American Airlines Announces More Benefits for SMBs Expanding Globally

The airline is offering midmarket companies the ability to earn extra program points on select international flights.

American Airlines announced that small to medium-size businesses can now earn Business ExtrAA program points on American Airlines codeshare flights operated by British Airways, Iberia or Japan Airlines, in addition to all American Airlines flights. The new benefits allow companies enrolled in American's business-to-business loyalty program aimed at midmarket companies to earn base points on more flights and earn awards more quickly within the airline's Business ExtrAA program.

For example, American's Business ExtrAA program will now reward companies with points when their employees travel for business on American Airlines or codeshare flights operated by the aforementioned airlines and include the company's Business ExtrAA account number in their reservations. Those employees then also earn miles on their personal frequent flyer accounts when traveling using their company's Business ExtrAA account number, so both the company and the individual traveler benefit.

In recognition of the new benefits for SMB customers, American also announced a promotion that allows companies that are Business ExtrAA members to earn double points on all qualifying American Airlines flights to Europe and Asia, all American Airlines codeshare flights operated by British Airways and Iberia to Europe, and all American Airlines codeshare flights operated by Japan Airlines flights to Asia. The promotion began June 27 and ends July 31, 2011.

"We are very pleased to extend joint business benefits to small and medium businesses and we will continue working to ensure that these companies and their travelling employees benefit from our overall joint businesses," said Karen Buls, American's director for small and medium enterprise products, marketing and sales strategy. "We understand the importance a face-to-face relationship can have for SMBs. One new customer can create exponential growth for an SMB, and we want to ensure SMBs benefit from our joint business with British Airways and Iberia and our joint business with Japan Airlines."

The additional benefits build on the momentum that began after American began its joint business with British Airways and Iberia and its joint business with Japan Airlines. Over the past few months, the airlines have implemented additional codesharing, enhanced their frequent flyer programs, and more closely coordinated fares and schedules-including London express service with 15 flights per day operated by American and British Airways from the New York City area to London. Earlier this year, five new routes were launched, including New York JFK-Budapest and Chicago-Helsinki (operated by American), London Heathrow-San Diego (operated by British Airways), Madrid-Los Angeles and Barcelona-Miami (operated by Iberia).

American and Japan Airlines have also implemented additional codesharing, coordinated fares and schedules, and introduced a number of consumer benefits. In addition, Japan Airlines co-located with American in Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. The two airlines' joint business includes Japan Airlines San Francisco to Tokyo route, its newly announced Boston-Tokyo flight, to be launched in April 2012, in addition to each airline's respective flights from New York to Tokyo, Chicago to Tokyo, and Los Angeles to Tokyo, as well as American's flights to China from Chicago and Los Angeles.