American Airlines Awards: 5000 Miles All Over The U.S.

One of the best tools in travel years ago was Travelocity Dream Maps. You’d plug in the city you were starting from, and how much you were willing to spend, and it would give you a map of all the places you could go for that amount or less. The tool was decommissioned about a decade ago, but American Airlines has an award map that is similar for miles.

Travel is drying up out of fear and uncertainty over coronavirus. I’m seeing international long haul flights going out with business class cabins that have empty seats, Golds clearing upgrades, and coach cabins where you can claim a row of seats for yourself (and so can most everyone else).

And I’m seeing a lot of domestic coach award space for just 5000 miles each way. For instance I plugged in Los Angeles and April 1 and performed a search of where I could go for 5000 miles.

American’s map came up with 83 cities where I could fly from LAX for 5000 miles (and it also shows cities where you can fly for just a little more).

From Austin I found 86 cities available at 5000 miles each (and more for 6000 miles). San Francisco it was 90 cities.

The remarkable thing is that it’s not just close-in (next month) where I’m seeing this sort of pricing. I’m seeing plenty of 5000 mile itineraries in July and into September too. Revenue management must not believe travel bookings will recover quickly.

To be sure, coach space is much more likely to be on sale than premium cabin space. And domestic seems better overall than international though of course some routes you’ll find business saver space on American (it only took coronavirus to make that happen). Here’s Los Angeles – Tokyo:

You’ll even find space on American in business class New York JFK – London Heahrow.

Although you’re not going to find business class award space, even with upgrades clearing and nonrevenue travelers doing well on some routes. Here’s what I’m seeing for business class one way to Sydney coming up. 480,000 miles? Insane.

Nonetheless American does have some great deals, and many more people are willing to take discretionary trips domestically right now than they are internationally, let alone to ‘hot spots’ like North Asia and parts of Europe.

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. Paid fares are also crazy cheap….like 2009 cheap. I’m seeing ORD-SAN/MCO/TPA/MIA/LAS from $49 to $69 one way in BE and many sub $100 in main. ORD-HNL is sub $500 pretty much everyday.

    I’m assuming these cheap fares are available out of other markets but haven’t looked.

  2. Gary,
    This article came at the perfect time, had 5 award tickets booked in June to Miami, total WAS 225,000. Rebooked same dates and now it was 90,000 for all 5 tickets.

    Thank you for all the helpful articles, keep them coming!

  3. I think it’s great that airlines are helping spread the virus by lowering award and actual prices. Heaven forbid we flex down capacity during a national crisis.

    Kidding, of course.

  4. Hmm, how do you get to the screen on AA website where you can do a search of where one could go for 5000 miles? Very cool! Thanks in advance~

  5. The map isnt working for me it give me a “where can we take you message” whenever I hit search, anyone else?

  6. This is awesome content and I hate to be pedantic, but Gary – your headline…it isn’t English. Or, if it is, it makes it sound like AA is flying over the country making it rain 5000-mile vouchers from the ky. Maybe get some sleep? I’m worried about you, man! 😀

  7. Wish they would waive the redeposited fee on awards like the change fee waiver.

  8. Great deals for healthy people who can properly assess risk. The mortality rate — and even the risk of feeling bad at all — is extremely small for corona if you’re not elderly and in good health. That said, in panics, people are generally incapable of rationally assessing risk. And this probably means these deals will be with us for at least several weeks. Unless you want to fly in the next couple of weeks, I think you can wait for the panic to run its course and still get a great deal. Which is probably what YOU feel like doing anyway. 🙂

  9. @chopsticks – It isn’t just about whether you’re healthy enough to avoid letting coronavirus kill you. A healthy person traveling can still spread the virus, thus putting other geographic areas at risk.

  10. Airlines always come back to rely on their loyalty programs anytime there’s a slowdown in the economy. I’m not falling for it this time. Keep your miles and I’ll keep purchasing tickets based on schedule and price. Not getting any loyalty from me.

  11. Great site! Thanks!

    I also like Google’s map where you can also type in a budget and let it show you where you can do, though of course that’s cash prices for all sorts of airlines.

  12. @Robert – it doesn’t work in all browsers, so try a different one and you may have better luck

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