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On May 1, 1981, American Airlines launched one of the first airline mileage programs: AAdvantage. Now, American Airlines is celebrating the month leading up to AAdvantage's 40th anniversary with a sweepstakes to give away 1,000,000 AAdvantage miles to 40 lucky members. Plus, AAdvantage member can also win a share of almost 1.4 million instant-win prizes.
In total, AAdvantage is giving away 292 million miles through these giveaways. Here's how to enter to win a share.
AAdvantage 40th Anniversary Sweepstakes Key Terms
- Sweepstakes begins April 5, 2021 and runs through May 3, 2021
- Must be an AAdvantage member to enter. Not a member yet? Join here.
- Must be a legal resident of one of the 50 United States or D.C.
- Open to members 18 years and older
- For the promotion, a day starts at 12am Eastern and ends at 11:59:59pm ET
- Mileage prizes will be deposited “within 8-10 weeks after the promotion ends”
At the end of the sweepstakes, AAdvantage will award 40 lucky members 1,000,000 AAdvantage miles (ARV: $22,400). There's also one second prize: a 2-night trip for up to 4 people to Arnold Palmer's Bay Hill Club & Lounge in Orlando plus $1,000 in American Airlines gift cards to cover airfare (ARV: $3,500). The drawing for these prizes will be held on (or around) May 4, 2021.
There are three ways to earn sweepstakes entries toward the grand prizes:
- Log into your AAdvantage account through the sweepstakes page (1 entry)
- Log into the sweepstakes page daily (1 entry per day)
- Play the instant win game. If you don't win, you'll earn 1 sweepstakes entry.
Instant Win Prizes
In addition to the grand prizes, AAdvantage members can win dozens of prizes through an instant-win game. You'll get one Instant Win Game play each day you log into the sweepstakes page. Plus you can earn bonus entries through “You've got options”, Read the Daily Fact, social share, and trivia questionnaire options.
Excluding coupons and other prizes with no Approximate Retail Value (ARV), AAdvantage is giving away 774,040 Instant Win prizes — including:
- One-year Admirals Club membership (200 prizes, $650 ARV)
- Two consecutive nights' accommodations at the Park MGM Las Vegas for 2 (40 prizes, $225 ARV)
- 4,000 AAdvantage miles (35,000 prizes, $89.60 ARV)
- Admirals Club Day Pass (7,500 prizes, $59 ARV)
- $20 Mastercard digital gift card (1,300 prizes, $20 ARV)
- 400 AAdvantage miles (230,000 prizes, $8.96 ARV)
- 40 AAdvantage miles (500,000 prizes, $0.90 ARV)
Value of AAdvantage Mile Sweepstakes Winnings
As with any contest, there are potential tax consequences from winning a prize. If you win one of the 40 grand prizes, you'll be on the hook for paying taxes on $22,400 of income. Or, you'll have to pay tax on $89.60 of income if you win one of the 35,000 giveaways of 4,000 AAdvantage miles.
That works out to 2.24 cents per AAdvantage mile. Depend on how you use your AAdvantage miles, you can easily get more than this in value by taking advantage of AAdvantage sweet spots. For instance, the 1,000,000-mile grand prize is enough for:
- 200 one-way 5,000-mile Economy Web Specials
- 114 one-way Reduced Mileage Awards flights
- 25 round-trips to Brazil in economy (or 16 round-trips in business class)
- 7 round-trips to the Middle East or Indian Subcontinent in business class (like Qatar Qsuite)
- 6 round-trips to Africa in business class (again, including in Qatar Qsuite)
- 6 round-trips to Japan or Korea in first class
With that said, this 2.24-cent valuation is a bit more than we've seen AAdvantage value miles in prior giveaways — such as a recent AAdvantage Dining sweepstakes where miles were valued at 1.7 cents each.
If you're one of the grand prize winners, keep in mind that you may be able to dispute the tax value of the prize. Gary Leff from View From the Wing shares how to do so here. However, it's probably not going to be worth the hassle disputing the value of any of the smaller prizes.
AAdvantage is giving away 292 million miles — plus over 627,000 non-mileage prizes — to celebrate its 40th anniversary. Free miles are free miles. It's worth setting yourself a reminder to log into the sweepstakes page once a day to maximize your entries and instant-win prizes.
If you're looking for other ways to earn free AAdvantage miles, remember that you'll earn 5 miles for commenting on AwardWallet posts. And, you can earn bonus AAdvantage miles through American Airlines credit cards:
- Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®: 60,000 bonus miles after $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
- Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®: 60,000 bonus miles after spending $6,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
- CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®: 65,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.
- AAdvantage® Aviator® Red Mastercard®: 60,000 bonus miles after making your first purchase in the first 90 days and paying the $99 annual fee.
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