AAirpass
October 14, 2004 3:27 PM   Subscribe

Are you filthy rich? Do you like going places? "Consider a lifetime AAirpass membership – for you or as a holiday gift for someone special." It's only - place pinky to pursed lips - three million dollars. Quantities are limited, so act now. Buy two and get a million off.
posted by PrinceValium (22 comments total)
 
Before I pony up my five million, I'd like some sort of assurance that American is going to be around in thirty years, hell it's debatable if they'll be around in three years.
posted by Keith Talent at 3:36 PM on October 14, 2004


Not answered in the FAQ:

Q - Do I get my money back if American Airlines goes bust before I die?
posted by spacewrench at 3:36 PM on October 14, 2004


my birthday's coming up, folks! ; >

(just a hint. i'd kill for something like this, but if you have that kind of money, it really doesn't matter who you take when you fly, or how much it costs.)
posted by amberglow at 3:40 PM on October 14, 2004


And you’ll earn AAdvantage® miles on every flight!.

This is confusing... why would you need them?
posted by Flat Feet Pete at 3:42 PM on October 14, 2004


If I had the money to shell out for one (or two) of these I'd be spending it with a decent airline. Lifetime of travel on American Airlines? That's not something to look forward to.
posted by i_cola at 3:43 PM on October 14, 2004


I'm thirty-five, so's my wife. Lets say we use the pass for 40 years. That's $125,000 a year or more than $10,000 a month. To the best of my knowledge, the most expensive full fare no advance purchase 1st class ticket isn't much more than $5000 anywhere in the world. How does this make sense? You need to travel overseas once a month for fourty years just to break even.
posted by Keith Talent at 3:46 PM on October 14, 2004


I just did some quick math, and the number of times I'd have to visit my inlaws, even if I flew first class every time, to make this cost effective...no. No thank you.
posted by padraigin at 3:48 PM on October 14, 2004


Oh, and "Quantities are limited, so act now."

Bullshit.

They'd sell as many of these as the could. Quantities are probably limited to 6 billion (+/- 1 billion)
posted by Keith Talent at 3:49 PM on October 14, 2004


This is one of those mindfuck promotions, like a shopping spree. It's not about the people who buy the pass (actually, I bet the people who thought this up at AA would be shocked silly if anyone tried to), it's about all the other people who couldn't possibly afford it, but are now sitting at their computers, staring wistfully out the window, dreaming of all the places they would go if they had a AAirpass... a certain percentage will actually follow through on at least one of those dream trips, and perhaps on American Airlines.
posted by 4easypayments at 3:51 PM on October 14, 2004 [1 favorite]


On the other hand---it's cheaper than a Learjet and a lot easier to maintain. If it's transferrable (and if AA lives), it might even be a good deal as an executive perk, especially if your headquarters is in Chicago. I wonder if it would be more cost-effective over the long run than all the walk-up fares that I imagine executives must have to pay. (From Keith's comment: maybe not.)

For $3M, I would want a more impressive card. No plastic: something like a small granite tablet, or a plaque of 99.5% pure yttrium.

The FAQ does indicate that Neiman-Marcus is involved, so yeah, it's one of those wacky promotions, like your own Zeppelin (also available this year).
posted by tss at 4:13 PM on October 14, 2004 [1 favorite]


Here's what I'm thinking. AA is going to have some kind of contest where they give out a number of these as prizes. They need to put a value on it for promotional expense (and the corresponding tax savings) so, they offer to sell these first, at a price that (almost) no one will pay, as "proof" of their market value for tax purposes.
posted by AstroGuy at 4:17 PM on October 14, 2004


seems to me like if you've got that kind of money, you already have you're own learjet, you wouldn't be flying American(with the plebes) in any case, or you don't care what flights cost. Just book it. right?

The prince broke up the moon he just made. Rich people sure are different.
posted by Miles Long at 4:26 PM on October 14, 2004


This is confusing... why would you need them?

To transport you and your slaves in the afterlife.
posted by Krrrlson at 4:27 PM on October 14, 2004


And you’ll earn AAdvantage® miles on every flight!.

