American Adds the Ability for Some of Its Highest Elites to Gift Executive Platinum Status
American Airlines' Concierge Key is the somewhat mysterious, invitation-only level of elite status that's the carrier's top option. And while you can't actively seek out Concierge Key status by attaining a certain number of Elite Qualifying Miles or Elite Qualifying Dollars, the status comes with top-level perks such as meet and greet at the tarmac, free Admirals Club membership, priority boarding, top upgrade priority, exclusive event invites and more. For 2018, AA is adding one more benefit for select Concierge Key members: the ability to gift Executive Platinum status.
Some AAdvantage members who qualified for Concierge Key in 2018 have reported receiving word of the new benefit in their welcome email. According to the wording of the email, some Concierge Key members are being allowed to gift the airline's highest attainable level of status to another AAdvantage member.
With the benefit for some Concierge Key members to gift Executive Platinum status to other AAdvantage members comes the possible devaluation of Executive Platinum status as a whole. Presumably, there will now be more top-tier AA elites, meaning that securing upgrades with increased competition for the space will become more difficult. On the other hand, it makes sense for AA to allow its most valuable members the opportunity to gift the highest level of attainable status.
It's not clear how AA is targeting which CK members are allowed to gift status. As a reminder, Executive Platinum status comes with complimentary upgrades on all all short- and medium-haul flights, systemwide upgrades, priority check-in, security and boarding and more. In TPG's 2017 analysis, Executive Platinum status is valued at $7,420.