Best American Airlines Credit Cards of February 2023 (Updated Monthly)

Best American Airlines Credit Cards of February 2023 (Updated Monthly)

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® is the best American Airlines credit card — it offers AAdvantage miles on everyday purchases as well as valuable airline benefits like free checked bags.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

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

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

AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®

American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card

Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®

CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®

American Airlines frequent flyers should consider applying for one of the airline's co-branded credit cards to accelerate miles earnings (and earn more Loyalty Points). American Airlines cards — unlike most co-branded airline cards — offer a pretty generous earning rate.

Signing up for the right American Airlines card could also get you valuable airline perks, such as:

  • Preferred boarding status
  • Free checked luggage
  • Lounge access
  • Fast track to elite status

You can also opt to apply for a non-co-branded card if you want more flexible rewards that you can still use toward American Airlines flights. Read on to learn about each American Airlines AAdvantage credit card and the perks they have.

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Annual Fee
Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®
Citi<sup>®</sup> / AAdvantage<sup>®</sup> Platinum Select<sup>®</sup> World Elite Mastercard<sup>®</sup>
Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening660 - 850$99, waived for first 12 months
Not available on ValuePenguin
AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®
AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®
Earn 60,000 AAdvantage® bonus miles after making your first purchase and paying the $99 annual fee in full, both within the first 90 days.660 - 850$99
Not available on ValuePenguin
American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card
American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card
Earn 10,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles and receive a $50 statement credit after making $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening660 - 850$0
Apply Now
On Citibank's Secure Website
Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®
Citi<sup>®</sup> / AAdvantage<sup>®</sup> Executive World Elite Mastercard<sup>®</sup>
Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $5,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening660 - 850$450
Apply Now
On Citibank's Secure Website
CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®
CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®
Earn 65,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 4 months of account opening.720 - 850$99, waived for first 12 months
Not available on ValuePenguin

Best American Airlines credit card overall (co-branded)

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

Generic art
Not available on ValuePenguin

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

$99, waived for first 12 months

20.49% - 29.49% (Variable)

660 - 850

  • Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after $2,500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants, and on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • Earn 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage® mile earned from purchases
  • Earn a $125 American Airlines Flight Discount after you spend $20,000 or more in purchases during your card membership year and renew your card
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to four companions traveling with you on the same reservation
  • Enjoy preferred boarding on American Airlines flights
First year card value: $741.93

  • Free checked bag on American Airlines for cardholder and up to four companions on domestic American Airlines flights
  • Preferred boarding
  • $125 American Airlines Flight Discount after you spend $20,000 or more in purchases in a year
  • 25% discount on in-flight food and beverage purchases
  • Lets you earn Loyalty Points toward AAdvantage status
  • First checked bag free for cardholders and four companions
  • Preferred boarding and discount on in-flight purchases
  • Only earns 1 mile per dollar on non-bonus purchases
  • $99, waived for first 12 months annual fee

We consider the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® to be the best all-around American Airlines credit card because of its generous sign-up bonus and solid ongoing rewards. This card offers the best miles-earning potential, with bonus miles on gas station and restaurant purchases. Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent at gas stations and restaurants, and on eligible American Airlines purchases.

Runner-up: Best American Airlines credit card (co-branded)

AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®

Generic art
Not available on ValuePenguin

Earn 60,000 AAdvantage® bonus miles after making your first purchase and paying the $99 annual fee in full, both within the first 90 days.

$99

19.74%, 23.74%, or 28.74%

660 - 850

  • Earn 60,000 AAdvantage® bonus miles after making your first purchase and paying the $99 annual fee in full, both within the first 90 days.
  • 10% of your redeemed miles back (10,000 miles maximum per calendar year)
  • Earn 2X AAdvantage® miles on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • Earn 1X AAdvantage® miles on all other purchases
  • Receive 25% inflight savings on food and beverages
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • First checked bag free for the primary cardmember and up to 4 companions on eligible bags
First year card value: $688.80

  • Free checked bag for cardholder and up to four companions on domestic American Airlines flights
  • Preferred boarding
  • 25% discount on in-flight food and beverage purchases
  • Lets you earn Loyalty Points toward AAdvantage status
  • Generous sign-up bonus with no hefty spending requirement to meet
  • Get free checked bag, in-flight Wi-Fi credits and more
  • $99 annual fee not waived the first year
  • No earning bonus categories outside of purchases made with the airline

The AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard® is a solid AAdvantage card for American Airlines customers. The card comes with one of the easiest sign-up bonuses to qualify for. Just make any purchase and pay the card's annual fee, and you'll earn bonus miles worth enough to cover a free flight or two. However, it's out-earned by the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®, which provides more categories to earn bonus miles.

