CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard Review: Travel Benefits for the Jetsetting Entrepreneur

The CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard is ideal for business owners who want free checked bags and other benefits on American Airlines flights.
Last updated Sep 11, 2020 | By Christy Rakoczy

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The CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard is a credit card designed for American Airlines flyers who can take advantage of perks such as free checked bags and preferred boarding on American Airlines flights.

While this card comes with an annual fee, it's cheaper than many other airline-branded cards. It is missing some of the perks more generous credit cards offer, such as access to airline lounges, but it's a great choice for business owners who want a card that offers a good mix of affordability and benefits.

Double miles on American Airlines purchases

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

Benefits

  • 65,000 bonus mile intro offer
  • 2X miles for American Airlines purchases and across several popular categories
  • Free first checked bag
  • Preferred boarding

Drawbacks

  • Annual fee


Who should get this card?

If you're a business owner who routinely travels on American Airlines, it may be time to sign up for the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard. This card is ideal for the price-conscious business owner who doesn't want to pay a high annual fee for a credit card but still wants ample travel perks any time you take an American Airlines flight.

You do, however, have to be OK with those perks coming only on one airline — although you can earn American Airlines miles when you fly with partner airlines, too. If you don't often fly American, a general-purpose travel card may be a better bet for you.

You'll also need good or excellent credit to qualify for this card, and should make sure you can justify the affordable annual fee of $99 (waived first year). Because the card comes with a free checked bag for you and up to four travel companions — along with other American Airlines perks — this fee could be worth paying if you take just a few trips a year with checked luggage.

Card Basics

Card Type Business
Card Issuer Citi
Annual Fee $99 (waived first year)
Intro Bonus Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage bonus miles after spending $4,000 in the first 4 months
Recommended Credit Score Excellent
Foreign Transaction Fee None

Top Card Benefits

  • Generous welcome offer: Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage bonus miles after spending $4,000 in the first 4 months. With domestic award flights starting at just 7,500 miles, that bonus could add up to significant travel savings.
  • Bonus rewards in many categories: You can earn miles on almost every purchase you charge to the card. Earn 2X miles per dollar on all eligible American Airlines purchases and on purchases in select business categories (telecommunications, cable, satellite, car rental, gas), and 1X miles on other purchases.
  • Free checked bags: You and up to four people traveling with you can check a bag for free on American Airlines flights. Since checked bags could cost up to $30 for your first bag on a domestic flight and $60 each on transatlantic flights, this benefit alone may make the annual fee worth paying.
  • Preferred boarding: Cardmembers get to board early, right after ConciergeKey members; active duty military members; Executive Platinum or Oneworld members; and Platinum Pro or Platinum members. You'll be in Boarding Group 5, which puts you ahead of most main cabin members and those flying basic economy.
  • In-flight savings: Save 25% on inflight food purchases or beverage purchases if you use your card to shop on any American Airlines flight.
  • Waived annual fee and no foreign transaction fees: There's an annual fee of $99 (waived first year) and no foreign transaction fees when using your card abroad.

Earning & Redeeming

Best ways to earn

The CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard offers ample opportunities to earn bonus miles — so the best way to maximize your earnings is to shop within the categories that get you double miles. You get 2X miles for each $1 spent on American Airlines purchases, and purchases from telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants, and gas stations.

For all other purchases, you'll also earn 1X mile per $1 spent.

Maximizing your redemptions

Using your miles to travel with American or to make purchases with American can provide the most bang for your buck. And by shopping for reduced mileage MileSAAver awards flights or economy web specials, you can make your rewards points stretch even further. You do have to give up a little flexibility — you can't change your flights without paying a fee, for example — but you'll be able to use far fewer miles to book trips.

You can also redeem American miles with Oneworld partners, such as British Airways, Japan Airlines, and Qantas. Oneworld is a member alliance of 13 airlines across the globe. These airlines fly out of 1,000 airports, providing the chance to get to almost any destination worldwide with your American Airlines miles.

Common Questions

What is the best AAdvantage credit card?

The best AAdvantage credit card will depend upon your specific situation. If you don't travel very often, you may be better off with a card like the American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp Card because it comes with a $0 annual fee. But it also offers far fewer bonus categories where you can earn double miles and you get no free checked bags.

If you are a business owner, the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select could be the right choice because it offers some perks especially valuable to companies, such as bonus miles for spending on telecommunications purchases.

But if you're a very frequent traveler or a big spender, you may be better off with the Citi / AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard. This card costs $450 annually but you get free checked bags for you and up to eight companions, you'll board before AAdvantage PlatinumSelect members will, and you get an Admirals Club membership with your card that's valued at up to $650.

How much is 60,000 American Airline miles worth?

The value of your American Airlines miles will depend on how you redeem them. In general, however, miles are estimated to be worth roughly 1.4 cents each. That would make 60,000 miles worth around $840.

Can I upgrade my Citi AAdvantage card?

Provided you meet qualifying requirements based on credit and income, you can upgrade your Citi AAdvantage card. If you received an invitation code from Citi to upgrade, you can even fill out a simple form online to request an upgrade. Otherwise, you can call your card's customer service phone number to find out about your upgrade options.

Are airline credit cards worth it?

Airline credit cards may be worth it if you frequently travel on the airline providing the card. You'll want to make sure the benefits you get — such as free checked bags and discounts on in-flight purchases — are perks you'll actually use.

If you tend to travel on lots of different airlines, however, signing up for an airline card likely isn't worth it because the benefits are usually airline-specific and you get the best value by redeeming your miles with the specific airline that offers the card.

Other travel credit cards that don't tie you into using one airline and that offer broader benefits, such as access to Priority Pass airport lounges, may be a better value.

Other cards to consider

Not sure if the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard is the right card for your company? There are plenty of other business cards to consider — and one of these two may be a better fit.

AAdvantage Aviator Business Mastercard

The AAdvantage Aviator Business Mastercard offers the chance to earn up to 75,000 miles: 65,000 miles after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days, and another 10,000 miles when a purchase is made on an employee card.

You also get some additional benefits that the CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard doesn't offer, including a 5% AAdvantage mileage bonus and a companion certificate good for one guest if you can meet the spending minimum. While the card's annual fee is slightly lower at $95, you still earn 2X miles on American Airlines and office supply, telecom, and car rental merchants.

Chase Ink Business Preferred 

The Chase Ink Business Preferred offers the chance to earn 100,000 points after spending $15,000 in the first 3 months, which is a more generous reward but comes with a higher spending requirement.

You get a 25% bonus when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards, so you can travel on any airline or use points to book hotels or other travel purchases. You also earn 5X points on Lyft rides; 3X points on the first $150,000 spent each year on travel, shipping, internet, cable, or phone services, and advertising purchases with social media and search engines; and 1X points per $1 on everything else.

Double miles on American Airlines purchases

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

CitiBusiness / AAdvantage Platinum Select Mastercard

Special Offer

Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage bonus miles after spending $4,000 in the first 4 months

See how these cards compare:

AAdvantage® Aviator® Business Mastercard®
AAdvantage® Aviator® Business Mastercard®
  • Free checked bag
  • Preferred boarding
  • Annual companion certificate after spending $30,000
  • Annual 5% mileage bonus
Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
Chase Ink Business Preferred Credit Card
  • 100,000 point sign-up bonus
  • 3X points on travel and common business spending categories
  • Flexible redemption options
  • Additional employee cards at no extra cost