Posted by Chuck on June 18, 2019
Credit Cards

Published on June 18th, 2019 | by Chuck

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[Update] American Airlines Gift Cards are again Working to Trigger Amex Travel Incidental Credit?

[Update 6/18/19: Multiple data points over the last few days are indicating that it’s back to coding as ‘Gift Certificate’. We’ll find out for certain over the new few days. Update 2: it appears that it may still actually be working. Let’s give it another few days for conclusion, I’m just putting out the update so people are aware it’s not yet for certain.]

Two data points indicate that American Airlines e-gift cards are again working to trigger American Express airline incidental credits. Presumably, physical gift cards will work too.

In February, American Airlines changed how they coded gift card purchase. Instead of showing as ‘Misc Fees/Taxes’, it began showing as ‘Gift Certificate’, and stopped working to trigger the airline credit. As of a few weeks ago, they’ve seem to have changed it back to ‘Misc Fees/Taxes’ and seems to be working again for the credit.

We’ll need to wait for more confirmations, but it’s looking promising that American Airlines gift cards will be again an option for the airline incidental credit, in addition to the existing options of Delta and Southwest gift cards.



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JV
JV

following for more data points. Hometown is Charlotte, which is AA heavy so would like AA versus anything else

Ralph
Ralph

i just ordered an AA gift card. Will report back with a data point.

Ricardo Costa
Ricardo Costa

Please do it!

Hoang
Hoang

Can you check with AMEX to see how AA code your order?

ANu
ANu

It coded to me as “Gift certificate”.

nfr
nfr

yep, coded for me twice this month as gift certificate.

Anon
Anon

Everyone please note you can ONLY use AA gift cards if purchasing a flight with cash. You cannot use them for award flights, taxes, seat reservations, etc.

I’ve been stuck with my two gift cards for years with no way to use!

Anonn
Anonn

Sell ’em

MrObvious
MrObvious

Sounds like you could use them to pay for a flight, no?

Anon
Anon

Well I haven’t paid for a flight for over seven years so maybe one day!

Charlie
Charlie

Paying for flights is so old school…..

Dick Bupkiss
Dick Bupkiss

Big question for all of us who never pay for flights anymore: do AA gift cards expire? With over a million AA miles gathering dust, it might be a very long time before I ever pay for one of their flights…

Percy
Percy

Gift cards don’t expire. Only vouchers expire.

James Bond

Current federal law does not allow gift cards to expire. Before this some gift cards did have expiration dates.

VL
VL

With quite limited award availability on many AA routes gift cards is not a bad option for a $0 out of pocket vacation. I would not call it free as you can sell them for less than a nominal value. I am planning to use them for a trip to Caribbean next year as AA has so many destinations there (more than anyone else) but award flights if found will be with 2 connections 🙂 … or should i say 🙁

Mari
Mari

How did you get to a million miles if you use the points to fly? Just curious. I’m taking my family of 7 to Australia and I’m spending about 300,000 points. I’m starting to collect points to take them to South America. Any advise?

MrDioji
MrDioji

If you have a bunch of gift cards, it’s not really paying for the flight. I just used $1,280 for 4 one ways(4 passengers) . Economy AAnytime was 50k each. I wasn’t gonna drop 200k on a domestic one-way. Used 5 GC instead. Felt free, haha. Except the $30 I put on CSR to ensure trip protection.

Gene
Gene

How did u get all these points

StarAdmiral
StarAdmiral

sell it on card cash

Ferris
Ferris

Do you mail in the cash or do they send out catalogs?

Vic
Vic

Sell them.

Snorklez
Snorklez

This is incorrect Anon; cash bookings are different than revenue bookings.

These can only be used for revenue tickets, of which seat selection (If
Selected at time of purchase) and taxes are indeed eligible.

However they are not eligible to pay for the standalone taxes on an award ticket…etc

Dick Bupkiss
Dick Bupkiss

Howabout fuel surcharges on BA metal flights booked through AA? Those are not taxes.

Megan
Megan

You can’t use GCs for award bookings. I did use the GCs for a revenue AA code share on BA metal.

James Bond

Some airlines, such as WN and Delta, do allow gift cards to be applied towards redemption fees and taxes. AA does not.

max martori
max martori

dude sell it on cardcash

Ed A
Ed A

Well they can be useful. I paid for one leg of the flight from Colombia to MIA on American Air with BA miles. But there was no availability with BA on the second leg but was able to use $250 worth of AA gift cards to pay for MIA-IAD leg.

XZ
XZ

LOL. I just got $1,000 AA GCs from my CNB Crystal card /facepalm

Sa
Sa

Haha. They probably noticed a drop in gc sales and figured out why.

lilurbanachiever
lilurbanachiever

LOL. I wonder how long it will take for Amex to notice the surge in AA travel credit redemptions. Not that they seems to care.

M
M

Not soon. They happily switched affected customers to DL as preferred airline. It would be impossible to do 2+ switches in less than a year.

N
N

Maybe AMEX noticed a surge in account closing due to the PP changes and decided to do this to control the damage.

sdsearch
sdsearch

This change happened as coding change on the AA side, not on the Amex side.. Amex changed nothing. Amex automatically decides whether to give the credit based on how the purchase is coded by AA.

