Here Is How I Used My 2019 AMEX Airline Fee Credit, How Will You Use Yours?

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There are 4 AMEX cards that give a credit to use for incidental fees on the airline of your choice.

You can use this link to check how much of your AMEX airline fee credit has been used. Just login and click on your eligible card.

While Chase Sapphire Reserve allows you to use travel credit for anything travel related, including tickets on any airline, AMEX is far more restrictive

You need to register with a specific airline before spending. After you register for an airline you can officially only change your airline in January. However I have had success changing the airline by chatting with AMEX online. 

You can choose to register for the following airlines:

  • Alaska
  • American
  • Delta
  • Frontier
  • Hawaiian
  • JetBlue
  • Southwest
  • Spirit
  • United

Note that if you have a Business Platinum card, the airline you choose will also be the airline that will give you 35% of your points back when redeeming for coach travel. You may want to hold off on spending the $200 until the end of the year if you want to be able to change the airline more easily during the year. You also get back 35% of your points on all airlines in business and first class redemptions without having to register for an airline.

Unfortunately as of the past month or so, gift cards no longer count for this credit.

But there are plenty of other ways to use your credit.

The screenshot below has some of the recent activity on my Platinum card.

$50 Saks gift cards are still being reimbursed without a problem:

Tickets under $99 have been reported to get reimbursement, though those have always been YMMV (Your mileage may vary).

On July 1st I redeemed JetBlue points for a ticket from Cleveland to Fort Lauderdale for my brother’s son’s bris. I bought an extra legroom seat and put it on my Platinum card to be reimbursed as an airline fee.

The next day the price of the ticket went down. Officially JetBlue doesn’t allow for cancellations for tickets booked within 7 days of travel. The workaround for that is to buy your ticket via Priceline, which has no such restrictions, but that doesn’t help for award travel. However if your ticket price goes down within 5 days of booking, JetBlue will give you credit for the difference. They don’t have a way to give a credit for the points difference, so they just refunded the points and said to book it again.

In the meantime I got a reader tip that the airline fee credit was working for paid tickets that are only partially paid for on your credit card. In other words if you pay for part of a ticket via gift card or travel credit and part on your credit card, then the part of the ticket paid on your credit card will be considered an airline fee and get credited back.

I had a few dollars in my JetBlue TravelBank from a previous trip, so I used that and bought the ticket for $123.98 on my Platinum card. I also bought the extra legroom seat again.

I got credited back for both $41 extra legroom charges and for the ticket price with the remaining $118 in credit that I had left for the year, for a total of $200 in 2019 refunds.

Best of all the price dropped afterward again, so JetBlue credited that price drop to my TravelBank for future use!

Now, I expect that I’ll get charged back for the $41 extra legroom charge on my original ticket as JetBlue refunded that charge as well. But it’s great to know that partial payments on a ticket is another way to use the airline fee credit.

This should also be working for other airlines as well, so please share your experience using a gift card or travel credit along with your credit card for partial payment on a ticket to get an airline fee reimbursed.

Aside from partial payments for tickets and ticket under $99, these other charges also have been reported to count for airline fee credit:

  • Alaska Airlines tickets under $99, if registered for Alaska.
  • Award redeposit and change fees from airline of your choice.
  • Baggage fees from airline of your choice.
  • Flight change fees from airline of your choice.
  • Food and drinks from airline of your choice.
  • Lounge access fees from airline of your choice.
  • Phone reservation fees from airline of your choice.
  • Seat selection fees from airline of your choice.
  • Standby fees from airline of your choice.
  • $9 Spirit Face Club Membership, if registered for Spirit.
  • United Economy Plus upgrades and Economy Plus Subscriptions, if registered for United
  • United WiFi Subscription Purchases And Gifts, if registered for United
  • United WiFi on mainline planes, if registered for United

What airline fees have you been credited for on your AMEX card?

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58 Comments On "Here Is How I Used My 2019 AMEX Airline Fee Credit, How Will You Use Yours?"

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Stewart Nemiro

Dan.. That is great information! Thank you!!


So just confirming, no gift cards for ANY airlines are eligible for the travel credit? I’ve had issues with American Airlines GC’s, but not Southwest GC’s, which I’ve purchased back in February. Are they now ALL ineligible for the credit?

For Leah

All reports are that all airline GCs are dead

No Airline GC’s

Normally, I purchase GC’s, but I guess I will now have to figure something else out. Bummer!


Some people have reported that buying gift cards at a lounge (in this case, Delta SkyClub) have been being reimbursed. But 1. this is not yet confirmed, and 2. not all lounges sell gift cards.


Are delta GC’s worth anything? They wouldnt let me use them for extra baggage. And they dont let you use more than 3 of them at a time


I used last year’s and this year’s for Southwest gift cards and purchased tickets for a flight for only $50 out of pocket.


