It pays to have friends in high places especially when one is trying to book cheaper airfare. If you fly somewhat frequently, you've probably heard other travelers raving about the American Airlines AAdvantage® frequent flyer program. The great thing about this program is that it really gets to the heart of what travelers need and want when they are booking flights.

Signing up for membership could help you avoid many of the common travel headaches that leave travelers flustered when they arrive at the airport. You can say that the AAdvantage® program essentially rolls out the red carpet over the tarmac for its members.

Is joining the program worth it for you? The answer depends on how frequently and how far you travel per year with American Airlines. It definitely offers the rewards and perks people who travel frequently for business or pleasure need. There is also the potential for you to save a lot of money in the long run and cut down on common travel hassles should you join the loyalty program.

Take a look at the best 5 benefits of the American Airlines AAdvantage® program we at GET.com have rounded up for you. You might just discover that every mile counts when it comes to getting perks that matter.

1. Upgrades Galore

You'll definitely start to look at flying a lot differently once you have the AAdvantage® membership. The program is more than generous when it comes to seat upgrades.

What can you expect? You can use your miles to upgrade to first class or business class with American Airlines or a number of select partner airlines. In fact, you can enjoy unlimited requests for upgrades on trips that are 500 miles or less. This is a big win for anyone who travels short distances between cities for business regularly.

This perk also extends to flights beyond 500 miles for Executive Platinum members. Platinum and Gold members can use earned or purchased upgrades on flights beyond 500 miles. The great thing about the program's 500-mile policy is that you can even upgrade one travel companion on the same flight, too.

The bottom line regarding the program's upgrade policy is that it has a lot to offer to people who travel for pleasure or business frequently. Signing up for membership will be more than worth the effort if you're able to enjoy better seats during both long and short journeys.

In addition, the ability to provide an upgrade for a travel companion is a great option to use for both business and personal reasons. AAdvantage® is definitely one of the most generous programs out there when it comes to its upgrade policy. You will have a hard time finding an airline that is so giving when getting you the best seat possible is involved.

2. Goodbye To Baggage Fees

Do you hate the stress of trying to stuff everything you need for a trip into one bag in a bid to avoid being charged for two? Let's face it, we've all frantically tried to fit everything we need for a long trip into one bag out of fear of being slapped with a hefty fee upon presenting our luggage. Baggage fees are undoubtedly one of the biggest inconveniences of modern travel.

Of course, the reality is that an overstuffed bag is likely to be way above the weight limit set by airlines. Showing up to the airport with an overweight bag will probably cost you between $50 and $200 on most airlines. AAdvantage® does away with this big travel hassle once and for all. Gold members have the bag fee waived for a single bag during travel. Platinum members can bring two bags along. Executive Platinum members have the fee waived for three bags.

This is a huge deal when you consider that the total cost of baggage fees can easily add up to a few hundred dollars on a single trip if you have a lot to bring along. It is definitely worth signing up for the program if you routinely need to bring along several bags when flying. We're talking about savings of potentially hundreds or thousands of dollars over the course of a year for a person who travels several times a month with heavy luggages.

3. Waived Special Fees

Membership in the AAdvantage® program will help you avoid many of the special fees that get tacked on during travel. Anyone who flies often already knows that the devil is certainly in the details when it comes to dealing with the little fees that go along with changing flights or flying standby.

The fee for processing your award is waived completely if you have Executive Platinum status. The really big perk of being at the Executive Platinum level is that fees for award changes and reinstated tickets are also completely waived. This means you won't be penalized if you ever need to change your travel plans. In fact, Executive Platinum members enjoy complimentary same-day flight changes.

4. VIP Treatment

American Airlines knows how to make its loyal customers feel important when they show up to catch their flights. One really great perk that the company offers for its members is discounted Admirals Club® membership.

This is a fantastic treat if you routinely find yourself waiting around at the airport with nothing to do during layovers. Admirals Club® lounges offer food, drinks and assorted comforts that make it a little easier to be away from home.

The special treatment doesn't stop there. Platinum and Executive Platinum members enjoy priority baggage delivery, too. All three tiers of membership get to enjoy priority status during airport check-in procedures, security screenings and boarding. Need I say more?

5. Beyond Airfare

One of the most exciting features of the AAdvantage®program is that the rewards don't stop there and then when you book your airfare. You can actually apply your points toward hotel stays, rental cars and vacation packages, too.

American Airlines has great relationships with many respected rental agencies and hotels. These relationships can work to your advantage when it comes to getting discounts on accommodations and travel needs while you're away from home.

American Airlines really looks out for its loyal customers with regard to helping them save money on the total cost of a trip. It's awesome that these perks are available to members across all three tiers.

Credit CardFeaturesIntro APRRegular APRAnnual FeeWhy we like itWe least likeCredit RequiredRelated links
Citi<sup>®</sup> / AAdvantage<sup>®</sup> Executive World Elite™ Mastercard<sup>®</sup>

Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®

APPLY NOWAt Citi's secure website
  • Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening*
  • Admirals Club® membership for you and access for guests traveling with you*
  • Complimentary Admirals Club® lounge access for authorized users
  • Earn 10,000 AAdvantage® Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) after you spend $40,000 in purchases within the year*
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases*
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases*
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 8 companions traveling with you on the same reservation*
APPLY NOWAt Citi's secure website

N/A

17.74% - 25.74%* (Variable)

$450

Why we like it
  • Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening*.
  • Admirals Club® membership for you and access for guests traveling with you*.
We least like
  • High annual fee.
Excellent


Credit CardFeaturesIntro APRRegular APRAnnual FeeWhy we like itWe least likeCredit RequiredRelated links
CitiBusiness<sup>®</sup> / AAdvantage<sup>®</sup> Platinum Select<sup>®</sup> World Mastercard<sup>®</sup>

CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Mastercard®

APPLY NOWAt Citi's secure website
  • For a limited time, earn 70,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening*
  • Designed for businesses
  • For a limited time, earn 70,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening*
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries to reduce travel costs and boost your bottom line*
  • New: 25% savings on American Airlines inflight Wi-Fi when you use your card*
  • Enjoy preferred boarding on American Airlines flights*
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases*
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations*
  • Earn 1 AAdvantage® mile per $1 spent on other purchases*
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees*
APPLY NOWAt Citi's secure website

N/A

17.74% - 25.74%* (Variable)

$99, waived for first 12 months*

Why we like it
  • For a limited time, earn 70,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening*.
Excellent, Good