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If you plan to change your Amex airline of choice but haven’t done so for the annual airline credits, you have one week left to act.

Change Amex airline of choice in January for annual credit

Each calendar year you can receive $100, $200 or $250 in statement credits for airline incidental fees, such as checked bags, seat selection, in-flight wifi and refreshments, charged to eligible American Express cards:

  • $100 for Amex Premier Rewards Gold Card;
  • $200 for all versions of Amex Personal Platinum Cards;
  • $200 for Amex Business Platinum Card.
  • $250 for the Hilton Aspire Card.

a screenshot of a travel rewards program

The reimbursement is usually automatic, but you have to designate the airline of choice during the month of January. You can only change it once a year during this period. To change your Amex airline of choice, start here. You don’t need to do anything if you don’t want to change your airline of choice.

[SEE: How to use your Amex Platinum $200 airline credit.]

Make Amex airline of choice wisely for the Business Platinum Card

One advice related only to the Amex Business Platinum Card. Choose your airline choice wisely so that you can take advantage of the card’s 35% point rebate benefit. For coach tickets, the rebate benefit only applies to the designated airline. The rebate points usually post back to your account one month after they were redeemed for flights purchased on

Back in 2017, I made great use of this benefit when the rebate was 50%. But going forward I will most likely transfer my Membership Rewards points directly to airlines for flight redemption.

Buying airline gift cards using the Amex airline credit

Since I basically have a credit card with all major domestic airlines, I don’t get charged on luggage fees. I also rarely pay for seat selections either. So to claim the annual Amex airline fee credit, I normally buy electronic gift cards. You must first designate your Amex airline of choice before purchasing airline gift cards.

If Delta is your airline choice, be sure to purchase gift cards only on Delta’s desktop site. Gift cards purchased from Delta mobile app are processed by CashStar and are not being reimbursed by Amex. 

Besides the changes for Delta gift cards, It is worth noting:

  • Per Flyertalk thread for Hawaiian Airlines here. gift card purchase was not reimbursed as of December 2017.
  • Per Flyertalk thread for Alaska Airlines here, gift certificates are no longer reimbursed as of June 2017. There were reports of small ticket purchase prices were reimbursed, so it is entirely YMMV!

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