The sky is falling again! If you haven’t heard about the changes in AAdvantage chart, you can read full details on The Points Guy HERE It was somewhat shocking that no advance notice was given at all. I really thought that American Airlines would take a more classy route than Delta, but apparently not.
So, what are the changes that pertain to my situation? To be honest, at first I dismissed the announcement, as I thought only standard AAnytime awards were affected and I try to redeem only at the lowest level. But then I saw a little blurb on stopovers, which will no longer be allowed to exceed 24 hours.
Remember my post on adding a free one-way to Europe flight? This change makes it obsolete as of now. You can no longer fly to Europe in the summer and add a one-way flight from Hawaii, Caribbean or another North American city all for just 20000 miles total. Yikes.
I actually had my heart set on this type of redemption for next year and now will have to come up with another plan. Yes, I know, first world problems and all that. I was going to add a one-way flight from Las Vegas to Florida in November and continue on to Europe in June 2015. No longer, at least not for 20000 miles all-in. This definitely takes away some of the value from AAdvantage program.
However, there are still gems to be had. Redemption to Europe is still 40000 miles roundtrip in the off-season, which runs from October 15th-May 15th. If you happen to have Citi AA card, you will get 10 percent of your miles back.
Flights to Hawaii will still cost 35000 miles roundtrip in the off-season ( 31500 miles with AA card), which is a very good deal from the East Coast. Not to mention, you can still fly to Alaska for 25000 miles. Very importantly, one way awards are still allowed, which is a huge plus for a family.
So there is still a lot of value to be had. However, you may want to think twice about participating in US Airways “share miles” promo, that runs through April 13th. There may be other changes in store before these miles become part of AAdvantage program. I recommend, you do it only if you have firm plans for award tickets in the near future.
I personally will not be participating, as I’m not sure when I get the chance to make a redemption. I advise you to proceed with caution as well. This is true when you are dealing with miles, period. Don’t hoard them for that special redemption which may never materialize. As I’ve said before, we are talking “funny money.”
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Leana is the owner and founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.