The 2010 AA "Who, When, Where, What, How" Thread

 
Old Dec 20, 09, 7:23 am
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: HKG
Programs: JL/JGC Diamond (OWE), AS MVPG, AA LT Gold 1MM, A3 *G, Marriott Plat, Hertz 5*, National Exec
Posts: 3,050
The 2010 AA "Who, When, Where, What, How" Thread

Copying the idea from our arch-rival, United Airlines.

Similar to the thread in the United Forum. Use this thread to share your AA travel stories, how status were obtained during the year, flying pattern, why they travel, places flown to etc. Feel free to express yourself in anyway possible be it a newbie or an old-timer of FT. And to the best of your abilities, tell us the status achieved for the new year and your travel projection and status changes for the upcoming year.

The UA thread link is below, for reference purposes.
http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/unite...ow-thread.html



Who: What do you do when you are not on FT? Anything you want to tell FTers about you.
When: When will (did) you make your desired 2010 status?
How: Include any info useful here. Purpose of travel (work/personal/others), Any MRs, how much did DBEQM/DBLEQ helped you in 2009, AA flying vs. OW flying, $$$ spent to achieve status, how your travel pattern has changed in 2009 from previous years.
Where: Places you have been this year (on your way to your 2010 status).
Why:Why is achieving status/accumulating miles important (or not important) to you? Why is AAdvantage your perferred (or not) program
What: Any changes in your plan to achieve 2011 status, and where will you go? What will be changed in 2010 versus 2009.

Happy Holidays and Safe Travel to Everyone in 2010!
To our FT friends in the mid-atlantic and the Tri-State area, hope the 2009 blizzard was memorable!


[moderator hat on]

This is an interesting idea, so we will give it a try with this caveat.

No replies.

Members are welcome to share their information, but any questions/discussions about the content should be restricted to PM.

All replies will be removed without comment.


[moderator hat off]

Last edited by JDiver; Dec 20, 09 at 11:38 pm Reason: bold mod note
Short hair Francis is offline  
Old Dec 20, 09, 8:11 am
  #2  
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Multiple locations
Programs: AAdvantage ExPlat LT Gold, BA Silver, Aegean Star Gold
Posts: 3,065
I guess I'll kick this off...
Who: 24 year old, recently unemployed Equity analyst. About to embark on 5+ months of traveling (including a nice OW130C)
When: Made EXP back in September, with the DBEQM promos, I think I'll end the year at just over 140,000 EQMs. Without the promos, I think I would be right over 100,000.
How: All personal travel, Double miles helped, but this was all personal travel... FT helps Lot's of Iberia across the pond, AA 763s and in 2010 I'll try out about 7 OW airlines on one trip. I keep my eyes open at all times looking for deals, playing around with ITA and the MR Deals forum. I'm also *G with bmi so I need to accumulate miles on that program and test drive the USA based *G airlines...
Where: Dublin 3x, Rio, Barcelona 3x, Frankfurt, Buenos Aires, Lima, Paris, Andorra, proabbly missed a few... in 2010 well that's when things get fun...
In 2010: Madrid, Brazil for Carnaval, then Brazil again, then Hong Kong, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Thailand beaches, Jordan, Greece, Hungary, Poland... that's where the OW130C kicks in ... then another 3 trips to Peru in May... 1 MR, 1 is a 2 night stay and the last one in a 40 hour stay...
Why: So that I can earn cheap miles to burn on a OW130C, a trip that would price out at over $18,000 for just 130,000 miles , also sent my mom from EZE to Europe and back in First class earlier this year on miles...
What: I have about 50,000 miles of travel booked so far in 2010, so halfway to re-qualification... cost is 3.5ish per CPM

as a NYC based flyer, I think we have about a foot of snow here in Rego Park , NY (halfway between LGA & JFK)...
jfkeze is offline  
Old Dec 20, 09, 10:09 am
  #3  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: HKG
Programs: JL/JGC Diamond (OWE), AS MVPG, AA LT Gold 1MM, A3 *G, Marriott Plat, Hertz 5*, National Exec
Posts: 3,050
Oh yes, where are my manners.

