CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard®
American Airlines has multiple co-branded credit cards with two different banks, but Citibank is the only issuer that offers a business card that earns AAdvantage miles. We’ll explore this card to help you decide if it’s right for your business.
As far as business credit cards go, the CitiBusiness Platinum Select World MasterCard has a lot to offer. It comes with a solid sign-up bonus, extra miles for spending in common business categories, free checked bags, priority boarding and more. To help manage your expenses, Citi provides quarterly and annual account summaries broken down by employee and purchase categories. We’ll dig into all these perks, but if you or your employees travel on American Airlines, this is definitely a card worth considering.
The only downside to this card isn’t with the card itself but rather the rewards you will earn. As the largest airline in the world, American has more flights and members of its loyalty program than any other carrier. That means there’s a tremendous supply of award miles out there, and American has responded accordingly. Redeeming miles on flights hasn’t changed, but finding availability — particularly in business and first class — has become more difficult, and awards cost a lot more miles than they did just a couple years ago. What good are AAdvantage miles if you can’t use them? We’ll get into that, too.
Bonuses and Benefits
Knowing what benefits come with a credit card can help you decide if it’s a good fit for you. Here we cover the bonuses and perks that the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard® offers and the value of the Citi AAdvantage® miles you earn.
One of the biggest perks of the AA business card is the sign-up bonus. The standard bonus is 30,000 miles after spending $1,000 within the first 3 months, but it sometimes goes up to 60,000 miles after spending $3,000 within the first 3 months. That’s a great sign-up bonus!
Additionally, you can add employee cards to the account at no cost, and the purchases they make will also earn AA miles. Keep in mind the miles earned go to the business owner’s AAdvantage account, not the individual employee making the purchases.
One unique perk this card shares with all American Airlines cards is the opportunity to purchase discounted award tickets. These Reduced Mileage Awards can save you up to 7,500 miles per person on round-trip tickets purchased at the saver level. The discount is based on which card you hold and your class of service, and these discounts are eligible to destinations that rotate monthly. Keep in mind that the destination is what triggers the discount, not your origin. American announces the featured monthly destinations typically a few months in advance, so you can sometimes find great deals on last-minute travel. You do have to call the reservations desk to book, and these awards are still subject to the same availability as normal award tickets.
What You Get
- Earn 60,000 miles after you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months
- Access to reduced redemption rates with Reduced Mileage Awards
Once you earn your miles, they transfer to your AA account, and they don’t expire as long as you earn or redeem miles at least once every 18 months. Doing so will extend the life of your miles another 18 months. As long as you earn at least one mile per month using your AA credit card, you’ll never need to worry about losing your miles.
What is the value of the AAdvantage® Miles?
The good news about using AAdvantage miles is that there are a lot of destinations you can fly to and a lot partners you can fly with. The bad news is that award availability on American-operated flights is becoming more difficult to find, and like Delta, they’ve started introducing variable pricing on some routes.
This makes the cost of those award flights very high in some instances. But don’t forget, you can also use AA miles on American’s many alliance and non-alliance partners when traveling abroad. Depending on the carrier, availability can be plentiful, and the cpm very good.
Assuming you can find award availability, the chart below shows the best use of your miles.
What is CPM and How Is It Calculated?
Cents Per Mile (CPM) is a way to measure the value of miles. It tells you how many cents you get for each mile you redeem by dividing the cash price of the airline ticket (minus taxes and fees charged for an award ticket) by the number of miles the award flight costs. This is a somewhat subjective calculation because the price of the flight in both cash and miles fluctuates by season and availability.
How we calculate CPM:
The Best Ways to Redeem AAdventage Miles
The American Airlines AAdvantage loyalty program is a revenue-based program where miles are awarded based on the cost of the airfare as opposed to mileage flown. Elite members earn more miles per dollar spent based on their status. However, miles can also be earned through partners and credit card spending.
When it comes to redeeming miles, American’s award chart is zone-based, which means the cost depends on the regions you’re flying from and to. This goes for booking partner flights as well. When American went revenue-based, they greatly devalued their loyalty program resulting in more expensive awards. However, these award prices are largely in line with what United and Delta charge for award flights. Unlike other carriers, American does offer an advantage over its competitors when booking off peak travel where the same awards cost less than traveling during high season.
