Just in time for next year’s American Airlines AAdvantage devaluation, Barclays is offering a very generous spending bonus to targeted AAdvantage Aviator MasterCard cardholders. Members who spend $500 per month in January, February, and March 2015 will each 15,000 bonus miles. That’s in addition to the 1,500 AAdvantage miles earned from the card at a rate of 1 mile per $1 spent. Overall, you’re looking at earning 16,5000 AAdvantage miles for putting a mere $1,500 on your AAdvantage Aviator MasterCard over three months. That means between January 1 – March 31, 2016 Barclays AAdvantage cardholders will be earning a massive 11 miles per $1 spent!
There’s no need to register if you got this email – you’re all set to start earning this bonus, starting in January. The 15,000 bonus miles will post 4-6 weeks after the end of the promotion, so I’d hold onto the email until your miles have finally posted, just in case there are any issues. If you did not receive this email, I would recommend reaching out to Barclays to see if they’ll extend it to you.
The terms specify that the following purchases will not earn miles: “Money orders, traveler’s checks, foreign currency, lottery tickets, gambling chips, wire transfers, person-to-person money transfers or using the account to obtain a cash advance.” This means Visa gift card purchases aren’t off the table, like they are with the 10% rebate on the Discover card/Apple Pay deal. Even without Visa gift cards, most people can easily meet the $500 monthly spending requirement by charging household expenses to the card.
Unfortunately, the timing of this promotion means your 15,000 bonus miles will post well after the AAdvantage devaluation goes into effect, so they won’t go as far as they do now. For example, those 40,000 mile off-peak awards to Europe will cost you 45,000 miles roundtrip. Redeeming a Cathay Pacific business class award from the U.S. to Hong Kong will set you back 75,000 miles instead of 55,000 and first class will cost 110,000 miles instead of 67,5000. However, if you’ve got your sights set on short-haul domestic flights or a trip to Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean or the Middle East/India, you’ll be glad to know those awards will be cheaper after March 22, 2016:
- The addition of short haul flights within the U.S. and Canada under 500 miles.
- Off-peak economy class awards to Central America decreasing from 15,000 to 12,500 miles one-way..
- Saver economy class awards to Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean decreasing from 17,500 miles to 15,000 miles one-way.
- Business class awards to Mexico, Central America, and the Caribbean decreasing from 30,000 to 25,000 miles one-way.
- Economy Class awards to the Middle East/Indian Subcontinent decreasing from 45,000 to 40,000 miles one-way.
This promotion is a nice way to balance out the negative changes coming to the AAdvantage program next year. I do wish the points would post before the changes so we could make better use of them, but I imagine it’s to keep cardholders spending after the devaluation goes into effect.
In addition to this spending bonus, Barclays is also offering 2 AAdvantage miles per $1 spent at grocery stores, movie theaters, and on utility bills (electric, gas, water, television telephone) between January 1 through March 31, 2016. Up to 2,500 bonus miles can be earned through this promotion. Be sure to check your email and activate this offer by February 15, 2016.
Did you get targeted for the 15,000 mile spending bonus from the Barclay AAdvantage Aviator MasterCard?
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