Quicktip: Easiest ways to get Oneworld Sapphire Membership

I like Oneworld as it is the only alliance that gives mid-tier members the opportunity to use their business class lounges. Star Alliance and Skyteam both require top-tier before granting that benefit.


There are currently a couple of ways you can get Oneworld Sapphire without flying the full amount normally required.

Air Berlin

AirBerlin are offering a status match. You simply email statusmatch@topbonus.de with a photo of the card from another airline and your TopBonus number.


American Airlines

American Airlines offers an elite status challenge whereby you call in (telephone numbers here) a pay a fee to request it. There are two levels, Gold (Oneworld Ruby) and Platinum (Oneworld Sapphire), but I will only refer to the Platinum in this post.

The fee is $200 to sign up and to successfully complete the challenge, you need to earn 12,500 Elite Qualifying Miles in 90 days. The miles must be earned from flights marketed and operated by AA, British Airways, Finnair, Iberia, Japan Airlines or Qantas.

Note that it is significantly easier to complete the challenge if you are flying on flights marketed by AA as their earning rates are more favourable – full-fare first class or business class earn 3 EQMs per mile flown, 2 EQMs for discounted first and business, 1.5 EQMs for full-fare economy and 1 EQM for discount economy. If you are flying on Oneworld partner airlines you should check the earnings pages here.


About Tim

Tim is an engineer and a nerd who analyses every travel deal, travel hack. He has travelled to around 90 countries and also speaks Spanish, Portuguese and Mandarin.

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  1. would like to congratulate you for this great blog.
    also i would like to mention that the above status “is only available in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, Norway and USA. A Status Match with another oneworld® airline is not possible”


  2. if im flying aa on y from pit to nyc then aa j from nyc to lhr then lhr to nyc on ba f then nyc to pit on aa j and credit to AA, would that meet the 12000 eqm requirement? if anybody can let me know that would be great.

  3. Hi there! Really found this website useful and learned a lot this past week! I currently make one trip to US West coast every year which I realise is enough to get Saphire normally (or BA Silver).

    Unfortunately I booked my business class tickets a week ago before I understood tier points. So I’m flying DUB-LHR-LAS for just 360 tp… (I realise other options via the east coast would have pushed me over 600…)

    I’m also flying economy to Kathmandu with Qatar for another 80 tp. Which brings me to 440 tp.

    Any suggestions to get the remaining 160 tp for a young student traveller on a budget? Any suggestions appreciated! Based in Europe mostly or LAS in July.

      • Hi Tim, Thanks for the comment!

        I’ve looked into this and can’t seem to find a AMS-JER TP run for less than £270ish. Adding in the cost of positioning this seems quite expensive. I’d much rather find a cheaper TP run or make a trip worth a holiday unless AMS-JER can be more affordable.

        And I’ve noticed that London Gatwick – Marrakesh is about £270ish return and also gives 160 TP – thus is more economical than the AMS-JER run. (Hopefully I’m learning fast!)

        What I really want is the 160 TP for around £1pTP.

        While in the US I’d like to visit Atlanta ATL from LAS for 3-4 nights in July.
        However I’ve noticed I hit the 210 TP bonus mark if I fly LAX-CLT instead. Unfortunately this is over £750 with AA..

        I’d also like to visit LAX or SAN or SFO or OAK for a few nights from LAS in July. These however would only give 60 TP each and so unless I can do a triangle from LAS-XXX-XXX-LAS or two round trips I won’t get what I need.

        Again the cheapest is £200 return to LAX… and £300+ to SAN, SFO and OAK.

        Any advice on finding the best price on any of these routes?

        Is there a thread/forum to read about the best US TP runs?

  4. Just to let you know, AirBerlin has changed their status match requirements. US residents must now have a booked round trip air Berlin flight originating from US to Europe. They will ask you for proof of that.

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