AAdvantage members who want to enjoy the privileges of Executive Platinum status with American Airlines will now have to accrue $15,000 “Elite Qualifying Dollars” (EQD) in a calendar year, up from the previous threshold of $12,000.
USA Today reports that the change brings American into line with Delta and United, which have also recently raised the bar on qualifying for their highest level of elite status.
American customers also must fly at least 100,000 Elite Qualifying Miles (EQM) in a year to reach Executive Platinum status.
EQDs are generally equivalent to dollars spent on airfare, not including taxes and fees. American said that travellers on partner airlines British Airways, Iberia, Finnair, and Japan Airlines will now earn EQDs at the same rate as those on American flights, but that the earning rate on full-fare economy “Y” fares would be reduced from 1.5 EQDs per mile to 1.
American also announced that Executive Platinum members can earn more upgrades when they pass additional EQM milestones (150,000, 200,000 and 250,000 miles), or choose instead to receive 40,000 frequent flyer miles redeemable for air travel or other products and services.
Elite members also now have the option to gift 25,000 miles to friends or family members so they can achieve Gold status.
Other levels of American’s elite status hierarchy were unaffected.