Executive Platinum Benefits offered by American Airlines to their top customers are some of the best offered by any airline loyalty program. Executive Platinum is American’s top-tier status. Executive Platinum status is also relatively easy and straightforward to earn compared to ever more complex loyalty programs from other airlines (Until 2017). In order to quality for Executive Platinum Advantage members must fly just 100,000 miles or complete 120 segments each calendar year. Benefits of Executive Platinum status from American Airlines include the following:
- OneWorld Emerald Status: This essentially means that you’ll enjoy the benefits of top tier status with each airline in the OneWorld alliance.
- Lounge Access: When flying internationally you will have access to First or Business Class lounges when flying on certain OneWorld partner airlines. This includes Admirals Club lounges when traveling domestically, but if you’ve earned Executive Platinum, chances are you have Admirals Club access from a credit card or from…
- Discounted Admirals Club Membership: Executive Platinum members receive a $100 discount on membership when purchasing an annual membership. This is a great discount, but considering the Citi Prestige card allows Admirals Club access and Priority Pass membership for just $450 annually (plus $250 Airfare Credit), this benefit should not be the main reason to pursue Executive Platinum status.
- Unlimited Complimentary Upgrades: When traveling domestically, regardless of class of service purchased or distance flown, Executive Platinum members receive unlimited complimentary “sticker” upgrades. Upgrades clear up to 100-hours prior to departure. I discuss American Airlines Upgrades here.
- Priority Access: Executive Platinum members receive Priority Boarding, Priority Check-in, Priority Standby, Priority Security Screening. These benefits also carry over to all OneWorld partner airlines.
- Guaranteed Seat in the Main Cabin: That’s right, Executive Platinum members are guaranteed a seat on any flight they choose to pay for. Airlines often oversell flights based on no-show performance, but often they oversell a flight when an Executive Platinum member needs to get on an already full flight. Mark Cuban once kicked Magic Johnson off a full flight because of this benefit!
- System Wide Upgrades (SWUs): Each year, Executive Platinum members receive 4 SWUs. When flying on an American Airlines operated flight, SWUs can be applied to a ticket to move passengers to the next higher class of service (when available). SWUs are best used when redeemed for international itineraries and allow passengers to fly business class for the price of an economy ticket.
- Baggage Benefits: Executive Platinum members get up to 3 checked bags free (I hope no one who travels frequently needs to carry around 3 bags). They also receive Priority Baggage delivery for all that checked baggage!
- Bonus Redeemable Miles: In 2016 American Airlines changed, “devalued,” their program in the way Advantage Members earn redeemable miles. As an Executive Platinum member, you’ll earn a 120% on each dollar spent with the airline.
- Concierge Key: Although there is no official criteria for earning Concierge Key with American, many have reported, after several consecutive years of earning Executive Platinum they had been invited to the Concierge Key program. The benefits of Concierge Key are not significantly greater than Executive Platinum, but it was another “Thank You” for being loyal.
There are many other benefits to becoming an Executive Platinum Member with American Airlines, but these are in my opinion the most important, in no particular order. Today, American Airlines announced more bad new in a second round of changes to the advantage program which I hope to discuss in a future post. Until today, Executive Platinum remained one of the few attainable top-tier status’ for budget travelers, but it seems American Airlines has chosen to follow the pack and change their program to a revenue based system.