. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Hmm. If you fly AA so seldomly, then, unless you see an uptick in your travel with them coming soon, what's the point? Certainly not worth much if you only fly them once a year.
     
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  8. jfhscott
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    jfhscott Silver Member

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    The point . . . as you likely suspect . . . is largely psychological.

    For now (and who knows what happens in 10 years), I'd truly be one of those LT Plats who does not crowd out mere golds, simply because I'm not around to crowd them out. They could give me LT EXP and I would still likely not crowd anyone out.

    But given that I've put an and to mileage running qua mileage running, I'd love to have a go to an airline to go to, being shown "the respect I deserve" for the rest of my life.
     
  9. tom911
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    tom911 Gold Member

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    Might be a short lifespan if AA is bought out, merged, or just changes the rules for elite status. There's discussion on UA right now that their lifetime tier may have different (lower) benefits than it does now when they make their announcement in September about changes.

    I see some folks moving hundreds of thousands of hotel points to lock in a lifetime status. They'll probably be kicking themselves if AA changes the rules over the next few years or pulls out of their market. Way too many variables for me to consider AA an "investment" in today's world of air travel for something I might not need until years down the line.
     

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