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For a limited time, the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard® offers 75,000 bonus American Airlines miles after spending $7,500 in the first three months. That means you’ll have 82,500 American Airlines miles after meeting the spending requirement. I’ll give you six ways to spend those miles on ultra-luxurious First Class redemptions you could never afford with cash.
When I got the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard® last year, the lounge access was a nice perk, but I got it for the huge miles. American Airlines miles are currently the most valuable airline miles for ultra-luxury awards because Delta and United devalued their award charts in 2014, but American’s has been the same for several years. For example, a roundtrip in First Class to Southeast Asia costs:
- 135,000 American Airlines miles
- 260,000 United miles on United partners
- Delta miles cannot book First Class (160,000 Delta miles in Business Class)
That means you and a companion can travel to Bali or Bangkok in First Class with almost the same number of American Airlines miles (270,000) as one person using United miles would need (260,000).
What are six great ways to use the 82,500 American Airlines miles you’d have after meeting the minimum spending requirement on the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard® for ultra-luxurious First Class?
1. Cathay Pacific First Class for 67,500 miles
You can book Cathay Pacific First Class one way for 67,500 American Airlines miles between the United States and Southeast Asia.
Cathay Pacific First Class is a throne…
…that turns into a large and comfortable bed.
Cathay Pacific First Class comes with some of the best food, fanciest wines and liquors, and most attentive service in the sky.
And best of all, award space is widely available from the United States to Hong Kong and from there to the rest of Asia.
2. Etihad First Class for 40,000 miles
Etihad First Class costs only 40,000 American Airlines miles between Europe and the Middle East, Indian Subcontinent, or Maldives. From the United States to those destinations is 90,000 miles.
Etihad First Class on its newest A380 has a couch that seats several people and a separate bed.
Etihad’s fully enclosed suites are the most spacious in the sky, and there’s a shower onboard that you can use in flight.
Award space is widely available on the A380 between London and Abu Dhabi and Sydney and Abu Dhabi. First Class award space between the United States and the Middle East and Indian Subcontinent on Etihad’s A380 goes in and out. I booked Abu Dhabi to New York for January 2016.
3. Qantas First Class for 40,000 miles
Qantas First Class costs only 40,000 American Airlines miles between London and Dubai. From the United States to Australia, the cost is only 72,500 miles on flights of over 14 hours!
Qantas First Class features an open suite that converts into a bed…
…or a table for two.
Qantas First Class is widely available between London and Dubai, Dubai and Sydney, and London and Sydney for low mileage prices. It is not widely available between the United States and Australia, but there is some availability if you can plan your trip one year in advance.
4. Malaysia Airlines First Class for 70,000 miles
Malaysia Airlines First Class on its A380 costs 70,000 miles between Kuala Lumpur and London.
Malaysia Airlines is a very large and comfortable seat that converts into an extremely long and wide bed.
The all-you-can-eat satay cart was the best food I’ve ever had in the sky.
And the attentive service–that included kneeling down to seat level for interactions–was way better than you’d ever get from a US-based airline.
5. Japan Airlines First Class for 62,500 miles
Japan Airlines First Class is among the best in the world.
Japan Airlines First Class between the United States and Japan costs 62,500 American Airlines miles one way.
6. British Airways First Class for 40,000 miles
British Airways First Class on the A380 from London to South Africa is only 50,000 miles. Between the United States and Europe, the price is only 62,500 miles. The A380 flies to Los Angeles and Washington-Dulles.
British Airways First Class is a partially enclosed seat that turns into a fully flat bed.
There are fuel surcharges when you use American Airlines miles to book British Airways–the only fuel surcharges for any bookings in this post–but if the schedule is convenient, they may be worth paying. British Airways First Class is moderately available between the United States and Europe and between London and the rest of the world.
For a limited time, the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard® offers 75,000 bonus American Airlines miles after spending $7,500 in the first three months. That means you’ll have 82,500 American Airlines miles after meeting the spending requirement. You can use those miles for ultra-luxurious First Class awards, starting at 40,000 miles one way.
Application Link: Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ MasterCard®
Earn 50,000 bonus points (worth $800 in American Airlines flights) after spending $3,000 in the first three months on the Citi Prestige® Card. Plus get an additional $500 in free airfare on any airline in the first 12 months plus free airport lounge access worldwide for only a $450 annual fee. Why I got the card.