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One of the recent offers that has been talked about recently is a partnership between American Airlines and Cadillac.  From an article in Forbes

At four major airports, American will identify members of its exclusive ConciergeKey program who face tight transfer times and escort them to their next departure gate in a Cadillac CTS, SRX or Escalade. Already underway at Los Angeles International Airport, this program also will be rolled out to New York’s LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy International airports and to the airline’s hometown Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport.

(who cares).  But also:

In another key aspect of the partnership, American’s AAdvantage frequent-flier-program members can earn 7,500 AAdvantage miles in exchange for test-driving a new Cadillac at a U.S. Cadillac dealership.

NOW we’re talkin!

the back of a car

Hesitation to test-driving?

I’ve seen some reports of people that are hesitant to do this test-drive, given the less-than-stellar reputation car dealerships have in most people’s eyes.  Here’s a tweet from Shawn at Miles to Memories:

While I obviously don’t have any experience with THIS particular test-drive promotion, I’ve actually done quite a few similar test-drives, so I thought I’d share my experience, which is completely opposite of Shawn’s.

Test driving for dollars

There is a thread over at Fat Wallet that I used to subscribe to.  That was a good source of deals, but also I’d sometimes get postcards in the mail talking about test drives.  Usually the reward is something like a $50 Visa gift card, or sometimes it would be a check received by mail.  There are also sometimes offers for non-cash items, but those (generally) don’t interest me as much.

Generally speaking, I’d go into the dealer (no appointment needed), and show the salesman my postcard.  They usually would ask a few questions, like if I was in the market for a new car.  I’d say “not really”, and then they go in the back and come back after 5-10 minutes with my validated postcard.

I never felt any kind of sales pressure, and only once (out of 7-8 times I’ve done this) did I even have to drive a car.  I think most of the salesmen appreciated my not wasting their time, so they could focus on people that were actually interested in cars.

Details on the AAdvantage offer

Unfortunately the details on how this AAdvantage offer will work are not really out yet.  My main concern is that it is something that won’t be adequately communicated down to the dealership.  It’s SO helpful to have a postcard or other tangible piece of information to show the salespeople, because most of the time they really have NO idea what you’re talking about.

We’ll see once the details come out, but you can bet I’ll be hitting this deal as hard as I can (multiple dealerships, multiple accounts, whatever might work 😀 )

What about you?  Planning on doing some test-drives?

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