The end of 2014 is coming upon us quickly – I mean very fast! It seems like it was just April last month and here we are less than two months from the year 2015. With the end of the year comes various tasks for the miles and points collector and this one can potentially get you up to 20,000 AA miles (if you have enough miles in your account already). This comes if you book 100,000 miles in awards this year and 100,000 miles next year to get the 10% rebate each calendar year.
The 10% Rebate With the Citi Platinum AAdvantage Card
– Application Link – Citi Platinum AAdvantage Card – 50,000 miles after spending $3,000 in 3 months – annual fee ($95) waived the first year (I do not receive a commission for this card)
- Your first checked bag is free for you and up to 4 traveling companions†
- Group 1 Boarding3
- 25% savings on eligible in-flight purchases on American Airlines and US Airways flights4
- $100 American Airlines flight discount every cardmembership year5
- Earn 10% of your redeemed AAdvantage® miles back6
- 2 AAdvantage® miles per $1 spent on eligible American Airlines and US Airways purchases7
The Citi Platinum AAdvantage card comes with a very nice perk – get a rebate of 10% of your miles on award bookings each year. And that is each calendar year, not cardmember year. I know many people got in on the incredible 100K Citi Executive AAdvantage offer earlier this year and are sitting on several hundreds of thousands of AA miles right now. If you have the Citi Platinum AAdvantage card, you will earn a 10% rebate of miles on awards booked from your account up to 10,000 miles per year. So, if you book 100,000 miles worth of awards, you will receive a 10,000 mile rebate. Great!
But, if you book your 100,000 miles worth of awards in December and another 100,000 miles worth of awards in January, you will receive a total of 20,000 miles in rebates back to your account (10,000 miles per calendar year). There are some great things about this rebate:
- It is for awards booked out of the account tied to the Citi Platinum AAdvantage card – so it can be awards booked for anyone, not just yourself
- American Airlines has one of the most generous award changing policies around – as long as you don’t change the cities or award type and changes are done outside of 21 days from departure, the changes are free.
- In addition to the change policy, AA does not charge for changes that you make that upgrade your cabin of travel (so, from economy to business or business to first, etc). This can be very helpful if award space opens up before departure in your preferred cabin and you want to use the difference in miles to move to a better cabin. A great way to take advantage of that is to book your awards in a lesser cabin than you desire, wait for the rebate (which posts in days), and then use the miles from the rebate towards your move to a different cabin. For example, I booked JFK-HKG in business on Cathay Pacific. The amount of the one-way was 55,000 miles. Shortly after ticketing that, I received the rebate of 5,500 miles. I then used that rebate (plus an additional 7,000 miles) to upgrade to first class. That is a great method of booking a better cabin if you do not have enough miles to ticket it immediately.
Planning a Strategy
So, what if you are not completely sure about your vacation days next year? If you know that you will be going at some point and that there is a decent amount of award availability on the route you are flying, book the flight this year. You can change the dates later for no fee (as long as it is outside of 21 days from departure). Plus, that triggers the 10% rebate during this calendar year. That is a great way to get 10,000 miles and you do not want to miss out on it!
Another thing is to not worry about using your miles now if you were planning on redeeming them at some later point in the future. If you were to redeem 100,000 miles this year (for travel this year or next year), you would get 10,000 miles back leaving you at a net 90,000 mile usage. It is pretty easy to get the Citi AA cards (that deliver 50,000 miles after meeting the spend) so you could get that 90,000 mile amount back by the end of next year and do the whole thing again!
Definitely do not cancel your Citi Platinum AA card before you take advantage of that rebate! That 10,000 mile rebate (if you spend 100,000 miles) is easily worth at least $170. Book your awards before the annual fee comes due (if it is this year) and watch your account for the miles to post before canceling.
So, start planning you award trip(s) now so you can take advantage of that up to 10,000 mile rebate. I am in the middle of trying to decide which ones to book now and will definitely do the booking before January 1.