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2 Mid-tier statuses or potentially more miles and one top tier status. My dilemma…
I was targeted for temporary Platinum Pro status a couple of weeks ago, with the opportunity to keep it until the end of January, 2020 if I hit $2400 EQD and 20k EQM by September 7th, 2018. I have a potential flight option that I’m considering taking that would satisfy both of these requirements. However, if I do credit the flights to AA, I wouldn’t be crediting them to Alaska, and this not only means missing out on quite a few points, but more than likely, I won’t hit Alaska’s top tier MVPG75 for next year. I’ll still hit MVP Gold, which is still great, but getting those bonus 50k points upon re-qualification is great. So here’s my dilemma: Do I want AA Plat Pro and AS MVPG, or do I just want to go for AS MVPG75? Here’s how I’m working through it.
My flight will be in business…
Quick refresher for those who aren’t fluent in lingo:
- EQM – Elite Qualifying Miles
- These are calculated based on the airline flown, and only count towards your elite status
- RDM – Redeemable Miles
- How many miles you earn off your flight that can be used for redemption on future award flights
- EQD – Elite Qualifying Dollars
- Calculated off the base fare and used to qualify for Elite status
While my flight is soon – I don’t need to credit the flight when I fly it so I have some time to decide.
I can fly and then figure out where I want to credit by requesting the credit…
Additionally, I haven’t booked the flight and am considering variations including options that solely fly BA which would change the calculus as those flights would earn at different rates in both AA and AS. But for the time being, I’m looking at flights that would fly AMS-DFW-LAX-DFW-AMS all on AA metal, so this is what I’m going to work through for this post’s purposes.
If I credit the flight to AA, here’s what I’ll earn.
Since they’ve granted me the status I’ll earn 9x miles on roughly $2200 base fare and fly 12,310 butt in seat miles. In AA’s program that will earn me…
- 19,800 RDM
- 24,620 EQM
- 2200 EQD
I need $2400 EQD, but already have another flight crediting to AA domestically, so I’ll hit the minimum requirement for the promotion. In addition to the RDM above I’d also get Platinum Pro status of which I’d value the following benefits the most:
- Platinum Pro status until the end of January, 2020
- Business Class lounge access internationally
- Access to Main Cabin Extra, Priority Seating free of charge
- Same Day change free of charge
- Sapphire check-in, boarding, etc
Here’s what I would make if I credited it to Alaska’s program.
Only certain flights now credit to Alaska when flown on AA metal, primarily those marketed by Alaska, and those that are international routes. For this trip the only flights that would credit are the AMS to DFW legs, not the DFW to LAX. This is why I’m looking at routes that would incorporate more BA metal as the earn rates would be substantially higher in RDM and EQM. But here’s the data:
AMS to DFW is 4920 butt in seat miles. MVG75 get 125% bonus and class of service bonus is 50%.
- Base RDM: 4920
- G75 RDM: 6150
- Class RDM : 2460
- EQM: 7380
- 14760 EQM
- 27,060 RDM
Now I could also attribute part of the 50k point bonus that I would achieve when I re-qualify for MVPG75. Since I need 90k EQM to requal, I’d be making 14760/90k on this flight alone. That’s 16.4% or 8200 of the 50k bonus. That would mean this itin would be earning 35,260 RDM. Nearly double the amount of AA miles earned.
I primarily enjoy Alaska miles to fly like this:
I’m also taking into consideration another variable. The Alaska fast track offers we saw early this year. From other posts – these people received the 50k bonus miles.
Many people who failed to requalify for status last year were targeted in January for Fast Track offers. Not that I could count on this going forward, but it’s at least worth taking into consideration.
This is especially attractive considering reports that MVPG75 targets got the 50k bonus miles after flying 20k miles in 3 month. While this is hefty travel, it’s not crazy.
So is it better to hold AA Platinum Pro and Alaska MVP Gold, or earn more miles on Alaska and potentially get MVP Gold 75k?
Is there a big difference between MVPG and MVPG75? Both of them allow me cancel without a fee, I get the MVPG upgrade certs, and complimentary upgrades. Is there a HUGE value in having top tier vs Gold when it comes to Alaska. I’m not really sure as I’ve only ever held MVPG75, and would that difference outweigh holding both an American status and an Alaska status? I kinda doubt it…
I tend to think having two is better than one especially when I think about Alaska more than likely trying to attract me back to MVGP75k with a targeted fast track offer.
What would you do?
Affiliate link via Card Ratings
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.
60k Points after $4k spend in 3 months
Transferrable Chase Ultimate Rewards
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.
- 3x on dining
- including eligible delivery services for takeout
- 3x on select streaming services
- 3x on online grocery purchases
- (excluding Target, Walmart and wholesale clubs)
- 5x on all travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards – Chase Travel Portal
- $50 Annual Credit on hotel stays purchased via Ultimate Rewards/Chase Travel
- The begins immediately for new cardmembers and after your account anniversary for existing cardmembers
- 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 Portal and the slew of other benefits remain in tact including primary rental car insurance, purchase protections, etc.
- Points are transferrable to 13 Ultimate Rewards partners
- Redeem in the Chase Travel center for 1.25 cents per point
- No foreign transaction fees
- Suite of Travel and Purchase Coverage
- Primary rental car coverage is my favorite
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.
Cards that earn flexible points and should be used on the bulk of your purchases.
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.