Seattle–HonoluluEconomy classMiles price40,000miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$888
New York–PittsburgEconomy classMiles price7,500miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$241
Oakland–Los AngelesEconomy classMiles price7,500miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$445
San Francisco–Hong KongEconomy classMiles price35,000miles+$80.6 feeDollars price$1,108
New York–ParisEconomy classMiles price30,000miles+$80.6 feeDollars price$1,098
Boston–MexicoEconomy classMiles price15,000miles+$80.6 feeDollars price$531
Chicago–MiamiBusiness classMiles price25,000miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$761
San Francisco–MauiBusiness classMiles price67,000miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$1,591
Denver–ClevelandBusiness classMiles price45,000miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$981
Fort Lauderdale–SydneyBusiness classMiles price175,000miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$821
Miami–LimaBusiness classMiles price35,000miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$3,495
Boston–DublinBusiness classMiles price57,500miles+$11.2 feeDollars price$6,291
Other ways you can redeem miles
Hotel Stays30 partners30 part.
Over 70,000 hotels worldwide to choose from ranging from your favorite big brand to that little boutique hotel along the coast you've always wanted to visit.
Car Rental13 partners13 part.
Complete your travel needs by hitting the road with car rentals from various rental car companies.
If you have elite status, or at least 25,000 miles saved up, you can redeem miles for gift cards through points.com.
Redeeming Avios for cash back is not an option with the BA card.
When you use your AAdvantage Business credit card from Citi, you earn miles on every purchase you make. You’ll earn 1 AAdvantage mile for every dollar spent, plus an extra mile per dollar on purchases with American Airlines as well as for car rentals, gas, mobile phones and landlines. Best of all, there is no maximum to the number of miles you can earn with your card. Don’t forget, you can add employee cards to your account for free, and their purchases will also earn miles at the same great rates.
- Car Rental
- American Airlines Purchases
- All Other Purchases
Free Checked Bag
The primary cardholder and four companions on the same reservation each receive one free checked bag on every domestic flight.
Cardholders receive preferred boarding on all American Airlines domestic flights, so you can be among the first to board and settle in sooner.
Feeling a little peckish or parched? With your card, you’ll receive a 25% savings on eligible in-flight purchases on American Airlines.
No Foreign Transaction Fee:
Whether using your card at home or overseas, you don’t have to worry about incurring foreign transaction fees.
Each year you spend $30,000 or more on the card, you can earn an American Airlines Companion Certificate for a free companion ticket. You only have to pay the taxes and fees, but the airfareis free!
Earn Elite Status Fast
Although you can earn miles at an accelerated rate with this card, the spend put on your AA Business card won’t assist in earning elite status.
Fees: the cost of Having the Card
For the first year you have this credit card, the annual fee is waived. After that, you’ll pay $95 annually to renew your card membership. . Assuming AA miles are worth 1.56 cents each, you would need to make $6,090 in purchases each year to cover the cost of the fee. Alternatively, you could break that down into $507.50 per month. Or, if you put regular business expenses on the card and spend about $2,000 per month, you’ll have covered the annual fee in just over three months.
Another way to consider offsetting the annual fee is in regards to the value of the sign-up bonus. If you earn the standard sign-up bonus of 30,000 miles, which is worth at least $468 in airfare, you’ll have covered the card fees for nearly six years. It gets even better if you’re lucky enough to get the promotional 60,000 miles sign-up bonus, which is worth at least $936. That’ll cover nearly 11 years of annual fees. That’s huge!
- Balance Transfer Fee
- 3% of the amount of each balance transfer, $5 minimum
- Annual Fee
- $0 first year, then $95
- Foreign Transaction Fee
- Late Payment Fee
- Up to $37
See What It Takes to Cover an Annual Fee:
We strongly recommend to spend not less than $2,030 per months to cover the annual fee in three months.
We’ve broken out our estimates for the first- and second-year net earnings you’ll get with the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard®. Is the card worth getting, and should you keep it after you get the sign-up bonus? Let’s find out.
These estimates are based on an annual monthly spend of $2,000
Top 5 Benefits of the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard®
There are numerous benefits offered by the CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum Select card, and the best is certainly the great 60,000-mile sign-up bonus, if you’re lucky enough to get it. Plus you’ll earn double miles for certain purchases, including those made with American Airlines, as well as for telecommunications, car rentals and gas.
- Big Sign-Up Bonus: The standard bonus is 30,000 miles, which is good. But American often offers up 60,000 miles after spending $3,000 within the first 3 months, and that’s great!
