Mileage Run – American: Los Angeles – Sioux Falls, South Dakota. $196. Roundtrip, including all Taxes and Fees

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What? That’s what you are probably asking right now — why are they putting a Sioux Falls fare as a feature deal? Sioux Falls might be a tourist destination — we’ll never know because we are actually not recommending you go there for anything but the miles — or a mileage run. A mileage run is taking a flight for the sole purpose of gaining or renew elite status with an airline without an overnight in a hotel! American Airlines is running a double miles promotion between Dallas and Los Angeles. The Los Angeles flight to Sioux Falls connects through Dallas, so you will receive double elite and redeemable miles for Los Angeles and Dallas portion of the trip! This is how this promotion is tremendous:

  1. You need to renew elite status for 2012. Los Angeles to Sioux Falls normally is 3,944 miles or 5.0 cents per mile. A decent last minute mileage run but it can be better. With LAX – Dallas being double miles eligible, the flight will give you 6,414 miles or 3.0 cents per mile. At 3.0 cents per mile, it is a very good mileage run.
  2. You want elite status for 2012 or 2013. For $800 or 4 flights, you will have Gold status until February, 2013. With Gold status, you will pay no fees for checked luggage with American, Alaska, and all Oneworld airlines in addition to priority checkin, security and boarding in addition to 25% bonus mileage for every flight. For $1,600 or 8 flights, you will have Platinum all the benefits of Gold status plus lounge access for international itineraries (does not include Canada, Mexico, Caribbean or Central America) and 100% bonus mileage. If you go for Platinum, you’ll have at minimum Gold benefits until February, 2014 even if you don’t fly enough to requalify for any status in 2012. The 25,000 miles you earn for 4 flights is enough for 1 domestic ticket, so basically you are buying Gold status for $500. The 50,000 miles you earn for the 8 flights for Platinum status is enough to go to Europe! Basically, you are paying $800 – $1,000 for Platinum status.

Let’s find some dates that require no hotel stays! Let’s go to our favorite fare search engine – http://matrix.itasoftware.com

Enter those criteria and then hit “Search” button to see what days have flights that require no overnight stays.

As you can see, there are 4 dates at the $196 price point. November 12th probably works the best because it probably does not require a day off from work for most people, so select that and you will get a list of flights, select one and you will see this:

With that information, go to AA.com and book.

Just in case you actually do need or want to go to Sioux Falls, here’s the fare rules information:

  • Valid until December 31st for Monday through Saturday departures. Must purchase 14 advance of departures. As you can see, despite the fare rules saying its available for Monday through Saturday departures, it is not available for every of those days.

If you are going to do this mileage run, remember to register for the double miles promotion first.

So that is the basics of constructing a mileage run.How do you find fares that are mileage run worthy? Most of the fares we publish on a daily basis can be done with a same day or overnight turnaround. Use the guide above to search.

We are firm believers of airline loyalty and having elite status because of the tangible benefits in making traveling easier (like checking in a business class line or going through a priority security line or boarding first so you always have overhead space) in addition to the money saved from nickel and dime fees that airlines charge such as for checking your bag.

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