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Upgrade Priority: Status, Upgrade Type, Rolling 12 Month EQD Spend

Old May 16, 2017, 12:53 pm
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Last edit by: Prospero
As of May 20, 2017 upgrade prioritization is:
  1. Elite status
    1. Concierge Key
    2. Executive Platinum
    3. Platinum Pro
    4. Platinum
    5. Gold
  2. Upgrade type
    1. Miles and copay award upgrades and systemwide upgrades, Business Extra? (SWU)
    2. 500 mile upgrades on purchased tickets (including EXP complimentary UDU)
    3. 500 mile upgrades on upgrade eligible awards (including EXP complimentary UDU)
    4. BXP Business Extra upgrades

Elite qualifying dollars* in the past 12 months
  • Booking class (in order, J, D, I, W, P, Y, H, K, M, L, V, G, S, N, Q, O, T)
    Time of request


  • *Your 12-month Rolling EQD value is different from your Year-to-Date (YTD) EQDs, which is used to track your progress toward elite status. It includes your EQD earned from reaching qualifying spend thresholds on eligible AAdvantageŽ AviatorTM MasterCardŽ cards.

    Link to EQD earning Help Desk thread on FlyerTalk.

    No- or lower status companion and effect on upgrade position

    WAIT LIST, SAME PNR: Prior to upgrade request going to airport list
    • SWU, Miles & Copay, Business Extra: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status. (BX is unsure, stated as least of priorities, likely to up D-24 only)
      • 500 mile / UDU: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status
        • Award travel: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status



    WAIT LIST, SEPARATE PNR: Prior to upgrade request going to airport list
    • SWU, Miles & Copay: lower status passenger DOES NOT "borrow" higher status under any circumstance
      • 500 mile / UDU: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status IF PNRs "linked"
        • Business Extra upgrade instruments
          • Award travel: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status IF PNRs "linked"




    AIRPORT LIST, SAME PNR:
    • SWU, Miles & Copay: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status. (BX is unsure, but is least of priorities, likely to up D-24 only)
      • 500 mile / UDU: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status
        • Business Extra upgrade instruments
          • Award travel: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status



    AIRPORT LIST, SEPARATE PNR:
    • SWU, Miles & Copay: lower status passenger DOES NOT "borrow" higher status under any circumstance
      • 500 mile / UDU: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status IF PNRs "linked"
        • Business Extra upgrade instruments
          • Award travel: lower status passenger "borrows" higher status IF PNRs "linked"



    NOTES:
    1. Traveling companion 500 mile upgrades (even for those pax using UDU) "stickers" must pull from higher status passenger's account.
      • Lower status passenger previously "borrowing" higher status may require human processing at the airport to re-establish "borrowed status" linkage


    (Companion information thanks to DW)
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Upgrade Priority: Status, Upgrade Type, Rolling 12 Month EQD Spend

Old May 16, 2017, 4:42 pm
  #61  
 
Join Date: Jan 2000
Programs: UA 1k, AA EXPLT, NZ GE, VA PLT Hyatt Diam, Marr Plat, HH Diam
Posts: 3,455
Originally Posted by AATrout
Expand on this. Award Upgrades are not the same as Award Tickets. The former often involve a copay for INTL travel. If the copay upgrade continuum for INTL travel is different than domestic - I would appreciate that clarity. I think what you are saying is the last tranche being 500-mile segments = domestic is accurate. But not those preceding it.
Expanding further, it's valid for all 500 mile upgrade eligible markets.
On American marketed and operated flights:
  • Upgrades from Main Cabin to the next class of service on flights within/between the U.S. (including Hawaii), Canada, Mexico, the Bahamas, Bermuda, the Caribbean and Central America
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Old May 16, 2017, 4:51 pm
  #62  
 
Join Date: Jun 2000
Location: JFK > LGA >> EWR
Programs: AA EXP 1.2mm, Kimpton IC, Starwood Gold, Marriott Gold
Posts: 2,185
Originally Posted by Time traveller
This year, I have missed quite a few (greater than 50%) of "sticker upgrades" as an EXP. AA upgrades are becoming like UA upgrades. Unless you are AA CK (or UA GS), don't expect upgrades anymore.
It might be something about your travel pattern. I am 16/18 for comp upgrades this year (as EXP). Last year was 19/23.
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Old May 16, 2017, 4:54 pm
  #63  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Programs: AA, WN, UA, Bonvoy, Hertz
Posts: 2,506
Originally Posted by Time traveller
I feel service is down too. On the flights in Y without the upgrades, only once did a FA offer me a complementary snack/beverage. The FAs did their required beverage service and then disappeared to the back until the flight landed.
Let me phrase it this way. If AA felt that the FA would offer the food and drink to EXP or CK consistently, they would not need to publish this information in both the onboard magazine and menu card. They could "surprise and delight" customers.

