American Airlines just joined the pack of airlines that have shortened the time that passengers can keep their frequent flier miles without activity in their accounts.
As of Dec. 15, that expiration drops from 36 months to 18 months at American. US Airways Inc., United and Delta have all shortened their deadlines, too.
That doesn’t mean you have to take a trip every 18 months. There are other ways to keep some activity in your account and thus keep your accumulated mileage valid.
You could get an affinity credit card that racks up miles with a specific airline whenever you use it. But I think it’s even easier to register a credit card that you already carry under the dining section of the Rewards Network (formerly iDine).
All you have to do is use that credit card to eat at a participating restaurant every 18 months. Not hard to do.