This is confusing... why would you need them?


Miles can be used to buy tickets for other people and can be otherwise transferred in some ways.
posted by obfusciatrist at 4:47 PM on October 14, 2004


I was about to call bullshit -- what with the Neiman Marcus reference, poorly laid out Microsoft FrontPage design and all -- but hey, if there's a press release on Yahoo!...

I want the Zeppelin.
posted by eschatfische at 5:04 PM on October 14, 2004


seems to me like if you've got that kind of money, you already have you're own learjet

Not necessarily: $1M buys you a used Learjet ($.5M for a TINY Lear 24, $3M for a nice, bigger, newer one). Then you've got maintenance, hangar fees, fuel, the pilot, etc... all adding up to an operating cost of about $900/hr and a total annual budget (assuming you fly it 400 hours a year) of around $600K (source). Private jets are expensive!
posted by tss at 6:18 PM on October 14, 2004 [1 favorite]


Also offered this year part of Neiman Marcus's 2004 Christmas Book, first mentioned here, where more mindless, disposable-income, hyper-consumption habits ensue.
posted by naxosaxur at 6:52 PM on October 14, 2004


Ripoff. airlines gives these away to employees and their families all the time. My future-(ex)-sister-in-law (that's another post) got to designate two people to fly for free and gets a butt-load of passes for $50 standbys.

It'd be much cheaper to marry/snuggle up with an airline employee on a better airline than AA.
posted by m@ at 7:58 PM on October 14, 2004


1. Invest the $5M in tax-free munis and earn 5% (or so) per anum. That would be $250K/yr.
2. Buy 60 hours of "occupied" hourly time from www.netjets.com (Warrne Buffet's company). Fly anywhere and anytime and take along 8 of your friends. Expensive, but your friends will love you. No lines at the airport.
3. Fly American Airlines (First Class) from New York (JFK) to Bangkok (BKK) round trip for $8300 x 2 or $16,600. That would be 15 trips per year. Oh, and you would earn 500K frequent flier miles which would get you another 2 trips.

So, if you plan to fly more than 17 times each year (with your significant other) to far-away lands, then by all means, fork over the $5Million.

Just make sure you write in bankruptcy protection into the contract.
posted by davebarnes at 8:45 PM on October 14, 2004 [1 favorite]


Ripoff. airlines gives these away to employees and their families all the time.

Sure, but with this card you fly first class, not coach...
posted by clevershark at 9:28 PM on October 14, 2004


Ripoff. airlines gives these away to employees and their families all the time.

As non-rev (revenue) passengers. Occasionally, airline employees can earn "one-time" passes that don't force them to fly standby. but those are quite rare. And, you either have to be an airline employee or a family member to get one.

They have AAirpass "pools" where a company can essentially buy a "mileage debit" sort of account and use the card for business travel against the mileage bonus, which is far cheaper. We looked into it at my company because my team travels extensively, often on short notice, which equals high fares.

If I had the money to shell out for one (or two) of these I'd be spending it with a decent airline. Lifetime of travel on American Airlines? That's not something to look forward to.

Flying as much as I do, I'd much rather fly a major carrier than, say "Bob's Discount Airlines" (ATA, Airtran, Big Sky, Horizon, etc.) On major carriers. the perks are good and they get me to cities I need to go to more quickly instead of flying to a smaller market and driving a couple hours to my destination. Of all the majors, my best experience has been on Delta, but they're in dire straits right now. American's in bad shape, but not as bad as Delta. And since Delta is scaling back in Dallas, screw em. AMR is getting my money now.

The one discount exception I'll make is Southwest Airlines. If they can wiggle the Wright Amendement a bit then I'd fly them exclusively.

American is the worst airline out there, except for all the others.
posted by TeamBilly at 6:51 AM on October 15, 2004


Fractional jet ownership sounds like something to look at for those of us who are shopping around for this sort of thing.

In the interest of honesty, when I say "those of us", unfortunately I do not include myself! :)
posted by Stoatfarm at 7:35 AM on October 15, 2004


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