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American Airlines offering $50, extra vacation day to vaccinated employees

March 05, 2021
3 min read
American Airlines offering $50, extra vacation day to vaccinated employees
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Sure, we're all eager for it to be safe to travel the world again, but few are more invested than the largest global airlines. With the ongoing pandemic and strict border restrictions impacting bookings, airlines have a greater incentive than most to see a return to normal life — and, ideally, an end to the COVID-19 pandemic.

With some states now moving to reopen — despite warnings from public health officials — vaccines may be the nation's best hope to put the pandemic in the rear-view mirror. They're effective, and they're safe, but many travel industry workers need an extra push to get the shot. At American Airlines, that incentive will come in the form of an extra vacation day, along with 50 bucks.

This week, American CEO Doug Parker and President Robert Isom explained in an employee memo that the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine is now available to employees at Chicago O'Hare (ORD), and the airline is working to roll out vaccinations at other airports soon.

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The executives also didn't shy away from highlighting the financial incentive, along with a reminder of what's at stake:

Don’t miss out on the opportunity to earn an extra vacation day next year and $50 in recognition points. Get vaccinated as soon as possible — to protect yourself and others. More than 500,000 people in the United States have lost their lives to COVID-19, including some of our own colleagues.

American isn't the only travel industry leader tapping an incentive program to encourage employees to get vaccinated for COVID-19. Marriott is offering four hours of extra pay to anyone who decides to get vaccinated, for example, and United Airlines is even considering mandating the shot.

If you have an opportunity to get vaccinated, you should certainly take it. You can not contract COVID-19 by getting the vaccine, and while you may feel some side effects, they're mild for most people. According to the CDC, "The side effects from COVID-19 vaccination, such as chills or tiredness, may affect your ability to do daily activities, and they should go away in a few days." I'd happily trade a day or two of not quite feeling 100% for the ability to return to normal life and to help prevent additional deaths.

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

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3XEarn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
2XEarn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery in the U.S. and at U.S. supermarkets.
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  • Intro Offer
    Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months.

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  • Annual Fee

    $250
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

Build your loyalty to Delta by applying for the carrier's mid-tier card option, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum card. The annual fee is quickly recouped by the card's travel perks, such as an application credit to Global Entry or TSA Precheck, annual companion certificate and so much more. Plus you can fast-track to elite status simply through card spend.

Pros

  • Earn bonus Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) and an Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MQD) waiver when you hit specific spending thresholds with your card within a calendar year
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year
  • Statement credit for TSA PreCheck/Global Entry fee (up to $100)
  • First checked bag free

Cons

  • Doesn't make sense if you don't fly Delta
  • SkyMiles aren't the most valuable airline currency
  • Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months.
  • Receive a Domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your Card. Payment of the government imposed taxes and fees of no more than $80 for roundtrip domestic flights (for itineraries with up to four flight segments) is required. Baggage charges and other restrictions apply. See terms and conditions for details.
  • Enjoy your first checked bag free on Delta flights. Plus enjoy Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding and settle into your seat sooner.
  • New: Card Members get 15% off when using miles to book Award Travel on Delta flights through delta.com and the Fly Delta app. Discount not applicable to partner-operated flights or to taxes and fees.
  • Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels.
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets.
  • Earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases.
  • Enjoy a per-visit rate of $50 per person for Card Members and up to two guests to enter the Delta Sky Club when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck® after you apply through any Authorized Enrollment Provider. If approved for Global Entry, at no additional charge, you will receive access to TSA PreCheck.
  • Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs up to two times per year, getting you closer to Medallion® Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion® Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees