American Airlines Adds Valuable New Perk for Platinum Pro Elites
One of the nice perks of top-tier American Airlines Executive Platinum status is the ability to change your flight for free via American Airlines' Same Day Flight Change benefit. Starting February 1, 2018, that same benefit will be extended to AA's Platinum Pro elites.
For those unfamiliar, Platinum Pro is American Airlines' newest elite level and requires members to have earned 9,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars and either fly 75,000 Elite Qualifying Miles or 90 Elite Qualifying Segments.
Members that qualified for Platinum Pro for 2018 should have already received an email informing them of this change:
The Same Day Flight Change perk allows elites to change their flight for free on the same day as originally booked. So, if a business meeting ends early, you can hop on an earlier flight home. Or, if you'd rather sleep in a bit rather than catching that early morning flight, you can change to a later flight.
This perk can also be especially valuable when there's a large price discrepancy between flights on the same day. Say that the flight you want to take is expensive, but there's a cheaper flight that same day. As long as your schedule allows the flexibility to take the original flight if necessary, you can book the cheaper flight and then — as long as there's availability — change to the preferred flight for free.
Until February 1, only top-tier Executive Platinum members are able to make these confirmed changes for free, while other American Airlines elites would need to pay $75 to get a confirmed flight change. All AA elites can standby for a different flight for free.
Stay tuned for a complete guide of how to use American Airlines' Same Day Flight Change. However, here's a quick briefer for now.
First, the change must occur on the same route as you originally booked. That means you can only change from one nonstop flight to another nonstop flight on the same route. Similarly, if you booked a JFK-PHX-SFO flight, you can only change to another JFK-PHX-SFO itinerary. Unfortunately, you wouldn't be able to change to a JFK-SFO direct.
Next, you can change to any flight the same calendar day as your original flight. And, yes, that means you can change a flight departing at 6am to a flight departing at 10pm.
Finally, the Same Day Flight Change option opens 24 hours out from the new flight, not the originally-booked flight. If you have a 6am flight and want to change to that 10pm flight, you have to wait until 10pm the day before your flight to make the change. That can mean some uncertainty for these types of drastic changes.
This is a nice additional perk for Platinum Pro elites, potentially saving $75 per flight. However, the exact value is going to depend from Platinum Pro elite to Platinum Pro elite. Those flying often on high-frequency routes will be able to use this a lot more than people who tend to use AA flights on routes served once or twice daily.