- Free Checked Bag: Without this card, you’d have to pay at least $25 per bag per person on each flight you take. But with this card, you and four companions get your first bag checked for free. Even if you just travel with one business colleague, that’s savings of $100 for one roundtrip if both of you check a bag. That savings can really add up!
- Great Earning Potential: You’ll get one mile per dollar spent on every purchase plus double miles on purchases with American Airlines and for telecommunications, rental cars and gas.
- Free Companion Pass: By spending at least $30,000 on the card each year, you’ll earn a companion certificate so a family or friend can fly with you for free on one domestic round-trip flight.
- Priority Boarding: Be among the first to board even without elite status as cardholders get preferred boarding on all American flights.
Should You Get the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard®?
If you’re a business owner looking to earn AA miles on credit card purchases, the CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum Select is definitely right for you. Not only does the card come with a great sign-up bonus to boost your mileage account balance, but it also earns double miles for common business purchases, including rental cars, gas and telecommunications, and with American Airlines.
For the first year, you won’t pay the $95 annual fee, but the card is definitely worth keeping year after year due to the speed at which you can rack up AA miles. Furthermore, the annual fee isn’t so high that you need to put a lot of spend on the card to get your money’s worth. So even if you are a small business or don’t put a lot of expenses on credit, it’s still a great card to get.
Need more info? Check out our frequently asked questions. If you have other questions, please click on “Ask Now” below.
Unfortunately, not. While some airlines let you pay for an award ticket for a partial number of miles as a combination of cash plus points, American Airlines does not offer this ability. But with this credit card, the big sign-up bonus will get you well on your way to a free ticket, and you can earn miles quickly to get you the extra ones you need.
While AA miles are best used for award travel, you do have options. You’ll get the most out of your miles on international flights, particularly in premium cabins, on American Airlines or one of their partners. However, you can redeem miles for other travel as well. If you book hotels and car rentals through the AAdvantage website, you can cash in miles to cover those travel needs.
Yes! Like many business cards, the business owner’s credit is checked as part of the decision process, so while banks like to see business revenue, it’s not the sole requirement. This card is geared toward small businesses, so even if you have a part-time business or side business where you have steady expenses, this card is worth considering.
Yes and no. Yes, it’s possible to transfer your miles to employees, family or friends, but there’s a steep cost and you lose a lot of value by doing so. It’s probably not worth it. However, if you have enough miles in your account for an award ticket, you can use your miles to book an employee’s travel for them. You’ll need their basic information to secure the booking, but the cost is the same whether you book travel for yourself or someone else.
The CitiBusiness AA card is very similar to other American Airlines co-branded credit cards. All the cards earn AA miles on every purchase, and they all have annual fees after the first year. See the chart below for details.
Other AAdventage® cards
|AAdvantage® Aviator™ Red World Elite MasterCard®||Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ MasterCard®||Citi® / AAdvantage® Gold World Elite™ Mastercard®|
|Sign-up bonus||60,000 miles||60,000 miles||60,000 miles||25,000 miles|
|Annual Fee||$95||$0 first year, then $95||$0 first year, then $95||$0 first year, then $50|
|APR On Purchases||16.99% to 25.99% Variable±||16.74% to 24.74% Variable±||16.99% to 24.99% Variable±||16.99% to 24.99% Variable±|
|Second Year Value||$374||$374||$374||$374|
Of course, all these AA cards aren’t exactly the same, otherwise there wouldn’t be so many of them. For starters, the CitiBusiness card is the only business credit card that earns AA miles on every purchase. This card was created to attract small business owners while the other cards are intended for everyday consumers. Additionally, this credit card is the only card that offers ongoing double miles on telecommunications, car rentals and gas purchases. All the other cards only earn bonus miles when making American Airlines purchases.
With the exception of the Barclays Aviator Red card, all these cards are issued by Citibank. You’ll see these cards advertised on American’s website and elsewhere, while Barclays has the exclusive right to advertise their card at airports and in-flight. It’s worth noting that Citi has become very strict when it comes to getting sign-up bonuses with their cards. Generally, if you have opened or closed any of their cards that earn AA miles within the last 24 months, you won’t be eligible for a sign-up bonus on a new AA credit card.
Another thing to keep in mind if you’re considering multiple AA cards is that while the non-spending benefits are similar, they don’t stack. For example, if you have two AA cards, you won’t be eligible for two free checked bags per person on your reservation, nor do you get double the discount on Reduced Mileage awards.
