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Essential for American Airlines Flyers: Review of the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard

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If you live in an American Airlines hub or fly with the Dallas/Fort-Worth-based carrier often, it can be beneficial to open a card like the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard. With the card, you can earn miles on your everyday spending and redeem them for free flights.

While that’s a great incentive on its own, there are additional perks, like a free checked bag and preferred boarding that can help pay for the annual fee in no time. We’ll provide an extensive review of the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard’s benefits to help you decide if it’s worth applying.

Offer Details
citi® / aadvantage® platinum select® world elite mastercard®

Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®

Annual Fee: $99 (Fee waived for the first 12 months)
Bonus: 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage®Bonus Miles
APR: Variable Rate
Reward Rate: 1X-2X

Rewards Rate

American Airlines plane at airport
American Airlines

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard offers 2x miles per dollar spent across three categories: restaurants, gas stations, and eligible American Airlines purchases. With any other purchase, you’ll earn 1x mile per dollar.

Each American Airlines AAdvantage mile is worth about 1.4 cents each, which means you’re getting a 2.8% return on the three bonus categories and a 1.4% return on all other eligible purchases. 

Not only will you earn frequent flyer miles, but you can also work toward earning American Airlines’Airlines elite status with your credit card spending. Every dollar spent on the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard rewards you with 1 Loyalty Point, which is part of American Airlines’ elite-qualifying program. Here’s a quick overview of the number of Loyalty Points you’ll need to earn in one year to qualify for each tier of elite status:

•AAdvantage Gold: 30,000 Loyalty Points (or $30,000 spent) 

•AAdvantage Platinum: 75,000 Loyalty Points (or $75,000 spent)

•AAdvantage Platinum Pro: 125,000 Loyalty Points (or $125,000 spent)

•AAdvantage Executive Platinum: 200,000 Loyalty Points (or $200,000 spent)

Of course, you will also earn Loyalty Points from your flights on American Airlines. However, you can get yourself across the finish line faster by spending on your Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard to earn 1 Loyalty Point per one eligible mile earned. Elite status can be worth pursuing if you’re after perks such as complimentary seat upgrades, same-day flight changes and more. 

Sign-up Bonus

tail of Qantas plane
Qantas

The introductory bonus on the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard offers a sizable payout. You’ll earn 50,000 bonus AAdvantage miles after spending $2,500 within the first three months of account opening. In other words, these miles are worth $700 toward award flights on American Airlines or any of its oneworld Alliance partners, like British Airways, Qantas Airways and more. 

Annual Fee

The annual fee on the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard costs $99 per year, but is waived for the first 12 months of account opening. 

About American Airlines AAdvantage 

man in first class using wifi for business
American Airlines

American AAdvantage is one of the best frequent flyer programs out there. That’s because the program still maintains an award chart, which allows you to understand how many miles you’ll need to unlock a free flight to your desired destination. 

There are even discounted award tickets, labeled as MileSAAver and Web Special Awards, that allow you to score flights for a great price. For example, you can get a short-haul domestic flight for just 5,000 to 7,500 miles one-way. 

Finally, the program offers fantastic award pricing for partner airlines through the oneworld Alliance. That means you can find an international business or first-class flight for a fraction of the cost using your miles. 

Redeeming Miles for Flights

There are many sweet spots in the AAdvantage program, and you can find them by taking a look at the award chart. You can book short-haul flights at just 5,000 miles one-way or economy flights to Europe for 22,500 miles. If you’re looking to travel in style, you can book Qatar Airways’ award-winning Qsuite business-class product to the Middle East for 70,000 miles, or a first-class ticket on Japan Airlines to Tokyo on Japan Airlines for 80,000 miles.

When searching for award flights, be sure to check the “Redeem miles” box on American Airlines’ website to see the flight prices in miles. Flexibility is key here, so you’ll want to play around with dates and airports to find the best redemption possible. 

