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JUST THE FACTS: 2016 AAdvantage Program Changes Announced 17 Nov 2015

JUST THE FACTS: 2016 AAdvantage Program Changes Announced 17 Nov 2015

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Old May 5, 16, 9:18 am   -   Wikipost
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AAdvantage Program Changes for 2016 - Just the Facts
as announced 17 Nov 2015 in FAQ on aa.com

PLEASE READ BEFORE ASKING YOUR QUESTIONS: we are seeing the same questions come up time and again, and those are often addressed here. NOTE: this thread is being closely monitored and moderated as needed to ensure it stays within the narrow remit of its topic.


Please see and post to AAdvantage Changes for 2016 - Discussion and Reaction all reactions, speculation about next steps, opinions, discussion, praise, complaints etc.

Link to AAdvantage program updates and FAQ links (17 Nov 2015)

New related threads:

FAQ: Award changes after 22 March 2016 - which incur redeposit, which not (Award changes 22 March 2016 or after may incur award miles redeposit (fees) and significant increases of miles required to issue new ones - but some changes may be made without doing so.)

See Earning AA Elite Qualifying Miles / EQM on AA, oneworld, partners 2016 for more about earning EQM.

See Earning AA Award / Redeemable Miles / RDM on AA, partners later 2016 for more regarding AAdvantage Award ("Redeemable") Miles.
Link to Gary Leff's article with charts, etc.

Also: brp has revised his spreadsheet for 2016 conditions - now named Miles Tracker v. 8.0. It can be downloaded from Gargoyle's page linked to in the OP, or here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/...Tracker-v8.xls (NOTE: due to technical problems, the proper spreadsheet was not uploaded.)

AA reducing some checked baggage allowance tickets pchs on / after 29 Mar 2016

Elite Qualification and Earning Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) - Change 1 Jan 2016
In 2016, there will be two methods to qualify for elite status:
  • Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) or Elite Qualifying Segments (EQS)

  • Elite Qualifying Points (EQP) no longer exist (EQM replaced them).

  • Thresholds for elite status qualification remain the same as 2015.
EQM will continue to be calculated based on distance flown (base miles). All EQM on AA marketed flights ("AA codeshares" / "AA coded flights") will earn at least 1 EQM per mile flown, with bonus multipliers for higher fares (regardless of operating carrier, AA itself or another carrier):


AA Marketed Flights Link
  • 3 EQMs/mile – Full-fare First or Business / F, J
  • 2 EQMs/mile - Discount First or Business / A, P, D, R, I
  • 1.5 EQMs/mile – Full-fare Main Cabin / Y, B and W when AA marketed on airline partners
  • 1 EQM/mile - Discount Main Cabin / all other Main Cabin fares
  • This applies to all AA marketed flight numbers, regardless of operating carrier.
  • Elites continue to earn 500 EQM minimum per segment

    Originally Posted by brp View Post
    Further confirmation of above from inside AA. He (JonNYC) got a message from AAdvantage

    Originally Posted by JonNYC Vie
    That's what I'm told as well-- fix on the way, system not operating as intended at present.
    Further confirmation of above from inside AA. He got a message from AAdvantage
    Originally Posted by AAdvantage
    Thanks for your questions on EQM earning. There is a glitch in how the minimum mileage guarantee for EQMs is being calculated. The calculation should credit the 500 mile minimum before applying the EQM multiplier. Beginning in the next few weeks, we will be running a retroactive process to “true up” any accounts where the member did not earn the proper number of EQMs. This process will continue to run until the calculation can be reprogrammed in the AAdvantage system.
    So, they will do an adjustment for those that were shorted so far and the system will soon be fixed for real.
    Cheers.

    So, they will do an adjustment for those that were shorted so far and the system will soon be fixed for real.

    Cheers.
AA Elite-Qualifying Partner Airlines
  • 1.5 EQMs/mile - First, Business, and Premium Economy
  • 1.0 EQMs/mile - Full-fare economy (typically Y and B, but varies by partner)
  • 0.5 EQMs/mile - All other mileage-earning economy fares
  • This applies to partner-marketed flights which are eligible to earn AAdvantage miles (typically meaning operated by oneworld carriers and affiliates, though this varies by partner), even if operated by AA.
Link to aa.com Partner Airline Miles Earning Charts as of 1 Jan 2016.

The is no minimum dollar spending requirement to obtain status.

AAdvantage Miles Award Charts - Change 22 Mar 2016
Link to American Airlines Award Charts as of 22 Mar 2016 (Note: some region descriptions were updated ~10 Feb 2016.)

See this post by Smiley90 for a compilation of new mileage redemption charts and changes.

Link to oneworld and other airline Award Charts as of 22 Mar 2016

Link to tool for old and new award chart comparison by bgriz18.

The number of miles required for many awards changed effective March 22, 2016. Award flights ticketed on or after March 22, 2016 will be subject to the new award charts.

