American Airlines has created a new platform for its co-brand credit card customers to earn extra miles. SimplyMiles functions similarly to Amex Offers, which publishes a list of offers that you can add to your card and earn a statement credit or bonus points when you make a qualifying purchase at select merchants. The difference with SimplyMiles is that you earn American Airlines miles and it appears to be managed primarily by AA rather than the card issuer. (HT to Doctor of Credit)
I attempted to register for the program, but as I don’t have an AA credit card I am unable to access the program. However, DoC reports that another blog, Bougie Miles, has confirmed that it’s possible to use SimplyMiles with other non-AA MasterCard products once registered.
These kinds of special offer programs are becoming more common in recent years. Although Amex popularized it, Chase and Bank of America now both offer them. I personally have found the Amex Offers to be less and less valuable to me over time, usually because they target the same retailers I don’t shop at or even retailers that aren’t located anywhere near where I live.
I can understand the purpose of an offer is to motivate new business, not an easy discount for a purchase I would make anyway, but given the amount of data Amex has on my purchasing habits I am quite unimpressed. Either they or their merchant partners are screwing up. Meanwhile Chase and BofA tend to have smaller offers that aren’t worth my time.
Hopefully American Airlines has figured out a way to improve on an old idea with SimplyMiles. However, the examples posted by Bougie Miles are not encouraging and seem to be recycled versions of Amex Offers. The most impressive offering I’ve seen from an airline continues to be United’s MileagePlus X, an app that lets you earn MileagePlus miles for in-person purchases just like traditional online shopping portals.