Who: 20 year old, 3rd yr University Student, major in tourism and environment. Other than FT, I also help my family managing our property and all of our FFP accounts , as well as offering travel advice to family and friends.
When: Made EXP on halloween when the 2nd batch of DBLEQ posted, changed programs from CX MPC to AAdv this yr.
How: Personal/Family obligation travel only, Don't do pure MRs, only mini vacations(3 this yr, STL from YVR, SNA, SEA), DBEQM helped around 35000, would've ended up around 90000 EQM. Commutes between YYZ-YVR, so yes I do a lot of cabotage connecting in LGA/ORD/DFW. AA/AS flying about 80%, CX the other 20%, Spend-$13500, no significant pattern change from 2008 to 2009.
Where: Vancouver 8x, Los Angeles/Orange County 3x, Hong Kong 2x, New York City 2x, San Antonio 2x, Seattle 2x, Austin, Boston, Chicago, St. Louis(and always seems to connect in DFW)
Why: Both status and mileage, fly in first/business as much as possible, not feeling stuck to one location. ELTRW will help a lot in planning my next trip and in padding my account and the next award ticket. Advantage although not the friendly ways for me to fly my routes has given me the highest % in upgrades, mileage and in status. Air Canada works way easier for me but then I won't have fun in having side trips in commutes.
Secondary: (Flaming suit on)Getting my environment professor to maybe having a heart attack when he hears my next trip, he is the biosphere/greenpeace type of professor who hates all counts of flying and would want to tax me out of my hobby. He seems quite freak out at an SEA trip for a weekend, just wait til I said LHR next time(tks ELTRW).
What: Flying changing to 50/50 for short haul and long haul in 2010. Then again decreasing to 75% Long haul in 2011.
Places Planned/Estimated: Vancouver 5x, Hong Kong 3-4x, Tokyo 2x, San Antonio 2x, Washington DC, Las Vegas(for 21st b-day), Honolulu, Miami/Orlando, New York City(nothing too concrete yet), maybe somewhere far to spend those ELTRW miles.
15000 Miles booked for Jan, an additional 18000 planned for Feb. Cost last yr quite high for a FTer, around 9.0 per CPM, plenty costly flying out of YYZ.


YYZ/BUF based Flyer, living in St. Catharines, ON(Niagara region). Have absolutely no snow, not even a dusting of snow on the ground although only 18-28F the last few days. Won't be surprised if no AAers can name my place on the map
Short hair Francis is offline  
Old Dec 20, 09, 10:20 am
  #4  
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Home Airports: CAE/CLT
Programs: Hyatt Globalist, National Executive
Posts: 5,440
When: Army officer who never had status with any airline until December 2008 when I did a PLT challenge. Did the challenge because I thought I would do 3, maybe 4 TATLs this year. Picked up an unexpected TATL on 1 JAN and then another related to my 1st MR, now hoping to get get EXP in SEP. Then I had two unexpected long hauls from Germany to South Africa, full fare Y on BA and I reached EXP during the 1st BA longhaul.
Turns out I would have reached EXP without the DBEQM promo.

How: Work/personal. One 33K, 5 day MR during the DBEQM/BOS3X. It was the perfect storm for my 1st MR! AA: 79K, BA 25K on BA, Some stray EQMs on IB. My patten went from 14K a year to EXP to 116K (including other airlines)

Where: Home airport FRA. Transited or been to DFW, SAN, LAX, BOS, CLT, ORD, LHR, CAE, SAT, LAS, LGW, LUX, MAD, JNB

Why: Added comfort, SWUs, lounges. AA is preferred because the Government required AA fro several of my trips. I choose to use AA for personal trips, even though FRA-DFW-CAE is the long way around.

What: I honestly don't think I will fly nearly as much in 2010. Will do one TATL in the spring and then be moving back to the States. I plan on traveling a lot once back in the States to take advantage of my status as it winds back down to PLT.
Gamecock is offline  
Old Dec 21, 09, 7:25 am
  #5  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 12,623
Who: 45 year old retail analyst
when and How Requalified for EXP in July on flight to SNA, 125K on flight to GIG in early September. When all was said in done I could have made the 125K this year without DBEQMs but it made life easier
Where Four paid tickets to GIG, two to FRA, more trips to the West Coast and MIA than I can remember, some smaller trips to TPA, DCA, BOS and ORD, and a sprinkling of MRs here and there
Why So that when I do travel it can be in the upmost of comfort with AC membership, a J/F seat, and not be crowded in 32E between two sumo wrestlers and a screaming kid in back of me
What My travel for 2010 is already being booked full swing. Already have seven trips booked for the first two months and a LIM flight in May. Also used the many triple miles earned since September to book two business saver awards to GIG.
newyorkgeorge is offline  
Old Dec 21, 09, 7:56 am
  #6  
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: St. Croix, US Virgin Islands
Programs: AAdvantage PLT-Pro, Priority Club Plt, Hilton Gold, Hyatt
Posts: 119
Who: 54 y/o dive shop owner on St. Croix
When and How: Made Gold a few years ago when I finally figured out how to use American Express miles to PURCHASE tickets on AA rather than get free ones on DL, CO, and US. Did a lot of traveling but always on free mileage tickets which gathered no status. Made PLT that same year. Requal'd PLT early this year and hit EXP with three west coast trips during the DBEQM promos.
Where:Scuba diving tradeshow all over the U.S. No int'l travel this year but hoping to use the EVIPs for either Europe or S/A next summer.
Why:Status is a great thing. When I first made Gold and could reserve exit row seats I was in heaven. UGs are just over the top. I worked for the airlines back when non-revs almost always flew up front and thought my days of that were over.
What:Have almost a month at home here in paradise enjoying the warmth and sunshine before hitting the show circuit again in February. With three west coast trips again this spring I'm hoping, along with almost everyone else here, for another DBEQM promotion.
stcroixscuba is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 2:57 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: DFW
Programs: AAdvantage
Posts: 108
Who: 29 y/o gal in the DFW area. I'm adventurous & love seeing new places. Love sports (especially MLB) & music.