If my kids are flying without me can they use my credit towards their bags?


Yup as long as they have an AU card or your very own card like Dan meantioned.
Doesn’t make a difference who uses it, but the first to use the credit on the account will cause the credit to be used. Whether the AU or the owner of the card.


“Seat selection or upgrade fees from airline of your choice.”

All reports indicate that while seat selection fees do work, upgrade fees do not if the upgrade goes into a different fare class.


will it work for an upgrade to comfort+ on Delta?


@Dan what happened to the post on the Delta AMEX bonus cards from the beginning of July? Can’t find it


I tried using the credit for a gift about 3 months ago, did not get the credit, the transaction was catagorized as a gift certificate, after chatting with Amex, they changed the category without asking what the transaction was for, I am not sure though it I should try it again. Good luck.


Forgot to mention was American airlines which always worked automatically for me

Amex guy

any one knows what about united FareLock?


If I claim my 100$ credit on jetblue now and I wanna claim another 100$ on Delta, Can I just wait til January and claim the Delta? Even tho both charges were made in the same year? TIA

For Chaim

They usually don’t let you change airlines once you’ve used part of your credit


Does ComfortPlus work?


You can also use the credit to book a pet that is traveling on your travel reservation


Dan, Mazel Tov!


Buy Southwest GC For $100 and sell on Card Cash for $81!


apparently, this doesn’t work anymore.


when the price dropped again for the 2nd time after you payed with cash, why did they only give you jetblue travel bank? they should have given you the refund to your credit card?


What difference is the language implying?
“from airline of your choice” vs. “if registered for…”


i just reread it and got it! no need for a reply! Thanks


can anyone confirm southwest gift card status for reimbursement

Phil R

AA Gift Cards are still being reimbursed – Purchase individually, $100/$100.


Would like to know how recently this was tried.


Dan, I got an offer to upgrade to the Hilton aspire and will receive 150k Hilton points. What are your thoughts?


Does it work for Southwest Early Bird fee?


Since Delta does ticketing for KLM in the US, I have received economy comfort fees for KLM totally reimbursed.


Hi –

I am hoping to do the same… do you mean that you had purchased a regular economy ticket and then chose a KLM economy comfort seat on the delta website and were reimbursed?



Why is the $200 airline credit connected to the 35% rebate?

I use my credit usually by February and change my preferred airline as needed…


I got credited for Delta gift cards in January… Bought in multiples of 50


Can I be eligible for the AMEX Platinum card welcome bonus if I had the card years ago? Is there a specific number of year exclusion? Or lifetime?


123 for a round trip to florida thats a good buy


If i book a refundable flight and use the travel credit for additional baggage on the flight and then cancel the flight will i get refunded for the baggage from the airline?


I downgraded my amex business platinum to green in Feb after using the wework and airline credit. I was thinking to upgrade back to platinum in Jan but now that the gc reimbursement is not an option, the annual fee doesn’t justified it for me. The Chase Sapphire Reserve has similar benefits and is accepted in more places so good bye AMEX.


You were able to use wework after you downgraded?


Any update on the AA Gift Cards?


Any update in the AA Gift Cards?


That’s good tp know. One check: in case of filing buggage/travel delay, etc. don’t they want to see the total fare was paid completely with one credit card?


My $53 AA virtual gift card was not reimbursed by Amex Platinum.


Hi Dan just saw your post, Does the option of paying partialy work with Delta?
I have a 693 dollar ticket and I pay 50 with a gc and the rest with my platinum card, would that trigger the 200 credit?


I’m wondering if you did this and can confirm that it triggered the credit…thanks! I’m looking to do the same!


Any News About that? I want to do the Same!


I have the Amex gold i used to buy AA gift cards and sell them on , what is the best option now if i don’t fly very often ??

Thank You, Dan !!!


Helpful. 1) You mention Alaska air tickets under $99. Does that mean swa or any airline tickets under $99 as well or just Alaska? 2) for the partial pay to work sounds like you must have credit with an airline, not a gc to partial pay with it. I have some travel bank credit with Alaska and southwest. Is it ANY airline tickets under $99 registered for, or just Alaska? Lastly, in that case based on above article sounds like can be above $99, when partial paying a ticket, correct? Trying to figure how to use this credit


That’s a slim list of Airlines you can register with, I am about to take a long haul round trip on KLM, guess I’m out of luck on that?


Any idea if the partial payment strategy works with AA? Ie part of the ticket as a gift card, the rest on Amex with the credit applying? Thanks Dan!

Mike Liang

will the American Air share miles fee from 1 account to another account? say I want to transfer 20,000 points from 1 account ($150) to another account.