The Masters – A weekend in Augusta, Georgia
April 15, 2016
Redeeming Delta Skymiles for maximal value
April 27, 2016

Maximizing AAdvantage Miles for Award Travel

Use AAdvantage miles for First Class travel on American Airlines and their partners!

AAdvantage Miles

I have been a frequent flyer on American Airlines (USAirways) since I was six months old. To me, AAdvantage miles offer the best bang for your buck of the three major US airlines especially when it comes to being a top-level elite status flyer. I almost never fly United because of multiple bad experiences and the lack of convenient hubs where I tend to travel most often. I do fly Delta when they have a much better deal than American or if I’m stranded because of an American delay or cancellation. This happened enough times last year for me to earn silver medallion with 30 segments and 30,000 miles.

Using AAdvantage Miles for Oneworld Alliance Travel

When it comes to travel partners, you will be hard-pressed to find a better alliance than the Oneworld alliance, which American Airlines is part of. Oneworld includes carriers such as Qatar Airways, Cathay Pacific, British Airways, and Qantas meaning you can get pretty much anywhere in the world and have a great experience from a major hub like LAX or JFK.

AAdvantage miles partner award chart traveling from the Continental United States

AAdvantage miles partner award chart traveling from the Continental United States

American also has a partnership with Etihad airlines, which I will be flying next month in their Airbus A380 First Class Apartment.

Etihad First Class Apartment via Etihad.com

Etihad First Class Apartment via Etihad.com

The best part about American being partners with all of these great airlines is that you can use your AAdvantage miles to book award travel with any partner. When Mallory and I traveled from the Maldives to Hong Kong, we booked Cathay Pacific Business Class for just 30,000 miles each. The flight would have cost almost $3000 if we were to have booked revenue tickets. My flight next month in Etihad First Class would be more than $10,000 one-way if I were to pay for it. Instead, I used 90,000 AAdvantage miles and paid taxes and fees of about $80. That is some serious bang for your buck!!

Now there are multiple ways to search for award availability using your AAdvantage miles. American Airlines website is not bad for booking travel on American, British Airways, or Finnair operated flights.

American's website only shows American flights from New York to Vancouver

American’s website only shows American flights from New York to Vancouver

British Airways website is much better for finding Oneworld availability. To search BA award availability, you must create a free account with the airline, but then just select “executive club” then “spend your Avios” and book an award flight.BAreward1

You can see there is actually availability on Cathay Pacific First class from New York to Vancouver!

You can see there is availability on Cathay Pacific First class from New York to Vancouver when searching on British Airways site!

Other Partners for AAdvantage miles redemption

etihad award

Guest Business available from Abu Dhabi to Dallas in mid-August bookable with AAdvantage miles

Since Etihad isn’t part of any airline alliance, you must use their website to search for available awards. Goto plan and book, then book flights with miles. To be able to use AAdvantage miles to book a trip on Etihad Guest award must be available. To book you must call American Airlines since Etihad award can’t be booked on American’s website. There is no booking fee because the travel can’t be booked online. Sometimes the American agents cannot see the same award availability, but if you call the call centers for Australia or Great Britain they usually have no problem seeing the same availability, in fact, I had to do this when I booked my Etihad award. Other airlines that are not part of the Oneworld alliance that you can redeem your AAdvantage miles for travel include Hawaiian Airlines, Air Tahiti Nui, Alaska Airlines, and Fiji Airlines.

Domestic AAdvantage miles redemption

My tips above relate to what in my opinion is the best way to use your AAdvantage miles. Of course, you can use your AAdvantage miles to book domestic flights on American Airlines website. If you are looking for domestic awards, make sure you are looking for “saver” awards because these awards offer the best value.

Use AAdvantage miles to travel from Pittsburgh to Orlando in mid-July

Use AAdvantage miles to travel from Pittsburgh to Orlando in mid-July


Pin This!

Maximizing AAdvantage Miles| Passports to Life| Award travel| AA| American Airlines| AAdvantage Miles| British Airways| Cathay Pacific| Etihad| First Class| airline miles

Did you find this guide helpful? Save it to your Pinterest by clicking the Pinterest logo that pops up on it!


















Please let me know if you have any questions about award redemption, or if you need help or advice planning award travel either in the comments or through the contact me page.


  1. dor cohen says:

    You have brought up a very wonderful details , thankyou for the post.

  2. […] previously discussed using AAdvantage miles for award travel. In this post we will take a look at using Delta Skymiles for award […]

  3. Hello There. I discovered your weblog the usage of msn.
    That is a really smartly written article. I’ll make sure to bookmark it and return to read extra of your useful info.
    Thank you for the post. I will certainly comeback.

  4. Quality articles is definitely the crucial to interest the
    people to go to see the website, that’s what this site is providing.

  5. Hello to every one, the contents existing at this web page are really awesome for
    people experience, well, keep up the nice work fellows.

  6. My brother suggested I might like this blog. He was entirely right.
    This post truly made my day. You can not imagine just how much time I had
    spent for this info! Thanks!

  7. LynnaLImus says:

    Fabulous, what a web site it is! This blog provides useful information to us,
    keep it up.

  8. Incredible! This blog looks exactly like my old one! It¡¯s on a entirely different subject but it has pretty much the same page layout and design. Excellent choice of colors!

  9. […] have previously showed you how to get the most value from your American AAdvantage miles and your Delta Skymiles. While I have much less experience redeeming United Mileage Plus miles, a […]

  10. Definitely, what a magnificent blog and illuminating posts, I will bookmark your website.Best Regards!

  11. […] will fold fully flat allowing you to sleep like it was a bed. Use my tips and tricks for using your American Airline, Delta, or United awards miles to book business class trips! Sign up for a credit card with good […]

  12. […] over the top experience, anyone can experience the Etihad First Class Apartment. I paid only 90,000 AAdvantage Miles and about $80 for this one-way flight. Etihad is partners with American Airlines, and transfer […]

  13. […] the helpdesk. I had been using the ITA Matrix on my phone to try and find other options using the One World Alliance partners that would get us there later in the night we were supposed to arrive, or first thing in […]

  14. […] it may be because the islands are so remote, but food was expensive! It is a good thing I used AAdvantage miles for most of our flights and breakfast was included in our hotel rate because it was nearly […]

  15. […] have mentioned in my posts about how to maximize your miles on American, Delta, and United, that each of the three legacy airlines in the United States belong to an […]

  16. […] I just missed opening when I was there last year. I was able to redeem 120,000 American Airlines AAdvantage miles each for our flights from Johannesburg to New […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *