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US Airways and American made it official this morning with their merger announcement, and now this afternoon the longstanding best US Airways card offer out there is already kaput? Coincidence? Maybe. Technically they may have just “closed the loophole” since those who were not top tier elites with US Airways were using the offer even though it wasn’t meant for them (and by them, I also mean me).
I recently wrote about why I would not wait to start getting both the personal and business versions of the American Airlines Citi and US Airways Barclay’s cards, and I hope a few of you did just that before the US Airways “Chairman’s” offer was pulled. We don’t know what the rewards credit card situation will look like for the “new” American Airlines, but we do know it won’t consist of the four separate cards we have available right now. If history plays out as usual, it will probably take quite a while for the US Airways cards to go away, but anything is possible. It is also possible that the issuing bank will change before the card goes away (such as with AirTran moving from Barclay’s to Chase).
Bottom line, now that the merger has been officially announced, I want to re-emphasize that it doesn’t make sense to wait to get any of the cards just for the sake of waiting. If now isn’t a good time for you to apply, then don’t worry too much about it, but otherwise I wouldn’t delay just for the heck of it…especially since the US Airways card has historically been “churnable”, so you may still be able to have a couple attempts at it before it does its final disappearing act.
In case you don’t want to flip back to the previous blog post, here are the relevant cards for US Airways and American Airlines and their associated current best offers (sadly without the now-defunct Chairman’s offer from US Airways):
Citi AAdvantage Business or Personal Cards: 50,000 miles after spending $3,000 in four months + $150 statement credit with first eligible AA purchase + two AAdmiral’s Club Passes (note that the offer for these cards is listed as having expired a year ago, but this FT thread still reports many success stories).
The US Airways Premier World MasterCard: 30,000 miles after first purchase (up to 40,000 with balance transfer) + two annual $99 companion tickets + 5,000 miles off award redemptions on US Airways flights with $89 annual fee. Do keep in mind that some are approved for a lesser card with a lesser bonus.
US Airways BusinessCard Offer: 25,000 miles after first purchase with $79 annual fee.
Update: After the post was written a stealthy Flyertalker found a working US Airways MC link for 35K miles with the annual fee waived. This is the better offer while it lasts.
While we are talking about the merger, I also recommend pulling the trigger on fancier award bookings you have in mind using American or US Airways miles. Many thought that US Airways wouldn’t have any real changes to their award chart right now because of the pending merger, but they eliminated one of the best awards in the industry without warning last week (the off-peak business class award to Europe for as low as 55K round trip if you have the US Airways card). So, that may mean that no more changes are imminent, but it may also mean we don’t know what is going on or which “play book” they are following.
On a brighter note, I want to mention that I would fully support a “new” American/US Airways Grand Slam promo to celebrate the announced merger! Apple pie, American flags painted on the airplane tails, and a Grand Slam promo….makes sense to me. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that the “new” American agrees.
Disclosure: I do receive a commission if you are approved for a credit card using one of my affiliate links. For those curious, the AA links are not mine as my affiliate offers are not as good as those links. The US Airways personal card is my link. As always, thanks for your support!