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CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® Review: Is it good for businesses?

CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® Review: Is it good for businesses?

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® offers a solid sign-up bonus and frequent flyer perks. However, the best benefits come to those who can spend at least $30,000 with the card each year.

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Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Visit americanexpress.com to learn more. Citi is an advertising partner.

Quick facts

More details

Rates & fees

  • Credit needed: 720 - 850
  • Sign-up bonus: Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.
  • Earning rate: Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases. Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations. 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases.
  • Annual fee: $99, waived for first 12 months
  • Key benefits: Free checked bags, preferred boarding, in-flight discounts and annual companion certificate

Quick facts

  • Credit needed: 720 - 850
  • Sign-up bonus: Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.
  • Earning rate: Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases. Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations. 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases.
  • Annual fee: $99, waived for first 12 months
  • Key benefits: Free checked bags, preferred boarding, in-flight discounts and annual companion certificate

More details

  • Designed for businesses
  • Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries to reduce travel costs and boost your bottom line.
  • 25% savings on American Airlines inflight Wi-Fi when you use your card
  • Enjoy preferred boarding on American Airlines flights
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations.
  • Earn 1 AAdvantage® mile per $1 spent on other purchases
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees

Rates & fees

  • Intro Purchase APR: N/A
  • Regular Purchase APR: 19.74% – 28.74% variable based on your creditworthiness
  • Intro BT APR: N/A
  • Regular BT APR: N/A
  • Annual Fee: $99, waived for first 12 months
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 0%
  • Balance Transfer Fee: N/A

Pros

  • Earn a large sign-up bonus
  • Earn 2X miles in five popular spending categories
  • Annual companion certificate
  • Good airline perks, including a free checked bag

Cons

  • Earns just 1X miles per dollar on non-bonus spending
  • Limited redemption options outside of flights
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Is the CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® worth it?

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® comes with valuable rewards and perks that may be well worth it, particularly if you're a heavy spender and a frequent flyer with American Airlines. There are many benefits that may justify the card's annual fee:

  • The card's sign-up bonus may be enough for a round-trip international flight, or for a few round-trip domestic flights depending on your destination and dates.
  • Cardholders earn 2X miles in five popular business spending categories, including cable and satellite providers, telecommunications merchants, car rentals, gas stations, and eligible American Airlines purchases.
  • The card can also help frequent travelers climb the elite status tiers with the brand. In fact, cardholders earn 1 Loyalty Point for each dollar they spend on the card for purchases. This means anyone with an eligible American Airlines credit card can reach AAdvantage Gold Elite status by spending $30,000 on purchases within a calendar year without actually flying.
  • It comes with frequent flyer perks, like free checked baggage and preferred boarding, that can make travel more comfortable and less expensive.

As an added bonus, cardholders who spend $30,000 on their card within a calendar year qualify for a American Airlines Companion Certificate after paying $99 plus airline taxes and fees. Since this is the same spending requirement for the card's elite status benefit, the card makes the most sense for those who can devote at least $30,000 in yearly spend to it.

Earn 65,000 AAdvantage miles

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® comes with a large sign-up bonus that can help you score an award flight right off the bat:

Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.

While American Airlines recently announced a move away from award charts to dynamic pricing, it's reasonable to assume this bonus is still good for at least one and potentially several flight awards. This is true for both international flights and domestic itineraries, and particularly for American's web specials that let travelers secure flight awards to select destinations for a lower rate.

money icon
How much is it worth? Since we estimate AAdvantage miles to be worth around 1 cent each, this bonus is worth around $650 in airfare with American Airlines

Who can earn it? According to Citi, this welcome offer is not available to you if you have received a new account bonus for the CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® account within the past 48 months. This offer is also available only to individuals who reside in the United States and its territories with the exclusion of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

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Earn 2X miles on a variety of categories

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® has a generous earning rate that may be lucrative for business owners who spend a lot on internet services, or on rental cards and gas.

Cardholders Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases. Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on purchases at telecommunications merchants, cable and satellite providers, car rental merchants and at gas stations. 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases.

That said, some business rewards cards offer a higher average earning rate on a broader array of categories, as you can see below. For instance, the American Express® Business Gold Card offers a whopping 4X points on two select categories where your business spends the most each month, including U.S. gas stations and U.S. restaurants. Furthermore, cards like the American Express® Business Gold Card, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, Chase Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card and Capital One Spark Miles for Business card allow you to transfer points 1:1 to a variety of airline and hotel programs, making those points much more valuable.

You can see from the chart below that the CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® offers far less earning power than these cards:

Rewards earned per $1 spent

$0.017
Southwest® Rapid Rewards® Performance Business Credit Card
$0.012
CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®

We estimate an earning rate for the average consumer based on U.S. Bureau of Labor data and multiply that by the value of each card’s points or miles.

Earn an annual companion certificate

Another money-saving feature of the CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® is its annual companion certificate. This certificate requires the cardholder to pay $99 plus airline taxes and fees ($21.60 to $43.20) for its use, yet it qualifies the cardholder for a companion ticket on a domestic American Airlines flight.

