American Airlines is making some significant improvements to its AAdvantage program for 2021, and it’s arguably Platinum Pro status that’s benefiting most.
Platinum Pro upgraded to oneworld Emerald
There’s some great news for AAdvantage Platinum Pro members — as of early 2021, Platinum Pro will get you oneworld Emerald status, rather than the oneworld Sapphire status it currently offers.
That’s only one of the improvements, as Platinum Pro will also offer an elite choice rewards selection, offering members their choice of additional benefit, ranging from a $200 travel credit, to a systemwide upgrade, to up to 25,000 bonus miles.
Platinum Pro is getting a oneworld status upgrade
What is AAdvantage Platinum Pro status?
Platinum Pro is the upper-middle tier of the AAdvantage program, as it’s above Gold and Platinum status, and below Executive Platinum and Concierge Key status.
Platinum Pro status was introduced back in 2017, and is intended to address the significant gap between Platinum status (which required 50,000 elite miles), and Executive Platinum status (which required 100,000 elite miles). At a typical qualification requirement of 75,000 elite miles, Platinum Pro status is right in the middle. Do keep in mind that for 2021 elite requirements have been lowered by around 20%.
What are the incremental perks of Platinum Pro over Platinum?
- Unlimited complimentary domestic upgrades (rather than needing 500 mile stickers)
- An 80% mileage bonus (rather than a 60% mileage bonus)
- oneworld Emerald status (rather than oneworld Sapphire status)
- Fast track security at airports
- Higher priority for everything, from upgrades to standby
Platinum Pro members get unlimited space available domestic upgrades
What is oneworld Emerald status?
American Airlines is in the oneworld alliance, and each elite tier in the AAdvantage program maps over to a certain elite tier in oneworld. I recently wrote a detailed post about the perks of oneworld Emerald status, given that it’s my favorite alliance status.
What are the incremental perks of oneworld Emerald status over oneworld Sapphire status?
- Access to oneworld first class lounges (rather than access to oneworld business class lounges)
- Access to oneworld first class check-in (rather than access to oneworld business class check-in)
- Priority boarding, often with first class (rather than business class)
- An incremental baggage allowance
Without a doubt my favorite oneworld Emerald perk is access to incredible oneworld first class lounges, so this will be a real treat for Platinum Pro members (at least when these lounges reopen).
Access some amazing lounges with oneworld Emerald status
Alaska Mileage Plan MVP Gold 75K will also be oneworld Emerald
- Alaska MVP will be oneworld Ruby
- Alaska MVP Gold will be oneworld Sapphire
- Alaska MVP Gold 75K will be oneworld Emerald
It seems pretty clear that American is making this change to align with Alaska, given that the two airlines will be working more closely together beyond their mutual oneworld membership.
Platinum Pro ordinarily requires 75,000 elite miles, while MVP Gold 75K ordinarily requires 75,000 elite miles on Alaska, or 90,000 elite miles on partner airlines.
Perhaps the next interesting question is what this means for reciprocal upgrades on Alaska and American, which should be coming soon.
Are the implications of this for reciprocal upgrades that Alaska and American are essentially “aligning” Platinum Pro and MVP Gold 75K status for the purposes of upgrades? If so, does that mean Executive Platinum members will get upgrade priority over both tiers, or…?
Alaska MVP Gold 75K will offer oneworld Emerald status
Staring to 2021, American AAdvantage Platinum Pro will come with oneworld Emerald status, offering superior lounge access and other airport benefits. When you combine this with the new elite choice rewards selection, I’d say this is a very nice improvement for Platinum Pro members.
It’s great to see genuinely positive changes at AAdvantage, with (seemingly) nothing being taken away.
What do you make of this change to Platinum Pro status?