This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

It’s been a while since there’s been a significant change to American Airlines’ AAdvantage mileage program. So, we were anxious to see new changes loaded to the AAdvantage award chart website Thursday morning. Turns out, it’s not a massive change — but still one that might limit travelers’ upcoming award redemptions.

Effective immediately, AA has capped the number of segments that you can fly on a one-way award booking. For domestic award flights, you’re limited to just three flights. For international awards, you can only book four segments to reach your destination. If your award booking requires more flights, you’ll have to split the booking into two different awards.

An airline spokesperson explained that this shouldn’t have much of an impact. AAdvantage redemptions already required that you take the most-direct routing available — even before these changes you weren’t able to book circuitous awards to get more out of your business or first-class award. These new changes “are in line with [AA’s] most direct routing rule and allows [it] to better support [its] partner airlines.”

For domestic flights, this new limitation is a fairly moot point. It’s tough enough to get AAward AAvailability on one AA flight, much less four.

However, we can see this limitation being an issue on international flights — especially if you’re starting in a non-hub city and heading to a more remote destination. If domestic award availability forces you to connect a couple of times domestically, you might be limited to only 1-2 flights to get from your international gateway city to your final destination. While we can’t think of any past award bookings that have required more than four legs, there could be travelers with upcoming bookings that might be affected by this change.

While relatively minor, this is a change that could impact your award booking plans. Make sure that you’re aware of this new segment limitation when searching for your next AAdvantage award booking.

Can you think of an AAdvantage award that’ll be limited by these new rules?

Know before you go.

News and deals straight to your inbox every day.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points Terms Apply.


CARD HIGHLIGHTS: Delta Sky Club and Centurion lounge access, $200 annual airline fee credit and up to $200 in Uber credits annually

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
  • 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
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
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.