This companion certificate is earned when a cardholder spends at least $30,000 on purchases within a calendar year, which is the same threshold required to achieve AAdvantage Gold Elite status with the card.

Other CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® benefits

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® comes with several travel benefits that can make it a good value, even with its annual fee.

  • Free checked bags: Cardholders get a free checked bag for the cardholder and up to four companions on domestic American Airlines itineraries, which means they can get up to five free checked bags for every domestic flight. Considering a checked bag with American costs $30 on domestic itineraries, this savings can reach $300 for each round-trip domestic flight that includes the cardholder and four companions.
  • Preferred boarding: Preferred boarding takes place after Priority boarding but before the rest of economy boarding. While this perk may not necessarily have a monetary value, it can make travel more comfortable and ensure you get access to overhead bin space before it's gone.
  • 25% savings on in-flight Wi-Fi and purchases: Cardholders also save 25% on food, beverage, and internet purchases made with American, if they use their co-branded credit card to pay for the purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees: The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® doesn't charge any foreign transaction fees when you use it for purchases made overseas, which is a major perk for those who travel internationally.
  • Employee cards: If you're a business owner with employees, you should know that this card offers free employee cards. This benefit can help you track your employee's work-related spending with ease, and you also earn miles for every purchase they make in addition to your own.

Alternatives to the CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®

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CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®
CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®
American Express<sup>®</sup> Business Gold Card
American Express® Business Gold Card
Editor's Rating?
Annual Fee
$99, waived for first 12 months
$0 intro for first year; $95 after that
$99
$295
More card details
Not available on ValuePenguin
Apply Now
On Capital One's Secure Website
Apply Now
On Chase's Secure Website
Not available on ValuePenguin

CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® vs. Capital One Spark Miles for Business

On Capital One's Secure Website

Verdict: Flexible miles that you can use on any airline.

The Capital One Spark Miles for Business can be a better option for business owners who want more flexibility in how they redeem their rewards. Where the American AAdvantage program is mostly set up to let you redeem for flights with American and its partners, the Capital One Spark Miles for Business gives you the option to transfer your miles to 15 airline and hotel partners including Air Canada Aeroplan, British Airways, Choice Privileges, Wyndham Rewards and more.

You can also redeem your miles for travel purchases charged to your card at a rate of one cent per mile, or for gift cards, a statement credit or cash back.

CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® vs. United℠ Business Card

On Chase's Secure Website

Verdict: Earn valuable United miles at a faster pace

The United℠ Business Card can be a better option for frequent flyers who mostly travel with United or other airlines in the Star Alliance. Not only does this card offer a more generous welcome offer, but it comes with different bonus categories that may help some business owners rack up miles faster.

While many of the card's frequent flyer benefits are similar, the United℠ Business Card offers two United Club passes and some generous insurance benefits. For example, cardholders get auto rental coverage, trip cancellation and interruption insurance, and purchase protection automatically.

CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® vs. American Express® Business Gold Card

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Not available on ValuePenguin

Verdict: Fantastic point earnings on a wide variety of categories

The American Express® Business Gold Card comes with a higher annual fee, but its rewards structure highly favors businesses who use their card for a considerable amount of purchases each year. Specifically, cardholders with the American Express® Business Gold Card Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month* from the following: airfare purchased from airlines, select U.S. advertising purchases, U.S. purchases on computer hardware, software and cloud systems from select technology providers, U.S. gas station purchases, U.S. purchases at restaurants (including takeout and delivery) and U.S. purchases of shipping.

This card also earns points in the American Express Membership Rewards program. You can transfer Amex points to more than 15 hotel and airline loyalty programs — including Delta Air Lines — making them much more flexible and valuable.

Should you apply for the CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®?

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® is best for business owners who frequently fly with American Airlines or plan to in the future. Plus, it's a good deal for individuals who already have a personal American Airlines card. You can pair your personal card with this card to make sure you're racking up rewards on every purchase.

That said, you may want to consider other travel credit cards if you want the utmost flexibility in using your rewards. For example, cards like the American Express® Business Gold Card and the Capital One Spark Miles for Business let you transfer your rewards to a range of airline and hotel programs. Plus, these more flexible cards let you choose from other non-travel redemptions like gift cards and statement credits.

The information related to CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®, American Express® Business Gold Card, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express and Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which ValuePenguin receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). ValuePenguin does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

How We Calculate Rewards: ValuePenguin calculates the value of rewards by estimating the dollar value of any points, miles or bonuses earned using the card less any associated annual fees. These estimates here are ValuePenguin's alone, not those of the card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer.

Example of how we calculate the rewards rates: When redeemed for travel through Ultimate Rewards, Chase Sapphire Preferred points are worth $0.0125 each. The card awards 2 points on travel and dining and 1 point on everything else. Therefore, we say the card has a 2.5% rewards rate on dining and travel (2 x $0.0125) and a 1.25% rewards rate on everything else (1 x $0.0125).

Editor's Rating

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