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Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® Review [2024]

You don’t need to pay a lot to get major perks from this American Airlines credit card. (Citi is a FinanceBuzz partner.)

Updated July 10, 2024
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Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®

Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®
4.3

OUR VIEW

American Airlines fans have several credit cards to choose from if you're looking to earn extra miles with their everyday purchases. The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® is a card that offers some significant perks and bonuses for little work on the cardholder’s part and a low annual fee.

Free checked bags, early boarding privileges, and in-flight discounts on eligible purchases make this a solid option for anyone who frequently flies American Airlines and is looking for ways to improve their travel experience.

Pros

Free checked bag
Early boarding on flights
Good bonus categories that align with everyday spending

Cons

Limited rewards flexibility
No lounge access
How we evaluate products

Card basics

Card type Travel
Credit card issuer Citi
Credit card network Mastercard
Annual fee $99 (waived first year)
Intro bonus Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
Reward rate 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants, and on eligible American Airlines purchases; and 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage® mile earned from purchases
Recommended credit score Excellent, Good
Foreign transaction fee 0%

Who should get the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard?

This card is a good fit for those who want a way to quickly and consistently earn miles with their everyday purchases - as long as they’re a frequent American Airlines customer. It’s also good for customers who want a large welcome bonus from their airline card and a low annual fee.

Because this card earns American Airlines miles, also known as AAdvantage Miles, you’ll want to make sure you fly with the airline fairly regularly so you can easily use the rewards you earn. The card’s other perks, such as free checked luggage or preferred boarding, are also only good on the airline, so it’s probably not worth getting this card if you rarely fly with American Airlines.

You're most likely to get the maximum value from an American Airlines credit card if you live in or near one of their hubs, which include the following cities:

  • Charlotte
  • Chicago
  • Dallas-Fort Worth
  • Los Angeles
  • Miami
  • New York
  • Philadelphia
  • Phoenix
  • Washington, D.C.

Best benefits and perks

Generous welcome offer

American Airlines has a very generous welcome offer that’s relatively easy to attain. You can earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. That could be enough miles for more than two round-trip flights, depending on your flexibility.

Easy miles with everyday spending

You can easily grow your bank of miles by doing your everyday shopping with the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard. You’ll earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants, and on eligible American Airlines purchases; and 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage® mile earned from purchases.

Those bonus categories can rack up miles quickly. Loyalty Points don’t necessarily help you earn more free flights, but they can increase your status with American Airlines. This can help you get priority boarding and other upgrades when you fly.

Flight perks

This card gives you some cool perks when flying. The first is one free checked bag for you and up to four companions on the same reservation when flying domestically. With bag fees on the rise, this is a valuable perk that could save you up to $400 per round trip.

You’ll also get preferred boarding on American Airlines flights. If you want lounge access to the Admirals Club, however, you'll need to opt for the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® instead.

American Airlines discounts

You’ll get some nice discounts when using the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard. First, you’ll get 25% off in-flight food and beverage purchases when flying American Airlines.

You can also earn a $125 American Airlines flight discount after you spend $20,000 or more in purchases annually (or about $1,666.67 monthly) and renew your card membership. This amount is fairly easy to hit if you use the card for all your eligible monthly expenses.

No foreign transaction fees

Like many other travel credit cards, this card does not charge foreign transaction fees. I hate paying extra fees when I travel abroad, so I only bring a card with no foreign transaction fees.

Loyalty Points

Earn one Loyalty Point for every eligible mile you earn from card purchases. Loyalty Points can help you achieve elite status with American Airlines.

Drawbacks to this card

Lack of flexibility with rewards

This card will be best for people who regularly travel with American Airlines or its Oneworld Alliance partner airlines. Unlike other travel rewards credit cards, you won't be able to use your miles to book flights on airlines outside the Oneworld network.

This can be a drawback for frequent travelers looking to fly on other airlines or with other networks. I prefer more flexible travel cards that aren’t tied to a specific airline because I want more flexibility with my rewards.

Annual fee

With the $99 (waived first year) annual fee, make sure the travel benefits end up being worth more than the fee.

Earning & redeeming AAdvantage Miles

Potential earnings in years one and two

Here's a look at how your AAdvantage miles can add up with the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard. To calculate these values, we used a point valuation of 1 cent per mile.

Remember, this is an estimation. The actual value will be determined by how much you spend and in which categories you spend.

