Which Card Should I Keep When American and US Airways Merge?

Mar 22, 2015

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TPG reader Mark tweeted me to ask:

@thepointsguy—”Which credit card should I keep after the US Airways/American merger: the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select World Elite Mastercard or the US Airways Premier World MasterCard? Is it worth keeping both cards for the 10% mileage rebate?” The information for the Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

After the AAdvantage and Dividend Miles programs merge in the near future, you won’t be able to get the 10% mileage rebate on both cards, because that benefit is awarded per AAdvantage account. That being said, you will be able to earn Elite qualifying miles on both cards (provided you hit the spending threshold on each one), so they could be worth hanging onto for that purpose alone.

Its not the worst idea to just keep both cards and try to earn elite qualifying miles on each. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.
It’s not the worst idea to just keep both cards and try to earn elite qualifying miles on each. Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

If you’re certain you only want to keep one account open, there are a few factors to consider:

1. Which account you’ve had the longest — You might prefer to cancel an account you’ve had for just one year, rather than one you’ve had for 15 years.

2. Annual Fee — The Citi AAdvantage card is a little more expensive at $99, but the fee is waived for the first year. The US Airways card has an $89 annual fee that is not waived for the first year.

3. Which card gives you better customer service — I love Barclaycard customer service, however I have no qualms with Citi either.

4. What other products the bank offers — Sometimes banks will only let you have one or two cards. Barclaycard is often stingy about letting you have numerous cards, whereas Citi is more generous. If you’re interested in other cards from Citi or Barclaycard, this may be something to consider.

5. New Technology — Barclaycard is on the forefront of chip and pin technology, and the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite Mastercard already has this option. If this is important to you, I expect it will be coming soon to the other cards from Barclaycard.

Of course, if you’re grandfathered into any kind of anniversary bonus, it’s probably a good idea to keep that card so you can continue to get future bonuses.

While these cards are similar, it’s worth keeping both if you can spend enough to earn the bonus Elite qualifying miles on each.

If you have any other questions, please tweet me @thepointsguy, message me on Facebook, or send me an email at info@thepointsguy.com.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the 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.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.