Update:  Brett Snyder had one of his “Across the Aisle” interviews with AAdvantage President, Maya Leibman over on his Cranky Flier blog. You can read it here.

Last Friday I wrote about AAdvantage President Maya Leibman and her team asking members of both the FlyerTalk and milepoint forums for ideas about how to improve the AAdvantage section of AA.com.

The most frequent request was for the ability to book oneworld and partner awards online.  Which wasn’t surprising for a couple of reasons, in that there isn’t any way on AA.com to:

• Find AA partner and oneworld award inventory

• Book an award without calling reservations and incurring a $25 service charge

It’s a frustrating limitation that’s long been a discussion in the forums.

The subject even came up during the milepoint chat with Maya back in May:

7:45 Comment From Cameron:
Is there any plans to allow AAdvantage members to see/book partner awards online?

7:45 Maya:
I’m really glad we got this question. This is a priority for us and one that we’re working on now. I don’t want to get into “how the sausage is made,” but it is my hope to have this available by the end of the year.

That was the first indication that a fix was in the future.

Things started to look more imminent a couple of weeks ago when JonNYC posted this in the Traveling Better forums:

Booking of partners awards coming to AA.com– in bits (Alaska Airlines first)

On or about NOV10, we’ll be able to book awards on AA.com that incorporate AS.

More exciting; it’s being “advertised” (internally) as:

Quote:
…the start of incorporating all 27 airline partners on to AA.com

Well it looks likes the first big step has happened: over the weekend American updated their website and it’s now possible to book Alaska Airlines awards online.   This is from the Alaska Airlines partner page at AA.com:

Book award travel on Alaska Airlines/Horizon Air carriers on AA.com or contact Reservations at 1-800-882-8880 (or your local American Airlines office).

I played around a little with this new AA.com feature, and availability of awards from DFW to HNL on Alaska Airlines looked good.  I was even able to find some at the lowest, MileSAAver, redemption level.  Here’s a look at some screenshots:

 

Booking American Airlines Partner Awards Online

Booking AAdvantage Award at AA.com for travel on Alaska Airlines

American Airlines Partner Awards Detail
Detail of booking AAdvantage Award at AA.com for travel on Alaska Airlines

Hopefully they’ll expand this feature soon and you’ll be able to book awards with more partners.

So clearly a pattern has been established. Post your suggestions in one of the forums on Friday, and Maya and the AAdvantage team will work over the weekend and have it ready by Monday.

Nice!

This is off topic, but since it’s Monday, I thought you might be interested in a little distraction from your inbox.

Video artist Michael Konig released this HD video over the weekend: it’s series of time lapse sequences of photos taken from the International Space Station.

 

Sigh….hopefully there will come a day when we can use our AAdvantage Miles to travel to space…..

  • Brant Jackson said,

    That could be the start of a wonderful thing. Once all the airlines are incorporated it will be great. Next on the agenda: booking upgrade awards on aa.com.

  • aadvantagegeek said,

    @ Brant – I think we have the same wish-list:). Thanks for commenting!

  • Miles said,

    For the space video, does anyone have any idea what the sinuous red line is at 3:48 into the video?? Did 10 million cars put on their brake lights at the same time?

  • aadvantagegeek said,

    @ Miles – I noticed that same red line when I first watch the video. My best guess is that it’s The Great Wall of China. Here’s a photo I found of The Wall illuminated at night:

    http://bit.ly/rMud1g

    What do you think?

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