Year one earnings: $1,451

Year two earnings: $762

These values are based on the FinanceBuzz Credit Card Rewards Valuation Model, which takes a look at points earned via spending, the welcome bonus, and the annual fee. If you are able to use the various credit and travel perks that come with this card, you'll experience far more earnings.

In addition, the "travel" spending used to calculate these numbers did not include any American Airlines spending or spending with their partner airlines. Of course, with this card, you are likely to book with American and its hospitality partners. So your earnings in your first year and second year would potentially be much higher than what is projected here.

Best ways to earn

Earning miles is easy with the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard. When you use your card at gas stations, restaurants, and eligible American Airlines purchases, you earn 2X miles per dollar spent. Those are common spending categories for many consumers, so you could earn miles quickly depending on your budget. If you’re someone who travels for work, this card could be an easy way to rack up a lot of miles.

For all other eligible purchases, you’ll earn 1X per dollar spent. Unfortunately, you can’t earn extra cash back in popular categories like grocery stores, hotels, rental cars, streaming services, and more. If you’re like me, you probably spend a large portion of your household budget on grocery stores, so this is a major blind spot.

Categories Rewards rate
Gas stations, restaurants, and eligible American Airlines purchases 2X
All other eligible purchases 1X

Maximizing your redemptions

Redeeming miles is certainly easy with the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard. American Airlines has flexible fare options as low as 7,500 miles each way, which makes earning enough miles to get free or discounted airfare fairly simple.

If you really want to score a deal, you should try to have flexible travel dates. If you can travel on cheaper days (typically mid-week), you can stretch your miles even further. Traveling off-peak, like during the winter, is another way to get more bang for your buck.

Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard FAQs

What credit score do you need for Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select?

You’ll likely need a good or excellent credit score to qualify for a Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select. Generally speaking, good credit starts at a score of 670, and excellent credit starts at a 740.

Can you upgrade a Citi AAdvantage credit card?

Yes. Citibank has a policy that allows cardholders to request upgrades and downgrades to their existing cards. Some cardholders may also be invited by Citi to upgrade their card. If you haven’t been given such an invitation, contact customer service to see if you’re eligible to upgrade your card and what is involved with making that change. Your creditworthiness and other factors will likely be considered.

How much does it cost to check a bag on American Airlines?

These charges depend on where you’re traveling to and the size of your bag. The following are rates for bags that meet standard size and weight regulations when flying domestically:

  • First bag: $40 ($35 if you pay online)
  • Second bag: $45
  • Third bag: $150
  • Four or more bags: $200 each

You’ll get one free checked bag for you and up to four travel companions on your reservation when you use this card to book your AA flight. This is worth up to $400 in savings for a round-trip flight. This can be especially useful if you often travel with a family or a group of friends and like to check luggage.

Which American Airlines credit card is best?

How you spend money and travel will determine which American Airlines credit card is best for you. The airline has a variety of credit card offers to choose from, which makes doing your research before applying very important. American Airlines also offers the Citi® / AAdvantage Business™ World Elite Mastercard® for business owners looking to earn miles on work-related travel.

Other cards to consider

If it sounds like the Citi / AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard isn't the best airline credit card or travel card for you, here are two other card offers to consider.

The AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard® is very similar to the Citi card, but with some different perks. First is a generous welcome offer: Earn 60,000 bonus miles after making your first purchase and pay the $99 annual fee in the first 90 days. You can also earn a $99 companion fare certificate after spending $20,000 in purchases and if your account stays open for 45 days after your anniversary date. You'll also enjoy other benefits like 25% off in-flight food or beverage purchases and $25 per year toward in-flight WiFi.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a great overall travel credit card that delivers perks and benefits for multiple airlines. It has a welcome offer of 60,000 bonus points after you meet the spending requirement of $4,000 within the first 3 months after account opening. That’s worth $750 in travel, not to mention extra savings when you book travel, hotel, or car rental reservations through Chase Travel℠. This is personally one of my favorite travel cards, especially if you don’t have one airline you like to use.

Free checked bags & more

4.3

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

Current Offer

Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

Annual Fee

$99 (waived first year)

Rewards Rate

2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants, and on eligible American Airlines purchases; and 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage® mile earned from purchases

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

Author Details

Robin Kavanagh

Robin is a freelance writer who lives on the South Carolina beach. She has spent the last 20 years writing about all kinds of topics for publications such as The New York Times, Yes! Magazine, Next Tribe, Parenting, and various trade magazines. On FinanceBuzz.com, you’ll find her mostly writing about smart ways to use credit cards, navigating personal loans, how to save when traveling, and ways to improve your financial health.