How The Citi AAdvantage Card 10% Mileage Refund Works

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The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ MasterCard® has a sign-up bonus of 50,000 AAdvantage miles upon completing minimum spend, with the first year’s annual fee waived. While the sign-up bonus makes the card worth applying for, there’s one other card perk I really value long term.


The main reason I hold onto the Citi AAdvantage Personal Platinum Card is because it offers a 10% refund on redeemed miles, for a maximum refund of up to 10,000 miles per year. Since I redeem at least 100,000 American miles per year, this means I’m getting 10,000 bonus miles per year due to this card, which more than justifies the card’s $95 annual fee. That’s like picking up miles for 0.95 cents each.

In this post I figured I’d answer some of the most common questions I get about this perk:

How quickly do the refunded miles post?

The terms state that the miles will post within 6-8 weeks of an eligible redemption, though in practice they typically post much faster than that, often even same day.


What kind of redemptions are eligible for the refund?

Just about all mileage redemptions make you eligible for the 10% refund. This should include award tickets, upgrades, redeeming miles for Admirals Club memberships, etc.

How does the 10,000 mile limit work?

You’re limited to a refund of up to 10,000 AAdvantage miles per calendar year. The refund occurs based on when you book travel, and not based on when you actually travel. So even if you’re booking a ticket for travel next year, you’d be eligible for the 10% mileage refund for this year.

What happens if you cancel an award ticket after being refunded?

If you book an award ticket, get the 10% refund, and then later cancel the award ticket, the mileage refund will be reversed as well. So there’s not a way to “trick” the system by booking a trip and then later refunding it.

Do you need to use an American credit card to trigger the 10% refund?

Nope. You get the 10% refund regardless of which credit card you use to pay your taxes on an award ticket. It also doesn’t matter who the ticket is for. All that matters is that the AAdvantage miles are redeemed out of the primary cardmember’s account.

Do you need to register to take advantage of the 10% refund?

Nope, it’s automatic. Just make sure you’re redeeming miles out of the primary cardmember’s account.

Does this benefit apply on other Citi AAdvantage cards?

As far as Citi cards go, this benefit only applies on the Citi AAdvantage Personal Platinum Card. It doesn’t apply for the business version of the card, the CitiBusiness® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World MasterCard®, or to the $450 annual fee version of the card, the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard®.

What about with Barclaycard AAdvantage cards?

The AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite MasterCard offers the same benefit as the Citi AAdvantage Personal Platinum Card — you can get a 10% refund on redeemed miles, up to 10,00 miles per year. The catch is that the two benefits aren’t stackable. That means if you have both cards, you’ll still get at most 10,000 refunded miles per year.

Bottom line

My single favorite benefit of the Citi AAdvantage Personal Platinum Card is the 10% annual mileage refund, which I view as an opportunity to pick up miles for 0.95 cents each. The card has a great sign-up bonus of 50,000 AAdvantage miles that makes it worth applying for, though this is a benefit that makes the card a keeper for those who redeem 100,000+ American miles per year.

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