I just order the food and beverage and when they look to their tablet to take payment, they will see your seat with the color indicator and can mark the payment with a status that will zero out the payment cost. There is nothing DYKWIA about it as you will be told no amount due. I think of it as a coupon at checkout rather than items priced as zero.

Rasheed
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Old May 16, 2017, 5:23 pm
  #64  
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: USA
Programs: AA EXP, UA GLD, Bonvoy Titan, HH Dia, WoH Exp
Posts: 2,673
Originally Posted by rasheed
Let me phrase it this way. If AA felt that the FA would offer the food and drink to EXP or CK consistently, they would not need to publish this information in both the onboard magazine and menu card. They could "surprise and delight" customers.

I just order the food and beverage and when they look to their tablet to take payment, they will see your seat with the color indicator and can mark the payment with a status that will zero out the payment cost. There is nothing DYKWIA about it as you will be told no amount due. I think of it as a coupon at checkout rather than items priced as zero.

Rasheed
I hear you. If a drink or a snack was really that important, I would have asked for them and showed the FA my BP and/or EXP card. I didn't really bother as it's really small stuff and they were shorter 2-3 hour mid-con flights. However a few years ago when I was flying TATL J on AA, the FA never asked for my meal order and skipped over me during a meal service. I certainly spoke up and asked to speak to the purser. Although I fly TATL J several times a year, I remember I was dressed very casually in a T-shirt and jeans on that flight, but that was a very unusual experience in my many years of being a EXP.

It's just that I feel more and more FAs are barely doing their jobs these days and I can tell they are not really happy to be working. I am not saying UA or DL is any better. And it is true that many of us are also guilty of not always looking forward to going to work everyday either. But flying is definitely a different experience nowadays with all the media bashing of the airlines and a greater exposure of unruly passengers and airline workers on the news.

Last edited by Time traveller; May 16, 2017 at 5:30 pm
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Old May 16, 2017, 5:29 pm
  #65  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: BUR
Programs: AA, DL Platinum, AS, AF/KL, UA, VS, HA, Hilton Gold, Marriott Gold, Hertz Presidents Circle
Posts: 1,803
I keep getting "Get Platinum Status Now" emails offering it for $1479. One came today. Obviously those like me getting these offers aren't spending a lot with AA currently or they'd already be of that status so taking up such an offer will mean they we'll be at or near bottom of the upgrade pecking order. Beside this being the same price that was offered late last year so it being a lower value now, this new pecking-order policy effectively devalues that Platinum status price no matter when it was purchased.

If I had taken AA up on that $1500-ish offer for Plat and then learned of this new policy, I would be fuming. I feel really bad for those who were duped.
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Old May 16, 2017, 5:56 pm
  #66  
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Posts: 149
Is this for the upgrade priority only at the airport, or as soon as the window opens?

If the latter, I don't understand how a higher status 500-mile upgrade can take priority over a lower status miles upgrade award, when they come from different inventories, don't they?
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Old May 16, 2017, 6:07 pm
  #67  
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The only saving grace for this I see for lower spending EXPs who book in advance is that upgrades may clear up to 4 days ahead of the flight. This could protect from loosing upgrades to EXPs booking within the 4-day window...However, that probably assumes a pretty empty F, which you may clear anyway...

I also feel that EXPs will be fine in leasurely routes regardless...I often clear at the T-100 mark and the F cabin is still half open...
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Old May 16, 2017, 6:17 pm
  #68  
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Chicago, IL
Programs: AA PPro, 1MM
Posts: 505
Originally Posted by Time traveller
I don't know if this will make a big difference for a lot of travelers.

This year, I have missed quite a few (greater than 50%) of "sticker upgrades" as an EXP. AA upgrades are becoming like UA upgrades. Unless you are AA CK (or UA GS), don't expect upgrades anymore.

