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AirPass Prepaid Travel (ne AAirpass, not Lifetime Airpass) Master Thread

Old Dec 1, 2015, 8:52 am
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Last edit by: Shawn02139
American Airlines AirPass PrePaid Travel

NOTE: The program is Airpass; no longer named "AAirpass"
Link to AirPass front page

Link to aa.com AirPass contact and links page.

Prepaid, Unrestricted Air Travel at a Fixed Rate

As an AirPass member, you wont have to search for fares or pay extra for last-minute trips. Your airfare is pre-paid at a fixed rate and your account is ready when you need to travel to any of the more than 350 destinations in the combined American Airlines and US Airways network.
AirPass offers significant savings on fares (as well as guaranteed last seat availability) for flyers who know they will fly a lot but find themselves buying expensive last minute walk-up level fares.

AirPass, depending on level of purchase, includes status and may include up to Executive Platinum status and Admirals Club membership, or even Concierge Key, which includes both.

AirPass members get a courtesy drink and a snack if they're traveling in Coach, much as Executive Platinums do; unlike Executive Platinums, their traveling companion does also.

14 Jan 2016 jmappleby said: "...they take credit via wire transfer at $10k (Gold), $20k (Platinum), $30k (EP). Concierge Key is available for $50k individual spend or $75k team spend."
AirPass can be for different classes of service, and except for "PlanAAhead Economy", book into Y, J or F classes (and in 2016 will earn AA Elite Qualifying Miles at Y, J or F levels) and for Economy AirPass flyers offers "instant upgrade" fares that book into A for First or D for Business. These may not be available on all routes, however, and the legal routes may change during your contract.

Contact AirPass

AirPass Customer Service
800-433-6355
817-931-9029 - Fax

Monday - Friday
8 a.m. - 5 p.m. (CT)

Send us a letter
FedEX / UPS / Overnight mail
American Airlines
AirPass Customer Service
4255 Amon Carter Blvd.
MD 4106
Fort Worth, TX 76155

U.S mail
American Airlines, Inc.
AirPass Customer Service
P.O. Box 619616
MD 4106
DFW Airport, TX 75261-9616
You can get indicative pricing here: https://airpass.aa.com/vt-customer/c...ervations.html
The best deal seems to be the -UP fares, where you pay the standard economy, but book a confirmed seat into business
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AirPass Prepaid Travel (ne AAirpass, not Lifetime Airpass) Master Thread

Old May 28, 2020, 6:45 pm
  #676  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Arizona
Posts: 5,699
I swear in the old days you could use your air pass dollars to buy a discounted ticket. Is my memory not correct ?
Centurion is offline  
Old May 28, 2020, 7:17 pm
  #677  
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: LAX
Programs: AA EXP, SPG Gold
Posts: 181
Originally Posted by Centurion
Pre Covid the last minute flight purchase market from PHX>SAN,SNA,LAX,SFO well basically anywhere in California this would make sense if you needed to go away for the weekends on AA. You could save money flying Southwest but even they were getting pricey as recent as last year
My wife used to have to fly intra-CA on 1 or 2 day notice a lot and usually paid $400-500+ RT on Southwest. I think they actually get a lot of business travelers since they have (had?) more departure time options than other carriers.
jcain is offline  
Old May 28, 2020, 7:40 pm
  #678  
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Live: IWI; Work: DCA/Everywhere; Play: LAS/SJU/MLE
Programs: AA EXP, DL PM, Hyatt Glob, Marriott Ambassador/LTP, Nat'l Exec Elite, LEYE Gold
Posts: 6,709
Originally Posted by Centurion
I swear in the old days you could use your air pass dollars to buy a discounted ticket. Is my memory not correct ?
I have the same recollection. I thought you could use your AAirpass travel funds for regularly priced tickets too, not that you had to use it all for AAirpass fares. If you can, this would be a reasonable way to get club access.
platbrownguy is offline  
Old May 30, 2020, 9:31 am
  #679  
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Join Date: Sep 2019
Programs: AA: CK
Posts: 2,230
Originally Posted by scubadu
Have you considered the distinct possibility that this program isn't targeted towards you?

This is literally a 650+ post thread that documents and explains what this program is and who it tends to work for.

Regards
My god, thank you. It's like everyone wants a program designed exactly for them and gets super whiny when they realize the program is tailored to a different (and higher-value) market segment. "Wah, I want a Lexus at Toyota prices!"

Airpass gives 100% complete and utter flexibility for a meaningful discount when compared with regularly-priced tickets that offer 100% complete and utter flexibility. Plus AC membership. Plus MCE seating at booking. Plus a better call center desk. Plus free food and booze in Y. Plus a great portal to manage your spend. Plus immediate access to status rather than flying first.

