Most cost effective way to get to Executive Platinum

 
Old Feb 20, 13, 9:43 am
  #1  
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Most cost effective way to get to Executive Platinum

I'm a lifetime Platinum, and flying lately has become a drag. Lot's of delayed/canceled flights with no pro-active assistance from American. Standing in long lines, wait on hold, etc. to get flights fixed. Every flight seems to have something happen. This is making me long for the days when I had Executive Platinum status.

1st Question, am I correct in thinking that as an Executive Platinum, my flights are flagged and if there are cancellations, flight delays, etc. that they will attempt to fix the connecting flights?

2nd Question, for my situation, whats the best way to get back to Executive Platinum? I fly to Europe a couple of times a year, could add another Europe trip. Fly home to Hawaii at least three times a year. Fly about six domestic round trips a year. Live in LBB and connect via DFW to where ever.

Looking for ideas on best way to maximize mileage to Europe. Maybe LBB-DFW-LAX-LHR for instance instead of LBB-DFW-LHR if it will fare out around the same cost. For Honolulu, maybe LBB-DFW-OGG-HNL instead of LBB-DFW-HNL to pick up one extra segment each way. Another idea is go to Honolulu and then start a European trip. The price is almost the same and I would pick up the HNL-LAX-HNL segments.

How have others done it? There are so many flight segment options that I'm a little overwhelmed.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 9:46 am
  #2  
 
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Well, "efficient" can have different meanings. On the one hand, it could be an attempt to minimize time in the air/away unnecessarily without regard for cost while on the other hand it could be the cheapest way to add miles to your existing trips. Are you planning on being a miles qualifier or a points qualifier?
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Old Feb 20, 13, 10:30 am
  #3  
 
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Judging by your signature, I would suggest consolidating your air travel to one specific airline.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 10:32 am
  #4  
brp
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Find cheap fares to places you want to go and fly them. You can use services like Yapta to track prices. Other than that, not much else to say- the less you pay, the cheaper it is. The number of variables are too many to list here, and depend upon your personal definition of "cost effective" as noted. There is no "one size fits all.' If there were, this forum and all the threads, FAQs and stickies wouldn't exist. Read and learn

Cheers.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 10:51 am
  #5  
 
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Consider qualifying on EQP by flying to Europe on BA on Premium Economy that gives you 1.5 EQP of miles flown.

In my case (From SAN), the Premium Economy fare may be only $300 more each way. IF I fly to Europe (11,000 miles) on Premium Economy, I get:
-Extra 5,485 EQPs for ~$700 (which is a little bit expensive but I avoid doing unnecessary mileage runs that require time away from home)
-The comfort of Premium Economy and the chance to upgrade to Business at the airport for $500 more on BA

Others may consider this an expensive option, it'd work for me.

Tip: When booking on AA.com, use the advanced search and in option 7, choose "AA, American Eagle, AmericanConnection® and oneworld". On the next screen, look for the BA flights with BA flight number that are usually priced on the cheap Premium Economy Fares (T). The BA flights sold as AA codeshare show up only with the full Premium Economy fares (W).

Last edited by carlosdca; Feb 20, 13 at 11:08 am
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Old Feb 20, 13, 11:42 am
  #6  
 
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Originally Posted by EXPLAT View Post
2nd Question, for my situation, whats the best way to get back to Executive Platinum?Looking for ideas on best way to maximize mileage to Europe. Maybe LBB-DFW-LAX-LHR for instance instead of LBB-DFW-LHR if it will fare out around the same cost. For Honolulu, maybe LBB-DFW-OGG-HNL instead of LBB-DFW-HNL to pick up one extra segment each way. Another idea is go to Honolulu and then start a European trip. The price is almost the same and I would pick up the HNL-LAX-HNL segments.
My strategy is to always use ITA to find the flight options (it is worth getting to understand the routing codes). You can then decide whether the longer routings that ITA finds are cost effective for you. In general you can increase miles by up to 25% for a roughly pro rata increase of the base fare. For international flights the base fare is often a low proportion of the total fare which makes the longer routings good value for the extra miles. To get a better understanding of the mileage associated with different routings, put your routing into the Maximum Permitted Mileage calculator In EF.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 12:01 pm
  #7  
 
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I'm not sure adding segments to your trips would address your main concern which seems to be the handling of delayed/canceled flights - it would make the problem worse.