In addition, off-peak (OP) periods have been sharply reduced. For example, Europe OP has changed from Oct. 15-May 15 to Nov. 1-Dec. 14 & Jan. 10-Mar. 14.
NOTE: Region changes

  • Bolivia and Manaus, Brasil: changing from South America 2 to South America 1
  • Venezuela: changing from South America 1 to South America 2
  • Guam: changing from Asia 2 to South Pacific
  • Sri Lanka: changing from Asia 2 to Indian Subcontinent/Middle East
  • Kiribati, Palau, Solomon Islands and Tuvalu: added to South Pacific region
Earning Redeemable Miles (RDMs) / Award Miles - Change second half of 2016 (EST. ~1 OCT 2016)
For the first part of 2016, RDMs will continue to be earned as they are today. Sometime (most likely later) in "the second half of 2016" RDMs will switch to spend-based model, akin to Delta and United.

RDMs earned will be the base fare plus carrier-imposed fees (excluding any government-imposed taxes and fees) times the following multiplier based on status level:
  • 5 miles/U.S. dollar – non-status AAdvantage member
  • 7 miles/U.S. dollar – Gold Member
  • 8 miles/U.S. dollar – Platinum Member
  • 11 miles/U.S. dollar – Executive Platinum Member
It appears from the FAQ NO 500 mile minimum for elites - further information will be forthcoming from AA as these changes roll out.
In the example below, in Costa Rican Colones so used only for illustrative purposes, the airport and countered fees and taxes would be excluded from RDM calculations:

As it states in the thread specific to this issue, it appears ~01 October is the likely start date for revenue-based Award Miles earning - and they'll announce one month in advance.

Earning AA Award / "Redeemable" Miles / RDM on AA, partners later 2016

Originally Posted by Fernando_BR View Post
(2 May 2016)

Hi everyone,

This is what I´ve read on a Brazilian blog.

The blogger met Suzane Rubin on the T-Mobile Arena, and posted that she told him that they would not change before September, and probably only in October, with a 1-month notice.

I have a booked roundtrip Sao Paulo to Dallas in August, so I hope he is right and this information helps !

I don´t know him, but I follow his blog. You can check it (in Portuguese):
http://www.mestredasmilhas.com/2016/...ards-2016.html

(Reformatted for wiki use.)

"Agora vamos às novidades. Tive o privilégio de conversar particularmente com a Suzane Rubin, e a equipe do AAdvantage, e já posso adiantar algumas informações aqui. Eles me confirmaram que a mudança para revenue não irá ocorrer antes de setembro, mas com data provável em Outubro deste ano, e com pelo menos 1 mês de aviso prévio. Também o crédito de pontos será na data do voo, ou seja, se você compra uma passagem agora, e voa somente em dezembro, provavelmente irá receber pontos, e não milhas pela distância voada."

Translated:

Now for the news. I had the privilege to talk particularly with Suzanne Rubin and the AAdvantage team, and I can share some advance information here. It was confirmed to me that the change to revenue (based earning) will not occur before September, but with a probable date in October this year, and with at least one month's notice. Also the credit points will be for the date of the flight, or if you buy a ticket now, and fly only in December, will probably get points, but not (Award / Redeemable) miles by distance flown.

Business Extra changes

Effective 30 Nov 2015, European Business Extra members' accounts have been migrated to the joint AA-BA-IB "On Business" programme. (Announced 24 Nov 2015)

Apparently effective ~1 Jan 2016, BPX- upgrades become more restricted. See this post. (Remains unannounced!)

24 hour ticket hold gone as of 1 April 2016

HOLD ticket WILL change 1 Apr 2016 - 24 hr hold or / & cancel

Effective April 1, you will not be able to put paid bookings on 24-hour hold if making them by telephone.

The 24-hour hold (as well as "pay for extended hold") will be available online, though 24-hour hold will only be available for an indeterminate, interim period of time.

There will be no free cancellation if travel is booked less than seven days out.

Other key changes
  • As of January 1, 2016, EXPs will earn 4 SWUs (down from 8) upon requalification with 100K EQM. Two additional SWUs will be earned at 150K EQM, and again at 200K EQM.
  • As of March 1, 2016, Gold and Platinum elite members will earn 4 "stickers" for each 12,500 EQM flown (up from 10,000 EQM) in a membership year.
  • As of March 1, 2016, the price to purchase a "sticker" (online, kiosk, agent) increases to $40 (up from $30 online/kiosk, $35 agent).
  • As of March 1, 2016, the price to purchase 8 "stickers" using miles increases to 40,000 RDM (up from 35,000 RDM).
  • Elite status earned in 2016 for 2017 will expire on January 31, 2018.
  • No announcement about the rumored revised status challenge has been made
Link to ARCHIVE: 2016 AAdvantage Program Changes (formally unannounced, but reliably sourced)
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:26 pm
  #46  
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Originally Posted by AAbruflyer View Post
what happens with the million miler program? Do the award miles count towards it or the qualifying miles?
Didn't even look at the new announce but this was in the advance thing on these earning changes (which has proven to be 100% accurate, best I can tell):

Million Miler miles will continue to be based on the flight distance
Originally Posted by prw555 View Post
I like the new EQM earning. Just 3 trips to HKG in paid J and at EXP. Given go there every month, and else where also, would be Uber Exec Plat, if only such a program existed :-( Wonder if the "over achieving exec plat" extra SWU program will continue?
Only marginally related, I thought there was a -chance- they'd make some changes/improvements to CK at this point, kinda think it's a mistake that they didn't, personally.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:28 pm
  #47  
 
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Originally Posted by AAbruflyer View Post
what happens with the million miler program? Do the award miles count towards it or the qualifying miles?
Million miler still accrues based on distance flown per the AA FAQ.


