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TPG reader Brendan tweeted me to ask:

@thepointsguy– “I’ve already re-qualified for American Executive Platinum for 2015, but still have a few trips this year, should I credit elsewhere?”

December is crunch time for those of us who value airline elite status. You’ve got until December 31, 2014 to embark on a flight that will count for 2015 elite status. Unsurprisingly, I’ve been getting a lot of reader questions lately about elite status, and TPG reader Brendan is one of the lucky ones who’s already set with his AAdvantage Executive Platinum status for 2015 (even I’m still hustling to get it). You do have the option to credit elsewhere, which is a solid way to bank miles and points in other programs and diversify, especially if you already have a lot of AAdvantage miles.

However, whenever you credit to another airline, you’ll lose that Elite Platinum 100% bonus that you get when you bank your points to American, unless you’re banking to another airline with which you also hold high elite status. The opportunity cost of losing that bonus could be pretty high, especially on a long international flight.

You’ll also lose your American Airlines Elite Status perks like lounge access, especially if you’re flying a Oneworld itinerary. You could always leave your AAdvantage number on the reservation until the very last minute and then change it, but this isn’t the best idea if you’re hoping to get complimentary upgrades. It may also be annoying to remember to change the number in the airport at the last minute.

Congrats! You
Congrats! You’ve got your AA Executive Platinum status. Now what? Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

If I were you, I would keep banking your miles to American Airlines. You worked hard for the Executive Platinum status, and you deserve the perks and mileage bonuses that come with it. If you really want to build up status in other programs, getting credit cards and taking advantage of the spend bonuses is a better place to start.

If you have any other questions, please tweet me @thepointsguy, message me on Facebook, or send me an email at info@thepointsguy.com.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
  • Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
N/A
Annual Fee
$550
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.