Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Get a 50% bonus when you buy American Airlines miles

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

American Airlines is offering a 50% bonus when you buy miles. The deal is valid until 31st December.

I am not an expert on buying AA miles, but View from the Wing rates this as about as good a deal as you ever see for buying AAdvantage miles.

The ink to buy AA miles is here (click on the AA logo).

American Airlines

The best value comes when you buy 60,000 miles (the annual cap for buying AA miles) to receive 30,000 for free. That is 90,000 miles for $1,685 including the fee, or 1.17p each.

Even taking into account AA’s low taxes (business class London to New York is £177 of taxes compared to £520 with BA), it still isn’t worth buying all the miles you need for a redemption at this price. It is not a bad price if you need to top-off an account, though.

The ‘sweet spots’ for AA redemptions for a UK resident are the Middle East and India, where business class (flying on a BA plane) is 60,000 miles return vs 80,000 using Avios. First Class is 80,000 AA miles versus 120,000 Avios. You still pay the same taxes as BA would charge, though.

AA is also partners with Etihad which offers you an alternative route to the region via Abu Dhabi.

I don’t know what the taxes are for London to Abu Dhabi on Etihad, using AA miles, but I imagine they are lower than BA and the onboard product in Business and First is meant to be excellent. It is only a short drive from Abu Dhabi airport to Dubai as well.


How to earn American Airlines miles from UK credit cards

How to earn American Airlines miles from UK credit cards (November 2022)

American Airlines no longer has its own UK credit card.

There is, however, still a way to earn American Airlines miles from a UK credit card

The route is via Marriott Bonvoy. Marriott Bonvoy hotel loyalty points convert to American Airlines miles at the rate of 3:1.

The best way to earn Marriott Bonvoy points is via the official Marriott Bonvoy American Express card. It comes with 20,000 points for signing up and 2 points for every £1 you spend. At 2 Bonvoy points per £1, you are earning (at 3:1) 0.66 American Airlines miles per £1 spent on the card.

You can apply here.

Marriott Bonvoy American Express

20,000 bonus points and 15 elite night credits Read our full review

Comments (6)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Dev says:

    As long as you avoid BA and IB, there is no high taxes. my CX F flight from CMB to YYZ cost less than $75 USD.

  • lallyr says:

    EY tax for LHR-AUH return is around $350.

    • Raffles says:

      Thanks. I know Etihad charges £470 on a cash business class ticket London to Abu Dhabi but didn’t know how much of that AA would actually want.

  • Phil Leonard says:

    Hi Raffles

    No one ever mentions it (and perhaps I should stay quiet in my own selfish interests) but the Europe/Africa redemptions are very much a “sweet spot” with AA miles. An F return redemption is 100k AA miles versus 150k Avios.

    If CPT is your destination and there is no availability on the direct flight – as is often the case nowadays – you will spend another 30k Avios for Club seats on the internal legs. AA includes those legs for nothing making the AA miles proposition very compelling.

    So even though you still pay all BA’s iniquitous fees and taxes, there’s a substantial saving and it is done online on AA’s very user friendly award booking system. (As you can guess I’ve just talked myself into buying the full whack of miles for SO and me.)

    Cheers Phil

    • Raffles says:

      Very interesting, I never knew that. And I did, in January, end up doing exactly what you described – doing an F to JNB and then being stung with the extra for the connection.

  • PGW says:

    I’m flying EY LHR-AUH in F and then AUH-BKK in J and QF SIN-LHR-MAN in F return in January. Charges were £243 each ticket. All with AAdvantage and requiring 140k miles each. Very happy with that.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.