Best American Airlines credit card with no annual fee (co-branded)

American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card

On Citibank's Secure Website

Earn 10,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles and receive a $50 statement credit after making $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening

$0

20.49% - 29.49% (Variable)

660 - 850

  • Earn 10,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles and receive a $50 statement credit after making $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • No Annual Fee
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for each $1 spent at grocery stores, including grocery delivery services
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • Earn 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
  • Earn 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage® mile earned from purchases
  • Save 25% on inflight food and beverage purchases when you use your card on American Airlines flights
First year card value: $329.34

  • 25% savings on in-flight food and beverage purchases
  • Lets you earn Loyalty Points toward AAdvantage status
  • Only co-branded AAdvantage card with $0 annual fee
  • Earn double miles on grocery spending and airfare with American
  • Lower sign-up bonus than other co-branded AAdvantage cards
  • Charges foreign transaction fees on purchases made abroad

The American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card is the top AAdvantage card for customers searching for a $0-annual-fee airline card. It's actually one of the few airline co-branded cards on the market to not charge an ongoing membership fee. While frequent flyers won't get the same level of perks they would with an annual fee card, the card's generous grocery bonus stands out in the realm of no-annual-fee airline cards.

Best American Airlines credit card for lounge access (co-branded)

Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®

On Citibank's Secure Website

Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $5,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening

$450

20.49% - 29.49% (Variable)

660 - 850

  • Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $5,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening
  • Admirals Club® membership for you and access for up to two guests or immediate family members traveling with you
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
  • Earn 1 Loyalty Point for every 1 eligible AAdvantage® mile earned from purchases
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 8 companions traveling with you on the same reservation
First year card value: $237.80

  • Admirals Club access
  • Free checked bag for cardholder and up to eight companions on domestic American Airlines flights
  • Group 4 Priority boarding for cardholder and up to eight companions
  • Priority check-in and screening (where available) for cardholder and up to eight companions
  • 25% savings on in-flight food and beverage purchases
  • Build Loyalty Points to earn AAdvantage status
  • Get free Admirals Club membership worth up to $650
  • Great perks including free checked bags, priority boarding and more
  • $450 annual fee required each year
  • Low rewards rate on non-bonus spending

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® is the best American Airlines credit card for the American Airlines frequent flyer who wants lounge access and premium airline perks. The card comes with a hefty $450 annual fee, but it also grants cardholders access to the Admirals Club (up to a $650 value). Admirals Club gives you access to airport lounges with complimentary snacks, drinks, shower suites and business centers.

Best American Airlines credit card for business (co-branded)

CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard®

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Not available on ValuePenguin

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

$99, waived for first 12 months

20.49% - 29.49% variable based on your creditworthiness

720 - 850

  • 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
First year card value: $862.98

  • Companion certificate good for a guest for $99 (plus taxes and fees) each year you spend $30,000 on the card
  • Free checked bag for cardholder and up to four companions on domestic American Airlines flights
  • Preferred boarding
  • 25% discount on in-flight food and beverage purchases
  • 25% discount on in-flight Wi-Fi
  • Lets you earn Loyalty Points toward AAdvantage status
  • Great bonus offer can be earned with eligible business spending
  • Annual fee of $99, waived for first 12 months
  • Regular purchases only accrue 1 mile per $1 spent
  • No lounge access for business travelers

The CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® is the best American Airlines credit card for business owners that frequently travel with the airline. That's because it awards miles for a wide variety of purchases, making it a highly versatile card for any business. Another lucrative perk: You can get authorized user cards for your employees, and their purchases will earn you miles, too.

General travel cards for American Airlines flyers

If airline perks aren't important to you and you're simply looking to earn miles for flying, or you prefer to fly on a variety of airlines, a general travel credit card may be the best way to go. The following cards offer generous rewards and even a few cushy perks, like lounge access.

