Why Now Is The Time to Apply For The Barclays US Airways MasterCard

| Updated: October 30, 2014

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The US Airways® Premier World MasterCard® is currently among the best ways to earn US Airways miles. With the US Airways and American Airlines merger going through the card will be discontinued at some point in the near future, but until then the card is offering a great welcome bonus.

The 40,000 US Airways miles offered from this card is enough for a low-level economy class round trip ticket within North America, Hawaii, the Caribbean, Central America, South America or Europe!

Get 40,000 miles from the US Airways card before it's gone!
Get 40,000 miles from the US Airways card before it’s gone!

You would expect most credit cards to stick around for a long time, but surprisingly when re-branding and mergers go through the card may no longer be offered at any given time.

I cannot say for sure when the card will no longer be available, but eventually the Barclays US Airways card will disappear.

If you earn US Airways miles now, then when the two airlines completely merge your airline miles will eventually convert into American Airlines miles. You will be able to redeem them for award flights on the largest airline in the world and fly to just about anywhere.

Get 40,000 US Airways miles
Get 40,000 US Airways miles!

Application Link: US Airways Premier World MasterCard

(Full review of the US Airways MasterCard)

US Airways Card – Earn 40,000 Bonus Miles

Right now you can get 40,000 US Airways miles just by making your first purchase and payment of the $89 annual fee on the US Airways MasterCard.

Card details:

  • Earn 40,000 bonus miles after your first purchase and payment of the $89 annual fee*
  • First checked bag free on eligible bags for you and up to four companions on domestic US Airways operated flights
  • One companion certificate good for up to 2 guests to travel with you on a US Airways operated flight at $99 each, plus taxes and fees
  • Priority boarding Zone 2 on US Airways operated flights
  • Redeem miles for award travel on US Airways and American Airlines booked through usairways.com or US Airways Reservations
  • Earn miles on every purchase with 2 miles for every $1 you spend on US Airways and American Airlines purchases and 1 mile for every $1 on purchases everywhere else
  • New! Receive a 25% savings on eligible US Airways and American Airlines in-flight purchases
  • Please see terms and conditions for complete details

The card also offers a handful of other benefits worth mentioning including a 5,000 mile discount on US Airways award tickets and a companion certificate each year for up to two traveling companions. Take note that the companion certificate will discontinue in December.

What Are 40,000 US Airways Miles Worth?

US Airways has one of the most generous and competitive award charts among US airlines. Their routing rules allow you to stretch the value of your miles and book amazing trips with stopovers and open jaws that you normally could not book with other airline miles. For a comparison of the US Airways award chart against other airlines check out my award chart comparisons.

Some of the better uses of US Airways miles include:

As far as routing options go you can basically get one stopover and one open-jaw per round trip award using US Airways miles. However, most awards will allow you to route almost entirely however you want from your origin to destination. The biggest constraint you will run into when booking awards with stopovers using US Airways miles is that the total flight segments has to remain under 10 for a round trip.

What Will Happen To The US Airways Card After The Merger?

The 40,000 US Airways miles earned from the US Airways Card will eventually be converted into American Airlines miles when the merger is completed. This also means that the US Airways card will be converted to the new American Airlines card offered by Barclays and will have similar card perks to the Citi American Airlines cards.

Your US Airways miles will turn into AA miles after the merger
Your US Airways miles will turn into AA miles after the merger.

The new Barclays American Airlines card will not be available to new applications and only existing US Airways MasterCard holders will receive it. However, the primary American Airlines card will be issued through Citi.

The biggest thing to take note is that the current US Airways card benefits will no longer be available at the beginning of 2015. If you want to take advantage of the companion pass, lounge certificates, 5,000 mile discount awards be sure to do so before the card changes. If you apply now and earn the companion certificates you will still have 12 months to use them from when they are issued to your account (normally a couple weeks after being approved for the card).

Is The US Airways Card The Best Barclays Credit Card?

This card along with the Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard® are the two best Barclays credit card offers. Depending on the type of award travel you want to get, the Arrival Plus card may be more flexible and earn rewards quicker with it’s 2X earning, but the card has offered a 40,000 mile welcome bonus for over a year now and I do not expect to see it change anytime soon.

One reason to go for the US Airways card now is that it is offering 40,000 bonus miles and won’t be around sometime between now and the end of the year. You also will not be able to apply for the new Barclays American Airlines credit card, but by having this card your card will automatically be converted into it. I do not know an exact date that the current offer will get pulled, but because it is a great way to earn US Airways miles on a credit card that will not be offered in the future, sooner than later may be a good time to apply for it.

The Bottom Line

The fact that the US Airways MasterCard will no longer be available in the near future makes it a great time to grab the card and earn the 40,000 US Airways miles. You should not have to rush to apply for it, but if you were thinking about going for it make sure to do so before it is gone possibly by the end of the year.

After the merger is complete these miles will turn into American Airlines miles and you will be able to redeem them on the largest airline in the world. In 2015 existing US Airways cardholders will receive the new Barclays American Airlines card with new card benefits. This card will not be available to apply for and only existing US Airways cardholders will have access to it.

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3 thoughts on “Why Now Is The Time to Apply For The Barclays US Airways MasterCard”

  1. MM, the companion ticket can can only be used for economy class travel within the 48 states or Canada. For a flight from JFK to Europe or Asia, you can actually book a flight to Asia with a stopover in Europe if you want to just book one award. It is the same price to fly to Asia and stopover within Europe, and an example would be to fly from New York to Europe on Austrian (stopover in Vienna), Brussels (stopover in Brussels) or LOT (stopover in Warsaw). From Europe you can fly to Asia on Austria (to Beijing), LOT (to Beijing), ANA (to Tokyo), Asian (to Seoul), with even more potential options. With US Airways routing rules you can get away with a lot and depending if it fits you schedule add a ton of value to your miles.

  2. Jesson, since you won’t earn the sign-up bonus converting the card to another product your best option would be to cancel it and apply for another card. Just for a data point I waited a couple months before I applied for my second US Airways card.

  3. I signed up in June and am disappointed with the award availability. Not to complain too much since the miles are free but award booking seems to be a pain.

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