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It’s the last day of 2014, which means it’s also your last opportunity to make use of credit card benefits that recycle at the start of the new calendar year. There are several cards that offer statement credits for airline incidentals, but whatever credit you haven’t used will disappear once 2015 arrives.

Use your annual credit card airline statement credits before they reset! Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

The annual $200 airline fee credit is one of my favorite perks of the Platinum Card from American Express and The Business Platinum Card from American Express OPEN. Every year you get to select a different airline of your choice, and throughout the year you can get a rebate of up to $200 for incidentals like baggage fees or in-flight purchases. Since this benefit is based on the calendar year, you can generally use it twice in your first year as a cardholder. If you haven’t received your credit yet in 2014, you could theoretically use it today, and then use your 2015 credit tomorrow on New Year’s Day for a total of $400 in statement credits.

If you won’t be traveling tomorrow and are unlikely to be paying for any airline incidentals, don’t worry. While airline gift cards are officially ineligible, anecdotal evidence (including my own experience) shows that you can in fact receive a statement credit for gift card purchases. Remember, the credit must be redeemed entirely on one airline, so if you’ve used a portion of it already, the remainder will have to also be on that same carrier.

Several other credit cards offer similar credits, including:

  • Citi Prestige: $250 annual air travel credit, which can be used on multiple airlines or entirely on one carrier, and can be redeemed for airfare as well as in-flight purchases and other incidentals.
  • Ritz-Carlton Rewards Credit Card: $300 annual fee credit, which can be used to cover charges on any airline, as well as Global Entry applications. This credit is not automatic, and you have to call Chase within 4 billing cycles to request it.
  • Citi Expedia+ Voyager from Citi: $100 Annual Air Travel Fee Statement Credit can be used toward airline incidentals or for either the Global Entry or the TSA Pre √® application fee

Today is also the last day to earn annual spending bonuses like the Travel Together ticket on the British Airways Visa Signature Card, and the last day to bank qualifying miles, segments, and dollars toward your 2015 elite status. If you’re still a bit short, check out this post for Delta/United and this one for American/US Airways for last minute ideas on how to qualify.

Travel safe and enjoy the end of 2014; I look forward to sharing my award travel stories and hearing yours in the new year!

The Platinum Card® from American Express

While this premium card has one of the highest annual fees on the market, it has several valuable perks that could make it worthwhile, depending on your travel patterns. These include a $200 annual airline rebate, lounge access, free Hilton Gold status and free Starwood Preferred Guest Gold status.

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  • Earn 40,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • 5X points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 a year for baggage fees and more at one airline. Terms Apply.
  • As a Platinum Card Member, you can enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations worldwide. Terms Apply.
  • Enroll to enjoy the benefits of complimentary Hilton HHonors™ Gold Status with your Platinum Card.®
  • No interest charges because you pay your balance in full each month.
  • Terms and Conditions apply.
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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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