I’m going to do something either really crazy or really dumb. With American Airlines announcing their shift to loyalty points for elite status, I’m going to try and see if I can earn top tier American Status with 0 flights in 2022.
Before I go into detail about how I plan on achieving this goal, I am located on the West Coast near Silicon Valley where American flights are more expensive and less convenient that United. In addition, unlike other members of the travel community, I never travel for my job. All of my flights are for vacations or for visiting friends and family. As a result, it would be near impossible for me to earn any type of airline elite status by flying so I figured let’s try to earn top tier status without flying. Here’s how I plan to do it!
Leveraging Shopping Portals
I operate several small businesses on the side and often purchase goods or supplies online. I plan on leveraging American Advantage Shopping when possible. I can earn anywhere from 1-10 miles on most purchases . Shopping portals are a great way to stack on rewards when online shopping. I never shop online without using a shopping portal.
In addition, I also hope to leverage shopping portal offers to earn additional miles when possible. I most recently took advantage of the Spring Forward Bonus where I earned an additional 1,000 miles for spending $300 during the promotional period, but I’m pretty sure they won’t count as loyalty points. I also took advantage of a 2,000 mile offer for a Hello Fresh box so I could have a quick dinner last week.
AA Advantage Dining
While the program is hit or miss, there are some restaurants on the American Airlines Dining program that I do regularly visit. I hope to leverage the dining program to double dip rewards when visiting some of regular restaurants. The program is also currently offering a 1,000 mile bonus for spending $25 on an order within the first 30 days of signup. I hope to take advantage of this offer pretty soon, but be sure to only go for the instore offers. When attempting to order online via the portal, I noticed that prices online were a bit higher than normal even for instore pickup which seems to be the norm when using a third party app. I’m thinking leveraging the dining bonuses could net me somewhere between 1-3k loyalty points for the year.
Credit Card Sign-up Bonus
No the 70,000 bonus miles you get from meeting a sign up bonus will not net you a single loyalty point. On the other hand, the minimum spend requirement will allow you earn loyalty points and I hope to open a few American Airlines credit cards this year making this another way to add some loyalty points and American miles. I will most likely open at least 2 cards this year and spend at least 10k which should get me a minimum of 10,000 loyalty points in 2022.
This is similar to Amex/Chase offers but for American Airlines members with a mastercard? I’m not 100% how this works but there are plenty of data points to suggest that Simply Miles is another awesome method to double or triple stack your points. I will be giving this a try pretty soon since I recently opened an American Airlines credit card, but in my game plan I will omit using Simply Miles.
Overall, at a bare minimum I could spend 200k on my American Airlines credit card to earn top tier American status. Instead, I will be leveraging a combination of shopping portals, special offers, and the dining portal in an attempt to earn top tier status. I hope to give a monthly update pretty soon, but right now I’m pretty far behind.