A Trick When You Are Short A Few American Airlines Miles
I thought I would post a quick little trick that can help you bridge a small gap on an American Airlines award booking. This trick will only work for American Airlines card holders who get 10% of their points back (up to 10,000 per year). This is a nice perk of the card that I wish other airlines would adopt. This perk has come in handy for me on a few different occasions.
I have run into a few different occasions where I am just short the number of miles I need for an award ticket. This is a telltale sign that I need to get another AA card :). But I have found a way to work around it without the need to purchase miles or transfer Marriott points (the only viable AA transfer partner left).
On the most recent occasion I was looking to book two round trip flights at 25,000 miles a piece. The problem was that I only had 48,000 miles. To purchase as few as 2,000 miles can be costly and I recently depleted my Marriott balance. I could try to book the flights with British Airways Avios but since they had connections it would end up costing me more miles.
The only option I had left was to book one of the tickets first, get the 10% back on the booking, and then have enough miles to book the second ticket. The miles are credited back instantly so they would only take 22,500 miles for the first flight. That would leave me with 25,500 for the second flight. Even though you only need 45,000 miles to book both flights I believe you need to have the full 50,000 to be able to initiate the booking.
You can do this for single person flights as well. Book them as one ways to recoup some of the miles up front and bridge a small gap when/if needed.
Most experienced American Airlines flyers have probably already figured out this trick. I thought it was worth sharing for anyone who doesn’t fly American Airlines often. It may save you a few dollars or several thousand Marriott points in the future.