Mastercard AAdvantage Aviator World Elite Business Card Review

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Main advantages

This card offers a number of potentially valuable benefits, but only if you fly American Airlines regularly.

Card purchases earn up to 2x the AAdvantage miles per dollar

The Mastercard® AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business card allows you to earn American Airlines frequent flyer miles on your purchases. You’ll even get bonus miles on a range of daily business expenses.

The card earns 1x AAdvantage mile per dollar on purchases and earns bonus rewards in the following categories:

  • 2x miles per $1 on qualifying American Airlines purchases
  • 2x miles for $1 on select telecom services
  • 2x miles for $1 on office supplies
  • 2x miles for $1 on car rentals

Bonus categories can be quite lucrative for a variety of business types. American Airlines reward flights start as low as 12,500 miles.

Sign-up bonus

New cardholders can earn 80,000 bonus miles and $95 statement credit. The requirement to qualify is to spend $2,000 on purchases within the first 90 days. This is arguably a rich signup bonus for the annual fee.

Earn loyalty points towards elite status

American Airlines launched a new program to achieve elite status in early 2022. You can achieve elite status by earning frequent flyer points. The AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business Mastercard® will earn one loyalty point per base dollar spent on card purchases. Bonus miles earned will not be equivalent to bonus frequent flyer points.

To be clear, you earn loyalty points per dollar spent with your card, not miles earned. For example, if you spend $500 on a purchase at American Airlines, you will only get 500 loyalty points, even if you earn 1,000 AAdvantage miles. Gold Elite status starts at 30,000 loyalty points.

Get a free checked bag on domestic flights

AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business Mastercard® cardholders get their first checked bag free on domestic flights operated by American Airlines. This benefit also extends to up to four travel companions on the same reservations. Considering checked baggage fees start at $30 each – one way – that can add up to a decent savings if you can max it out.

It’s important to note that free checked baggage only applies to domestic flights, so it won’t help you if you’re traveling on an American Airlines international flight for business. And if you’re flying business class or first class, you usually get one checked bag for free anyway, so it’s really only useful for economy flights.

Preferential boarding on American Airlines flights

Another benefit of the AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business Mastercard® is preferred boarding status for you and up to four companions on the same reservation. This benefit allows you to board in groups of 5, for which you would otherwise need a Main Cabin Extra ticket.

You’ll get the most out of this benefit if you normally buy Basic Economy tickets. Preferential boarding is useful if you have carry-on baggage that you need to store in the overhead bins, as you are more likely to find space in the bins the further you are in the boarding queue .

No foreign transaction fees

Any half-decent travel card should waive foreign transaction fees, and the AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business Mastercard® does just that. Foreign transaction fees are additional card fees added to purchases made in a foreign currency – anything that is not in US dollars – or that goes through a foreign bank. A card without these fees is essential for anyone traveling abroad or making purchases from foreign suppliers.

Earn 5% bonus AAdvantage miles every year

Purchases you make with your AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business Mastercard® can pay off not once, but twice. Cardholders receive 5% bonus AAdvantage® miles each year on their account anniversary. Thus, you will get a bonus equal to 5% of all the miles you have earned with your credit card during the previous account year. For example, if you earned 10,000 miles with your card the previous year, you will get 500 bonus miles after your account anniversary.

25% savings on inflight food and beverage purchases

All airline food jokes aside, this perk can be invaluable to anyone on long flights in economy class. You’ll get 25% off food and beverage purchases on American Airlines domestic flights when you pay with your AAdvantage card.

The discount will not apply to international flights. This also does not apply to other purchases, such as internet or in-flight entertainment. Also, the discount is not deducted when you make your purchase. Instead, it will be applied as a credit to your card account and may take six to eight weeks to appear.

Annual companion certificate for spending $30,000

Business owners who spend a lot on their AAdvantage® Aviator® World Elite Business Mastercard® can get a little something extra: an annual companion certificate. If you spend at least $30,000 on your card in a year — and keep your account open at least 45 days after your anniversary date — you’ll earn a companion certificate.

These certificates can be used to book a return domestic economy class ticket for a guest for only $99 plus taxes and fees. (Taxes and fees generally range between $21.60 and $43.20.) You will need to purchase your own ticket on the same reservation to use the companion certificate.

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