When: I am a statusless AAdvantage member. I don't travel as much as you folks, due to $$$. But when I can, I try to make the most of it.

How: All of my travel is personal, & most of it is solo. I don't generally do MRs, because I travel for fun and not necessarily to get status. I didn't fly any OA this year. My travel pattern was more domestic and less international this year (last year I did 4 international trips, but less domestic)...due to financial woes (wah, etc).

Where: LAS, BRU, LGA, DCA, MSY, GPT, OGG

Why: Getting status isn't as important to me as getting where I want to go in the easiest way possible. I prefer AA/AAdvantage due to living in DFW. (I am actually physically closer to DFW than DAL...had a friend recently trying to get me to fly somewhere on WN, but DAL is alllll the way across the Metroplex, haha.)

What: I don't have much planned for 2010 at this point. I'm sure I'll hit LAS or MSY again (did I mention I also like to play craps?). Probably somewhere in SoCal (BUR/SNA/ONT/LAX, whatever works), since I haven't been this year or last year. Maybe down to Latin/South America if I can find something good, or a TATL to MAD maybe, since there's that direct flight now. We'll see where it goes.
exquisitered is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 3:35 pm
  #8  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Durham, NC (RDU/GSO/CLT)
Programs: AA EXP/1MM, DL PM, UA Gold, HH DIA, Hyatt Discoverist, IHG Spire/AMB, Marriott Titanium, Hertz PC
Posts: 30,161
Who: My name is Charles, I don't like being called any diminutives of it. When I'm not on FT I work in a Management Training program with CED (Consolidated Electrical Distrubitors). I'm posted in Phoenix working with custom switchgear and lighting packages. I also read a book a week, play poker at a moderately competitive level, enjoy going to baseball games and driving my red car.

When: I barely requalified for Gold thanks to the 2x EQM promotions. I only flew 15,000 AA BIS miles and 13 segments.

How: Let me make this clear. I don't believe in Mileage Runs. I used to, but now that I don't have as much free time and I think my money is better saved than spent, I will only travel for a specific purpose. That being said I do love to fly so I will pad trips with extra flights. Also, I am happy to take weekend trips, but my days of flying for miles/status are over. I requalified with a mix of business travel (Chicago) and several personal trips. I travel the country going to baseball games and American helps with that. I also use my AA FF# on occasional AS flights.

Where: AA/AS Flying below:
February: AA CMH-LGA
May: AA PHX-DFW-ORD-DTW-ORD-PHX (Award)
June: AA LAX-JFK, LGA-DFW-ORD-PHX, PHX-ORD
July: AA DFW-PHX
September: AA PHX-DFW-ATL
October: AS PDX-SEA-PHX
December: AA PHX-DFW-AUS-DFW-LAS

To go: None

Why: It's more of a side benefit. I love to fly and to travel and I want to go places I couldn't afford with miles and to enjoy my said travel.

What: Only so far planned travel is YVR with AS.
CMK10 is online now  
Old Dec 22, 09, 5:01 pm
  #9  
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Programs: AA-EXP & 1.6 MM
Posts: 78
Who: 39 yo architect doing consulting work for the past 2 years.

When: EXP re-qualification for EXP in early Nov.

How: Most of my flying is alone except for 4 RT flights with my miniature pinscher. 95% of travel is for pleasure. All flying has been domestic.

[B]Where: 3X JFK-HNL. countless LAX-JFK

Why: I split my time equally between NYC & LA.

