Be sure to check your junk mail; I just opened an envelope from Citi that said, “important updates to your account” on the front. Of course, the top half of the letter inside begins by speaking about the exciting benefits of my Citi AAdvantage Platinum Select card before revealing the fact that the annual fee would be increasing from $85 to $95 starting on my next anniversary date… which luckily happens to be 6 months ahead in August. The revised terms officially go into effect starting May 1, 2013.
I initially signed up for this card and the business version of the card simultaneously back in August 2011 during the 75,000 mile sign-up bonus offering using the “two-browser” trick. Last year, when it came time for renewal, I closed the business account immediately after I was not offered any type of retention bonus. On the other hand, with the personal card, I was offered an $85 statement credit to neutralize the annual fee; plus, the agent told me I’d get an additional 1,000 miles per month if I spent at least $1,000 on the card each month. That was generous enough for me to keep my account open.
Don’t get me wrong, the card is a good card, in my opinion, but I really was just in it for the miles. However, being an actual card member, I quickly learned that my favorite perk is the fact that card holders have the ability to receive 10% of their miles back on redemptions (up to 10,000 back per year). If maximized yearly, having 10,000 miles redeposited in your account is worth the annual fee in itself. Other perks include: the expected free checked bag, priority boarding, bonus miles on AAdvantage purchases, and discounts on in-flight food in beverage purchases.
Come summer of 2013, I definitely planned on canceling this card anyway, but maybe mentioning my disappointment in the increased annual fee can lead to yet another retention bonus. We’ll see.
Have you received a notice like this in the mail as well? What are your thoughts?