Great news: You can now rebook your canceled American Airlines trip online — here’s how

Aug 25, 2020

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. Terms apply to the offers listed on this page. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.

Since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, American Airlines has allowed travelers to change or cancel new and existing flights without penalty. In June, the airline also made a positive change to its seat fee refund policy.

While that sounds great on the surface, the rebooking was a pain. Fortunately, that isn’t the case anymore.

TPG has discovered that flights voluntarily canceled can now be rebooked online. Previously, you needed to call and speak to an American Airlines reservations representative, which could be an extraordinarily long process.

For more TPG news and deals delivered each morning to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Types of AA travel credits

American now offers three types of travel credits: Flight Credit, Travel Vouchers (being discontinued) and Trip Credit. All of these sound similar so here’s a quick overview:

Flight Credit Travel Voucher Trip Credit
Issued for Flights canceled by you U.S. residents (typically compensation) Compensation by airline, or for remaining value from a Flight Credit exchange
Valid for Flights only Flights only Flights only
Who can use it Only the same passenger on the canceled ticket can book and travel using a Flight Credit

Can be used by the voucher holder to book travel for anyone

Can be used by the credit holder to book travel for anyone

Number that can be used per trip 1 per passenger Up to 8 per trip Up to 8 per trip
Expiration Travel must begin 1 year from the date of issue (credits issued for flights canceled due to COVID-19 can be used for travel through Dec. 31, 2021) 1 year from date issued 1 year from date issued
How to redeem Online (new feature) or over the phone Online or over the phone Over the phone

Related: How to change or cancel an American Airlines flight

Rebooking AA flights online

When you voluntarily cancel a non-refundable flight, you’ll get the value of your ticket back in the form of “flight credits.” These credits are valid for flights only (not extras like seats or bags) and can only be used to book flights for the passenger on the canceled ticket.

As first discovered by TPG, you can now check the value of flight credits on AA’s site. In the “Manage trips/Check-in” box on the site’s homepage, there’s now an option to look up canceled flights. You can search by record locator or ticket number.

You’ll then be taken to a page that shows your ticket number, the original date of issue and ticket value. There was no easy way to find this information online in the past.

Related: How to quickly reach an airline customer service agent

To book a trip using the credit simply search for a flight as you normally would. Then, on the checkout page, under the payment options, there’s an option to apply your flight credit. This feature is available both via the airline’s website and mobile app. Presently, you can only apply one flight credit per passenger per trip.

Travel typically must begin within one year of your original ticketing date. However, due to the coronavirus travel waiver, the value of your unused ticket can be used for travel through Dec. 31, 2021.

Unlike United, American will give you the residual value back in the form of a trip credit if you book a new flight with a lower fare.

A spokesperson for American explained to TPG that this feature is available for domestic single-passenger itineraries, though there are some instances where domestic multi-passenger itineraries are also eligible. The feature is not available for international itineraries or where the point-of-sale was international.

Related: American Airlines extends free change and cancellation policy

Bottom line

Being able to rebook flights online is a big step forward for American. It’s refreshing to see that the airline is making it easier for our customers to use travel credits while some competitors are doing the opposite.

This isn’t the airline’s only technological improvement in recent months. In June, American added a chat feature to its mobile app and then in August it introduced a tool to provide travelers with the latest travel and health restrictions.

All screenshots courtesy of American Airlines.

Featured image by Zach Griff/The Points Guy.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.

With Status Boost™, earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. Earn 3X Miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels, 2X Miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets and earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases. Terms Apply.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. Offer ends 8/3/2022.
  • 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.
  • 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 Miles on all other eligible purchases.
  • 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.
  • 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.
  • Enjoy an exclusive rate of $39 per person per visit to enter the Delta Sky Club® for you and up to two guests when traveling on a Delta flight.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • $250 Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Regular APR
17.24%-26.24% Variable
Annual Fee
Balance Transfer Fee
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.