My initial instinct was that the American Airlines distance based OneWorld Explorer Awards were too good to be true and it turns out that this will be the case for many. As of April 7, 2014 American Airlines has discontinued OneWorld Explorer Awards with zero advanced notification to customers. When attempting to access the former awards chart, customers are greeted with this friendly message from AA:
The former awards chart below was one of the best values available for rewards travel. I posted just one day prior to the discontinuation about How to Travel the World for $250 using this fare. The distance based fare allowed you to fly any One World Alliance airline up to 16 segments around the world in a single direction.
With the US Airways merger, I expect that this is simply the first of many changes that will be coming down from American Airlines.
Luckily we booked our trip prior to April 7, 2014 and our itinerary will still be honored but I’m sure there are many others out there who have been saving miles for quite some time for the OneWorld Explorer Award. I encourage anyone in this situation to reach out to AA as quickly as possible via phone and social media to encourage them to continue offering this valuable award.