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American Airlines has change its credit card offerings since this article was published, so it is out of date. The airline's entry-level card is the . See our for that card.
American Airlines and Citi have increased marketing recently for the lightly touted . It’s among the least expensive versions of the airline card and comes with less robust benefits than its pricier siblings.
Seemingly aimed at infrequent flyers, the big attraction is an easy-to-get sign-up bonus: .
That’s typically enough miles for a free domestic flight. You also get access to what American calls reduced mileage awards, discounted award seats on select routes that could mean spending 5,000 fewer miles on a roundtrip fare.
Compared with other American Airlines cards, the costs less: . The airline's premier card with airport lounge access is the , with an annual fee of .
To crunch the numbers on the 's annual fee, try our calculator:
Positives mostly stop there for the .
Notably, the card does not include free checked bags. That’s a key perk with airline cards that can quickly compensate for an annual fee. It also doesn’t come with early boarding privileges. So if you carry a bag onto a crowded flight, you might have trouble finding overhead bin space. The airline’s other cards include those perks.
earns 1 mile per dollar spent on the card, with no accelerated earning for purchases at American Airlines. That means spending more than $2,000 per month on the card to earn 25,000 miles, enough to get a typical free domestic flight per year. The card also charges a fee for foreign transactions, 3% of the amount charged. Many travel cards carry no foreign transaction fee.
But the card offers minor benefits that some flyers may find appealing. They include:
Citi says you cannot get the sign-up bonus if you opened or closed an American Airlines consumer card in the past 24 months.
To find out more out how this card stacks up against other competitors, browse our list of .
After earning the sign-up bonus, the doesn’t distinguish itself for use in everyday credit card spending. Frequent travelers might reap more value from a general travel card. See NerdWallet's .