American Airlines and JetBlue recognize that elite requalification thresholds remain a challenge for many travelers. The carriers have come up with shifts in earning means and promotions to help boost accounts, though each in a slightly different manner.
American’s AAdvantage Bonuses
American is now offering at least some members bonus earnings towards elite qualification miles (EQMs) and dollars (EQDs) this summer, hoping to sway travel decisions for the few trips that may happen in the back half of the year.
In addition to the one-time EQD gift the carrier has a separate EQM promotion on offer:
Of particular interest on this promotion is that segments operated by EQM-earning partners also count. So crediting a JetBlue flight to an AAdvantage account under that new partnership would earn the bonus 250 EQMs. This still encourages loyalty to American, but not quite to the same level as only granting the bonus on AA-operated flights.
These (possibly targeted) promotions come on top of the company’s decision to lower requalification requirements in 2021 for the 2022 program year. The reduced requirements were announced in October 2020.
They also come against a backdrop of relatively strong domestic, leisure travel demand. People are flying, but not the same AAdvantage Elite members that have flown in years past, or at least not in the same volumes.
This makes the timing of the promotion interesting, given that it hopes to increase business during the peak summer season, where demand is already rather stronger.
JetBlue opens up earning options
While not outright giving away bonus qualifying points, JetBlue’s Mosaic program qualifications are also adjusting for 2022 qualification. The carrier will now allow earning towards Mosaic elite status for the hotel, car, and activities portions of its Vacations product. Previously travelers only earned on the airfare portion of a package. Spend on hotel bookings made through the Paisly platform will also earn towards Mosaic.
The JetBlue options open up more earning potential, but do not give members any freebies.
Of interest is one area where the programs are still not offering elite earning credit: Ancillary product spend direct with the airlines. That’s some of the best margin revenue the airlines generate and the sort of behavior the companies should want to encourage.
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