New award chart from American Airlines, US Airways


UPDATE: More details on American’s Level 3 awards is now available.

Gotta love an airline who introduces a new award chart without warning in the middle of the night, right? Thanks, American Airlines & US Airways! New charts are now in effect for travel commencing on or after 1 June 2014.

The good news is that the MileSAAver level of awards is not affected from what I’m seeing. For those with flexibility and who can search for the cheap award seats that should be comforting. For those who use the AAnytime awards on occasion, however, the news is mixed. AAnytime awards are now split into three tiers and only two of the tiers are published. The third tier is represented on the chart simply as a star with the fine print:

*AAnytime Level 3 awards are offered on a few select dates and will require higher number of miles to redeem.

The other two levels might benefit some customers. The Level 1 AAnytime awards are comparable or less expensive in much of the Americas. For premium fares to South America, Europe and Asia the Level 1 AAnytime awards are higher. And then there are Level 2 AAnytime awards, where the rates are higher almost universally (I see three where it doesn’t go up).

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I haven’t looked at partner awards yet; hopefully nothing shocking there.

The company has promised more details later today:

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The US Airways changes are similar, with multiple different levels in play and generally dramatically higher rates for the rule buster awards. Dividend miles members will not have to deal with the mystical “Level 3” awards for now, though there are now two levels of “High” awards (I suppose “Astronomical” doesn’t really market so well) which is going to be a bit confusing. US has also upped the price on the much beloved North America – North Asia partner award from 90k to 110k return. Oops.

Not so great for customers, especially the part where there was zero notice provided.

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Seth Miller

I'm Seth, also known as the Wandering Aramean. I was bit by the travel bug 30 years ago and there's no sign of a cure. I fly ~200,000 miles annually; these are my stories. You can connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

15 Comments

  1. Took almost 3 hrs last night to book award trip to Hawaii last night. talked to 4 separate booking agents, spent 45 min. on hold at one point. Worst booking experience EVER! PLease southwest start flying to Hawaii SOON – American experience was awful and sucked way too many points to find a decent flight!

  2. What a shame, I love flying AA so much, but AAdvantage is such a poorly managed program. There is simply no need or upside to surprising your customers in this manner.

  3. That’s a lot of red! And I’d bet that they will have less saaver availability, and not much in tier 1 aanytime.

  4. Thanks for the write up. But this middle of the night change, it all sucks!

  5. Check your level 3 values. I see 100,000 miles roundtrip domestic coach flights this summer. Where’s the outrage?

    1. Just booked a flight for our grand-daughter to fly from Santa Ana to DFW for June 28. Socked it to me 50,000 miles for one-way coach ticket. The mysterious Level 3 award. There were 80 available seats on the flight we booked. There were NO flight from Santa Ana allowing any redemption of miles, other than, at the Level 3 “SOCK IT TO YOU” award.

  6. Where’s the outrage over Elite USAirways flyers now being charge up to $100 each way – in addition to the miles required – to upgrade? Starting April 24 – that’s a low blow, and has devalued our mileage program greatly, with 2 weeks notice.

    1. I think upgrade awards are mostly a sucker bet anyways. Given that I don’t see too much reason to get worked up over the change.

  7. Pingback: American, US Airways latest to revamp mileage awards - USA TODAY 2014

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