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AA CC free baggage/pri boarding & travel partner paying?

AA CC free baggage/pri boarding & travel partner paying?

Old Feb 2, 2024, 8:40 am
  #1  
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AA CC free baggage/pri boarding & travel partner paying?

Sorry if this has been posted before; a quick search didn't find anything.

I have an AA Citi cc that gets free baggage and priority boarding. No problems using it when I book the trip and pay for it with my new wife (both on same PNR).

She wants to try to use her FF miles to pay for an upcoming trip (either for both of us; or at least her). If she pays completely, from the wording
"Up to four individuals traveling with the eligible primary cardmember will also get their first checked bag free of charge if they are listed in the same reservation." - I think it would be good to go, since we are on the same PNR. Is this the correct interpretation?

What happens if she pays for herself (ie. her award miles for her ticket, mine for mine)? Is there an option to combine reservations? If so, does that they get us back to the same situation as above, where she'd get the luggage and boarding perks? I know decades ago, on Delta, I used to be able to move my parents separately-books flights to my PNR, so we all had free luggage and pri boarding. But not sure if that applies for American (and I'm not sure if Delta even does that anymore).

She doesn't have a ton of AAvantage miles. I'm trying to figure out a way where it's not a choice between using them or getting the perks.

Thanks.

Jeff
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Old Feb 2, 2024, 9:36 am
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If you have enough miles of your own, I suggest that you book both of you with your miles. That's all that is necessary for both of you to get priority boarding and a free checked bag. Those privileges are tied to the credit-card-holder's AAdvantage account; there is no requirement to use the credit card to get the benefit.

Last edited by guv1976; Feb 2, 2024 at 10:17 am
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Old Feb 2, 2024, 9:50 am
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As an alternative, she can use her miles for both of you in one direction, and you can use your miles for both of you in the other direction. Be aware, though, that AA sometimes charges less for a roundtrip award than for two one ways. Check the pricing before you decide how to book.
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Old Feb 2, 2024, 9:57 am
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I would do as guv1976 suggests. You both need to be on the same PNR for your travel partner to get the same benefits. (Valentine's Day is coming up! Get her her own AA credit card!)
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Old Feb 2, 2024, 12:59 pm
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Originally Posted by guv1976
As an alternative, she can use her miles for both of you in one direction, and you can use your miles for both of you in the other direction. Be aware, though, that AA sometimes charges less for a roundtrip award than for two one ways. Check the pricing before you decide how to book.
So are you saying as long as we are on the same PNR from the beginning, we are good? [I (cc holder) don't have to be a paying member, but a passenger on the PNR?]

Does that mean that trying to combine PNR's to one that I'm on can't or won't work?

Jeff
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Old Feb 2, 2024, 1:50 pm
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Originally Posted by jwhite4
So are you saying as long as we are on the same PNR from the beginning, we are good? [I (cc holder) don't have to be a paying member, but a passenger on the PNR?]
As long as your AAdvantage number is in the PNR -- and this is for domestic travel -- everyone in the same PNR will get one free checked bag. It does not matter whose miles are used; it does not matter what form of payment is used to pay for the $5.60/person September 11 Security Fee.

There is no way to extend your credit-card benefits to passengers on different PNRs.
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Old Feb 3, 2024, 1:03 pm
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Originally Posted by guv1976
There is no way to extend your credit-card benefits to passengers on different PNRs.
Directly, I would agree. It's still unclear to me if you can merge someone else's reservation onto my PNR. Then that would handle any case with additional travelers.
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Old Feb 3, 2024, 1:08 pm
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Originally Posted by jwhite4
Directly, I would agree. It's still unclear to me if you can merge someone else's reservation onto my PNR. Then that would handle any case with additional travelers.
You can't.

If you were entitled to certain benefits -- like free Main Cabin Extra seats -- due to elite status, AA would let you extend those benefits to others traveling with you on a separate PNR. But AFAIK, you cannot do that with the credit-card benefits.
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Old Feb 3, 2024, 2:46 pm
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Originally Posted by jwhite4
Directly, I would agree. It's still unclear to me if you can merge someone else's reservation onto my PNR. Then that would handle any case with additional travelers.
You cannot merge them after booking separately, into a new single PNR for all travelers.

However, any semi-competent agent can "Cross Reference" the PNR's on the back end, and that serves as a flag for IRROPS, re-bookings, re-seating, etc.
I don't think it has any sort of front-end functionality to extend benefits gained via AA elite status or CC card benefits, to a non-elite or non-CC card holder (jn your case, the free checked bag benefit).

I have had success with an elite member calling in to cross reference PNR's and getting a non-elite traveler on a separate PNR to be moved to MCE or preferred seating areas on an aircraft for free, where the elite is already seated. But that is a YMMV situation.

As mentioned, 2 one-way reservations that have both travelers on the same PNR seems to be the best way to utilize the miles and/or cash you both have AND gain any entitled benefits for the whole traveling party.
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