Disclosure: We get a commission for links on the blog. You don’t have to use our links, but we’re very grateful when you do. American Express, Barclaycard, Capital One, Chase, Citibank and US Bank are Million Mile Secrets advertising partners. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or endorsed by our partners. Here’s our Advertiser Disclosure.
Via One Mile at a Time, American Airlines announced you WILL be able to earn elite status more quickly through spending on a co-branded Barclaycard credit card. Like the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Silver card.
That’s good news for folks looking for a (slightly!) easier way to earn elite status with American Airlines, without spending a lot on flights.
I’ll explain the details of the credit card spending requirements to earn elite status with American Airlines.
Earn American Airlines Elite Status With a Credit Card
Earlier this year, American Airlines announced a number of disappointing changes to their loyalty program. Including things like changes to complimentary upgrades, revenue-based earning based on ticket price, and spending requirements to earn elite status.
The good news is, they just announced that they’ll lower the spending requirement for elite status for folks with Barclaycard co-branded American Airlines credit cards!
With American Airlines elite status, you’ll get perks like seat upgrades, free checked bags, and bonus miles.
Spending Requirement to Earn Elite Status
Effective January 1, 2017, you’ll need to spend a certain amount in addition to having a certain number of elite-qualifying miles or elite-qualifying segments to earn elite status.
Here’s how many Elite Qualifying Dollars you have to spend to earn elite status at each level:
- $3,000 for Gold
- $6,000 for Platinum
- $9,000 for Platinum Pro
- $12,000 for Executive Platinum
But with the Barclaycard Aviator American Airlines cards, you can reach these spending thresholds more quickly.
For example, folks with the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Red, Aviator Blue, or Aviator Business card, can earn up to $3,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars by spending $25,000 on qualifying purchases per calendar year. That’s enough for American Airlines Gold status, as long as you meet the elite qualifying miles or segments required.
And folks with the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Silver card can earn up to $6,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars by spending $50,000 on the card per calendar year, enough for American Airlines Platinum status.
You’ll earn $3,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars for the first $25,000 in spending on the card, and another $3,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars after spending $50,000 on the card in a calendar year.
Only the Barclaycard Aviator cards will earn Elite Qualifying Dollars towards elite status, NOT the co-branded American Airlines cards from Citi. And although the Barclaycard American Airlines cards are NOT currently open to new applicants, they’ll be available starting January 2017!
Is It Worth It?
With Delta, the Elite Qualifying Dollar requirements for ANY elite level are waived if you spend $25,000 in a calendar year on an AMEX Delta card, like the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Card from American Express.
And with United Airlines, Silver, Gold, and Platinum elites can get their Elite Qualifying Dollar requirement waived for spending $25,000 within a calendar year on a Chase United Airlines card, like the United MileagePlus Explorer card.
The deal with Delta is better than what American Airlines is offering. Because it’s impossible to waive the Elite Qualifying Dollars requirement for American Airlines’ top 2 elite levels, Platinum Pro and Executive Platinum, through credit card spending.
Although with United Airlines, NONE of your credit card spend will count towards Premier 1K status.
So, depending on which airline you fly the most with, it might not be worth putting extra spending on an American Airlines Barclaycard card, just to earn elite status.
That said, if you fly American Airlines a lot, using one of the Barclaycard American Airlines credit cards can help you earn elite status more quickly. And would definitely be worth it if you want elite status.
For folks who fly a lot with American Airlines and want to earn elite status, being able to use a co-branded American Airlines Barclaycard credit card to earn Elite Qualifying Dollars is good news!
Especially after learning about the disappointing changes coming to the American Airlines loyalty program in 2017.
With a card like the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Red, you’ll be able to earn $3,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars when you spend at least $25,000 on the card in a calendar year. That’s enough for American Airlines Gold status so long as you meet the elite qualifying mile or segment requirement!
And with the Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Silver card, you’ll be able to earn enough Elite Qualifying Dollars for American Airlines Platinum status by spending $50,000 on the card per calendar year.
Will you move spending to a Barclaycard Aviator card to help earn American Airlines elite status?