What: I've been put on a flying moratorium by the SO until end of winter.
DZONELB is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 5:12 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: DCA, maybe IAD, hopefully not BWI
Programs: AA LT GLD (bitter fmr EXP), SPG Gold, HH Gold, UA Plastic
Posts: 524
Who: I'm a 21 year old college student based put of BNA during the school year, NYC during summer and breaks. Starting in 3 weeks I will be living and studying in BCN for 6 months.

When: I never held status of any kind until 2008 when I qualified for gold and then plat (via a challenge). In 2009 I hit EXP in early October.

How: My travel is mostly personal but I also help out in my family business, which takes me to South America and occasionally to a few domestic destinations. During the summer DBEQM promo I took the plunge and went on my first MRs to get to EXP.

Where: BNA/LGA about 4 round trips, ORD, SNA, SCL twice, LAX twice, DUB (MR), NRT (MR), SEA (MR). I also flew to CLE, PIT, BNA, and GIG on other airlines for various reasons (despite my best efforts, believe me!)

Why: I got addicted to flying during summer 2008 around the same time I joined FT (coincidence? ) and have been obsessed ever since. I love to travel and learn about new people and cultures but I also just enjoy flying for the hell of it. I am the resident travel expert for my friends and family and I really love finding people deals that save them money!

I have been hoarding miles for the last 18 months and I plan on cashing them in big time during the spring to explore Europe during my study abroad in BCN. I doubt too many other students weigh the proximity of OW hubs heavily into their decisions about where to study abroad.

What: I will almost definitely not requalify for EXP in 2010, as I only reached the level in 09 with DBEQM MRs. In 2010 I will burn miles and travel on revenue tickets as infrequently as possible. My dad will use most of my VIPs and I will look for milesAAvers around Europe to satisfy my travel fix.
njvandy is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 5:17 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Dallas
Programs: AA EXP 1MM, Starwood Gold, Hyatt Diamond
Posts: 890
Who: 28 y/o male litigation attorney based out of DFW.

When: Made EXP in August after coming back from a deposition in CA.

How: Made to trips to PVG during DBEQM and a DFW-BOS-LAX mileage run as well as business travel.

Where: I've been to Shanghai, Los Angelese, San Diego, San Jose, San Francisco, Boston, DC, Orlando, San Antonio, and Seattle.

Why: I can't stand to sit in coach and I love collecting miles/points even though I almost never use them. AAdvantage is important to me because I live in Dallas. Honestly, there's really no other choice. Although I live 5 mins from Love, I refuse to fly Southwest for the most part unless it's to Houston.

What: Don't know if I'll be able to maintain EXP next year without a DBEQM promo. But I'll be going to Asia and Europe for business development quite often and I will need to use up my 12 SWU.
krazieman is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 7:07 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Dallas, TX
Posts: 79
Who: 37 yo clinical consultant for a diagnostic company (former ICU RN) based in DFW

When: Made EXP end of October (AUS-DFW)

How: On segments. Started traveling at the end of April and hit 100 in October. Ended up with 118 segments and ~110K miles

Where: On AA all over the US (NYC, ORD, SAN, MCO, PHI, BNA, etc,etc) but a lot of short trips throughout the Southwest (LHR was my longest flight, but was on CO)

Why: I like to get on the plane first! I lived in Houston and was Platinum for a couple of years. I got used to being upgrade. Building back status on AA was not that fun.

What: I'll probably fly about the same amount next year, so EXP will make it a little more tolerable. SWU will be nice for a vacation.
keeper22 is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 8:02 pm
  #13  
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: bay area, ca
Programs: AS 75K, AA Gold, IC Plat AMB, CC Gold, HH Gold, Hyatt PLT...belong to most others but no status
Posts: 1,730
Who: 36 year old data analyst

When: Crossed the EXP line for the first time sometime mid-October. Previously several years as PLT, riding the coattails of my husband's EXP status.

How: 100% personal travel (however, my employer is very generous with the time off)

Where: Hmm, this is a brain strain, as we literally took at least one trip a month this year. SJU(x3), LAX, MSY(x2), CUN, LHR, MKE, EZE, ORF, LAS, PHX, HNL, IAD, PDX...

also did a reward trip to SIN/DPS on Singapore Airlines and another to KSA that doesn't count either as that one was on Continental Micronesia

Why: We like to travel a lot and status makes it so much easier when you do! AAdvantage is the most generous and the eVIPs and upgrades to domestic first make it comfortable enough to re-up each year.

