Unpublished AAdvantage Re-engagement Challenge

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In the midst of research for Monday’s post, Buying Back Expired Miles, I stumbled upon some information from milecards.com that mentioned another way to earn back expired American Airlines miles via a Re-engagement Challenge. For frequent American Airlines/oneworld flyers, participating will be cheaper than paying to get larger amounts of expired miles back.

The general gist is that if you have miles that expired within the last five years, you can pay a flat $30 fee to register in a “Re-engagement Challenge”. Depending on how many miles you want to bring back from the dead, you’ll need to earn X amount of partner base miles and/or fly X amount of roundtrips.

As it’s not published anywhere on aa.com, I called AAdvantage Customer Service to confirm that the reengagement challenge is still available. It is.

Re-engagement Challenge For Reinstating Expired Miles

Step 1: Register.

Call AAdvantage customer service at 1-800-882-8880 and let the representative know that you would like to participate in the Re-engagement Challenge for the purpose of reinstating your expired miles. They will charge you $30.

Your challenge will be defined by how many miles you’d like to reinstate.

If you want to reinstate somewhere between 1 and 50,000 miles, you’ll need to earn…

  • 5,000 partner base miles OR take one roundtrip flight on American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines or Qantas Airways (codeshares marketed by these carriers but operated by others are also eligible) that earns miles

If you want to reinstate somewhere between 50,001 and 75,000 miles, you’ll need to earn…

  • 7,000 partner base miles AND take one roundtrip flight on American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines or Qantas Airways (codeshares marketed by these carriers but operated by others are also eligible) that earns miles

If you want to reinstate somewhere between 75,001 miles or more, you’ll need to earn…

  • 10,000 partner base miles AND take two roundtrip flights on American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines or Qantas Airways (codeshares marketed by these carriers but operated by others are also eligible) that earn miles

Here’s a summary.

Terms

  • You’ll have six months to complete the challenge after you register.
  • You’re only eligible to earn miles back via the Re-engagement Challenge that have expired within the last five years

What are Partner Base Miles?

For the purpose of this challenge, partner base miles are any redeemable AAdvantge miles earned outside of any a bonus. Primary examples are the redeemable miles earned by spending on an AAdvantage co-branded credit card (but not the miles you earn from sign up bonuses/other bonuses), or redeemable AAdvantage miles earned by flying American Airlines, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines or Qantas Airways (or codeshares marketed by these carriers but operated by others).

Don’t let the term “Partner” bonus miles confuse you–you can still earn these miles for spending on an AAdvantage credit card, or by flying American Airlines.

From the terms: Any AAdvantage partner or collection of partners may be used to earn the total required number of miles in your AAdvantage account. Visit www.aa.com/earn to see a list of AAdvantage partners. Any miles received from transactions through the buyAAmiles®, giftAAmiles®, shareAAmiles® and reactivateAAmilesSM programs, any miles received from mileage conversions, as well as bonus miles received through customer service bonuses or partner bonus offers, do not count toward this requirement.

Bottom Line

Don’t let your miles expire. There are tons of easy ways to keep your account active even if you don’t have a co-branded airline credit card nor fly them or their partners often, like…

  • Dining programs
  • Purchase a small amount of miles
  • Donate miles
  • Shopping Portals
  • Move some transferrable bank points
  • Watch out for free giveaways and/or promotions (we’ll keep you informed of those here)
  • Rent a car

But if they do expire (and for AAdvantage, that means no account activity for 18 months), know that you’re not totally up a creek without a paddle…many loyalty programs allow you to buy back your miles for cheap or participate in reengagement challenges like this one from AAdvantage.

To enroll in AAdvantage’s reengagement challenge, call 1-800-882-8880 and ask for more details as this offer is not published on their website.

 


Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

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11 COMMENTS

  1. Does a points transfer from UR into Marriott extend the expiration date? Got social media sign up points, but read that those don’t extend the expiring date of your other points. TY

  2. Yes, just talked to them. $100. However, they said they no longer go back 5 years. It’s now 18 months. I politely told the representative that I was not frustrated with her, as she doesn’t make the rules, but with American Airlines not notifying me of the 18 month rule change. So she said she would talk to a supervisor to override the rule, which they did. So, I was able to buy my miles back for the rate listed in the chart, and my miles were 2 years 3 months old. Also, the supervisor was able to find additional miles that the representative couldn’t see on her computer. Yay!

  3. I tried to call and ask for this challenge in September 2019. They claimed it was no longer active and the only way to reinstate miles now is by paying.

  4. Yes, they dont have it any longer, called today 12/3/2019. I got 51.000 miles reinstated of the 125.000 that I lost, last year when I took a round trip flight and paid $ 30.-. After that you could reinstate the rest of the miles, they said. Well, today they told me they dont have the program anymore, never got an email about it and my 51.000 miles would expire 12/19/2019 unless I paid $ 80.- to buy 2.000 miles after which my 53.000 miles are good for 18 months, but my other 51.000 miles are gone? Anybody a good advice what to do? I am mad.

  5. Yes, I called today 12/17/2019 and they told me the same, they no longer have the re-engagement program. The only way to reinstate the miles is to pay. My husband’s account has 400,000+ miles that expired and that will cost us $2,000!! What a nightmare!! If someone know any other option, or the re-engagement program is back next year (2020) please let me know! Thanks!!

    • Ugh that really sucks. Have you tried the good ol’ squeaky wheel gets the grease approach? If your husband has or has had any sort of status with AAdvantage than make sure you leverage that.

      • I will try to open Aadvantage card for my husband next year 2020 and will dedicate that card for our future spending for few months then I will try to call again. It’s hard to ask when they saw your account has been inactive for 18+ months so hopefully they’ll have something for us. In the meantime I will keep checking if the re-engagement program will be back. Thanks, Sarah!!

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