Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite MasterCard
Bonus Offer: Get 50,000 AAdvantage miles when you spend $2,500 in your first 3 months
Bonus Offer: Get 50,000 AAdvantage miles when you spend $2,500 in your first 3 months
★ This card earns bonus points for spend in the following bonus categories:
Anyone who travels semi-frequently on American Airlines. It's a low annual fee personal American Airlines credit card that gets you a host of benefits.
Card Features and Benefits:
- Earn 2X miles per dollar spent on all dining, gas station and eligible American Airlines charges. That's not just American Airlines flights. The airline defines eligible American Airline purchases as "those that are billed by American Airlines as merchant of record booked through American Airlines channels (AA.com, American Airlines reservations, American Airlines Admirals Club, American Airlines Vacations, and American Airlines airport and city ticket counters).
- 1X miles per dollar spent on all other eligible purchases with the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card.
- Earn 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage(R) mile earned from purchases
- 10,000 AAdvantage miles and a $50 statement credit when you spend $500 in your first three months.
- 2X points at supermarkets, which the AA Platinum Select card does not offer. (Also see: other credit cards that earn more at supermarkets and grocery stores).
- No annual fee.
- You can apply for one card every eight days
- You can apply for two cards in a period of 65 days
This card is ideal for those that travel frequently with American Airlines but don't have elite status. Let's dig into the features and benefits.
Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite MasterCard Earn Rate
Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Card Benefits
Photo Credit: Unsplash / Ross Sokolovski
The AAdvantage Platinum Select card offers great travel benefits when you are on American Airlines flights.
Free Checked Bag: Baggage charges are among the most annoying of all the airline fees. The AAdvantage Platinum Select card has you covered, offering a free first checked bag for you and up to four companions. That's $150 in savings.
Preferred Boarding: Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select cardholders also receive preferred boarding on American Airlines flights in Group 5, which is right behind passengers with elite status.
What this means is that you are almost guaranteed to have overhead space for your bags, eliminating the need to check them at the gate.
No Foreign Transaction Fees: Self-explanatory. Citi won't charge you any extra foreign transaction fees for purchases made in foreign currencies. If you're getting this card, you're likely to be traveling, so it's a good one to have in your pocket.
$125 American Airlines Flight Discount: Spend $20,000 in your cardmember year (in any category), which is determined by when you open the card, and American will give you a $125 discount certificate. You can use your discount at American's website or make your reservation over the phone, and it can be used on oneworld partner flights.
World Elite Mastercard Benefits: Cardmembers also receive access to the benefits included with the World Elite Mastercard program. These benefits include rebates for Lyft rides, 3 free months of DashPass from DoorDash and free ShopRunner membership.
World Elite Mastercard benefits also offer certain insurance features, such as coverage for a stolen or broken cell phone, if you purchased the phone with your registered card.
Discount on Inflight Food and Beverage Purchases: For those of you with a taste for airline food, you'll earn a 25% discount on in flight food and beverage purchases American Airlines flights.
The annual fee is on this American Airlines credit card $99, but it's waived for the first year.
American will also give you a bonus for keeping the card. If you spend $20,000 during your cardmember year, AA will give you a $125 flight credit upon renewal of the American Airlines credit card. Even after paying the annual fee, you can actually earn a $26 profit by using this card.
Sign Up Bonus
The Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Card offers 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage miles upon account opening when you spend $2,500 in the first three months after account opening. Given the low annual fee and the card's benefits, 50,000 miles is an amazing deal in the world of airline credit cards.
Best Uses for your Sign Up Bonus from the American Airlines Credit Card
Visit the big apple with a big sign up bonus. Photo Credit: Musik Animal
Use AAdvantage Miles for Qatar Business Class Q-Suites
Image courtesy QatarAirways.com
Here's our MilesTalk review of the QSuites on an A350-1000.
You can fly the QSuites from JFK to Doha and onward from there to anywhere in the Middle East (Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Israel, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates) for just 70,000 miles - a steal since the QSuites are a Business Class product that is much like a First Class product (though certainly not as exclusive).
But in my opinion, the best use of these 75,000 miles (150,000 round trip) would be flying from the US to Africa. "What what?!?!" you ask... noting that AA forbids routing via third regions.
True! But this is one of those random exceptions you just kind of have to know about. Africa from the US in Business Class will cost you 75,000 miles, so you are getting Doha-Africa in Business Class for just 5,000 more miles than Doha alone!
Use AAdvantage Miles for Qantas First Class
I absolutely LOVED my First Class flight from LA to Sydney on Qantas. Not to mention the free connecting leg on the Qantas route from JFK-LAX that is only bookable with a connecting Qantas flight to Oz.
A First Class flight from the US to Australia (or connecting on to New Zealand for the same price) will cost 110,000 AAdvantage miles each way in First Class. It's a notable premium to the cost to fly to Asia, but perhaps worth it for one of the longest flights you can take if you are flying from JFK.
You can also redeem your AAdvantage miles for short-haul intra-Australia flights starting at 10,000 miles. But a real sweet spot is going clear across the country, 5 hours from Sydney to Perth, in style for just 20,000 miles. Considering that AA charges 32,500 for a business class LAX-JFK, this is a steal.
Use AAdvantage Miles for Japan Airlines First Class
I flew Japan Airlines in First Class a few years ago from JFK to Tokyo and back for a total of 160,000 AAdvantage miles and $46 in cash. That's just 80,000 miles each way for over 12 hours of true First Class!