Compare CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard® to Other Cards
How does the CitiBusiness AA credit card compare to other co-branded airline cards? By nature, all the cards in the chart below earn miles for their respective loyalty programs. They also come with similar baggage and priority boarding benefits. Both American Airlines and British Airways are part of the oneworld alliance, so you can use both airlines’ miles for travel on any of the oneworld partners (including each other). If you’re a frequent flyer of one of these airlines, it’s probably worth considering getting one of these cards.
- Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
35,000 miles offerRead Review
- Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
30,000 miles offerRead Review
- British Airways Visa Signature® Card
50,000 avios offerRead Review
The biggest difference between the CitiBusiness AAdvantage card and the other three is that the AA card is a business card, while the others are personal cards. Naturally, this AA card is geared toward small business owners. Also, the AA card currently has the highest sign-up bonus with the current 60,000 miles promotion. On top of that, the CitiBusiness card is the only card of the bunch that earns double miles in spending categories other than purchases with their respective co-branded airline.
Another difference is that Delta is part of the SkyTeam alliance and has totally different airline partners than American. While parts of their route networks may overlap, their partner carriers do not. This is worth taking into consideration when thinking about an airline card or loyalty program because you want to earn miles you can actually use based on where you travel.
Lastly, the Gold Delta card is the only card in this mix that does not offer a companion certificate. It is worth noting, however, that the Platinum Delta card has a higher annual fee than the others, but with this card you earn the companion certificate simply by renewing your card membership each year. The British Airways and AA cards require you to spend at least $30,000 on the card to earn that perk.
Whenever you apply for a credit card make sure you read the terms and conditions of the card and the rewards program to find out about minimum spend requirements and any restrictions to ensure you can successfully obtain the card and earn the rewards it offers.
Card Terms and Conditions
While it's easy to focus on the rewards offered by the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard®, it's worth taking a closer look at the terms and conditions. There's a lot to consider as you think about how you're going to use the card. Will you carry a balance, get a cash advance or maybe make a big purchase? Below is a rundown of the various interest rates, purchase protections, security features and mobile banking options that come with the MasterCard card.
- Intro APR:
- See Terms and Conditions
- Intro APR for balance transfers:
- See Terms and Conditions
- Ongoing APR:
- 16.74% to 24.74% Variable±
- Minimum Grace Period:
- 23 days
Cash Advance Features
- Ongoing APR:
- 21.24% Variable±
- Cash Advance Fee:
- Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
Security and Protections
Like all Citi cards, there are certain built in security features to give you peace of mind. Whether you’re on the go at home, or traversing the country on business, there are several great security benefits like account alerts, chip technology and credit score monitoring.
- Account alerts:
- You can customize alerts so you’re notified of large purchases, unauthorized activity or when your payment is due.
- Banking On The Go:
- Use Citi’s mobile app to easily keep track of your business accounts.
- Emv Chip Technology:
- Whether in the U.S. or abroad, your card will be accepted at more merchants and your payments are more secure using chip enabled terminals.
Smartphones make banking easy no matter where you are. You can use Citi’s app for Apple or Android, or their mobile website to monitor your account. Best of all, it’s easy and free.
- Mobile App:
- Don’t forget to download the free Citibank app to monitor all your Citi accounts in one place.
- Mobile Wallet:
- Apple Pay, Android Pay and Samsung Pay all work with your Citi card for easy on-the-go payments.
Additional Cardholder Benefits
This card is issued by Citi as a World Mastercard , which comes with additional benefits. They include travel protections like travel accident insurance, car rental insurance and travel and emergency assistance. The card also gets you Purchase Assurance and an extended warranty on eligible purchases.
Master Card Travel Benefits
- Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance:
- Pay for your trip with your Citi AA card and you’ll have Worldwide Travel Accident Insurance. This coverage may offer some financial assistance to you or your travel companions if an accident occurs while you’re away. Includes up to $1,000,000 in compensation.
- Worldwide Car Rental Insurance:
- You earned double miles on your car rental purchase, and by doing so you’ll be covered against theft or damage to your rental car for up to $50,000.
- Travel and Emergency Assistance:
- Services are available 24/7 before and during your trip in the event of emergency travel arrangement, travel issues, medical or legal referrals and more. Referrals are free but charges apply to the services rendered.