New AA Reservations layout…and a note for BA Tier Point runners

Hard on the heals of changes to the way BA operates it’s redemption site, AA has redesigned its booking engine for revenue tickets.

There has always been an odd quirk with AA’s UP fares – where you essentially get a free upgrade. These fares have always been popular with people looking for a few more BA Tier Points as the ‘free’ upgrade gets you in to a higher cabin and earns you more Tier Points too.

The new engine doesn’t, in my view, make it always easy to see what you’re getting in terms of fare class. This is essential if you are going to maximise Tier Points. For example a 2000+ miles flight in Business Class earns 140 Tier Points, where as the same flight in First earns 210. In the example below I searched and found these fares:

a screenshot of a computerThe Business and First Class fare is the same.

However, ehwne you click the [+] you notice that the Business Fare books in to I and the First in to A. Not only is the First Class seat on AA’s 767-300 much nicer than the business class, but it earns more Tier points. Of course, check and you will see that there is an all business ticket for $604.

Expanding the display shows the informaion you need:

a screenshot of a flight schedule

So today’s tip is to make sure you check before you book these fares.

What I did notice was the difference between the desciption of the Instant Upgrade and Business Class fares. The Business Class fare says ‘Guaranteed Seat in Business Class’. The Instant Upgrade fare omits this line!



  1. Remember with instant upgrade if you have IROPS you may be rebooked into economy – business seat is not guaranteed.

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