If that doesn't fit your use case, move on.
BlooJoo is offline  
Old May 30, 2020, 9:38 am
  #680  
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Join Date: Oct 2004
Programs: Nah.
Posts: 13,967
Originally Posted by BlooJoo
"Wah, I want a Lexus at Toyota prices!"
More like, "I have a bicycle and want to trade it in for a Bentley. The company should let me do it for free since I use my bicycle ALL THE TIME."

But I get your point
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Old May 30, 2020, 9:52 am
  #681  
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Join Date: Sep 2019
Programs: AA: CK
Posts: 2,230
Originally Posted by qasr
More like, "I have a bicycle and want to trade it in for a Bentley. The company should let me do it for free since I use my bicycle ALL THE TIME."

But I get your point
Apt.
BlooJoo is offline  
Old May 30, 2020, 11:45 am
  #682  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: BOS
Programs: AA EXP, UA 1K
Posts: 1,078
Basically on most of my domestic flights, instant upgrade AAirpass comes out ahead of the paid domestic first class fare if you make one change to a booking. Given the inherent flexibility it offers, I usually end up taking advantage of the ability to make (multiple) changes. It's tough to say whether I would be as likely to make changes if I had to pay the change fee, but the flexibility of being able to switch flights fairly easily is awesome.
daron4000 is offline  
Old Jun 21, 2020, 3:52 pm
  #683  
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 222
My company which I estimate is a high six figure or low seven figure AA Airpass account holder just advised us that they have terminated our Airpass contract and we must stop using it immediately. We had mostly used Airpass to fly to and from Australia, China from the U.S. and by virtue of those routes being reduced we had an relatively easy way out but also at issue was that we had a specific change of control provision in our contract that required AA to notice our organization if any material events that would cause AA to lose control of the assets or operation of the program were imminent. We received such a notice in the past month which also gave a very clear signal that leaving such funds at AA was not a risk worth taking. Now I must admit I am curious how long AA might take to issue the rather large check but the contract does have a specific time frame but whether they pay up I guess remains to be seen.

While it has been widely reported that AA is in the process of pledging the AAdvantage program as collateral for debt obligations to the U.S. government as well as new issuance bonds there has been little to no reporting or interest in the other business units. But based on regulatory filings they are also pledging the Business Extra and Airpass program assets (among others such as aircraft, gate slots, ect). With the likely potential of AA going bankrupt [again], which increases by the day, this would essentially allow the company to selectively liquidate or be forced into forbearance on specific obligations (such as the frequent flyer or airpass programs) prior to the whole company going bankrupt. While AA has already had its series of financial troubles and bankruptcies in the past where the programs survived relatively unscathed, this time would be different as the decision would be taken out of AA's control as the creditors could force the liquidation of the specific collateralized segments of the business. This should be of great concern to any prepaid Airpass contact owner as their contracted interests in future travel on the airline could be wiped out even prior to AA even filing for insolvency or bankruptcy. The other real issue is that in collateralizing these programs the company could have much less flexibility in making good will gestures such as extending expiration dates or even making rate band changes.

If you have an Airpass contract you may want to check your contacts for any out clauses now before what may very well be inevitable happens.
BlatheringPenguin likes this.
FleyeSkyHigh is offline  
Old Aug 7, 2020, 4:29 pm
  #684  
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: DFW
Programs: AA EXP 1M
Posts: 300
deleted, posted in wrong forum
Psyclone*Jack is offline  
Old Sep 5, 2020, 5:53 am
  #685  
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,044
Some what surprised how little contact weve had from the AirPass team in the last few months, given how good, frequent, and proactive communications have been from them previously.

Does anybody know: have there been significant departures or job losses in that department?

Given a bunch of factors we are strongly considering not renewing. (Lack of communications is way down the list of reasons and no where near a deciding factor.)
BlatheringPenguin is offline  
Old Sep 5, 2020, 11:20 am
  #686  
 
Join Date: Dec 1999
Location: NYC/PHX
Programs: IATA, Sabre, AvgeekAgent
Posts: 1,958
Originally Posted by BlatheringPenguin
Given a bunch of factors we are strongly considering not renewing. (Lack of communications is way down the list of reasons and no where near a deciding factor.)
Interesting times. One would think the elimination of change fees will require a reworking of the Airpass value proposition, as both the Y-up and discounted advanced bookings will be more susceptible to cannibalization in the form of published fare purchases. I know many companies will only allow Airpass travel when it's a better deal than published fare (which may also benefit from negotiated corporate discounts).

