The premium co-branded American Airlines MasterCard that can earn elite qualifying miles, offers no foreign currency transaction fees, and comes bundled with lounge access, carries a $450 annual fee.
Most often I’ve seen the card offered with 25,000 miles as a signup bonus.
But now there’s a 50,000 mile signup bonus offer for the card which requires $5000 spending within 3 months.
It’s a lot of money for that annual fee but it’s also a lot of miles, and amounts to purchasing miles at less than a penny apiece (for the first year only).
If you are shut out from other Citi cards you might want, such as AAdvantage Visa and the Citi Hilton HHonors Reserve Card (the latter offers referral credit to me) then this is probably worth considering.
It’s a no-brainer if you buy lounge access from American, though I get mine from my American Express Platinum card (here’s the Mercedes-Benz version which carries the best available signup bonus) and also via my British Airways Gold status (I was comped based on being a british midland Gold member when BA acquired that airline).
And there’s a strong case to be made for the card if you are striving for American Airlines status. It requires a whopping $40,000 in spend to earn 10,000 elite qualifying miles, but that can be a better strategy than actually flying those 10,000 miles and of course you save both your time and the cost of the tickets in doing so.
Looking at my own travels I’ll likely requalify for American’s Executive Platinum status. But I’m monitoring that and hope that this offer is still available should I need the status miles.
(HT: Million Mile Secrets)