The case not to stretch to executive platinum on AA

For the Charlotte crowd, its March 2nd and trying to get our plans ready to reach executive platinum (EXP) for another year, right?

If you have been playing the loyalty game since 2002 you know it’s a game, and not that hard to win status, with the biggest decision to make is what status threshold to stop at.

I have been EXP for 3 years and when I used to fly a ton about 15 years ago, I pretty much always had top status. Things have changed. This year I have decided to not go for EXP – meaning I’m not going to spend a ton of time worrying about it or use my AA credit card (with its woeful 1x points) more than I need to.

Here is why- – scan this and read the EXP benefits closely and tell me which ones really grab your attention

Here is mine:

  1. 120 percent bonus
  2. 100 hour upgrade window (very rarely invoked though)
  3. Complimentary alcoholic beverage and snack in the Main Cabin

Yes it is a short list and #3 is some comic relief although I did invoke this once !

Everything else that matters to me I can get through Plat Pro or even boring old Plat

But what about upgrades? Lets quickly talk about upgrades:

Its becoming more and more rare to get a complementary upgrade for 3 reasons:

  1. The quantities of EXP has risen with easier ways to achieve EXP. Your competition is great . A few years ago I was hitting 1 or 2 on the upgrade list almost every flight. When I fly now if im 5 or greater that is pretty awesome.
  2. American is pushing for “in-app” paid FC upgrades. Their goal is not to give out a seat to an EXP at the 100 hour mark, but use the app to push paid upgrades a few hours before flight time then EXP get the “scraps” at the gate
  3. Even pilots can get FC ahead of passengers with a new agreement inked in Dec. You can google that if you wish (no ill -will towards pilots of course, its just more data to show how upgrades are much harder to get)

So if you were racing to EXP for upgrades — I would challenge you to think again