All, in all, perhaps a rethinking of the cost and/or prepayment terms will help bolster the Airpass program (and AA's finances), particularly if companies are increasingly seeking to exit or pass on renewing contracts .
NYC Flyer is offline  
Old Sep 6, 2020, 4:14 pm
  #687  
 
Join Date: Oct 2019
Programs: Flying Blue, Hilton Honors, Amtrak Guest Rewards
Posts: 2,453
Originally Posted by NYC Flyer
All, in all, perhaps a rethinking of the cost and/or prepayment terms will help bolster the Airpass program (and AA's finances), particularly if companies are increasingly seeking to exit or pass on renewing contracts .
One avenue for AirPass to provide value might be allowing name changes on changeable tickets (perhaps contingent on maintaining a certain 30-day rolling average prepaid balance, to discourage running the balance to near zero).
hhdl is offline  
Old Sep 28, 2020, 8:11 am
  #688  
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 1,234
Just curious - given the pandemic , is AA giving Airpass members an extension of time to use their funds ?
Mister Nice is offline  
Old Sep 28, 2020, 8:45 am
  #689  
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Programs: AA: CK
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Originally Posted by Mister Nice
Just curious - given the pandemic , is AA giving Airpass members an extension of time to use their funds ?
They did a long time ago. My contract year was to end 3/15/21, and it was extended to 9/15/21. It was initially extended to 7/15/21, then to 9/15/21. This was all done without my requesting it. Seems more than fair, IMHO.
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BlooJoo is offline  
Old Sep 28, 2020, 10:25 am
  #690  
 
Join Date: Jul 2016
Posts: 222
Originally Posted by Mister Nice
Just curious - given the pandemic , is AA giving Airpass members an extension of time to use their funds ?
Ive been involved and an observer to negotiations between AA and some larger corporate customers regarding the Airpass program. AA has drawn a line in the sand in that they absolutely will not and cannot extend Airpass contacts past their original end date (inclusive of the standard one-year extension option). In essence the only thing they are offering is to waive the nominal cost/fee of the extension option that exists in the contracts already (which normally was a maximum of a onetime $600 fee). That does nothing to help companies that already were into the extension period of their contract and little to help those that were approaching the 1-year mark. AA is also standing firm that per the contract language only a single extension will be allowed per contract so for those negotiating with AA dont take a three, six, or nine-month extension without demanding a 12 month extension as now all extensions will be at equal cost (zero).

In addition, AA is also offering to allow AAirpass customers to roll existing funds in an expiring contract (which they already allowed) to a new contact BUT is now also offering to count those rolled funds towards the minimum threshold for a particular threshold (which they did not do before). For example, if a contract had $8,000 remaining, a company would only need to cough up an additional $2,000 to meet the $10,000 minimum contract threshold. Further, AAirpass previously offered unpublished discounts to the standard $0.40 base mileage multiplier rate for larger commitments and they are now also allowing rolled funds to count towards that threshold (so for example, if a larger corporation had $6.5MM left in a contract then would only have to wire over an additional $3.5MM) to lock in whatever base multiplier that applied to their $10MM annual commitment contact (which is meaningfully less than $0.40/mile). AA also has indicated that they have their hands tied at least for the next 18 months with regards to changing any of the new higher rate bands which took affect in early 2020.

In the first couple months of the pandemic Airpass was throwing around CK and EP status extensions but that was all quickly shutdown by the AAdvantage business unit and will not be repeated. As I have previously suggested I believe AAs inability and inflexibility with regards to Airpass is that the programs have been used as collateral against various loan commitments or the modification of the program terms is covered by covenants of existing debt obligations.

In my opinion, the Airpass program, which use to be quite useful, will slowly die and is basically being killed off by a change in direction for the airline. Over the past several years the Airpass program was already falling out of favor with in the organization. It had been bounced around a bit within the company and finally was absorbed into the business unit that primary handles Business Extra and Meeting Services and based on my dealings with the company Airpass is definitely not a priority (despite the cash it has on the balance sheet but that of course is countered by the liability of the few remaining uncapped contract holders). The industry has experienced a paramount change in short order due to the pandemic and Airpass doesnt fit with the direction of the airline and where its leadership is taking the company. Private and charter travel is picking up the high dollar business traveler and the legacy carriers are more and more focusing on the commodity business and leisure markets. Business commercial air travel is no longer the cash cow that it once was a decade ago to the legacy carriers. Despite all the money AA spent on a new website for Airpass last year, I believe the program will sunset over the next several years once any collateralized obligations expire.
FleyeSkyHigh is offline  

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