Best for lounge access

The Platinum Card® from American Express

See Rates & Fees. Terms Apply. On American Express' Secure Website

Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

$695

See Pay Over Time APR

660 - 850

  • Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Apply and select your preferred metal Card design: classic Platinum Card®, Platinum x Kehinde Wiley, or Platinum x Julie Mehretu.
  • Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year and earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.
  • Get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings, which requires a minimum two-night stay, through American Express Travel when you pay with your Platinum Card®.
  • $240 Digital Entertainment Credit: Get up to $20 back each month on eligible purchases made with your Platinum Card® on one or more of the following: Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. Enrollment required.
  • $155 Walmart+ Credit: Cover the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card. Cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax. Plus Ups are excluded.
  • American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. There are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit: Get up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one select qualifying airline.
  • $200 Uber Cash: Enjoy Uber VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status is available to Basic Card Member only.
  • Get up to $300 back per calendar year on the Equinox+ digital fitness app, or eligible Equinox club memberships when you pay with your Platinum Card. Enrollment required. Learn more.
  • Breeze through security with CLEAR® lanes available at 100+ airports, stadiums, and entertainment venues and get up to $189 back per calendar year on your membership when you use your Card. Learn more.
  • $695 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
First year card value: $1,306.93

American Express Membership Rewards points are especially valuable since they can be transferred to partners like Air France / Flying Blue, Delta SkyMiles, or Singapore Airlines Krisflyer. When transferring American Express points to a partner for premium travel redemptions, these points can be worth 2.2 cents each or more.

  • Earns transferable points you can use for all sorts of travel
  • Large welcome offer and great earning rate on eligible travel
  • Luxury travel benefits — airport lounge access, hotel elite status and more
  • $695 annual fee is the highest among all premium travel cards
  • Low earning rate outside of travel purchases

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here

If you want a premium travel card that offers perks that extend well beyond flights with American, The Platinum Card® from American Express is worth considering. While a $695 annual fee applies, having transferable points means you can fly with whatever airline is most convenient, whether that's American or not. You also get elite perks like Priority Pass™ Select airport lounge access (enrollment required), as well as access to Amex Centurion lounges and Delta Sky Clubs when you fly with Delta. Annual credits for Fine Hotels + Resorts bookings, airline incidentals, digital entertainment*, Walmart+ membership* and more also add to this card's overall value.

*Enrollment required

Best American Airlines credit card for travel credits: Chase Sapphire Reserve®

Chase Sapphire Reserve®

On Chase's Secure Website

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®

$550

21.24% - 28.24% Variable

720 - 850

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $900 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year.
  • Earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $900 toward travel
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Access to 1,300+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority PassTM Select and up to $100 application fee credit every four years for Global Entry, NEXUS, or TSA PreCheck®
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more
First year card value: $1,475.49

Chase Ultimate Rewards® points can also be transferred to a range of travel partners including Southwest Rapid Rewards, United MileagePlus, World of Hyatt and more. You can even transfer to American Airlines oneworld partners such as British Airways and Iberia Plus, or you can book flights with any airline through the Chase portal.

  • Earns valuable and flexible Chase Membership Rewards® points
  • Comes with $300 annual travel credit, airport lounge access and other perks
  • Points worth 50% more when redeemed through Chase Travel
  • $550 annual fee
  • $75 authorized user fee

If you're flexible with which airline you fly and you want a handful of travel perks that apply regardless, the Chase Sapphire Reserve® may be the best way to go. This card earns flexible points that transfer to major frequent flyer and hotel loyalty programs. You can also get 50% more value for your points when you use them to book travel (including American Airlines flights) through the Chase portal. While a $550 annual fee applies, the easy-to-use $300 annual travel credit, fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership and included airport lounge access make the fee well worth it.

Best American Airlines credit card for travel insurance: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

On Chase's Secure Website

Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

$95

20.24% - 27.24% Variable

720 - 850

 

  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Enjoy benefits such as a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards Hotel Credit, 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3x on dining and 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get complimentary access to DashPass which unlocks $0 delivery fees and lower service fees for a minimum of one year when you activate by December 31, 2024.
First year card value: $1,875

This card has the same Chase Ultimate Rewards® transfer partners as the Chase Sapphire Reserve®, which means you can turn your points into airline miles or hotel points with a range of popular programs. This includes British Airways and IberiaPlus, both of which are part of the same airline alliance as American Airlines.