So this has nothing to do with PP changes or anything else on the Amex side.

As as has been pointed out before elsewhere, this has happened before. AA changes the coding the same way in 2016 and then months later changed it back. Why we don’t know, but it was on the AA side BOTH times, and lasted only months BOTH times.

SamL
SamL

What’s the best way to sell AA GCs? (I’ve never sold a GC before. I’d rather just use GCs I end up with, but sometimes I can’t use them.)

Raj
Raj

Most of the GC marketplaces will buy them from you.

SamL
SamL

What is safe and good price?

nonimmigranth1b
nonimmigranth1b

AA gift card sells in the price range from $78 to $84.

SamL
SamL

Where is safe to sell? I’ve read there can be problems where people get ripped off.

StarAdmiral
StarAdmiral

card cash

TatyG
TatyG

SamL I have been selling my AA and Southwest cards on cardcash and Raise without any issues.

lilurbanachiever
lilurbanachiever

That number is steadily decreasing.

ThaigerNation
ThaigerNation

I have a some experience working with cc payments data and I’m so curious what kind of spaghetti code the analyst is using to include and exclude qualifying txns.

IF txn < 100 AND mccode = 1234 AND txndesc != '%gift%'

🙂

Lucas
Lucas

Chuck, I used my aspire for 250 south west e-gift card. No credit yet, it’s been two weeks and posted on my statement this month already. Is it normal?

Jonathan
Jonathan

I still dont understand why people still insist on GCs to cash out these credits. It’s been shown many times you can buy Southwest (or other airline) ticket for < 100 and that triggers the credit. Cancel within 24 hours and get your money back but keep the credit. No claw back ever.

tribesman55
tribesman55

I don’t believe that. Amex clawed back tons of people who did PGGM for their credits.

Slidellian
Slidellian

I have a $200 AA travel credit on my Citi card. Will this work?

Snorklez
Snorklez

It’s a great way to get your accounts closed if you do it repeatedly.

LK
LK

Yes but funds from canceled tickets expire after 1 year.
Gift cards dont expire.

Jonathan
Jonathan

You don’t get an airline credit. Southwest refunds the funds to the cc. I’ve never had a clawback from amex. Done it many times on platinum. TBH don’t remember doing it with Citi before.

Christian
Christian

I bought an American ticket for $92 on 6/23 and cancelled it within 24 hours but a credit still hasn’t appeared. When doing this with the gift card in November the credit appeared two days after purchase. My preferred airline in AmEx is set to American. Am I missing something?

Thomas
Thomas

DP. As of 5/24 and 5/29 the AA GC route did not work.

Stan
Stan

son of a bitch, i just selected Southwest instead of my preferred American Airlines on my Hilton Aspire, last night!
wonder if there’s any chance they’d switch it for me.

GL
GL

They will if you haven’t used your credit yet! Use the chat function.

A
A

You can chat with them to change

Nicholas

Yes, they will switch you if you chat and ask them.

Bill
Bill

I wouldn’t change back until we have more confirmation that AA is working again.

mec
mec

Been waiting.

Will report back.

Aloha808
Aloha808

PSA… since around the beginning of June, reports on FT indicate GC purchases >100 on WN aren’t getting reimbursed.

JV
JV

WN?

Snorklez
Snorklez

WN = IATA code for Southwest

Although you really couldn’t have figured that out putting it into google since it’s right in front of you when you search for it….

JV
JV

Thanks for telling me, could have used a little less sarcasm. I actually did google and didnt see anything that helped me piece it together…

Carl Pietrantonio
Carl Pietrantonio

Ouch!

Bob
Bob

Can’t stand pompous people like you on the internet who abbreviate almost everything to either feel elitist or think they everyone already knows these abbreviations.

You at one point didn’t know what it meant…so “chill out Francis” !

Pam
Pam

Follow

Alan
Alan

southwest did not credit, 250 on June 4th

VL
VL

I do not think you should go for more than a $100 denomination. I go usually for $99 or $98.

Brian k
Brian k

Do AA gift cards still work for bank of America premium rewards card incidental reimbursement as well? It worked April 2018 for me, but not sure if it changed.

Jack
Jack

It worked for me in April this year

Gerald prosciutto
Gerald prosciutto

Yes should do did it Feb this year

Brian k
Brian k

Thanks gents

SamL
SamL

Fresh DP: I just got this credit TODAY! (Answering Brian k’s question about BoA not Amex.)

Brian k
Brian k

Great! Thanks for sharing

Hadley V. Baxendale
Hadley V. Baxendale

Thank you for the report, Chuck.

To all of those who never use gift cards because of miles accumulated, that may soon change with all of the majors — including AA — going to Dynamic Pricing soon.

The guy with 1 million miles had better use his miles soon, as they will be substantially devalued once AA goes towards dynamic pricing.

Alex
Alex

For those that arent getting reimbursed on SW gift cards, did you do it in increments of $50 and less? I purchased $50 x4 on June 6 and was reimbursed on June 09.

Joseph Sleek

Has AA gift cards been working for Ritz Travel Credits lately? I knew they were working a year ago but not sure if those stopped with this change as well and coming back.

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