I did the AA status challenge for a taste of Platinum status for 3 months (17 Sept to 17 Dec). After that I go back to normie status as I don’t think I can achieve the objectives without great distress to my poor wife and kids. To retain status for all of 2018 I need to:
Earn $2,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQDs) AND 12,500 Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) or 16 Elite Qualifying Segments (EQSs) by traveling on American Airlines or other select airlines during the challenge period.
I can do one of these challenges every 5 years, in hindsight I should of waited for a 3 month period where I would have a lot of TAD snd vacation days. However I do have 3 AA flights in this period and wanted to see what their version of elite status was like. I would like to credit FoundersCard for arranging this little venture, and we can add it to value to its staggering $295+ annual fee. As with all things on this site, please use this link to toss some FC points my way if you think its a worthwhile venture for you. Right now they are doing $395 a year but you get a $100 gift card using code 100AMEX1YR. Just mention I sent you so I get my cut.
So what exactly is Platinum status on AA? Well it can be summed up here, basically it is like United Gold, giving you better chances for upgrades. You also get upgraded to a higher class of travel for flights less than 500 miles, which is not a lot of places I want to go to:
Since my active duty status already gives me free lounge access at the Admirals Club and free checked luggage, there really is no value add to having AA Platinum for military Members. I guess if you have these type of showdowns ever once in awhile, it can be like winning the coin challenge on who buys the next round. Overall pointless and rare to occur.
However, if you are hell bent on getting status I say you buddy up with another person doing the challenge and take advantage of the $100 travel credit on the Ritz Carlton Chase card. For example flight to ORD to LAS are going for $158.80 for 2 RT tickets. We are looking at less than $40 a segment!
Just do this 8 times and you got the 16 segments, I believe you will get the full $94 as the EQD which is only $752 so not sure how you would come up with the needed $2,000 EQD to get status. We also have the option to use American Express miles at 2.2 cents via the Business 50% back combo conjugated with 5x points. Remember any Business or First Class is eligible for the 50% rebate as long as you are grandfathered in. You can book a single $2,000 first class ticket for 200,000 MR points and wait the 45 days to get 110,000 points back. This would clear you for the EQD but not the segments or miles.
So you milage may vary, for those active duty with two kids then not possible to fly or spend the needed flights in 3 months without some resistance. For those DINK HENRYs out there you might just make it. Overall I find the Platinum AA status to be an awesome thing to have, but not if I have to put any work into it at all, since you get the highest free status with AA which is American Active Duty status (AADvantage LT status) worth the free lounge and luggage for every AA flight!