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American Express offers premium travel benefits on many cards, including annual airline fee credits. The catch is that these credits reset each calendar year, so time is ticking for you to take full advantage of these perks before we ring in the new year.
Eligible cardholders can benefit from annual airline fee credits up to $250 to cover incidentals, such as seat upgrades, checked bags and in-flight refreshments. The Amex cards that offer these credits often come with steep annual fees, so it's important to use the full benefit in order to offset those costs.
The good news: You can book future travel and use the credit now. For example, if you're planning a vacation for 2021, you can purchase the flight and add any checked bags or seat upgrades to your reservation now, therefore using your annual airline fee credit to offset the cost of incidentals.
Checking whether you have any credit left is simple and best done via americanexpress.com instead of the Amex app:
- Log in to your Amex account
- Navigate to "Benefits"
- Scroll below "All Benefits" or select "Travel" to find the airline fee credit, which will read something like "$200 Airline Fee Credit"
- Expect to see either the credit you have remaining or a statement saying you used the full credit
Note: Before you can take advantage of the credit, you have to select an airline to benefit from this perk. You should do this before you book your travel.
While you're checking your airline fee credit balance, consider checking any other credits that expire at the end of the year. Enrollment may be required to take full advantage of the credits.
- American Express® Gold Card: Monthly $10 credit toward eligible dining at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth's Chris Steak House, Boxed and participating Shake Shack locations.
- The Platinum Card® from American Express: Up to $15 monthly Uber Cash credit (up to $20 in December), up to $20 per month on select U.S. streaming subscriptions (valid through 12/31/20), up to $20 per month on wireless phone service charges made directly with U.S. wireless telephone service providers (valid through 12/31/20) and up to $50 toward Saks Fifth Avenue purchases from July to December.
- The Business Platinum Card® from American Express: Up to $100 Dell credit from July to December, up to $20 per month on U.S. shipping purchases (valid through 12/31/20) and up to $20 per month on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers (valid through 12/31/20).
Terms apply for all benefits.
Information about the Hilton Honors Aspire Card has been collected independently by CNBC and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of the cards prior to publication.
For rates and fees of the Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Hilton Honors Aspire Card from American Express, click here.
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