  • Earns valuable and flexible Chase Membership Rewards® points
  • Points worth 25% more when redeemed through Chase Travel
  • Comes with coverage for trip cancellations/interruptions, baggage delays and more
  • Lackluster 2x earning for travel purchases among similar products
  • $95 annual fee applies each year

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is another great choice for consumers looking to earn flexible points they can use toward American Airlines purchases or elsewhere. For a moderate annual fee, this card offers a $50 annual Ultimate Rewards® hotel credit, $0 foreign transaction fees and a 10% anniversary points boost to help you fund your next trip. Your points are also worth 25% more when you redeem them for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. Best of all, cardholders receive perks like trip cancellation and interruption insurance, baggage delay coverage, primary rental car coverage, trip delay reimbursement and more.

How to choose an American Airlines credit card

Which benefits are you likely to use?

One of the main reasons to get a co-branded AAdvantage card is to score a range of important airline perks. The more often you fly with American Airlines, the more you can use those benefits and the more valuable the card will be. On the other hand, if you rarely fly with American Airlines, or you are unlikely to use the airline perks, a general travel card is probably the better way to go. Here are the key benefits to consider:

  • First checked bag free — This can save you hundreds of dollars each year if you fly American frequently. Also note that co-branded American AAdvantage cards with this perk let cardholders use it for themselves and a few of their traveling companions on the same itinerary.
  • Preferred/Priority boarding — If you care about being front of the line on your flights, Preferred and Priority boarding can be another good reason to own an AAdvantage card.
  • Lounge access — Admirals Club membership (which comes with the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard®) can make your wait for your next flight much more pleasant, but the benefit only makes sense if you often travel through airports with Admirals Clubs.
  • Global Entry/TSA PreCheck® application fee credit — If you want a fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership, picking up a co-branded AAdvantage card that has it like the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® is a smart move. This kind of benefit with a dollar value attached helps you make up for the annual fees cards with more perks tend to charge.
  • American Airlines companion certificate — A few co-branded American AAdvantage cards also offer a companion certificate you can use alongside your own paid fare with the airline. These companion fares can help you get more value for your airline credit card and are most useful when you fly often with American Airlines already.

Which card has the most valuable sign-up bonus?

You should take a close look at each card’s sign-up bonus, since this can be a quick way to earn an award flight on American Airlines. Some things to consider when evaluating the bonus:

  • How do the value of the miles compare to other card’s bonuses? (Consider the value of their points/miles when redeemed for AAdvantage airfare.)
  • Can you meet the spending threshold?
  • Do you meet the eligibility requirements? (Read the offer terms carefully. You may not qualify if you have owned other AAdvantage cards.)
  • How does the value of the bonus compare to the annual fee? (You might go for a lower annual fee card if you’re strictly interested in earning miles.)

With this in mind, the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® has the most generous sign-up offer among co-branded American Airlines credit cards right now. Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after making $5,000 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.

How much are American Airlines points worth?

By our estimates, AAdvantage miles value around 1 cent per mile. However, the value varies depending on how you use your miles.

You can get much higher values than this with MileSAAver Off Peak awards (when you can find them) while AAnytime awards may offer a lower value than this (because they trade value for flexibility). Also, though you can redeem AAdvantage miles for merchandise and gift cards, you’ll find that you generally get less than 1 cent per mile on these redemptions.

Miles value of an American Airlines flight = Flight cash price (minus taxes and fees) / Number of miles needed for flight

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How many AAdvantage miles do you need for a free flight?

The number of AAdvantage miles required for an award flight varies widely, depending on the type of fare, origin, destination — and whether you’re able to find a deal. Some flights can cost as little as 5,000 miles. On the other hand, international flights in first class can cost hundreds of thousands of miles. Here are some sample fares for different fare types on American Airlines (see the American Airlines miles chart for a full list of awards).

Fare type
Synopsis
MileSAAver Off PeakDiscounted awards during defined off-peak times of the year. 22,500 miles between U.S.-Europe
MileSAAverThe traditional saver award rate. 30,000 miles between U.S.-Europe
AAnytime Level 1The first level of "AAnytime" awards. 47,500 miles between U.S.-Europe
AAnytime Level 2The highest published level of AAnytime awards. 65,000 miles between U.S.-Europe

How to fast track AAdvantage status

Earn Loyalty Points multiple ways

  1. Fly with American Airlines
  2. Make purchases with an AAdvantage® credit card
  3. Earn eligible miles with AAdvantage® partners

Fly with American Airlines and AAdvantage partners

Elevate the rate at which you earn miles per dollar spent by flying with the American Airlines network to accumulate points more quickly. Prioritize earning status tier one, AAdvantage Gold, and work your way up from there.

