500 mile upgrades

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by milerunner, Apr 10, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. milerunner

    milerunner Silver Member

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    I am new to EXP, former Usair CP. I noticed while I was checking out AA.com that I have 24, 500 mile upgrades. I thought you do not get these if you are EXP, but instead you get complimentary upgrades. I must have missed something last time I read up on this.
     
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  2. brodyf

    brodyf Gold Member

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    You don't earn the 500 mile upgrades as an EXP, nor do you need them for yourself to upgrade. EXP upgrades are complimentary. You can only use them for a companion upgrade while EXP or if you ever drop down in status. They do not expire.
     
  3. timfrost

    timfrost Silver Member

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    They must have automatically bestowed stickers on US members based on past travel, whether you need them or not.
     
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  4. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    OTOH, there are likely a few bugs left to be ironed out in the "new AA". When I log in to the AA website from a computer, it shows that I am (correctly) Pt, while my smartphone app shows that I am EXP.
     
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  5. milerunner

    milerunner Silver Member

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    So in other words they can only be used with companions traveling in the same reservation. Also if you drop status they are still useable at a lower tier or no status at all?
     
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  6. milerunner

    milerunner Silver Member

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    That's bound to happen. It does sound like this merger was a lot more smooth than NWA/delta and united/continental mergers
     
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  7. daninstl

    daninstl Gold Member

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    They cannot be used if you drop below Gold status. You must at least be Gold to use the 500 mile upgrades.
     
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  8. timfrost

    timfrost Silver Member

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    Are you sure this isn't just showing your "progress" to EXP?
     
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  9. Newscience

    Newscience Gold Member

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    Perhaps. I was CP with US, but now downgraded to Pt with AA. I expect to fall off the ratings chart entirely next year, as my status was employer-derived, and my current employer just doesn't have me travelling much. Not that big of a deal, as I still have miles to use. ;)
     
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  10. brodyf

    brodyf Gold Member

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    They don't have to be in the same PNR. from AA.com:

    AAdvantage elite status members can request an upgrade for a single companion traveling on the same flight using 500-mile upgrades as payment
    If your companion is booked in a different reservation, call Reservations to link the reservations
    You and your companion will be upgraded at the same time, if seats are available.
     
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  11. Zarg

    Zarg New Member

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    It's pretty sad, with US Airways buying American, that we US Airways elite members are getting shafted down to American's plan for first class upgrades. I fly 50,000 miles/60 segments per year, comprised mostly of DEN-PHX RT by myself, but including an average of 4-5 cross-country trips with my wife. Under US Airways (Gold/2nd tier), I/we received many 1st class upgrades, probably 70% of the flights. Under the new US Airways (code-named American), I will get zero upgrades between Denver and Phoenix, as the flight is 588 miles (602 miles under US Airways - what's that about?). For the cross-country flights with my wife, I will have to use 16 500-mile upgrades to get us upgraded round trip - for just one trip. Considering I only get 20 of these 500-mile upgrades per year, I'll be upgrading exactly once per year, except every 4 years, I'll get a 2nd upgrade. Talk about removing the incentive to remain loyal to this new monstrosity of an airline. What does American do with unfilled 1st class seats? US Airways just keeps upgrading folks until 1st class is full.
     
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  12. satman40

    satman40 Gold Member

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    We use to be able to swap out the 500 mile stickers for miles, Things change..

    I put my name on the upgrade list and my wife gets moved also..

    Watch out stickers seem to get lost, but then they do not always take the stickers..
     
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  13. Pizzaman
    Original Member

    Pizzaman Co-founder

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    I can understand your frustration. And, if you used to get upgraded 100% of the time, then the AA system will be worse for you. Most US folks I've spoken with did not get upgraded often unless they were Chairmen. IMO, here's why I like the AA upgrade formula:

    Because everyone doesn't end up on the upgrade list automatically, you have a better chance of clearing an upgrade when you want one.

    This may mean having to purchase some 500-Mile upgrade certificates, but that's what also keeps others from taking an upgrade when you want it.

    Even if you don't want to purchase upgrades, your chances of clearing in an elite program as big as the new AAdvantage will,be higher when you do use your certificates, as everyone isn't automatically added to the list.

    Gold and Platinum members of AA generally average higher upgrade percentages than those on UA/DL/US, though some of it is route specific (transcons are tougher to clear on all airlines).

    Downside? If you're not willing to pay for some 500-Mile upgrades, you'll definitely get less upgrades in the new system.
     
  14. flyforawg

    flyforawg Silver Member

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    My limited experience on US is that the upgrades may clear sometimes, but the planes are woefully behind the times. No power outlets, worse food, no IFE. I can honestly say without hyperbole that the first experience on US isn't much better than that in coach. Can't wait for them to bring the planes up to new AA standards. You may pay for stickers on AA, but you at least get more for the money spent.
     
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