RealTime IT News

You've Got Miles

America Online and American Airlines are pairing up to launch AOL AAdvantage Rewards, calling it "the largest online and off-line rewards program" and offering millions of consumers convenient opportunities to earn and redeem miles.

To promote the launch, the companies said they are giving away 1 million miles a day for 30 days to winners of a special sweepstakes for those who sign up as members either over the Web or via the proprietary service.

The rewards program also announced partnerships with a variety of companies, including TD Waterhouse, 1-800-Flowers, Cooking.com, Sharper Image, AA Vacations, and a variety of rental car and hotel companies.

Details of the financial arrangements among the various companies involved were not disclosed.

The program, powered by Netcentives technology, brings together America Online's former AOL Rewards program and the airline's American AAdvantage program to provide new benefits both for current AOL and AAdvantage members and new members. American has one of the oldest frequent flyer programs in the business, started in 1981.

"When you say `miles' people get it. They understand the value of what miles can provide them," said Joe Redling, senior vice president of marketing for the AOL service.

In addition to earning miles by traveling on American Airlines and its airline partners, AOL AAdvantage Rewards members can earn miles by:

  • Shopping with commerce partners available through the Web and AOL.
  • Buying from American Airlines' network of airline, hotel, restaurant, rental car and other goods and services merchants.
  • Participating in opinion surveys on noteworthy current events.
  • Using AOL's "Quick Checkout" wallet technology when shopping online throughout the month of October.

Miles can be redeemed for travel, free months of basic AOL service or brand-name items including videos, CDs, magazines, books and consumer appliances.