New Citi/AA airline credit card offers "chip and PIN" plus elite perks
July 20, 2011
By: Joe Taylor Jr.
Travel rewards and perks
The Citi Executive / AAdvantage World Elite MasterCard builds on the 24-year relationship between Citi and American Airlines, while promising extended compatibility with European merchants' point-of-sale terminals. Following a trend among top travel reward credit cards, the new Citi credit card drops foreign transaction fees. The Citi Executive / AAdvantage World Elite MasterCard adds other member perks and incentives, such as:
- Membership and guest privileges in AA's Admirals Club airport lounge network
- Executive concierge services
- Waived baggage fees on one checked bag per flight
- Double AAdvantage miles on AA purchases, plus one mile for every dollar spent elsewhere
- 10,000 bonus AAdvantage miles after $40,000 in annual spending
- No mileage earning cap
The Citi Executive / AAdvantage World Elite MasterCard also includes access to Citi's new "Private Pass" program, offering exclusive events, ticket pre-sales, and VIP experiences for elite cardholders. Private Pass mirrors some of the experience-focused rewards offered by American Express and Discover, leveraging relationships with sports, entertainment, and cultural organizations to connect cardholders to artists and other public figures at private events throughout the year.
Citi joins a handful of American banks offering "chip and PIN" compatible credit cards for its best customers. European merchants have already started phasing out magnetic stripe readers in favor of credit card terminals that read EMV chips and require personal identification numbers.
Adding PINs to credit card transactions has significantly reduced the risk of credit card fraud, especially in parts of Europe where pickpocketing and card "skimming" have become common. American business travelers have reported frustrating experiences trying to use U.S.-issued credit cards outside of major city centers like London, Paris and Rome.
Citi officials told reporters that Citi Executive / AAdvantage World Elite MasterCard cardholders would gain access to EMV-enabled cards by the end of 2011.
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