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Why American Airlines just added 3 new routes, but only put 1 of them on sale

Jan. 25, 2021
3 min read
Why American Airlines just added 3 new routes, but only put 1 of them on sale
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Flying to the Super Bowl? American Airlines is ready to take you to the big game.

During the weekend, the Fort Worth-based carrier added three new one-off routes to its schedule, in anticipation of the NFL conference championship games played on Sunday, Jan. 24.

But it only put one of them on sale — here's what happened.

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With the Super Bowl being held in Tampa on Feb. 7, die-hard fans with (very) deep pockets will likely want to see the faceoff in person.

However, getting to Tampa (on a commercial jet) could prove to be a challenge, especially if you want to fly nonstop.

Going into Sunday, the Buffalo Bills, Green Bay Packers, Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers were the last four teams in the NFL playoffs.

Based on the outcome of the two championship games, the Super Bowl match off would be determined. In anticipation of the rush to book Tampa-bound flights, American added new nonstop flights to the host city from Buffalo (BUF), Kansas City (MCI) and Milwaukee (MKE) on Feb. 5 and Feb. 8 — the Friday before and Monday after the Super Bowl, respectively — to the host city, according to Cirium schedules.

When the Chiefs and Buccaneers won, American knew there'd be little interest from frustrated fans in Buffalo and Milwaukee to fly down to Tampa. So, despite those flights being added to the schedule, it never actually put them on sale.

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But, of course, there are now plenty of Kansas City fans making last-minute plans to escape the cold attend the game. And American is prepared to get you there.

On Sunday night, the carrier quickly put its one-off Kansas City to Tampa flights on sale. Cirium schedules show and the carrier confirmed that it added two flights, one each way, on the 76-seat Embraer 175 operated by Republic Airways.

American also took to Twitter to promote its new flights, hoping to gain attention from Kansas City fans.

As expected, the flights are expensive. For now, one-way fares start at $344 for coach and $503 for business class for the outbound to Tampa. The return starts at a whopping $491 in coach. If you're looking to redeem miles, flights start at 71,000 miles roundtrip in coach and 119,000 miles roundtrip in biz.

Despite the sky-high fares, American is currently the only carrier offering nonstop flights in the market, according to Cirium schedules. With resale tickets starting at more than $9,000 and significant capacity caps on Super Bowl attendance, American clearly reasons that flights are just a small drop in a very large bucket for die-hard fans.

In years past, many U.S. carriers have added one-off flights to the Super Bowl to capitalize on this surge in demand. It remains to be seen if — and when — other airlines will enter the market.

Until then, if you're looking to get to the big game, American Airlines is your best bet. Or you could try catching a ride on one of the many private jets that are sure to descend on Tampa in just under two weeks.

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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Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
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Best card for premium perks while traveling
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

10XEarn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel
5X5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel.
2X2 Miles per dollar on every purchase, every day
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel

    75,000 bonus miles
  • Annual Fee

    $395
  • 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.

    740-850
    Excellent

Why We Chose It

The Capital One Venture X card is one of the best all-round travel credit cards ever launched. Not only is it offering a tremendous welcome bonus, but cardholders can earn tons of miles on everyday spending and receive a 10,000-mile anniversary bonus to boot. Its annual fee is $395, but cardholders can count on up to $300 in statement credits toward travel booked through Capital One Travel each year and other valuable benefits like access to Priority Pass lounges and Capital One’s own growing family of airport lounges.

Pros

  • Excellent welcome offer worth 75,000 miles after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months.
  • Up to $300 in annual travel statement credits toward bookings make through Capital One Travel.
  • 10,000 bonus miles (worth $100 toward travel) each account anniversary.

Cons

  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
  • Get 10,000 bonus miles (equal to $100 towards travel) every year, starting on your first anniversary
  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
  • Earn unlimited 2X miles on all other purchases
  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,300+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and the Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023