Status tier
Earning rate?
Increase in earning potential
AAdvantage® Member*Earns 5 miles per dollarNo additional miles earned for membership
Tier 1: AAdvantage Gold®Earns 7 miles per dollar40% bonus
Tier 2: AAdvantage Platinum®Earns 8 miles per dollar60% bonus
Tier 3: AAdvantage Platinum Pro®Earns 9 miles per dollar80% bonus
Tier 4: AAdvantage Executive Platinum®Earns 11 miles per dollar120% bonus

How to maximize American Airlines credit cards

  • Use your card for gas, grocery and American Airlines purchases. You should check the earning rate on the card, but some AAdvantage cards earn 2X miles on these purchases — a great way to stack up AAdvantage miles on major expenses.
  • Use your card when you fly domestically on American Airlines to save on luggage (if waives the luggage fee). Since the annual fee AAdvantage cards offers free checked luggage for up to four people on your itinerary, this can save you $100 or more each way. (This is a key benefit of the cards!) Note, the benefit doesn’t apply to international flights, so you might use another card when traveling overseas.
  • Link your card to the AAdvantage dining program to earn bonus miles at some restaurants. You can earn an additional 1x to 5x miles on your purchases.
  • Use your card for all in-flight purchases on American Airlines. If you opt to purchase an in-flight cocktail, be sure to reach for your co-branded AAdvantage card — you’ll score a huge 25% savings.
  • Add the American Airlines shopping button to your web browser. You’ll earn extra AAdvantage miles on top of your card rewards for online purchases at participating merchants through American Airlines’ shopping portal.

American Airlines co-branded credit card vs. flexible rewards credit card

Co-branded American Airlines cards offer great airline perks that can be very valuable for loyal American Airlines flyers. However, if you're just looking to earn miles for free flights, a flexible rewards card like the Chase Sapphire Reserve® may be the way to go.

In fact, you could pick up a card that earns flexible points in the Chase Ultimate Rewards®, Amex Membership Rewards or Capital One Travel program and turn your rewards into a flight with American or other airlines.

As an example, all three of these programs let you transfer points to the British Airways Executive Club program at a 1:1 ratio. From there, you can use your newfound "avios" to book one-way domestic flights on partner American for as little as 7,500 avios one-way for short haul flights.

Frequently asked questions

American AAdvantage miles expire if you don't earn or burn them at least once every 24 months. That said, choosing one of the American Airlines credit card offers on this page and using it for spending will restart the clock and keep your miles valid for another two years.

The best American Airlines AAdvantage credit card for you is the one that comes with the perks and rewards you are most likely to use. That said, we named the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® as our top pick due to its array of benefits and great earning rate for a reasonable annual fee.

If you're looking for an American Airlines credit card with no annual fee, the American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card is the only option available. This card comes with $0 annual fee required, yet you'll get a lower welcome offer and earning rate as a result.

American Airlines credit cards do not disclose a specific minimum credit score requirement. However, rewards and travel credit cards are typically geared to individuals with good or excellent credit.

You can use your American Airlines points to book travel for yourself or for others. This makes it easy to use your rewards to book flights for your entire family, or to give someone an award flight as a gift.

All co-branded American Airlines credit cards offer a free checked bag benefit with the exception of the American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp℠ Card.

The American Airlines AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard® offers a few travel insurance perks including trip cancellation and interruption coverage, baggage delay insurance and travel accident insurance.

Methodology

To make choosing the right card easier, we've looked at credit cards reviewed on ValuePenguin as well as cards on major issuer sites to compile a list of the best rewards credit cards available right now. Our recommendations are based on the additional value you can earn with the cards — including the rewards value, cost of ownership and value of benefits such as travel and purchase protections, lounge membership and airline companion passes. Our choices are not influenced by our advertisers. Learn more on how we calculate rewards.

The information related to AAdvantage® Aviator® Red World Elite Mastercard®, Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®, and CitiBusiness®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® Mastercard® has been independently collected by ValuePenguin and have not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here

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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).