Availability on JAL in First can be a bit hard to come by, but it's far from impossible to get if you are flexible.
American Airlines AAdvantage credit cards (and their signup bonuses!) just happen to be the best way to accrue a large stash of miles quickly.
Alternative to the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Card: American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp Card
The AAdvantage MileUp is another personal American Airlines credit card that can help you round up your mileage account. Although the American Platinum Select card is a more powerful card, MileUp has a few additional benefits, including:
Bonus Miles Eligibility
You are not eligible for the AAdvantage Platinum Select card sign up bonus miles if you have received a new account bonus for a Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select account in the past 48 months. The same rule applies for the AAdvantage MileUp card (i.e., that you have not received a bonus for the AAdvantage MileUp card within the past 48 months).
Remember the following when applying for Citi personal credit cards:
Business Version of the American Airlines Credit Card
If you have a small business, definitely consider the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®.
The bonus eligibility for the Business card is separate from the personal cards, so this means that you can get a bonus on an AAdvantage credit card, one personal and one business, every 48 months.
The American Airlines business credit card has similar features benefits as well.
Why is the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Card So Good?
The Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Card is an outstanding choice for anyone who takes American Airlines flights frequently, even if just because of the free checked bags which quickly cover the annual fee. It offers a generous sign-up bonus, waives the annual fee for the first year and earns you rich benefits when you travel on American Airlines.
Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard FAQ
What Credit Score do I Need for to Get the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard?
You'll generally need at least a 700 FICO credit score to be approved for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card.
Do I Need to Pay My Bill Every Month?
Yes! Reward cards pay for those points by charging extraordinarily high interest rates on any balance that you carry over each month. When you don't pay your card in full at the end of each month, you are simply paying for somebody else's rewards.
Here's the bottom line: If you get an American Airlines credit card, pay your bill on-time, every month. If you carry a balance from month to month, get a zero or low-interest rate credit card.
Can I Transfer My Rewards to Somebody Else's Account?
The miles that you earn from the credit card will be transferred to the authorized cardholder's American AAdvantage account. Once they're in an American AAdvantage account, the account holder can transfer the miles to another member's account.
The better question, though, is whether you will want to. American charges a fee of 1.5 cents per mile to transfer them, which is as much as the miles are actually worth! A better bet would simply be for you to simply purchase the ticket for the person to whom you wanted to transfer the miles.
Do I Get Lounge Access with My Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select Card?
The card does not offer Admirals Club lounge access. You can, however, use miles to purchase an annual membership. Depending on your elite status with the airline, an Admirals Club membership will cost you from 55,000 -- 65,000 AAdvantage miles.
You could also consider applying for the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite MasterCard® which has a $450 annual fee, but includes free Admiral's Club access for less than the cost of a standalone Admiral's Club membership.
Does the American Airlines Credit Card Reimburse Global Entry or TSA PreCheck Expenses?
No, there is no fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck. The Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite MasterCard® does offer a credit of up to $100 every five years.
Can I Add an Authorized User to the Account?
You can, and all of the miles that the authorized user accrues on their spending will be added to your AAdvantage account.
Do I Get Insurance for Car Rentals with the Citi AAdvantage Credit Card?
No, the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card does not come with insurance for car rentals.
If you are looking for a card that offers great insurance, check out cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred card, which offers primary insurance for car rentals.
How Long Does it Take for Miles to Credit to My AAdvantage Account?
It could take 8-10 after a purchase for the miles to credit to your AAdvantage account, depending on when in the credit card cycle you make the purchase. Miles usually show up after the following month's American Airlines credit card statement.
Is there a Limit on the Number of Miles I Can Earn?
No, there isn't. For every dollar that you spend on the card in a qualifying category, you will earn at least one mile. There's no maximum. Gas stations, dining and eligible American Airlines purchases will get you double.
Is there a Business Version of the American Airlines Credit Card?
Yes! As mentioned earlier, if you have a small business, you should definitely consider the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®.
The bonus eligibility for the American Airlines business credit card is separate from the personal cards, so this means that you can get a bonus on an AAdvantage credit card, one personal and one business, every 48 months.
Conclusion: Is the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard Worth It?
If you take American Airlines flights even twice per year, you will want to have this card. It's a free card for the first year, since AA waives the annual fee. In the meantime, you'll earn 50,000 points for meeting the initial spend requirement, which should be enough for a domestic roundtrip American Airlines flight (or two).
Even after the first year, the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card is a great deal. The $125 certificate that you earn for spending $20,000 in a year more than covers the annual fee, while getting a checked bag free for you and up to four people traveling with you could save you up to $150 per trip. The lack of foreign transaction fees also means that you can spend freely on foreign purchases.
Of course, if you aren't loyal to one airline, you may be better off with a credit card that earns transferable points, like a credit card that earns Chase Ultimate Rewards, a credit card that earns Amex Membership Rewards, a credit card that earns Capital One miles, or a credit card that earns Citi ThankYou points. Likewise, you should probably look for other options for recurring charges, such as utilities, cable and satellite providers, etc.
More American Airlines Credit Cards
You can pick from 4 different credit cards that earn American Airlines AAdvantage miles, including the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard for consumers as well as the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Mastercard for small business.