AA Platinum Challenge - Tips

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cowombat

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You wrote
How do I sign up for the challenge?
Phone AAdvantage Customer Service in the US on +1 817 799 250 ( from Australia , replace the + with 0011 )

I made the mistake of calling the AAdvantage help desk out of their (US)business hours. So instead I called the London AAdvantage help desk. The nice lady knew all the details of the Plat Challenge and signed me up on the spot.
 

Dave Noble

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cowombat said:
You wrote
How do I sign up for the challenge?
Phone AAdvantage Customer Service in the US on +1 817 799 250 ( from Australia , replace the + with 0011 )

I made the mistake of calling the AAdvantage help desk out of their (US)business hours. So instead I called the London AAdvantage help desk. The nice lady knew all the details of the Plat Challenge and signed me up on the spot.

i would suggest that you give the USA a call and make sure that it has been set up correctly. Others have used the UK to sign up and been told all was ok, yet after flying 10k qpoints worth of travel found they had no status and , on phoning, found that it had never been set up

Dave
 

tuapekastar

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cowombat said:
You wrote
How do I sign up for the challenge?
Phone AAdvantage Customer Service in the US on +1 817 799 250 ( from Australia , replace the + with 0011 )

I made the mistake of calling the AAdvantage help desk out of their (US)business hours. So instead I called the London AAdvantage help desk. The nice lady knew all the details of the Plat Challenge and signed me up on the spot.

And I would suggest that having signed up, you call back shortly before you fly, just to confirm it. The number I used on both occasions (and got a knowledgable peron who explained the challenge to me in detail) was (US number) 1-800-421-0600.
 

cowombat

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Thanks for suggestion to affirm my Plat Challenge membership. I rang AA in the US this morning. Got confirmation that all was in place. So in this case the UK office was on the ball. But worth checking anyway.
 

cowombat

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Thanks to Dave Noble, and things to watch for...

Having signed up for the Challenge in mid January, today I got an e:mail from AAdvantage

"Congratulations! You did it again!

I want to be the first to applaud you for requalifying as an AAdvantage Platinum(R) member for the next elite membership year (2007). In just a few weeks you'll receive your new card by mail. Enjoy it - you deserve it!"

Getting to 50,000 Qualifying Points was relatively easy with the Challenge... and got full value with the double points earning after the first 10,000 miles.

A couple of things I learnt
1/ Read Dave's post very carefully. I accidentally allocated to AAdvantage a transatlantic flight on BA. Fortunately the lady at AA who signed me up for the challenge picked this up, and immediately changed the link to QFF, so all points were gathered OK

2/ I carefully watched my file on the AAdvantage website as I approached 10,000 miles. I had been flying on QF, CX, BA and AA, and the various flights were being posted haphazardly, not in the date order flown. As a consequence, I had actually reached 10000 miles, but some later flights posted did not have my 200% bonus miles. I rang AAdvantage Help Desk, and the very helpful guy fixed it with a one-off correction. When done, they don't correct the original flight record, but make a special line addition which looks like
02/03/06 PLT CHALLENGE BONUS-REG MEMBER 0 4,486 4,486

So all is good :D , but watch the postings carefully!
 

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Re: Thanks to Dave Noble, and things to watch for...

cowombat said:
I rang AAdvantage Help Desk, and the very helpful guy fixed it with a one-off correction. When done, they don't correct the original flight record, but make a special line addition which looks like
02/03/06 PLT CHALLENGE BONUS-REG MEMBER 0 4,486 4,486

Actually, that bonus is the one that is done automagically when you reach Platinum rather than being an AA customer service line

A Customer service amendment would appear in format of
01/06/06 CUSTOMER SERVICE BONUS 0 500 500

When you reach the 10k points , it will initially show the flight earnings based on base status. When they system does its automatic update of the account, it adds the PLT CHALLENGE BONUS-REG for the qualifying flight and then corrects the bonus for all the subsequent flights, normally without any action being needed to get manual corrections

Dave
 

JamesF

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Hi All,

I called AA today (from the US 1800 421 0600) and officially signed up for the Platinum challenge. As others on this board have reported, they were very happy to help and explained all the different aspects of the challenge.

They also emailed me a useful document about the details of the challenge. Not sure if this is a new thing, but its a hard-copy confirmation that I am enrolled, which is nice.

Thanks for speaking with me about your AAdvantage account. We have put you on a Challenge for AAdvantage Platinum membership. Congratulations - and Good Luck!

Here are some helpful tips:

- Remember that Challenges are based on points, not miles, and your goal is 10,000 points in the three-month period we discussed. If you're not sure how you earn points, read on. (That's why you wanted this email, right?)

- Use American Airlines (of course!) and other elite-qualifying carriers to maximize your earnings. These elite carriers are Aer Lingus, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Finnair, Iberia, LAN, Qantas and Alaska Airlines (and their eligible affiliates). When you earn miles on AA or on these carriers, you also earn points. Only points count toward your Challenge. (But remember that there are some fares on these carriers that are not eligible to earn miles or points. You can easily check out these rules on aa.com/aadvantage when you select 'Partners and Mileage Programs' and then navigate to the particular airline.)