Consolidating flying to AA/OW and if feasible buying some PE/F tickets as suggested is probably the way to go.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 12:02 pm
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If you put a cost number on your time and your well-being i suggest RTW ticket in First or Business Class on good airlines. Avoid AA, maximize travel on CX, JL, BA and possibly LAN (no F). With two of these tickets you can easily reach PlatEx in a pleasant way with not too much time in airplanes. And if you select a cheaper starting point it also will not be too expensive.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 12:14 pm
  #9  
 
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I don't know by being EXP, it would make the cancellations and delays that much more bearable. I am sure AA takes care of PLT members pretty well. Is it worth the mileage run? That's more of a personal question. Do you wan to spend the additional time and money to make it to EXP? If you are going for the SWUs or the improved chance of domestic upgrades, that is one thing. But better treatment during IRROPS would not be my main motivation for trying to get to EXP.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 1:16 pm
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Originally Posted by Time traveller View Post
I don't know by being EXP, it would make the cancellations and delays that much more bearable. I am sure AA takes care of PLT members pretty well. Is it worth the mileage run? That's more of a personal question. Do you wan to spend the additional time and money to make it to EXP? If you are going for the SWUs or the improved chance of domestic upgrades, that is one thing. But better treatment during IRROPS would not be my main motivation for trying to get to EXP.
This! Trying to save time in lines, on phones, etc during IRROPS by spending more time flying by adding unnecessary connections seems strange to me.

I'm a PLT and dealt with many IRROPS last year (weather, crew, etc). Every time I was proactively assisted (i.e got a call about the cancel, and that they were saving me a seat on a different flight). On a couple occasions, while the different flight seemed like the best alternative on paper, my plans had changed and they were able to move me to different (better) flights for no fee. One time was moving a flight from EWR-LAX to DCA-LAX, which saved me hours of travel time. I even had a flight with weather delay very last minute that was going to cause me to miss my connect. I went to the AC and the AAngel said, oh don't worry, they saved you a seat going through DFW if you want it, or you can take a chance through ORD.

I know everyone's experience varies, and I no doubt believe that the treatment of EXPs is better, but the marginal increase can't be worth the trouble (unless you were really really close).
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Old Feb 20, 13, 1:20 pm
  #11  
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Old Feb 20, 13, 1:36 pm
  #12  
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Even as an EXP you have to be proactive when it comes to irregular ops. You just can't expect to call the EXP desk and say take care of me. Maybe at one time in the past or high spenders are still getting that level of attention.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 1:38 pm
  #13  
 
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I find the AC AAngles to be extremely helpful in IRROPS. I'm a newly minted EXP, so my most recent experience with IRROPS has been PLT. If you don't have an AC membership or AMEX PLT, that may be a good value for you based on what you're hoping to achieve. Otherwise, hope for a DEQM promo and take full advantage of it.

Another option could be to buy status on US. It's expensive, but no BIS required. Time will tell how the programs will merge together and when (may not help you until 2014 or 2015). If they match chairman's preferred to EXP with 8 SWU's, it would be cheaper than buying 8 tickets in J and could be good value.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 1:44 pm
  #14  
 
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Originally Posted by dmbtr3 View Post
I find the AC AAngles to be extremely helpful in IRROPS. I'm a newly minted EXP, so my most recent experience with IRROPS has been PLT. If you don't have an AC membership or AMEX PLT, that may be a good value for you based on what you're hoping to achieve. Otherwise, hope for a DEQM promo and take full advantage of it.
If your concerned about IRROPS, I would take an AC AAngel over the EXP line, although having both is obviously better.
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Old Feb 20, 13, 1:54 pm
  #15  
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going via sju can be decent...& great for eqp....

a recent dfw-sju same day turn got 6.3k eqp for $820 on yups....
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