UPDATE: It appears that I and a few others jumped to conclusions here. American Airlines and US Airways will look at the miles earned in either program in 2014 to determine status in 2015 (it will look at activity in Dividend Miles “and” AAdvantage) but will not actually combine the credits. So pick one program or the other and credit all your flights there to maximize your status!
HT to Loyalty Lobby for finding some fine print that confirms US Airways and American Airlines will combine the elite qualifying flights you complete with either carrier when determining your elite status for the 2015 program year.
Status for the 2015 program year beginning in March 2015 will be determined by the member’s activity in 2014 in the US Airways Dividend Miles program and the American Airlines AAdvantage program.
It doesn’t say exactly how they’ll combine them, but it does reaffirm the advice I suggested late last year, that if you’re planning to switch from United Airlines to American Airlines, it might be a good idea to fly on United and credit those miles to US Airways. You’ll give up some bonus redeemable miles if you already have elite status, but your US Airways EQMs will eventually add to any American Airlines EQMs. (Check out some recent AA status match offers to Gold and Platinum levels.)
I’m doing exactly this with my status run next week to complete my Executive Platinum status trial: my positioning flights to/from Seattle and Honolulu are on United Airlines, paid for with a United Airlines compensation voucher, and upgraded with United Airlines regional upgrade instruments. Other people got in on some great United mistake fares last last year and are flying to Dubai and back on United — but crediting them to US Airways.
UPDATE: Chase makes a good point in the comments that some upgraded flights may not earn credit with US Airways if booked into the R fare class (e.g., using RPUs and GPUs). I’ll try to confirm this with United/US Airways and get back to you. You should still be okay crediting other flights.
Just make sure you do this for flights on or before March 30. On March 31, US Airways leaves the Star Alliance to join oneworld and you won’t be able to take advantage of this loophole anymore.