- Select fares with high point values. If, for example, you use Deep Discount Fares, get ready to fly 20,000 miles because those fares earn points at half the rate of miles. But if you buy Discount Fares, the rate is one point per mile and you can meet your Challenge by flying 10,000 elite-qualifying miles. And if you select premium fares, you earn 1.5 points per mile and can meet the Challenge by flying just - OK, you do the math!

- Know the point values you'll earn for the booking codes you select. Yes it may look like alphabet soup, but there's a point to these codes. In fact, there's anywhere from .5 - 1.5 points!

- Earn 1.5 points per mile when the purchased fare on your American Airlines ticket begins with one of these booking codes: A F P D I J B Y
- Earn 1.0 point per mile for these AA booking codes: H K L M V W
- Earn .5 points per mile for these AA booking codes: G N O* Q** S (sorry, you knew there had to be an asterisk somewhere)

- Equivalent booking codes for the other elite-qualifying carriers are included on the various airline pages on AA.com

- How can you determine what booking code is used for the fare you're purchasing? Simply ask the booking agent, whether that's your travel agent, corporate travel planner or AA Reservations representative. Or, even better, when you book your flights on AA.com, the Flight Summary screen displays the booking code in the same column as the cabin booked

- Here's an easy way to keep track of your progress: Before you take your first flight in the Challenge period, look at your YTD Elite Qualifying Points. You can access this information when you login to AA.com with your AAdvantage number and password. (If I've just lost you, call us at 800-421-0600 and request the email on 'AA.com Login and Passwords.') Click on 'View My Miles' and your Mileage Summary (displayed on the left) includes your YTD Elite Qualifying Points. Add 10,000 to this number and that's what you're shooting for. At the end of your Challenge, if your YTD Elite Qualifying Points are 10,000 more than when you started, victory is yours and you'll see 'Status: Platinum' on your Home Page right below your name when you login to AA.com.

A Challenge is intended for members who are in a hurry to get to the elite level they desire. Think of it as a shortcut to the status you would probably earn on your own during the normal 12-month qualification period. If you meet your Challenge goal, then you will be expected to requalify the following year by meeting the normal criteria. We know you can do it.

Now here are those pesky but important footnotes:

*O -- only eligible domestic fares booked in O will count

**Q -- excludes American Airlines transatlantic fares booked in Q and equivalent booking codes on participant airlines

Regards,

AAdvantage Customer Service

Hope this helps. Thanks everyone for your advice

Cheers

James
 

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A question

Can I credit my domestic travel on QF to my AA number?

Live on Gold Coast
 

QF WP

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Yes, travel with any of the Partner Airlines (whether domesic or International) can be put on your AA account. Here is the QF table.

Mrs LW has been crediting most of her travel to her AA account (unless it's an N class fare). When she's bought one of those online red e-deals, she's been crediting to QF, because under AA it doesn't accrue mileage...
 

raccoon111

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This sounds almost too good to be true. :D
I'll be flying to from SYD to SIN for a week and back in July, on BA WT+.
So if I sign up for AAdvantage and register for the Plat challenge, I'll be AA Plat/oneworld Sapphire by the time i get back to SYD? And I can use the QP when flying QF domestically and internationally?

Thanks :D
 

Dave Noble

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raccoon111 said:
This sounds almost too good to be true. :D
I'll be flying to from SYD to SIN for a week and back in July, on BA WT+.
So if I sign up for AAdvantage and register for the Plat challenge, I'll be AA Plat/oneworld Sapphire by the time i get back to SYD? And I can use the QP when flying QF domestically and internationally?

Thanks :D

Yes. SYD-SIN is 3908 miles. In WT+ you earn 1.5 qualifying points (Qpoints) per mile flown => will earn 5,862 qpoints . Doing the round trip will earn a total of 11,724 qpoints

10,000 qpoints are needed to complete the Platinum Candy Thief Challenge and so , if you start the challenge in July, you will have AA Platinum status (OW Sapphire ) through till end of Feb 2008. As an OW Sapphire member you are entitled to business class check in and business class lounge access when travelling on an OW carrier so, yes, you will be able to use the QPs when travelling domestically and internationally

Fly 50,000 miles/earn 50,000 qpoints during 2007 to renew

Your mileage earning for the trip will be 3908 + 391 class of service bonus on the outbound = 4299 and 3908 base + 391 COS + 3908 platinum bonus = 8207 on the inbound. Total earning = 12,506

Dave
 

raccoon111

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Thank you for you advise Dave.
I am currently QF PS. When I get AA Plat, will I be recognised as emerald by QF when flying on them and giving only my QFF number? Eg, must I show the AA Plat card to enter QP as it may not appear on my boarding pass?

I still want points credited to my QF account. How bout the points and SCs earned during the challenge? Can these go the the QF account?

Whats the best arrangement for a aussie based QF PS?
 

