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So last Sunday Mr. Deals posted that he was essentially going for Platinum. That sorta put a wrench in my plans as I had actually given up on maintaining American Airlines platinum. I absolutely CANNOT have him one up me. No way, no how. So, here is the dilemma….
Typically I am an American Airlines flyer. About six years ago I was able to maintain Executive Platinum status for a few years. I absolutely loved my EXP status – my 8 eVIP upgrades, typically flying business class domestically, etc. But then when the business travel decreased, I slowly went down to Platinum and then Gold status. I was able to earn lifetime Gold, so at least I’ll have that on Mr. Deals for awhile! Earlier this year, I was flying a good bit with American so decided to go for the AA Platinum challenge. I quickly earned Platinum status again which I’ll maintain until February 2013.
I am now at 39,000 elite qualifying miles for this year and to maintain my Platinum status I must earn 50,000 miles. Now I absolutely could get the additional 11,000 miles needed, but after calculating it out, this will cost me about an extra $500 out of pocket. I would probably have to do one extra trip (mileage run) that I would not have otherwise done and on an upcoming trip the AA fare price was about $200 more than what I was able to get on another airline (and the other airline flight times are better and direct – no layover).
Prior to learning about Mr. Deals’ strategy, I decided to go the easy way. Fly the cheaper, more direct airline and not do a mileage run. And save about $500, which is a lot of money! My travel next year will most likely consist of Southwest Airlines since I have the companion pass and an international trip would be redeeming miles on AA, thus status won’t matter. Yes, I’ll have a few AA flights here and there, but no where to the extent when I was flying a ton for business. If I knew I was going to be flying American more next year, I might think differently.
Since I will still have Gold status, I can fly standby on an earlier flight for no fee, which is a huge perk to me. The only thing I’ll be missing out on is a 100% bonus on mileage flown (instead of 25%) and a higher position on the standby list. At this point for me, not worth the $500 price sticker and time spent. But again, I can’t have Mr. Deals win!
Decisions, decisions…. I actually think I might just allow Mr. Deals to have one up on me. I cannot believe I am actually saying this out loud, but it is true. At the end of the day though, is the time and money spent really worth it – I can confidently say in this situation it is not. Wow, does that make me sad…
There is still hope though… the Mr. hasn’t yet earned the status!
What would you do?!