The Barclaycard AAdvantage Aviator Red World Elite MasterCard comes with 60,000 American Airlines miles, and you don’t even have to spend a large amount of money to earn the bonus. In fact, you hardly have to spend anything–only one purchase is required, along with the payment of the $95 annual fee–to trigger the 60k bonus. Little did you know Barclaycard also issues a business version of this card! It comes with 40,000 American Airlines miles after one purchase and paying the $95 annual fee. 40,000 AAdvantage miles is enough to fly anywhere in the world–that’s right, to ANY region–at least one way in economy.

Prefer to travel in style? The bonus is also an easy way to boost your balance for that premium cabin redemption you’ve been eyeing. Japan Airlines First Class to Tokyo, anyone?

Quick Facts

  • Sign Up Bonus: 40,000 American Airlines miles after your first purchase
  • Category Bonus: 2 American Airlines miles for every dollar spent on American Airlines purchases, as well as 2 American Airlines miles for every dollar spent at eligible office supply, telecom and car rental merchants
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines flights for you and four others on the same reservation
  • Preferred Boarding for you and up to four travel companions on your reservation when flying American Airlines
  • 25% off of in-flight food, beverages, and headsets purchased on the card
  • 10% rebate of redeemed American Airlines miles (maximum of 10,000 miles returned each calendar year)
  • $99 Companion Certificate each year (after cardmember anniversary) that you spend $30k on the card
  • $3,000 Elite Qualifying Dollars each calendar year that you spend $25,000 on your card
  • Access to American Airlines’s Reduced Mileage Awards
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Annual fee: $95, not waived the first year

The benefits of this card are very similar to those of the personal version. You can read a full breakdown of those benefits here.

If you’re trying to fly under 5/24 for the purpose of applying for Chase credit cards, then you might not want to apply for this card if you’re extremely risk averse. While most business cards don’t show up on your personal credit report, there is talk on the internet that business cards from Barclaycard sometimes do. That being said, I’ve only seen one data point that says a Barclays business card was actually reported as a new account. The rest of the data points I’ve seen are that Barclays performs a hard credit pull on your Transunion personal credit report, but not that it actually shows up as a new account.

Getting Real About AAdvantage

American Airlines has a nasty reputation for lack of SAAver Level award space on American Airlines, and for good reason. Beware that you might not find tons of options on the exact dates you want to travel when redeeming AAdvantage miles on American Airlines flights, especially domestically.

That doesn’t, however, mean they’re useless. American has tons of partners you can redeem their miles on–anyone in the oneworld alliance–and even valuable non-allied partners like Etihad (although do note that booking Etihad flights touching the United States with AA miles has proven difficult lately).

I myself have a healthy balance of American Airlines miles–I do actually put my money where my mouth is–and find them useful for travel between the United States and South America, as well as occasionally within South America on LATAM flights.

Whenever American Airlines Business Class award space opens up to popular destinations like Europe we try to cover it as quickly as possible here on the blog, so keep an eye out for notice.

What You Can Do with the 40k Sign Up Bonus

  • Fly Qatar in economy one way to or from Windhoek (Namibia) for 35,000 miles + taxes only.
A photo I took of the Sossusvlei Salt and Clay Pan in the Namib Desert of Namibia: photo credit Sarah Page Maxwell
A photo I took of the Sossusvlei Salt and Clay Pan in the Namib Desert of Namibia
  • Get another 5,000 miles and fly roundtrip to Europe in American Airlines economy during the off season (January 10 – March 14 as well as November 1 – December 14)  for 45,000 miles + taxes only.
  • Fly to Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Colombia or Manaus, Brazil roundtrip in economy on American Airlines or any oneworld carrier for 40,000 miles + taxes only.
  • Fly anywhere in the world in economy at least one way…

What You Can Do with the 60k Bonus Miles from the Personal Card

  • Fly one way to or from Europe in American Airlines Business Class for 57,500 miles + taxes only (if you redeem on British Airways you’ll incur high fuel surcharges, stick to AA)
  • Fly one way to or from Southern South America (Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Paraguay) for 57,500 miles + taxes only
  • Fly one way to or from Asia 1 in Japan Airlines Business Class (Japan, South Korea) for 60,000 miles + taxes only
  • Fly roundtrip in American Airlines or LATAM Business Class for 60,000 + taxes only
  • There are many sweet spots awards that don’t touch the United States on American’s chart flying premium partner products like Etihad, JAL, Qatar, Cathay Pacific and more… read Sweet Spots on New Devalued American Airlines Award Chart to learn more.

What You Can Do with the 100k Bonus Miles from the Personal & Business Card

  • Fly one way to or from Southeast Asia in Business Class on Cathay Pacific for 80,000 miles + taxes only
  • Fly one way or from Southeast Asia in First Class on Cathay Pacific for 110,000 miles + taxes only (so you need a few more thousand, but you’d be close!)

    Cathay Pacific First Class
    Cathay Pacific First Class
  • Fly one way between London and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia Airlines First Class for 90,000 miles + taxes only.

All-you-can-eat satay cart in Malaysian Airlines First Class

Need help spending your American Airlines miles? Consult our Award Booking Service.

Bottom Line

I value American Airlines miles at 1.5 cents, which makes a 40k bonus worth $600. All you need to do to unlock the bonus is make one purchase on the card, no minimum spending requirement required, and pay the first year’s $95 annual fee. That is a minimal amount of effort for a pretty large return.

It’s never wise to collect miles you don’t have a plan for since all miles depreciate over time. But if you have a trip in mind, the bonus from the AAdvantage Barclaycard Business card (as well as the personal version of the card) is super easy to earn and burn. If you want more American miles fast and also value American elite status/lounge access, the Citi / AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard is offering 50,000 American Airlines miles for spending $5,000 within three months of opening the card.

Credit card links have been removed from posts and added to the menu bar at the top of every page of MileValue under the heading Top Travel Credit Cards. We do get commissions when you sign up for some cards, but not the AAdvantage Aviator cards. We just want you to be aware of the best deals.

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