Dave Noble

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raccoon111 said:
Thank you for you advise Dave.
I am currently QF PS. When I get AA Plat, will I be recognised as emerald by QF when flying on them and giving only my QFF number? Eg, must I show the AA Plat card to enter QP as it may not appear on my boarding pass?

I still want points credited to my QF account. How bout the points and SCs earned during the challenge? Can these go the the QF account?

Whats the best arrangement for a aussie based QF PS?

AA Platinum is OW Sapphire rather than Emerald whilst QF PS is OW Ruby

In order to get AA Platinum, you will of course have to credit the flights to AA in order to get status.

Why would you want to credit to QF though? AA gives a much better earning to burning ratio ( e.g. 20k AA points gives a r/t from anywhere in Oz to anywhere in Oz/NZ and 35k for business ) plus no Fuel Fines to pay on awards.

If you wanted to coninue crediting to QF , then you would have to show the AA card for lounge access.

I would look at the schemes and see whether AA would be better value to collect to in the longer term

If you collect miles through AMEX, these can be laundered to AA too

Dave
 

cowombat

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AnEx Points to AA?

Hi Dave

I'm an AmEx platinum card member. Your above post refers to ability to allocate these to AAdvantage mileage? How can this be done please? The AmEx site makes no reference to such - only offering Malaysian or Qantas as airline partners for points transfer. Or do you feed them first to Hilton or Starwood, then across to AA? Thanks for your expert advice!
 

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Dave Noble said:
In WT+ you earn .5 qualifying points
I know you meant to type 1.5 here, Dave.

cowombat, you can "launder" AMEX points through SPG and onto AA. We discussed that a couple of days ago in this thread - see NM's confirmation in his post 31 Mar 10:55am.
 

JohnK

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Re: AnEx Points to AA?

cowombat said:
The AmEx site makes no reference to such - only offering Malaysian or Qantas as airline partners for points transfer.
Sorry this is not the thread to discuss this but you can also transfer Amex points to Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines and Thai Airways.

Amex Membership Rewards Partners
 

matau

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I have a quick question and hope someone can help.

In the next month I have a trip to HKK....problem fare is O so 0.5 points for that trip....also two return trips Sydney-Melbourne standard economy.

Is the platinum challenge still do-able?

I'm new at all this :D
 

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Matau, trust you meant Hong Kong (HKG) and not Hokitika, NZ (HKK), if it's the latter then no chance of a Plat challenge from the flights you listed.

You don't say who you are flying with - QF or CX, but I presume QF from your comment "fare is O so 0.5 points" (looking at the QF Table on the AA website).

To meet the Plat Challenge, you need 10,000 QPoints. On your trip of ~4,480 miles each each way (SYD/HKG) , on each one way segment you'll only get 50% mileage and 25% QPoints on QF (as it's 0.5 EQP's per base mile earned, so 50% of 50%). Therefore; you earn 2,240 miles and 1,120 EQP's. As it's a return flight, total earn is 4,480 miles and 2,240 EQP's (well short of Gold, let alone Platinum).

If you can be booked on the AA codeshare flight number, then you'll earn as per AA flights (100% mileage and 50% EQP's). Therefore, calculations become (using return journey) 8,960 miles and 4,480 EQP's earned. So this is a little better QPoint earning but still just short on these flights in isolation. It may be harder to get the AA codeshare (should be easier if you book via AA SYD Reservations).

If you then add a couple of return flights SYD/MEL/SYD, then you'll reach the Gold Challenge (as each sector is 500 EQP's as long as you don't book in N class), but you'll need a lot in the 90 day period to meet the Platinum Challenge.
 

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matau said:
I have a quick question and hope someone can help.

In the next month I have a trip to HKK....problem fare is O so 0.5 points for that trip....also two return trips Sydney-Melbourne standard economy.

Is the platinum challenge still do-able?

I'm new at all this :D
I assume you mean HKG (Hong Kong), which is 4581 miles from SYD. Note that an O fare from Qantas will only earn at a rate of 0.25 EQP per mile flown. So with a QF O fare, you will earn 2290 Elite Qualifying Points towards the Challenge for the return SYD-HKG-SYD itinerary.

SYD-MEL is 439 miles. You will earn the minimum 500 EQP for each flight. If the SYD-MEL-SYD flights are in B or Y class fares, then you will earn 1.5 EQP per mile flown, being 658 EQP per segment. So that means after the SYD-HKG-SYD and two SYD-MEL-SYD trips (in B or Y) you will have 4922 EQP and hence not quite sufficient to complete the Gold challenge.

You will still be considerably short for the Platinum Challenge.
 
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matau said:
I have a quick question and hope someone can help.

In the next month I have a trip to HKK....problem fare is O so 0.5 points for that trip....also two return trips Sydney-Melbourne standard economy.

Is the platinum challenge still do-able?

I'm new at all this :D
I believe O class only gives a ¼ Qpoint per mile flown (½ Qualifying Point Per Base Mile Earned at ½ Mileage Accrual ).

See here for more information: AAdvantage: Qantas Airways Earning

SYD-HKG is ~4580 miles so the return will earn 2790 Qpoints.

So in this case, there may be no benefit for you.
 
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