how to retain gold status or upgrade to plat

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by dlawyers, Feb 16, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Hi there, we are new here and need help. Our gold status will expire end of this month. We have been offered to maintain gold status for 2012 the option to pay a fee. We were wondering if there is any way (as we won't fly so much this year) instead of paying the fee to retain gold to do something and jump to Platinum. Also, if there is no way to do that, how do you make sure that you can upgrade to biz each time you fly if we are going to retain gold? Any help is highly appreciate. Thanks!
     
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  2. DestinationDavid
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    Hey dlaywers, and welcome to MP.

    Are there particular benefits from Gold status you are interested in? I ask because the new AA Citibank Executive cards offer a few benefits that are similar to Gold status. It does not provide all the benefits, but a few of them. Also, if you spend the required $40K on the card, you get 10K EQM added to your yearly total, so you'd only need to fly 15K in the year to maintain Gold. That might be an option for you.

    AA does offer status challenges as an unpublished benefit. You would first have to lose your Gold status before signing up for one though, and it does require a bit of flying in a short amount of time. Here is some more information if you want to look into it: LINK.

    As for upgrading to First with no status? It's very, very unlikely. You could purchase full fare economy tickets and request an upgrade, but you'd fall behind all other AA elites in the queue. Additionally, from time to time AA will offer upgrades for a fee when all requests from elites have been cleared and there is still space available in the F cabin. You can find these by checking in with a kiosk. If space is available, they kiosk will prompt you with an opportunity to purchase.

    At the end of the day, AA is not an airline that offers elite status easily for those who do not fly. If you absolutely need status, it might be a good idea to bite the bullet and pay the fee to renew. Without status the best way to guarantee you sit in the premium cabin without status is to simply buy a F/J ticket.

    Good luck with your quest!
     
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  3. Thanks for the hint, but AA Citibank Executive cards are not an option at this time.
    Is there a way when you are gold status to easily get upgrade to biz or first when buying economic fares ticks?
     
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  4. tondoleo
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    tondoleo Gold Member

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    There is no easy way on AA to get upgrades if you are Gold status. Perhaps if you are flying a particular route at a certain time there may availability. You might be able to apply miles and a fee depending upon award availability.

    How did you obtain your Gold status with AA?
     
  5. DestinationDavid
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    I understand where you're coming from, we all try to play the system to our advantage. Unfortunately with AA the way to "play the system" in terms of upgrades is to figure out how to get EXP/PLT status. There really isn't anything in terms of having low or no status and getting upgrades.
     
  6. in 2010 we did the challenge to become gold and in 2011 AA offered to pay a fee to maintain status. We did that and now they are offering the same, but was wondering if we could do something to jump from Gold to Plat. Or renew Gold and find a way to ensure upgrade to biz (first on Caribbean routes are not always offered) each time we fight. Like for example purchasing a specific type of tickets. We have been told that airlines keep certain fares available at very discounted prices but you need to specifically ask for those or they won't give it to you. Is that true?
     
  7. I don't mind to maintain Gold if it helps and pay for the offer made by AA. But once we do that, I was looking for way to get discounted biz or first tickets.
     
  8. DestinationDavid
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    Sadly Gold status is the bottom of the totem pole, so your chances for upgrades are very limited. If you want to get the upgrade for little cost you'll need to get to EXP or PLT, and to do that will require you to do a bit of flying.
     
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  9. OK. Thanks for all the tips and info. Have you all a great week-end.
     
  10. John777

    John777 Silver Member

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    I'm surprised they offer the "buy-back" for two non-qualifying years in a row. I assumed it was for when you earned status and then didn't re-qualify for one year, not that you earn the status and then can pay to keep it year over year.
     
  11. DestinationDavid
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    Status challenges limit this type of behavior, but with the financial straits AA is in I'm not surprised they're open to positive cash flow.
     
  12. firstglobal

    firstglobal Silver Member

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    In previous years this was indeed the case.
     
  13. gemac
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    gemac Silver Member

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    If you don't fly much (and it appears you don't), you may have better results by just buying first or business class tickets instead of buying back Gold status and requesting upgrades. If you buy premium tickets, you know you will be in premium seats. Those tickets cost more, but you will save the cost of they buybacks. Compare the number of flights you were actually able to upgrade to the cost of they buyback and it may surprise you what you have been paying for those upgrades.
     
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