Mileage Run

My AAdvantage Year to Date

We’re two-thirds of the way through 2012, and I must say it has been a pretty good AAdvantage year for me.

I’ve earned Executive Platinum status through February 2014.

I’ve used many of those miles to purchase a trip for later in the year when my wife and I will visit Bali, Indonesia. We’ll fly First Class on American Airlines from Austin to Los Angeles, then Business Class on a Cathay Pacific 777-300ER to Hong Kong. Then we’ll again fly Business Class on Cathay to Bali. This flight was originally on a 747-400 and we were seated upstairs. But Cathay, like many other airlines, is starting to ground the 747-400 to reduce costs. So now we are on a “regional” 777-200.

The difference between this plane and our LAX-HKG plane is that the 777-300ER is a three-class aircraft (First, Business, and Economy), and  business class seating is only four seats across per aisle; it is Cathay’s most luxurious aircraft. We’ll be in a forward section of the plane that only has two rows for a total of eight passengers.

The 777-200 is a two-class aircraft (Business and Economy), and business class is seven seats across per aisle. In other words, while it will be nice, it will not be as luxurious as the 777-300ER is or the 747-400 would have been. I’m sorry that we won’t be on the 747 for that flight, it may have been our last opportunity to fly on one of the most iconic aircraft of the 20th century. Japan Airlines, British Air, and Cathay Pacific are just some of the airlines that are grounding the 747-400 in place of more fuel efficient aircraft. Boeing has launched the 747-800, but so far only Lufthansa has ordered the aircraft for passenger service (several companies have ordered it as a freighter). Since Lufthansa is not a Oneworld partner with American Airlines, the chance of me flying with them is very small.

And that’s it for me for the rest of the year. I don’t have any other trips planned, no mileage runs on the calendar. What a difference from earlier in the year when I was flying so much!

I’ve looked for some 2012 mileage runs, but have not found many good deals. With that I have decided it make more sense for me to put my into flying and re-qualifying for elite status next year. I’ve seen some January-February R/Ts to Seattle for $235 which is good, but certainly not great. I may book some of those as we get later in the year if I can’t find anything better. I’ve looked at Flyertalk.com and seen some interesting deals (Honolulu to Chicago to Helsinki, Finland and back) but not found any that I can get to work from Austin.

I’ll keep looking, something is bound to show up. However, I think AA is probably holding off on any special deals until it emerges from bankruptcy and possibly merges with another airlines.

Disclaimer: I own stock in AMR Corp, the parent of American Airlines. The total value of my holdings is less than $90.