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Back in January of this year I wrote about the AAdvantage World Elite Mastercard as it was offering 100,000 bonus points after meeting the $10,000 spend requirement within the first three months. I applied for this card at the beginning of February, although the offer is still available as of today.
While this card comes with a hefty annual fee of $450 (which is not waived the first year!), one of the perks is that you’ll earn up to $200 in statement purchases – earn $1 in statement credits for each $1 spend on purchases within the first 12 months. So really, spend $200, get a $200 statement credit.
While there was no indication that the $200 statement credits were only valid for American Airlines purchases, some were wondering if that would ultimately be the case. The terms only state: “Eligible purchases excluded returned goods and services, cash advances, convenience checks, transferred balances, credits, fees and interest charges. Statement credits will appear on the monthly billing statement from Citi®.”
Well, I am glad to report that the $200 statement credits really are valid on ANY purchase (as of today). As you can see from my account summary below on received the $200 statement credit on 3/12/14. And my only purchases on the card were two CVS purchases, a restaurant, and another purchase that I have no idea. No American Airline purchases. I haven’t even made an American Airlines reservation or stepped foot on an American plane since applying for this card.
Since spending $200 on a credit card is beyond easy, I personally think of the annual fee to cost $250 instead of $450. While $250 is still expensive for an annual fee, you do earn 100,000 miles upon meeting the minimum spend requirements and gain Admirals Club membership. Remember though, the $200 statement credit is a one time only benefit, so I personally will probably not keep the card once next years annual fee hits.
100,000 miles can get you the following, for example:
- 4 roundtrip domestic economy class flights
- 1 business class seat to Europe
- 2 economy class seats to Europe during their off-peak award redemption and 20,000 miles left over
- 2 roundtrip economy class tickets to Hawaii
For me, I think 100,000 miles is absolutely worth $250. This is like buying miles for .25 cents per mile – a cost that is very favorable!
Disclosure: For those interested, this card is NOT an affiliate link. A great offer though for those interested!