Other Redemption Options

You can also redeem your miles for other things like gift cards, hotel nights, rental cars and more. As a general rule of thumb, it’s best to avoid these awards, since the redemption value is usually below 1 cent per point. Instead, you’ll want to save your AAdvantage miles exclusively for award flights. 

Do American Airlines AAdvantage Miles Expire?

All American Airlines miles expire after 24 months of account inactivity. However, it should be virtually impossible for cardholders to lose their miles as your spending earns AAdvantage miles and counts as qualifying activity to keep your account open. 

Benefits

American airline check in and attendants
American Airlines

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard comes with a broad range of money-saving benefits. If you use some of these perks — even just a few times per year — frequent American flyers can save a great deal on travel. 

Free Checked Bag

You can get your first checked bag for free on domestic American Airlines flights, which normally costs $30 one-way. Better yet, this perk extends to up to four additional companions booked on your same flight reservation. If you travel often with friends or family, this perk could easily help you save hundreds of dollars on pesky bag fees. 

Preferred Boarding

Early boarding can make all the difference to help you score overhead bin space for your carry-on bag, and American Airlines currently boards its passengers from Groups 1-9. With the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard, you and up to four travel companions on your reservation will receive preferred boarding in Group 5. 

25% Discount on Inflight Purchases

You’ll enjoy a 25% discount on all food and beverage purchases on all domestic American Airlines flights. Simply pay with your card onboard, and the discount will be given to you in the form of a statement credit. 

Earn a $125 American Airlines Flight Discount Every Year

Upon spending at least $20,000 during your card membership year and paying the $99 annual fee to renew the card, you’ll earn a $125 American Airlines flight discount. This certificate can be applied to any flight marketed and operated by American Airlines and will expire in one year. 

To earn this reward, you’ll need to spend roughly $1,667 per month. Remember that you’ll simultaneously earn American Airlines miles and Loyalty Points to help you achieve your elite status goals. 

No Foreign Transaction Fees

If you’re traveling internationally, you won’t have to pay any foreign transaction fees with the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard. Additionally, Mastercard is accepted by millions of merchants worldwide, ensuring that you can use your card no matter where you go. 

Apply for the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard

If you’re ready to take the plunge, you can apply for the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard online in under 15 minutes. The application requires basic cardholder information, income and Social Security number. You may even receive an instant approval upon submitting the application.

Once you receive your physical card, you can start spending to earn the 50,000-mile sign-up bonus. This is a nice stash of miles that can help unlock flights on American Airlines or any of its partner airlines. Finally, the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard can help you achieve elite status with the airline for even better perks. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Which cards compete with the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard?

If you’re looking for an American Airlines credit card, you should also take a look at the AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®. Issued by Barclays, the card also comes with a $99 annual fee —– but it isn’t waived for the first year. Many of the perks overlap, such as a free first checked bag and preferred boarding, but there are some differences to note. You can earn the sign-up bonus much faster, simply by making one purchase and paying the $99 annual fee in full. You’ll sacrifice the rewards rate, as the AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard® only offers 2x miles per dollar on American Airlines purchases and 1x mile per dollar on all other eligible purchases. 

How do I use American Airlines miles?

You can redeem your American Airlines flights easily by searching for award flights on the airline’s website. We recommend that you save your miles for short flights or partner award tickets, as you can get 1.4 cents per mile in value (or greater).

Does the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard have foreign transaction fees?

The card waives all foreign transaction fees, which usually cost 3% of each transaction. This makes the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard a great choice to bring on your international travels.

While we work hard on our research, we do not always provide a complete listing of all available offers from credit-card companies and banks. And because offers can change, we cannot guarantee that our information will always be up to date, so we encourage you to verify all the terms and conditions of any financial product before you apply.

Marielle Lee
Marielle Lee
Marielle Lee is a digital nomad, working as a freelance writer in personal finance and travel rewards. Her first job was as a tour guide in France for several years, specializing in the country's great wine regions. After that, Marielle continued on to travel to more than 40 countries, all made possible by leveraging the 10-plus credit cards in her wallet.

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