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How to redeem American Airlines miles

Get value for your miles with international business or first class award flights with partner airlines.

Earning miles is easy if you’re an AAdvantage member or own an American Airlines cobranded credit card. But finding the best value for your miles can take some effort.

Often, MileSAAver flights will give you the highest value per mile — especially if you’re traveling abroad. Flying with Oneworld partner airlines on business or first class can give you higher redemption value than flying American Airlines within the US.

Airline transfer partners

Since American Airlines is a member of Oneworld Alliance, AAdvantage miles can be redeemed with all alliance members and with some non-alliance member airlines. Redeem your miles for flights with:

  • Air Tahiti Nui
  • Alaska Airlines
  • American Airlines
  • British Airways
  • Cape Air
  • Fiji Airways
  • Finnair
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • Iberia
  • Malaysia Airlines
  • Qantas Airways
  • Qatar Airways
  • Royal Jordanian Airlines
  • S7 Airlines
  • SriLankan Airlines

Book your award flight online, by phone or with the American Airlines mobile app.

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Awards chart

Choose MileSAAver or AAnytime flights when redeeming AAdvantage miles for an award flight.

The difference between the two is:

  • MileSAAver requires less miles to redeem and seats aren’t always available.
  • AAnytime requires more miles to redeem and seats are always available.

Here are the miles required for award flights if you’re flying from a mainland US state:
How to redeem American Airlines miles-chart1
Data obtained February 2019. Values are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

Here are the miles required for award Oneworld Alliance partner flights if you’re flying from a mainland US state:
How to redeem American Airlines miles-chart2
Data obtained February 2019. Values are subject to change and should be used only as a general guide.

Tip: Avoid redeeming award flights for British Airways flights, as they have high fees and taxes on award travel.

How to redeem points for maximum value

Redeem MileSAAver American Airlines flights within the US to maximize your point value in America. The values below are examples of how far your points can get you based on airline websites at the time of writing.

  • First-class award flight from the US to India.
    For 70,000 miles, you can redeem a first-class one-way award flight from the US to India. Search the Etihad Airways or British Airways websites to find the highest value award flight, then book it through American Airlines.
  • Business-class award flight from the US to Africa.
    For 75,000 miles, you can redeem a business-class Qatar Airways award flight between New York and Johannesburg. This gives you a value of more than three cents per mile. Use the Qatar Airways or British Airways websites to find the highest value award flight, then book it through American Airlines.
  • Business-class award flight from US to Asia
    For 60,000 miles, you can redeem a business-class award flight between the US and Asia. Use the American Airlines or British Airways websites to find the highest value award flight, then book it through American Airlines. Note that your best option for visiting Japan business class is with Japan Airlines.

Did you know: You can get better results using the British Airways website

Most of the international award flights listed on the American Airlines website have two or more stops, are only American Airlines flights and have longer flight times.

The solution?

Signup free with the British Airways frequent flyer program (called the Executive Club) to find better international award flights from the US with Oneworld Alliance partners. Use the British Airways website to find seat availability for the best flight and call American Airlines to book your flight with miles.

How much are American Airlines miles worth?

It really depends on what you redeem your miles for. Flights on American Airlines typically cost above 1 cent per mile. As of November 2020, here’s what you can get with 50,000 AAdvantage miles:

  • A main cabin round-trip flight for two between Los Angeles (LAX) and New York (JFK)
  • A main cabin round-trip flight for two between Chicago (ORD) and Dallas (DFW)
  • A premium economy one-way flight for one person between Chicago (ORD) and London (LON)
  • A main cabin round-trip flight for one person between Los Angeles (LAX) and Mexico City (MEX)
  • Upgrade from premium economy to business class for two on flights between the US and Africa (via Europe), the US and the Indian subcontinent, and the US and the Middle East (via Europe)

Note: You still have to pay taxes and fees when you redeem miles for award flights.

How to earn American Airlines miles

Get an American Airlines cobranded credit card and clear the signup bonus to quickly accrue AAdvantage miles. You’ll earn more miles on American Airlines purchases and accelerated miles on everyday spending depending on the card.

To learn more about how you can quickly earn AAdvantage miles, check out our full earning guide to find out which methods offer you the best ways to earn AAdvantage miles.

Compare cards for earning AAdvantage miles

Cobranded American Airlines cards are best for earning AAdvantage miles. However, you can also choose hotel credit cards and transfer hotel points to American Airline miles. You don’t have to use AAdvantage credit cards for earning American Airlines miles if you don’t want to.

Frequently asked questions

  • What is the value of American Airlines miles?
    Based on our valuation using airline websites, you can usually get a value of 1.5 cents per mile on American Airline award flights.

    But sometimes, you can get a value of up to three cents or more when redeeming international award flights on business or first class with Oneworld Alliance partners.

  • Do American Airlines miles expire?
    Yes, your miles will expire if your account is inactive for 18 months. Avoid this by earning and redeeming miles at least once every year.
  • Can I redeem my miles for a seat upgrade?
    Yes, you can redeem your miles for seat upgrades.

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