Earn 125,000 bonus American Airlines miles with BA transatlantic flights this Autumn!

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This offer has been around for a few days.  I have delayed writing about it because it is messy, frankly.

American Airlines is offering up to 125,000 bonus miles in AAdvantage if you credit transatlantic flights from British Airways, AA, Iberia, US Airways or Finnair to an AA account this Autumn.

Iberia has a similar promotion which allows you to earn Avios instead.  However, it is targetted.  There does not appear to be a way to register if they did not email you. The rules are also stricter as Iberia insists that flights are booked and flown during the promo period. AA does not care when you booked.

British Airways ALSO has a version of this deal but NOT for UK residents. Other EU countries are fine. I will look at this tomorrow.

Your dilemma

This means that, whilst this is a good deal, UK residents have a dilemma.  In order to receive your bonus, you need to credit BA flights to an American Airlines account.  This means that you will lose the British Airways tier points which you may need to retain or gain BA status.

This bonus is therefore most suitable for:

UK economy flyers, who should be crediting economy BA flights to AA anyway because AA still gives you 100% of miles flown compared to 25% with BA

British Airways Gold UK members who have already secured requalification and don’t mind the loss of tier points (but the bonus is worth less to a BA Gold because you are sacrificing the 100% status bonus you would receive by crediting BA flights to an AA account)

American Finnair

How it works

The promotion is outlined on the American Airlines website here.  Registration is required.

The bonus is very simple:

It is valid on all flights to or from Europe to or from the USA, Canada and Mexico

It is valid whether you fly on Iberia, BA, Finnair, US Airways, OpenSkies or American Airlines

You must fly by January 31st although registration closes on October 31st

The bonus is pretty good.

25,000 AA miles (or Avios in the Iberia version, if you were targetted) for every First and Business Class return flight

15,000 miles for every Premium Economy and full-fare Economy return flight

2,000 miles for every return flight in discounted Economy

You earn the bonus on up to FIVE return flights before the end of January, which means a maximum bonus of 125,000 AA miles, or Avios via Iberia.

It is worth noting that this offer would combine very nicely with the ‘free business class upgrade from Birmingham to New York on American’ deal that I wrote about yesterday.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for the latest articles on earning and spending your points and click here to see our list of current Avios promotions.)

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  1. If you did have status with BA, but credited the points to AA, would they still recognise your BA status? Can you add your BA number to the booking/show a card to get it eg lounge/seat selection etc? Or do you sacrifice the benefits as well as the tier points? (Always wondered this with AA redemptions too!)

  2. MileStalker says:

    You certainly cannot earn Avios with AAdvantage. Talk about copy&paste journalism…

    • That is a rather rude and curt way to point out a possible error, I presume you are new !

      • I agree.

      • Lady London says:

        Hey Mike, I take your point. For comparison, it’s fun to see a couple of more traditionally British ways of pointing out this same error are in the comments around your message. I’m taking notes for the next time I have to point out somebody’s error 🙂

    • This comment could have been more politely made.

  3. flibbly says:

    I don’t think its Bonus Avios you earn Rob 😉

  4. Dannyrado says:

    Not entirely sure you can earn avios in aadvantage. Late night Rob??

    • He didn’t say that. He said you can earn Avios with Iberia or miles with AA.

    • Fixed.

      What happened is that I originally wrote this article last week expecting the BA version of the offer to launch. When it did not launch, and when it turned out the Iberia version was targetted, I re-wrote it to focus on the AA version.

      I forgot, however, to remove the Avios references from the last paragraph – apologies.

  5. We have flights coming up for Miami which are upgraded from WT+ to Club using Avios (before the devaluation). Any idea if we’d get the premium economy or business class bonus in this case if we switched earning to AA?

  6. So as a BA gold currently who has minimal tier points to requalify and has no chance of doing so this year (resided to my soft landing to silver) I am considering crediting my Xmas biz class return flight dub-lhr-jfk (BA first leg then as for tatl) to my Iberia account. Looking at the avios/tp earner I’d get about 8600 for the main tatl so the 25k bonus will boost that, and as I have no chance of retaining gold I’m happy to “sacrifice” the tier points to credit to Iberia avios… Is that sound???

    • I am BA Silver and again, can not see myself qualifying this year.

      I have DUB-LHR-SEA-GEG GEG -PHX-LHR booked in Club World and AA First Dec 26 to Jan 7 . X 2 people

      I’m wondering if it’s worth sacrificing the 40k Avios that we would earn for the AA miles? Or IBERIA Avios?

      I have a BA Amex card as well

      Does anyone have a link so I can find out how many AA miles I would gain for the trip itself ?

    • No. There is a snag. The small print of the IB deal says flights must be booked after September 22 to qualify. The AA deal has no such restriction.

  7. James C says:

    I think the bonus for Premium Economy or Select Full Fare Economy is 7k miles not the 15k stated in the article.

  8. Flying DUB-LHR-JFK-LHR-DUB. Is there anyway to credit the TATL to Iberia and the DUB flights to BA? All on one itinerary so I’m guessing not. Don’t need the tier points for silver but I do need the BA flights.

  9. Raffles says:

    Update: I have now found the BA version. It is NOT valid for UK residents, only those in the EU. I will cover this tomorrow.

    • RIccati says:

      Why would BA need to give incentives to UK residents…

      On a serious note, why compete for EU business with weaker currency and low chances to pull people who already prefer Swiss/LH or Sky Team while alienating the home customers? Is a French man or Dutch or Dane more likely to spend more on BA?

      • Ba has been offering this bonus to EU residents for the last 3 or 4 years – works well for me being based in Spain 🙂

  10. Peter Taysum says:

    Gaining BA Gold this year, flying AA economy from LHR to JFK (I know) in Jan has allowed me to choose seats in I think premium economy. I hadn’t come across that anywhere else. Is it an anomaly?

    I’m trying to work out where to put my Avios…

    • If you have BA Silver or above you can chose at time of booking what American calls as Main Cabin Extra seats. They have extra leg space and without status you have to pay extra (around $80-120 one way for LHR-JFK I believe) but it is not a differentiated product like premium economy because everything else food, seat width etc is same. You also get same number of avios/miles as normal economy. You can also book the exit row seats at time of booking. Exit row seats give you a higher priority boarding than other economy seats even if you don’t have any status.

  11. Can’t you just move your address to a qualifying EU address, either permanently or for the duration ?

    If not, then what do people do who emigrate ?

    And where is the EU law here ? A snippet from a reported incident below (though not directly related):

    “The European Commission said that price discrimination based on residence broke the rules of the EU’s single market.”

    Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-28756674

    • You can move but:

      A cannot do Tesco conversions (not an issue as can go via avios.com)

      B you cannot have a BA Amex

      C cannot move back for 6 months

  12. Just looking at this deal – we are flying with BA in November Glasgow – heathrow – vegas and BA are giving us 11,444 avois each for this. They are heavily discounted ‘O’ seats – Would I earn any more miles changing this to AA?

    Thanks in advance

    • Did you book this before April 28? If so, you keep the old rate of 1 per mile flown so same as AA.

      Had you booked later it would / should show just 3,000 return.

      Definitely stick with BA in your case. No point crediting to AA for just 2,000 extra AA miles given the risk that you never get to use them before they expire.

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