Earn up to 75,000 bonus points with the Citi/AAdvantage World Elite cards

Citi AAdvantage World Elite cards

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If you’re an American Airlines loyalist who wants to use credit card rewards to fund your travel, the Citi/AAdvantage World Elite cards are a great option. The Citi/AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard is currently running a limited-time promotion that gives cardholders 75,000 bonus miles when they spend $7,500 in the first three months of card membership.

But if a $7,500 spend requirement isn’t in your budget, the Citi/AAdvantage Platinum World Elite Mastercard offers 50,000 bonus miles when you spend $2,500 in the first three months.

Which Citi/AAdvantage card is better in the first year?

While the Executive World Elite Mastercard offers a much higher sign-up bonus, the Platinum Select card offers additional spending categories and waives the annual fee during the first year.

To determine which card offers the better deal in the first year, let’s see how they compare side by side:

Comparing Citi/AAdvantage cards

   Citi/AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard
Citi/AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard
 Citi/AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard
Citi/AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard
Rewards rate
  • 2 miles per dollar at gas stations
  • 2 miles per dollar at restaurants
  • 2 miles per dollar on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • 1 mile per dollar on general purchases
  • 2 miles per dollar on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • 1 mile per dollar on general purchases
Sign-up bonus
50,000 miles when you spend $2,500 in the first 3 months 75,000 miles when you spend $7,500 in the first 3 months
Annual fee
$99, waived first year $450
Estimated value in first year ($15,900 spend) $1,352 $1,289

The average consumer who spends $15,900 on gas, food, clothing and general purchases can earn approximately $1,739 from the Executive card in the first year. However, once you subtract the card’s $450 annual fee, the first-year value drops to $1,289 – $63 less than that of the Platinum card.

After the first year, the Platinum card still comes out on top – even after the annual fee kicks in. We estimate that the average cardholder will earn $333 worth of rewards each year from the Platinum card with the fee subtracted. Meanwhile, a cardholder with $15,900 annual credit card spend will likely end up spending more on the annual fee than the rewards that they can earn with the Executive card (around $331 per year by our estimates).

Citi/AAdvantage World Elite Mastercard sign-up bonus history

Citi frequently updates the sign-up bonuses for the Citi/AAdvantage Platinum Select and Citi/AAdvantage cards. The Platinum Select sign-up bonus is currently 10,000 miles lower than its previous offer, while the Executive card’s bonus is 25,000 miles higher.

Citi/AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard recent changes

Change date Sign-up bonus
July 24, 2018 50,000 miles after $2,500 spend in first 3 months
May 3, 2018 60,000 miles after $3,000 spend in first 3 months
March 8, 2018 50,000 miles after $2,500 spend in first 3 months
Feb. 13, 2018 30,000 miles after $1,000 spend in first 3 months
Oct. 4, 2017 60,000 miles after $3,000 spend in first 3 months
July 20, 2017 30,000 miles after $1,000 spend in first 3 months
May 11, 2017 60,000 miles after $3,000 spend in first 3 months
March 8, 2017 30,000 miles after $1,000 spend in first 3 months
Dec. 19, 2016 50,000 miles after $3,000 spend in first 3 months

Citi/AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard recent changes

Change date Sign-up bonus
July 24, 2018 75,000 miles after $7,500 spend in first 3 months
Oct. 24, 2017 50,000 miles after $5,000 spend in first 3 months
July 26, 2017 75,000 miles after $7,500 spend in first 3 months

70,000 bonus miles for business owners

Business owners can also earn a large influx of bonus American Airlines AAdvantage miles. The CitiBusiness/AAdvantage Platinum Select World Mastercard has launched a limited-time offer that lets cardholders earn 70,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 in the first four months of opening an account.

Along with the sign-up bonus, CitiBusiness cardholders can earn an American Airlines companion pass after spending $30,000 each card membership year. With the companion pass, cardholders can add a companion to their flight for a $99 ticket fee (plus $22 to $43 in taxes and fees) each time they purchase a roundtrip coach ticket on an American Airline flight in the continental U.S.

Who is eligible for the sign-up bonus?

If you’re interested in applying for the Citi/AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard or Citi/AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard, you should note that you’re not eligible to receive American Airlines AAdvantage bonus miles if you have had any Citi/AAdvantage card – other than a CitiBusiness/AAdvantage card – opened or closed within the past two years.

If you’re interested in the CitiBusiness/AAdvantage Platinum Select World Mastercard, you are not eligible to earn bonus miles if you have had any CitiBusiness/AAdvantage card opened or closed within the past two years.

Should you apply now?

With the sign-up bonus currently at its peak, now is a prime time to apply for the Citi/AAdvantage Executive World Elite Mastercard. Since Citi has not yet specified when the 75,000-mile bonus will end, you’ll want to act fast to take advantage of the limited-time offer.

On the other hand, if you’re interested in the Platinum Select card, now is a good time to apply. Although the 50,000-mile sign-up bonus is not the highest ever offered by the card, it’s also not the lowest. That said, if you can hold off until the bonus reaches 60,000 miles again, the additional 10,000 miles could be worth the wait.

See related: Earn up to 65,000 bonus points with Southwest Rapid Rewards cards, Earn up to 35,000 bonus miles with AmEx Delta SkyMiles cards


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Updated: 10-20-2018