American Airlines will let you buy back your status if you aren’t going to requalify. On the one hand it’s expensive. On the other if you were going to mileage run to reach the status level, this saves you time.
- I genuinely don’t see the value of buying back Gold at all. Just get an AAdvantage co-brand credit card, and use the cash savings from the buy up offer to pay for Main Cabin Extra seats in advance instead of waiting until check-in.
- Higher status seems questionable given how much American charges, though it depends on how you value the benefits and how much you will use them next year. If you’re going to be flying more in the future than you did in the year you’re failing to requalify then it could be something to consider.
American may realize their prices are too high, or at least that they have plenty of time to market to members in different ways. If a member doesn’t buy, why not put elite status on a clearance sale?
I’ve been flying American Airlines less this year, and haven’t yet requalified for Executive Platinum status. However I’ll reach that after my next trip which is already ticketed. In mid-November they sent me an offer to buy back my status for $2645.
Now there’s absolutely no way I was going to pay that much even if I wasn’t going to requalify. There’s also no reason to pay it right away, my current status runs through January 31. Why not wait? New information can always come up and affect plans.
- New trips that would push someone over their status level
- A change in life circumstance which means more or less travel next year, so the value of the status would change
- American could decide to make changes to the program that mean status is less valuable
Giving an airline money later is almost always better than giving an airline money right away. Nowhere is that more true than with elite status buy backs — since they’re already discounting off of their initial prices.
I wouldn’t do $2645 but American wonders if I’d do $1895? I won’t but this is better at least.