- You have to have flown at least two elite qualifying segments in 2012
- If you did this last year you cannot do it again for 2013
- Offer is available through May 15
- Status is of course valid through February 28, 2014
Pricing varies based on your 2012 qualifying activity level.
- Platinums who flew at least 40,000 miles or 48 segments can buy back their status for $619. Platinums who flew less than that buy back status for $769.
- Golds who flew at least 20,000 miles or 24 segments can buy back their status for $409. Golds who flew less than that buy back status for $559.
Is it worth it?
This pricing may be cheaper than what it would have cost to mileage run for status, or at least not more expensive and you saved the time flying back and forth around the country and got to spend time with family or doing something productive over the holidays and your year end weekends.
Whether the price makes sense probably depends on what your travel plans are for 2013. If you’re going to be flying more in 2013 than in 2012, it can make good sense — especially in my view for Platinum where that allows you to earn double miles on your flying (fly 50,000 miles, earn 50,000 bonus miles which I believe are worth more than the price to buy back the status) and also gets you higher up on various waitlists. Elite status also waives close-in award booking fees, and lets you select ‘premium’ coach seats.
As an alternative, elite status challenges are cheaper — $120 to sign up for a Gold challenge, $240 to sign up for a Platinum challenge at last report I’m aware of. You do not get the status during the challenge but rather earn status on an expedited basis based on lower flying requirements during the 90 days of your challenge.
If you want to take advantage of the buyback you’ll have to wait until January 30 and then visit the buyback page to sign up.