American AAdvantage Lifetime Elite Status Program Changing Soon

American Airlines changes the way that they count miles towards lifetime elite status on December 1. Currently, miles earned from any source count. Starting December 1, only miles earned via flying count (and for at least the next year, those folks who get the expensive Citi Executive Mastercard with bundled lounge access before December 1 will have spend from that card count as well).

I expect to end November at 2,998,000 lifetime American AAdvantage miles. Which means that I will cross the 3 million mile threshold on the Oneworld MegaDO, which is neat in and of itself. And the advantage of not crossing 3 million miles until January is that the 4 international confirmed upgrades that I’ll earn will expire in February 2014, instead of February 2013 if I earn them before the end of this calendar year.

On the other hand I’m torn, and considering transferring a couple thousand miles in from a hotel program before the end of the month, because I may want to use those ‘eVIPs’ on mileage runs towards Executive Platinum status as part of the MegaDO challenge offer.

Either way, I need to decide soon. And any of y’all out there close to a million mile mark — 1 million is lifetime Gold status, 2 million lifetime platinum — you have just a couple of weeks left if you want to bump up those balances from something other than flying and earning on the Citi Executive card.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. I appreciate the tips I get at this website, and have gotten some good travel bargains and benefits. But if you step back, your tough decisions are really first world problems, aren’t they? (Posting pictures of your hotels and airport lounges and making mention of your $40,000 spends on credit cards comes across as a 1%-er.)

  2. @seven yes of course they are “first world problems.” I do not claim this blog is about feeding the poor or toppling dictatorships that squelch liberties and keep those people poor. I do try to incorporate addressing ‘real problems’ into my life, but it’s not what I blog about and frankly those who come to this website don’t spend all their time on such things either, obviously 😉

  3. @John years of accruals … bonuses… transfers… promos… Bankdirect checking, referrals, shopping offers, some flights, etc etc etc.

  4. Come on gary.. you should let us earn some miles too lol i just opend my bankDirect checking and had no one to referral lol would you give me some names to refer???
    by the way, im very close to you.. I have the total of 48.600 life time AAdvantage miles lol….

  5. If I get lifetime gold and do not have many flown miles,in order to acheive platinum do I start from what miles I have to qualify for platinum or from the miles I need to get starting from gold to platinum.

  6. I am very close to 2 million lifetime miles. I am also making sure I do not cross until after January 1 so that I will have an extra year to use the 4 SWUs. I just got 8 more for renewing EXP and still have 2 that will expire this March 1st.

  7. kudos Gary..just made LG earlier this month w/o one BIS mile (churn’n and Bank Direct’n)..and I recall u advising me to use my Citi AA cards two years ago (kept them in the drawer for months before I saw the light) Thanks Gary

  8. I’d like to see a post on toppling dictatorships, please! ; )

    You should trade for your eVIPs, and offer the further expiring ones.

    Just my 2 cents.

  9. @Bikeguy I try to keep my private life, travel life, and professional life separate to the extent possible. Though I’ll flag that coffee growers in Rwanda no longer have their crops taken from them by the government based as a result of work that a colleague of mine did (for which I provided modest support and assistance)

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