American Airlines is extending the elite status of AAdvantage members as a result of reduced travel related to the coronavirus (COVID-19).
AAdvantage members will automatically receive an extension of their current elite status through January 31, 2022; these updates will be reflected in member accounts in a few weeks. In addition, Admirals Club memberships and One-Day Passes purchased from the airline will be automatically extended for six months beyond their expiration date.
Elite members will also receive a special credit up to $400 to use toward an American Airlines Vacations package, giving travelers something to look forward to when travel resumes. Customers can receive the credit when they call American Airlines Vacations to book a trip.
Further, the airline lowered AAdvantage elite qualification requirements for all of 2020. AAdvantage members will achieve status more easily during the current elite qualifying year through lower Elite Qualifying Dollar (EQD), Elite Qualifying Mile (EQM) and Elite Qualifying Segment (EQS) requirements. All requirements were cut by at least one-third, with several being cut in half.
Members who qualify for Executive Platinum status previously received a choice of one reward upon reaching select EQM plateaus. American lowered the EQM requirements for 2020, which will make these rewards more attainable.
The airline is also giving members more flexibility with waived reinstatement and change charges for awards booked by May 31, 2020 for travel through September 30, 2020. Award travel ticketed on or after June 1, 2020 will include free changes if made at least 60 days in advance, however. A new variable fee structure based on elite status and days before departure will apply to any changes made fewer than 60 days in advance.