Flying is not glamorous. You usually have to get up at an ungodly hour, drag a week’s worth of belongings with you in a tiny box to a giant airport where you will have (at a minimum) one of your civil rights violated; you’ll then be forced to find your way around a byzantine terminal, before you are finally herded into lines only to be unceremoniously squeezed into a giant metal tube, strapped to a chair, and hurdled through the sky at 500 mph. It is, however, the price we all must pay in order to travel and go on vacation. There are few ways to make the experience better, the main one being an upgrade. When you’ve been upgraded, you’ll at least spend the last part of the ordeal strapped to a bigger chair, that in some cases even turns into a bed. You’ll certainly be fed, and provided a steady stream of [alcoholic] beverages. You’ll find room for your stuff, and the flight attendants will usually be more pleasant – reminding you that you are, after all, a human being. For the sake of being thorough, an upgrade entitles you to be seated in the next best cabin of service from the one in which you booked your ticket. If you booked coach, you’ll be seated in business; if you book business, you’ll be seated in first; and if you booked first, they will let you fly the plane! (not really) On international and transcontinental flights, upgrades also give you access to lounges, priority boarding, and additional baggage allowances. The goal of this post will be to discuss the main strategies for getting upgraded on flights booked with American Airlines (AA). This will require some level of status, since without it, there should be no expectation of an upgrade barring any extraordinary circumstances.