How will the change to earning award miles impact the Million Miler program? Will this impact the miles I’ve already earned toward the Million Miler program?

Miles that count toward the Million Miler program will continue to be based on the distance of your flight, regardless of which airline is marketing your flight. That means the Million Miler miles could be different from the award miles earned. For example, the award miles earned for an American marketed flight will be calculated using the base fare paid versus the Million Miler miles will be based on flight distance.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:28 pm
  #48  
 
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Originally Posted by Viajero Millero View Post
I was OK with the changes. But the sneaky ..........s did stab the award chart.

No more Off Peak to South America 2 (except Manaos, Brazil).

Manaos, Brazil and Bolivia become South America 1.

Venezuela joins South America 2. (...)

Still not clear on Panama or Puerto Rico.
So far, Puerto Rico is NOT in the award chart. So, we (SJU-based flyers) will need to pay$$$$$$$ for our flights.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:29 pm
  #49  
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Hmm so with the new EQM earning would a BA flight number operated by AA give me 2EQMs?

and it seems they extended the promo to earn the bonus miles for J/F tickets.
http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles

which brings me to the same Q: would a BA flight number operated by AA earn me those bonus miles?
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:30 pm
  #50  
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Originally Posted by pinksalsa View Post
So far, Puerto Rico is NOT in the award chart. So, we (SJU-based flyers) will need to pay$$$$$$$ for our flights.
Calm down, it is likely a minor oversight. I'm sure they will add Puerto Rico and Panama soon enough.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:30 pm
  #51  
 
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Still better than United for Asia redemptions, albeit worse in other areas. One "bright" spot I haven't seen highlighted is Asia 1 (Japan, Korea), which only went to 80K in F, from 62.5K. That's a 28% increase, versus 63%.

JAL F is still a very decent option under these rules, although a bit more expensive. Sure, Asia 1 is pretty limited, but still, trying to find the silver lining here.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:30 pm
  #52  
 
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Originally Posted by jason8612 View Post
Hmm so with the new EQM earning would a BA flight number operated by AA give me 2EQMs?

and it seems they extended the promo to earn the bonus miles for J/F tickets.
http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles

which brings me to the same Q: would a BA flight number operated by AA earn me those bonus miles?
No. "Marketed and Operated by"..
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:30 pm
  #53  
 
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Originally Posted by jason8612 View Post
Hmm so with the new EQM earning would a BA flight number operated by AA give me 2EQMs?

and it seems they extended the promo to earn the bonus miles for J/F tickets.
http://www.aa.com/i18n/urls/aadvanta...itle=moremiles

which brings me to the same Q: would a BA flight number operated by AA earn me those bonus miles?
No. That promo has never included BA flight numbers. It will be 1.5EQM.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:31 pm
  #54  
 
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Originally Posted by Juanefny View Post
You will have awards. Caribbean at worst.
So far, the "region definitions" are clear. All specific countries located in the Caribbean are listed on. Puerto Rico is not there.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:32 pm
  #55  
 
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Originally Posted by pinksalsa View Post
I feel you 100%. But, im SJU-based. So the new changes mean to me that i will have ZERO awards. As we speak, im writing AA in order to correct this glitch.
What's the more likely explanation - a clerical oversight or "no awards to SJU"?
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:36 pm
  #56  
 
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I already have a lot of premium cabin travel booked for the second half of 2016 already, if it was booked prior to the revenue system even being announced will it earn based on dollars spent or miles flown?
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:37 pm
  #57  
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Originally Posted by SJC AA View Post
No. That promo has never included BA flight numbers. It will be 1.5EQM.
Oh, that just sucks.
So I'll be flying on AA, crediting to AA but earning less since i bought my ticket on BA.
Guess itll be my first and last year as a ExP
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:38 pm
  #58  
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Originally Posted by pinksalsa View Post
So far, the "region definitions" are clear. All specific countries located in the Caribbean are listed on. Puerto Rico is not there.
Which region is it in in current chart ? just assume it hasn't moved for now - if AA was to put SJU as a place explicitly with no awards, I suspect it would mention it ( c.f. Cuba )

The Puerto Rica sky is unlikely to be falling
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:38 pm
  #59  
 
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Earning miles switches to fare based in second half of 2016, which can be as early as July 1.

As for the award bookings, we have until March 21, 2016 to book at the old rates. Time to start planning.
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Old Nov 17, 15, 1:39 pm
  #60  
 
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Steep increases US to/from Asia 1/2, as expected.

Also large increases India to/from Asia 1/2. Which makes the 2-award transpac (CX/JL) route USA-India an even worse deal than before.

Given that transpac to India is shorter than transatlantic from the west coast, they really should have lifted the transatlantic-only rule for India; instead they priced CX and JL out of the market entirely.
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