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When American Airlines implemented a bunch of changes/devaluations last week, the biggest blow to me was the free one way tickets from an international gateway hub (LAX). The free one-way trick was probably my favorite feature of American Airline miles and why I rated the miles the most valuable. It’s basically adding a free one way trip to and from an international destination such as HNL-LAX(stop)-LHR. My big question was “Are date changes allowed on exisiting AA free one ways?”
I have one free one way booked to Toronto and one coming from New York. I just added these two free one ways at the time but wasn’t sure about the dates. I was recently able to decide on a plan and feared that I would not be allowed free date changes on my free one way tickets. The only way to change your existing free one way legs is to call the AAdvantage desk at 1-800-882-8880.
I asked the agent to change the date on my free one-way from LAX-YYZ and the agent told me to hold on while she asks somebody. I’ve never had this problem before, but it seems that the agents may be confused with the new rules. Date changes are still free regardless of AA eliminating free stopovers at an international gateway.
I had no problem changing my date on my existing AA free one ways and I would assume that it should be no problem at all for existing reservations. The elimination of free one ways on American is a huge blow, but American Airline miles are still my number one choice for flights to Asia. You can’t beat 55,000 AA miles to Southeast Asia vs. United’s 80,000 miles to SE Asia for business class. I am still going to keep to my strategy of collecting UR points, AA miles, SPG points, and Barclaycard points.