Many of us are now carrying the Citi Executive® / AAdvantage® World Elite™ MasterCard® thanks to the 100,000 mile promotion earlier this year. Interest in this card perked up a bit when Amex Platinum card members lost access to the Admirals Club and US Airways Club lounges following the merger of American Airlines and US Airways. According to an email I received from Citi this morning, effective November 23, 2014, Cit Executive Card members will receive new or improved coverage in a number of areas including:

  • trip delay protection,
  • baggage delay protection,
  • medical evacuation coverage,
  • worldwide car rental coverage (still secondary),
  • trip cancellation/interruption protection,
  • return protection,
  • missed event ticket protection (ironically being deleted from Amex Platinum coverage in December), and
  • damage & theft purchase protection.

These are all travel-related areas that the Amex Platinum Card is known for, and they do represent improvements in the Citi Executive card. However, you’ll notice that things like reimbursement for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck fees, a $200 airline fee reimbursement, Cruise Privileges, etc. are missing. Of course, there’s also access to the American Express Centurion Lounges.

It’s good to see Citi upping the benefits of the Citi Executive card. In my opinion, the card is as good of a way as any to access the Admirals Club, and it offers respectable benefits and protections for travelers. However, the Amex Platinum Card offers most of the same traveler protections, reimbursement for known traveler options, and access to the best domestic US airport lounges. For these reasons and more, the Platinum Card is still the one for this traveler, but the best card for you will depend on your personal situation.

-MJ, September 15, 2015

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