Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® MasterCard® Review

 
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PostedMay 11, 2016 by

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® MasterCard® is a good credit card for anyone who lives near an American Airlines hub or just travels on American a lot. It’s also a great card for aspiring travel hackers looking to boost their travel rewards.

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® MasterCard® offers two reward miles for every dollar spent on American Airlines tickets. For everything else, it’s one mile per dollar spent. The card comes with other benefits as well: There’s no foreign transaction fee, you get a free checked bag for up to four people and, important to anybody concerned about having to check a carry-on bag, you get to board with the first group on all domestic flights. The points can also be used for reward tickets on American Airlines’ many partner airlines.

The card also offers a generous sign up bonus of 30,000 points if you spend $1,000 within the first three months of opening an account. With such a low threshold, most people could get the bonus points just by paying their regular expenses with the credit card.

Additionally, the card is unique in giving you 10 percent back on redeemed miles, up to 10,000 miles.

There is a $95 annual fee, which is waived for the first year. After 12 months the annual fee kicks in, but if you learn how to maximize the rewards, it could be worth it.

Is there a rewards cap?

There is no spending cap on this card. You can earn unlimited miles, which, since the card has so many ways to earn miles, means you can rack up points pretty quickly.

There is, however, a cap on their promise to earn 10 percent back on miles you actually use. That cap is 10,000 miles in a calendar year.

There’s also a cap on free checked bags. Only four people can take advantage of a single checked bag each on any individual trip.

Collecting rewards

You can redeem your points for free flights on the website of American Airlines or any of its partners. Save yourself 7,500 points a year by using American’s MileSAAver roundtrip award or by booking one-way tickets.

As mentioned earlier, this card provides 10 percent of your miles back for up to 10,000 miles. This is rather unique and definitely a good way to maximize points.

You can also get a $100 discount on any American Airlines flight when you spend $30,000 every year, starting on the date you open the account. If you don’t spend $30,000 by yourself in one year, consider enlisting trusted authorized users to maximize this reward.

Aside from the actual points, you can get 25 percent off eligible in-flight food and beverages by purchasing them using the card.

Card Details

Introductory APR: None.
APR: The APR varies from 14.4 to 22.24 percent, making it a little high but not atypical for airline rewards cards.
Cash Advance APR: 25.49 percent variable.
Penalty APR: 29.99 percent. This sky-high rate should provide sufficient incentive to never miss a payment.
Points: Two AAdvantage® miles for every American Airlines purchase and one mile for every other dollar spent. You also get 10 percent back up to 10,000 when redeeming points for flights.
Sign-up Bonus: 30,000 AAdvantage® miles when you spend $1,000 within the first three months of getting the card.

Fees

Annual Fee: $95, though it’s waived for the first 12 months.
Balance Transfer Fee: Either $5 or 3 percent of the transfer amount.
Cash Advance Fee: Either $5 or 3 percent of the transfer amount.
Foreign Transaction Fee: None. This makes it a great card for travelers!

Items of note

Checked Bags: First checked bags are free for up to four people.

Boarding: Cardholders are eligible for group one boarding on domestic flights.

Purchases: 25 percent off eligible in-flight purchases

Ticket discount: $100 off a flight every time you spend $30,000 in a calendar year.

Ways to save miles: American Airlines has a couple of unique ways to save your miles. First, they give 10 percent back on redeemed miles up to 10,000 when booking a flight

Who is this card for?

This is best for avid travelers, anyone who lives near an American Airlines hub or anyone who flies often with American Airlines.

Who is this card not for?

People who would prefer cash-back instead of miles and people who don’t travel. Travel points aren’t for everyone.

It’s also not for anyone carrying a balance. The interest rates on this card are pretty steep and it could eat away at your travel rewards.


Shane Tripcony

 


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