What: Don't have any planned changes, except the Mr. is likely going to be able to get me back to China again now that AA is going to fly to PEK.
TheBeerHunter is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 9:20 pm
  #14  
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: South Park, Metropolis
Programs: AA LT PLT 3MM, Hilton/Marriott/SPG/Club Carlson GLD, IHG PLT
Posts: 4,148
Who, what, .....

Who: 45 Male, licensed US Customs broker. Work for an international freight forwarder, ironic, I work with cargo. Always been fascinated about flying, going to different places and seeing new cultures. I'm very close to hit lifetime GLD, should get it by Feb 2010 ^

When: GLD 2007, PLT 2008(Missed out on AADER ), decided on EXP for 2009 and got it on June/July thanks to the double miles. Will end year with 150k, 35k is due to DBEQM

How: All of my travel is leisure, NONE is business, and it is on my own dime. Most of our travel is on weekends only, we call ourselves the weekend warriors, departing Friday PM, returning Sunday PM. My spouse is very supportive on this "hobby" of mine, and we always travel together 99% of the time. She even attended her first MR seminar in PHX this year. On Feb we did our first true MR, MKE-ORD-DFW-LAX-SFO-DFW-ORD-MKE for $39 each way, spent about 12hrs on SFO. The next week I surprised her for a weekend in FRA on Valentines day, that was the start of her first international travels. All my flying has been AA, have not done OW yet, but will like to accumulate miles for a RTW. DBEQM/DBLEQ was very helpful, as I missed out on AADER on 2008 and could have made EXP then. Now, even w/out the double miles offer, I still traveled over 110k, This year I've decided to definitely take advantage of offers, aside from the double miles, but also BOS3X too. I will go the extra miles to maintain EXP status. Prior to 2009, my wife has never done any international travel at all, but that changed for her this year.

Where: I travel to SJU almost every month, my mom has Alzheimer and I visit her in her nursing home. Those trips alone are almost 40k of my travel, that is why I decided to add some international trips to get the extra 60k. LHR(for our 10year anniversary) FRA2x, DUB2x, SJU(more than 10X) SFO, SEA, LAX, MCO3x, PHX2x

Why: I used to be the frugal/cheap traveler, will only book my ticket with whoever had the lowest fare. I used to travel a lot with ATA to SJU (as mentioned in WHERE above) and became ELITE with them. This is when I started seeing the difference between no status VS status. Eventually switched my travel to AA. Traveling is very hectic, the lines, wait, etc, anything you can do to minimize and eliminate the obstacles is great for me, hence the status. I've been with AA since 98, perhaps longer. We do not use miles towards award travel, instead we are accumulating them for a RTW. We also use them to invite friends or family to visit us or travel with us.

What: For next year we will do same as this year. Already have 30k booked so far. Will like to go to MUC for Oktoberfest on my B-day. I also want to go AMS, before the red light district is a distant memory. Other than that, just take AAdvantage of any special offers/deals that we can accomodate on our schedule. Funny thing is that this year, we did not spent any weekends at home until middle of March.
arollins is offline  
Old Dec 22, 09, 9:36 pm
  #15  
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: NYC area
Programs: AA PLT/2MM/lifetime Admirals Club, UA lifetime United Club, DL lifetime Sky Club, MR Plat, Hertz PC
Posts: 60
Who: 29-year-old unemployed consultant based out of NYC

When: Made PLT in May on a BOS-LAX trip.

How: This year, status was 100% achieved using mileage runs on the 3x BOS-LAX miles and DBLEQM promotions. This is the first year in which I've ever attained status through mileage runs alone. Normally I do 90% business travel and top off with a mileage run, if necessary. Being unemployed this year, I financed 100% of my travel.

Why: For purposes of lifetime Platinum status. I have lifetime Gold right now. Unfortunately, I have discovered that Delta Air Lines is my favorite airline and that American has gone from being my favorite airline to my second-to-least favorite airline. As a first-time Gold elite (equivalent to Platinum in AA), I was upgraded to first class more times this year than I ever was with American, even if I were to cash in all of my remaining 500-mile upgrade stickers. Not to mention, between the (way) better complimentary food selection and complimentary alcohol in the Delta Sky Clubs, nicer airports, nicer airplane interiors, and personal TVs at every seat on most flights.

What: 2010 is the first year I'll ever be unsure if I want to achieve lifetime Platinum status. What good is this goal of achieving lifetime AA status if all I want to do is fly Delta? I have to solve this dilemma at some point; what makes it difficult is the 1.1 million miles I've invested in the AAdvantage program, and to be honest, I don't know what I'll be doing, status-wise, in 2010.
tedward is offline  

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