I feel service is down too. On the flights in Y without the upgrades, only once did a FA offer me a complementary snack/beverage. The FAs did their required beverage service and then disappeared to the back until the flight landed.
I've noticed a downturn in e500 upgrades this year too but I've yet to not be offered a snack/beverage when sitting in Y. Where they mainline flights where you weren't offered one?
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Old May 16, 2017, 6:20 pm
  #69  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: MIA
Programs: AAdvantage Exec Plat SPG Platinum
Posts: 308
Originally Posted by oysterhead43
New perk for upgrades on award tickets applies to domestic only.
Does the hew upgrade perk apply to the domestic segments of an award ticket that has an international destination?
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Old May 16, 2017, 6:36 pm
  #70  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Programs: AA, WN, UA, Bonvoy, Hertz
Posts: 2,506
Originally Posted by Time traveller
It's just that I feel more and more FAs are barely doing their jobs these days and I can tell they are not really happy to be working. I am not saying UA or DL is any better
I don't want to get hit by going off topic, but I know you are asking about if it is worth to upgrade and/or the remaining experience as an elite or frequent flyer.

On this topic, I believe AA agrees with you about the lack of consistency of in-flight service. I can't think of another major reason why they would offer a voluntary raise in April. 5 percent to FAs. I am not sure I agree that this will help the issue though. I feel good FAs will continue doing a good job and mediocre ones will be the same.

I personally feel DL has done the best even beyond SWA in this area. UA has so much to recover after years of issues. Perhaps the recent viral media will put more attention to staff attitudes, but I don't know. My read is if flyers put up with a bad miles program, surly staff is no big deal. We can see AA is making an effort, but I think it is not the right solution.

Originally Posted by Oakshadow
I

If I had taken AA up on that $1500-ish offer for Plat and then learned of this new policy, I would be fuming. I feel really bad for those who were duped.
On this issue, this policy had been known to be coming since the renewal offers (before them). If anyone bought up and did not read the fine print on all the 2017 Elite changes and plans, I see that as a personal responsibility. So no one should have been "duped".

I will say further that this upgrade method change is not beneficial to Plats and Golds (as I have already indicated). However, the biggest downgrade for Plats in particular is the Plat Pro status addition, not this order change. Because even the smallest EQD Plat Pro will be rated above the highest EQD Plat member. Now, this is not a big issue today because few Plat Pros likely are in the system (in fact, if we have a lot, I suspect they are good candidates for getting to EXP). The 2017 buy offer was not attractive offer even if one had surpassed the EQM in 2016. However, closer to the end of the year, aside from the usual new elites, the four level effect on upgrades will be more obvious to the lower levels I think.

Rasheed

Last edited by rasheed; May 16, 2017 at 6:48 pm Reason: Added ordering comment.
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Old May 16, 2017, 8:20 pm
  #71  
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: WAS, SZX, HKG
Programs: AS MVPG75K, CX Green
Posts: 753
Quick question... how to view my 365 days rolling EQD? I didn't see it anywhere on the website, maybe I need to give AAdv a call?
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Old May 16, 2017, 8:54 pm
  #72  
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: 1 hour from Khao Yai, Thailand. No longer Bangkok, China, Taiwan , Palm Coast, FL though still exiled, again, from the Bay Area.
Programs: Only the good ones
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Originally Posted by JonNYC
They don't.
They have. Been there and done that.
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Old May 16, 2017, 8:55 pm
  #73  
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Originally Posted by JonNYC
I'd speculate definitely the latter
Interesting. So the upgrade lists for every single flight would have to get re-sorted literally every single day. I really can't imagine how the value in doing this remotely justifies the IT effort, compared to other criteria which are much more static.
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Old May 16, 2017, 9:15 pm
  #74  
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I'd imagine elites with identical EQD's is more common than you'd think. There are only a finite number of digits between, say, 3000 and 5999 (though of course that's not the only qualification for an elite level), and there are certainly more than 3000 platinums. Of course the odds that two are on the same flight drops, and the odds that those two specifically are next up for the last available F seat drops further. Still, if it happened once a day across the system, I wouldn't be surprised at all. Putting aside the zero EQD scenario.

PS, I am not a statistician, but I took a statistics course once in college.
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Old May 16, 2017, 9:16 pm
  #75  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Chicago
Programs: AA- EXP UA - Silver SPG- PLT Marriott- PLT
Posts: 797
Originally Posted by javabytes
Interesting. So the upgrade lists for every single flight would have to get re-sorted literally every single day. I really can't imagine how the value in doing this remotely justifies the IT effort, compared to other criteria which are much more static.
You're right, this will be quite the effort. Currently, Shirley in Dallas comes in every morning and pulls out her stack of index cards listing the upgrades for each flight, and adds the previous day's reservations to the bottom of the pile, since they are sorted by date of request. Now she's going to have sort through the cards and reorder them each time based on rolling spend, which will be constantly changing. Maybe this will create more jobs?
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