AA’s Business Extra promotion offers free upgrade after one flight

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AA’s Business Extra promotion offers free upgrade after one flight.

I just received an email from American Airlines Business Extra program regarding a 20th anniversary promotion. It allows members to earn enough points ( 650 ) for a one-segment upgrade by flying one flight within 30 days of registering. It’s a pretty straight forward offer and if you’re part of the Business Extra program ( or would will be) I don’t really see why you wouldn’t take part in it. In fact, because it’s 650 points, you wouldn’t even have to use the points for a one-segment upgrade and could save them for a different redemption. I’ll definitely take part in AA’s Business Extra promotion offering enough points for a free upgrade after one flight.

AA's Business Extra promotion offers free upgrade after one flight

What is the Business Extra program?

It is a separate and parallel AA loyalty program designed for small businesses and their employees. It allows bulk employee travel to accumulate miles in a central account to be redeemed for various AA awards and perks. You and your employees will continue to earn miles in your/their AAdvantage accounts. It’s basically earning two currencies of AA miles in one flight. If you aren’t enrolled, I’d highly recommend doing it.

You don’t even have to be a current member. You can enroll and take part

AA's Business Extra promotion offers free upgrade after one flight

The Terms and Conditions of this promotion.

  • 650 bonus points. Enough for a BXP1 ( one segment upgrade)
  • Must enroll between 2/23 and 3/31 2017
  • Use the code BX20UPGWELCOME
  • 1 qualifying flight within 30 days of registering
    • AA ( 001), BA (125) and Iberia(075) flights qualify

AA's Business Extra promotion offers free upgrade after one flight

There are certain restrictions on which flights you can redeem your one-way upgrade: here they are

As you can see, points can be use to upgrade EXCEPT B,N,O,Q or S fares buckets

Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 2.16.05 PM

So yes, you can use those points to upgrade to a lie-flat transcon.

OR save the points for an international one-way upgrade. Again excluding B, N, O, Q, or S fare buckets.

Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 2.16.17 PM Screen Shot 2017-02-23 at 2.16.25 PM

American Air Business Class 777-300 ER LHR-LAX Mini Cabin - 2 of 36

Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

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Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® is a great starter card that earns Premium Ultimate Rewards that can be transferred into over a dozen partners many of which are US based including Hyatt, Southwest, United, IHG, and Marriott.

Welcome Offer

Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. 

*you may find an elevated offer walking into a branch – see below

Annual Fee


Points Earned

Transferrable Chase Ultimate Rewards

  • Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
    • That’s $750 when you redeem through Chase Travel℠
    • Some people have seen Chase branches offering the following:
      • 75k Ultimate Rewards After $4k spend in 3 months + 10k Ultimate Rewards after $6k in 6 months 
  • 5x on all travel purchased through Chase Travel℠
  • 3x on dining, including eligible delivery services for takeout & dining out
  • 3x on select streaming services
  • 3x on online grocery purchases
    • (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs)
  • $50 Annual Chase Travel Hotel Credit via Chase Travel℠
    • The begins immediately for new cardmembers and after your account anniversary for existing cardmembers
  • 2x on all other travel
  • 10% Anniversary Bonus
    • Every year you keep the card, your total spend will yield a 10% points bonus. If you spend $10k in a year, you’ll get 1k bonus points
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred continues to redeem at 1.25c in the Chase Travel℠ and the slew of other benefits remain in tact including Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver ( primary ), purchase protections, etc.
  • Points are transferrable to 14 Ultimate Rewards partners
  • Redeem in Chase Travel℠ for 1.25 cents per point
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Suite of Travel and Purchase Coverage
    • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver is my favorite
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024
  • $95 Annual Fee

We keep an up to date spreadsheet that lists the best ever offers: You can find that spreadsheet here.

Historically 80k is a very, very good offer and hit in both 2022 and 2023. In 2021, we saw the offer hit an all time high of 100k. Who knows if that will ever come back.

Main Cast: 

Cards that earn flexible points and should be used on the bulk of your purchases.

Supporting Cast:

Cards that earn fixed points in the currency of the airline/hotel and can not be transferred at attractive rates. These cards yield benefits that make it worth keeping, but not necessarily worth putting a lot of your everyday spend on. 

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® is exceptional starter card and offers transferrable Ultimate Rewards, and pairs well with other Chase cards.

If you carry this card alongside Chase’s cashback cards like the Chase Freedom Flex℠and Chase Freedom Unlimited® or the business versions: Ink Business Cash® , Ink Business Unlimited® you can combine the points into Preferred account and transfer into hotel and airline partners

Annual fee is quite low at $95 a year + you get a 10% anniversary bonus on points + $50 hotel credit in Chase travel.

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.


  • Scott March 24, 2017

    Do you think my qualifying flight within 30 days of registering can be a miles flight?

    • Miles March 24, 2017

      Scott – unfortunately, it has to be a revenue earning flight

  • Elley February 28, 2017

    What fees are involved in enrolling in BE and you list letters for reservations … please tell
    Me what this means . Can a single ticket be purchased or does a large number of tix ?

    • Miles February 28, 2017

      Elley – Good questions. There are no fees for enrolling, and those letters are fare buckets that you can’t upgrade using points. And a BE number is just added to reservations your company makes. Single ticket or multiple doesn’t matter, but the passengers must be a part of your BE account. All points for your company are accumulated in one central account

  • Matt February 25, 2017

    Thanks for this tip! If I have an existing reservation (MIA-MCI) booked through the Merrill+ travel portal, class M. Will that reservation qualify to earn the upgrade?

    • Miles February 26, 2017

      Hey Matt – I would call on this one…I flew on a bulk fare booked through Citi’s portal last fall and BE didn’t award points. I’d assume eligible fares means fares that would earn BE points, but it’s a bit unclear and seems from others experience with bulk fares, very YMMV.

  • cmk February 25, 2017

    1 flight mean a one way qualifies right?

    • Miles February 25, 2017

      cmk – that’s my understanding

  • […] friends over at Monkey Miles wrote a great post on how you can earn a free one-way upgrade with your Business Extra […]

  • […] Sign up for American’s small business program and one flight can earn you a confirmed domestic upgrade. […]

  • Lee @ BaldThoughts February 25, 2017

    I have Business Extra but don’t recall seeing this email. I’ll need to log in to see if I qualify. Who wouldn’t want to be upgraded to Business or First Class for free?

    • Miles February 25, 2017

      Lee – great offer and didn’t think it was targeted… lemme know if you see it. Link should work too

  • Christopher February 24, 2017

    Nope, won’t let me register for the promotion. My BusinessExtra account is about a year old and when I try to use the code I get this error, “Promotion reserved for new enrollments and not available for registration.”

  • olgsr February 23, 2017

    It’s excluding N,N,O,Q or S

    • Miles February 23, 2017

      ahhhhh good catch, total brain fart. corrected now.

  • Stan D February 23, 2017

    I was able to log in and get the code to work (I also received the same email)

    I’m the one who books all of the employee travel at my employer and since we are based near PHL I’m putting those employees (and myself) on AA quite often. I love the business extra program and have been able to obtain gold status for 2400 points (it’s now 3200) and an Admirals Club membership for 3000 points which I just submitted for yesterday. Only annoying thing is the points only post once/month usually about the 3rd week of the month but other than that I highly recommend it!


  • J February 23, 2017

    Got an error it’s only for new sign-ups.

    • Miles February 23, 2017

      J – I was sent an email for it and have had a Business Extra account for quite some time. Try BX20UPG as the code

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