Pros & Cons
Program is now revenue-based, meaning miles are awarded based on dollars spent rather than number of miles flown
Mileage credit for American and AAdvantage-affiliated partners will be forfeited if your account is inactive for 18 months
Can only earn miles for one seat per flight
Ease of Earning Free Flight3.5
Award Flight Availability2.5
No. of Daily Flights> 2,000
American Airlines AAdvantage is ranked No. 6 in the Best Airline Rewards Programs. U.S. News evaluated 9 frequent flyer programs offered by airlines based in the United States across several indicators of excellence. Read more about how we rank rewards.
American Airlines AAdvantage is ranked as:
As an AAdvantage member, you can earn and redeem award miles and qualifying dollars, miles and flight segments on American Airlines and American Eagle flights and for flights on oneworld partners and other affiliated carriers. You'll also earn award miles (and in some cases, EQMs and EQDs) for everyday purchases made with your AAdvantage-affiliated MasterCard or Citi credit card. Additionally, you can earn miles for hotel stays, car rentals, cruises and vacation packages with any American Airlines partner.
Can Earn Points On:
Can Use Points On:
The AAdvantage program features basic membership and elite status membership. Elite membership is divided into four classes: AAdvantage Gold, AAdvantage Platinum, AAdvantage Platinum Pro and AAdvantage Executive Platinum. An invitation-only program called ConciergeKey is also available for AAdvantage's most loyal customers. The number of Elite Qualifying Segments or Elite Qualifying Miles you accrue, in addition to the Elite Qualifying Dollars you earn, determines your membership status.See details about how membership works
The Fine Print
- You can request to reinstate miles for a fee, but expired or partially used tickets will not be reissued.
- All elite members receive complimentary cabin upgrades on flights less than 500 miles.
- If you change your reward reservations prior to ticketing, you will not be charged; however, if your tickets are reissued, service fees may apply.
- AAdvantage miles do not cover taxes or fees (with the exception of waived ticketing service fees, a privilege for Executive Platinum members).
- Miles can be transferred to another account (for a fee) with the program's "Share Miles" feature, but transferred miles will not count toward elite status qualification.
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The Hilton Honors program is most advantageous for business and luxury travelers who frequently fly to and stay in major cities in the United States, Europe and Asia. Hilton Honors members can redeem points at more than 4,800 hotels and resorts across 14 different brands in more than 100 countries and territories. And because Hilton has a partnership with the United MileagePlus program (as well as more than 60 other airline and rail partners), you can cash in points for miles. Points can also be used to purchase tickets to concerts and sporting events, gift cards, cruise certificates and items sold on Amazon and Hilton Honors' shopping portal. Additionally, you can earn points for everyday purchases with the Hilton Honors American Express and Citi Visa credit cards.
Delta SkyMiles ...
The Delta SkyMiles program is convenient for frequent flyers based in United States cities like Atlanta, Detroit, Los Angeles, Minneapolis and Seattle, and for passengers who often travel to and from New York City. Delta Air Lines operates more than 15,000 flights each day to 335 destinations across more than 60 countries. By becoming a SkyMiles member, you'll earn miles based on the amount you pay for your flight with Delta, Delta Connection or Delta Shuttle; you can also earn miles for flying with any of Delta's multiple partner airlines, including KLM, Air France and Virgin Atlantic, among others. Those miles can be redeemed for free air travel on any participating airline or cashed in for cabin upgrades, unique experiences or items for sale at the SkyMiles Marketplace. When you fly with Delta, you will also earn Medallion Qualification Miles, which will help you gain access to a variety of perks through the Delta SkyMiles Medallion elite membership program. (Medallion-level members can rack up miles at participating Starwood Hotels through the Crossover Rewards program.) You can also earn miles on everyday purchases if you've signed up for a Delta SkyMiles credit card by American Express.
The United MileagePlus program is best for travelers based in major American cities and those who travel to destinations in Europe, Latin America and Asia. When you become a MileagePlus member, you can earn and use miles on United and its 35-plus airline partners like Singapore Airlines, ANA and Copa Airlines, many of which are part of the Star Alliance network. As a MileagePlus member, you'll accrue Premier Qualifying Miles (PQMs), Premier Qualifying Segments (PQSs) and Premier Qualifying Dollars (PQDs) each time you fly. Earn enough PQMs or PQSs and you'll reach Premier status – MileagePlus membership levels for which you'll receive extra benefits. Additionally, you can earn miles on qualifying cruise vacations, car rentals and train fares, as well as on shopping, dining and other services. And since United partners with major hotel brands, including Marriott, Hilton and IHG, you can earn rewards when you stay at properties worldwide. You may also redeem miles for flights, hotel stays, cruises, magazine subscriptions, destination experiences (think: sporting events and theater performances) and more. Choose to use one of four United MileagePlus credit cards from Chase Visa and you'll earn miles on flights and everyday purchases.