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Earlier today, British Airways introduced a promotion that lets you earn up to 125,000 bonus Avios on flights to Europe, and now American is chiming in with a deal of its own.
The terms are nearly identical — you can earn 25,000 bonus AAdvantage miles for each round-trip flight in business or first, 7,000 miles for each flight in premium economy or full-fare coach, or 2,000 miles for each round-trip in discount economy. Half the miles will post after the outbound leg, with the remaining miles posting after your return. You must complete travel by January 31, 2016.
You can only earn bonus miles on flights operated by American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia or OpenSkies, and you need to register for the promotion prior to travel. Generally, American AAdvantage miles are much more valuable than Avios on long-haul flights, as British Airways adds substantial surcharges, so in most cases you’ll be better off crediting your flights to American rather than BA, since both airlines are now offering identical promos.
Also note that these bonuses are in addition to the premium-cabin bonuses AA has been offering for 2015 travel, which will significantly increase your earnings, especially on first-class and more expensive business-class fares. For example, a round-trip first-class flight over Christmas will run you $2,966 after AARP and Visa card discounts, but an Executive Platinum member will earn 49,000 bonus AAdvantage miles, plus the 10,320 miles you’d normally earn, for a total of 59,320 miles. TPG values AA miles at 1.7 cents each, so the miles you’ll earn are worth more than $1,000. If you factor in those earnings, you’re essentially paying less than $2,000 for a round-trip first-class flight to Europe.