“Change” Photo credit: David Reece on Flickr
There are lots or reasons why it’s better to redeem your AAdvantage miles as far in advance of travel as possible, you’ll have a better selection of flights and schedules, it will cost you fewer miles, and there are no fees for award tickets issued online more than 20 days in advance of your travel.
For a while now American has had two tiers of fees for tickets issued within 20 days travel: $50 for tickets issued 20 to 7 days prior to departure, and $100 for tickets issued 6 days to 2 hours prior to departure
Starting August 25, 2011, they’re eliminating the two tier fee structure and the cost for all tickets issued within 20 days or 2 hours prior to departure will be $75.
One thing that hasn’t changed, the fees are waived for AAdvantage Executive Platinum, AAdvantage Platinum and AAdvantage Gold members using miles from their account.
In addition to making things simpler, I’m sure this change will also have the effect of increasing revenue for American, which isn’t a bad thing, especially if it allows them to continue their policy of not charging a fee when booking award reservations 21 days or more prior to departure via AA.com.
British Airways collects a fee on all award travel, I’d hate to see that happen with the AAdvantage program.