A Guide to American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades

American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades

Grab American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades for an Exclusive Experience

Your flight trip experience is enhanced when you get an upgrade. So, when you are flying with American Airlines, get ready for upgrades to up your trip delight. With American Airlines complimentary upgrades, you can grab your favorite seat and enjoy the top-notch in-flight features.

Since the premium flight seat demand is increasing, upgrades are highly looked upon. So, you might score a superior cabin class with cash or your points. If you have an elite status,  an upgrade becomes easier. That’s why an AA upgrade is for you whether you are an AAdvantage elite member or not.

Now, let’s see the ways to increase your chances for an upgrade on the next American Airlines flight. The account below takes you through the information about complimentary upgrades, eligibility, and more.

What are American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades?

The main upgrade for AAdvantage members is the complimentary upgrade on an American Airlines flight. All the elite members get unlimited, complimentary, auto-requested upgrades. They are upgraded to first class on domestic flights and select short haul international flights.

Moreover, elite status holders can get an upgrade for themselves as well as for their travel companion. On most of the AA flights,  a complimentary upgrade means that you will get a reclining seat in the first-class on domestic flights. However, some flights offer you an upgrade that allows complete relaxation in lie-flat business class seats.

Please note
  • If you are eligible to get complimentary updates, it doesn’t mean that you are assured of one. With a limited number of seats in the front of the flight, several AAdvantge members compete for it.
  • Up your elite status with AA to increase your chances to secure an upgrade.

Who Can Get Complimentary Upgrades on American Airlines?

Are you looking forward to complimentary upgrades during your trip with AA? So, take a look here and know when you are found eligible for getting an AA complimentary upgrade.

Status Members

With AAdvantage membership, you automatically get American Airlines complimentary upgrades on space availability.

You can get this upgrade –

  • To travel within North America
  • From any eligible fare in the Main Cabin or Premium Economy to the next service class – Business/ domestic First
  • With a companion on the same flight
  • On eligible flights that American Airlines operate and market
Please note
  • Now all AAdvantage status members can upgrade on AAdvantage award tickets.
  • Upgrades are confirmed before departure based on status.

Members Having SWUs

While only domestic and short-haul international flights, offer complimentary upgrades, SWUs can be applied to:

  • On AA-operated and marketed flights
  • Any one-way travel
  • Up to three segments

Flights on extremely long routes are also included.

Moreover, you can score AAdvantage complimentary upgrades on an American Airlines long-haul flight to various international destinations. The following can use SWUs.

Please note
  • SWUs are one-way.
  • You can also use the upgrades on flights –
    • That are marketed and operated by British Airways or
    • Operated by British Airways and marketed by American Airlines
  • With an SWU, AA upgrades you to the next travel class. For example, from –
    • Economy or premium economy, get upgraded to business class or domestic first class on short-haul flights
    • Business class, get to the first class with an SWU

Can I Get a Free Companion Upgrade on American Airlines Flights?

If you want to know how to get free upgrades on American Airlines for your travel companion, you must have an AAdvantage elite status. You can get it even if you have made bookings separately. Simply call the airline to link both the bookings and request a complimentary upgrade.

However, check the seat availability to get an upgrade.

When Does American Airlines Clear the Complimentary Upgrades?

After AA opens the availability of  complimentary upgrades, an elite status holder can grab one.

Now, let’s see when your upgrade clears. Here are the elite status levels and their respective timings for upgrade confirmation before the flight departure –

  • Executive Platinum: 100 hours
  • Platinum Pro: 72 hours
  • Platinum: 48 hours
  • Gold: 24 hours
  • Concierge Key members: 120 hours
Please note
  • If AA complimentary upgrades are not confirmed before check-in, the airline –
    • Adds you to the airport standby list
    • Potentially upgrades you before boarding
  • AA emails you in your AAdvantage profile to confirm about your upgrade.
  • For those who are not upgraded immediately, American Airlines checks for upgrade availability up to 3 hours before your flight’s departure.

How to Check My American Airlines Upgrade Status?

To check your upgrade status with American Airlines, go to the Manage trips section to view your booking. Complimentary upgrade for a same flight travel companion and unlimited auto-requested complimentary upgrades with award tickets are available for the following status holders –

  • AAdvantage Executive Platinum
  • AAdvantage Platinum Pro
  • AAdvantage Platinum
  • AAdvantage Gold

On Which Routes are AA Complimentary Upgrades Eligible?

Your American Airlines Upgrades are eligible in select regions, which include flights –

  • Within the United States, including Hawaii
  • Between the United States and Canada, Mexico, the Bahamas, the Caribbean, Bermuda, and Central America
  • Marketed and operated by AA within and between the U.S. (including Hawaii) and between the U.S. and Canada, Mexico, the Bahamas, the Caribbean, Bermuda and Central America

What is the Order of American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades Confirmation?

Your American Airlines elite status determines your free upgrade confirmation. Here’s the order of the same –

  • AAdvantage status level membership –
    • ConciergeKey
    • AAdvantage Executive Platinum
    • AAdvantage Platinum Pro
    • AAdvantage Platinum
    • AAdvantage Gold
  • Upgrade type –
    • Systemwide and mileage award upgrades
    • Complimentary upgrades
  • 12-month rolling Loyalty Points
Please note

AAdvantage members get complimentary upgrades on Alaska Airlines.

In Conclusion

All the AAdvantage elite members get American Airlines complimentary upgrades on both revenue and award tickets. Moreover, their travel companions are also at the benefit. Furthermore, the airline is known for having generous policies regarding complimentary elite upgrades.

Among the AAdvantage status holders who are eligible for complimentary upgrades, the upper-tier AAdvantage elites are at the benefit to earn SWUs and apply those to long-haul flights. Additionally, elite status holders of Alaska Airlines can get upgrades on select flights of American Airlines.

So, are you an AAdvantage elite member? Have you ever taken a complimentary upgrade with AA? How was your experience?

You May Visit:

What are American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades?

Does American Airlines Allow Seat Upgrade after Booking?

A Guide to American Airlines Complimentary Upgrades
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