Middle Age Miles

Everything You Need to Know About Barclays AA Companion Certificates

Middle Age Miles and Craig’s Dad at Notre Dame Stadium
(after using a Barclays AA Companion Certificate to fly into SBN)

The Barclays AA co-branded cards come with a unique benefit that can be earned through big-spend, a companion certificate for travel on AA.

This benefit is currently available on the Barclays AA Aviator Silver and Business cards, and starting this week (May 1) it will become available on the popular Barclays AA Aviator Red card (the one that’s pitched incessantly on every AA flight that you take these days).

When we first looked for information on Barclays AA Companion Certificates, we couldn’t find a good article that stated anything beyond the highest-level information about them. Calls to Barclays and American Airlines were equally unhelpful – no one would tell us critical information such as what would be the blackout dates if we spent enough money to earn a Certificate. This was extremely frustrating.

Given the dearth of available information and the fact that many more people are about to be able to earn a Companion Certificate, we wanted to publish an informative guide about Barclays AA Companion Certificates.

What Are the Basics?

In short, a Barclays AA Companion Certificate allows a companion to fly round-trip for $99 plus taxes and fees, when the primary traveler pays a published fare. On the Companion Certificate for the Barclays AA Aviator Silver card, the Companion Certificate covers 2 companions at $99 plus taxes and fees. Travel must be in economy class, within the 48 contiguous US states (with an exception for residents of Alaska & Hawaii, who can originate in their home state and travel to/from anywhere in the 48 contiguous US states). The cardholder must be the primary traveler on the certificate.

How Do You Earn a Companion Certificate?

You earn a Companion Certificate by spending a threshold amount during your cardholder year. Then, you must keep your card account open for at least 45 days after your anniversary date. The 45-day requirement ensures that you have to pay the next year’s annual fee on the card in order to receive your Companion Certificate.

Beginning May 1, 2019, the Companion Certificate earning requirements on the various Barclays AA cards are:

  • Silver: Certificate for up to 2 companions when you spend $20,000
    • Note: The spend requirement was previously $30k; changing to $20k
  • Red: Certificate for 1 companion when you spend $20,000
    • Note: This is new as of 5/1/2019
  • Business: Certificate for 1 companion when you spend $30,000

How Much Does the Companion Fare Actually Cost?

The Companion fare is advertised as $99 plus taxes and fees. The Barclays disclosure materials say that taxes and fees will be $21.60 to $43.20.

In our experiences using Companion Certificates, each companion ticket has cost a total of $135.03 (that is, the taxes and fees each time have been $36.03).

What Are Other Limitations on the Companion Certificates?

We previously discussed that Barclays Companion Certificates can only be used for travel within the 48 contiguous US states, in economy class (with exceptions for Alaska & Hawaii residents), and the cardholder must be the primary traveler. There are several other limitations and quirks to the Certificates that can be important:

Blackout Dates: Perhaps the most important limitation on the Certificates is the group of blackout dates. The date limitations cover some key holiday travel periods as well as most students’ Spring Break times. There are 56 blackout dates for 2019 and 55 blackout dates for 2020, so the limitations are not insubstantial. Here is the complete list of blackout dates for each year:

  • 2019: Jan 1-3; Feb 15-19; Mar 8-11; Mar 15-18; Mar 22-25; May 24-28; Jun 28-30; Jul 1-7; Nov 27-30; Dec 1-2; Dec 14-23; Dec 27-31
  • 2020: Jan 1-3; Feb 14-18; Mar 6-9; Mar 13-16; Mar 20-23; May 22-26; Jun 30; Jul 1-6; Nov 25-30; Dec 12-23; Dec 27-31

Booking in Advance: You must book your flights using a Companion Certificate at least 14 days before your departure date.

Expiration Date: A Certificate is good for approximately 1 year after issuance. All travel using a Certificate must be completed by the expiration date.

Fare Class: Companion Certificate reservations must be booked in one of the following economy fare classes: L, M, N, Q, S, V, G or O.

  • This is pretty broad and will cover almost all potential itineraries, but note that it does exclude the very highest-level economy fare classes, Y, H and K.
  • In addition, note that Basic Economy fares are excluded (fare class B).

Payment: You must pay for all tickets using a Companion Certificate with the credit card on which the Companion Certificate was earned.

No Miles-Earning for Companion: According to the terms of the Certificate, Companions will not earn AA redeemable miles or other elite credits for their flights.

  • This was not true in our experience. Our companions have earned redeemable AAdvantage miles as well as Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) and Elite Qualifying Dollars (EQDs).
  • On our most recent Companion Certificate flight in May 2019, earning was calculated using the $99 fare. $49.50 of the fare was applied to each direction of travel, which rounded to 50 EQDs. Redeemable miles were based on a $50 fare, which meant that Philly as an Executive Platinum earned 550 redeemable miles each way (1,100 total), and Middle Age Miles daughter KB as a non-elite earned 250 redeemable miles (500 total). Each of the companions also earned EQMs based on the trip distance.
  • Previously, in September 2018, the companions also earned EQMs, EQDs and redeemable miles. On that occasion, earning was calculated under the “Earning when ticket/fare details are unavailable” chart, which you can access by going to this AA web page and scrolling down. However, on that trip we had some special circumstances where the check-in agent adjusted our reservations at check-in, so I do not believe this was representative. I believe that you can actually expect earning as described in the paragraph above discussing our May 2019 trip.

No Upgrades: According to the express terms, no upgrades are allowed on tickets issued using the Certificate.

  • This was not entirely true in our experience. The reservations originally conformed to this limitation – not eligible. However, at the airport check-in desk, we asked to be added to the upgrade list, and the agent was able to do this (with a fair bit of effort). And on one of the flights, all 3 people were upgraded – myself as the primary certificate holder (Exec Plat), Philly as a companion (Exec Plat), and my Dad as a companion (no elite status). Again, we may have simply found a very helpful agent who was able to grant us a one-off exception.

No Replacement if Ticket is Canceled: If you make a reservation using the Certificate and then have to cancel your flight, your Certificate will not be replaced and is thus lost.

What’s the Timeline on Receiving Your Companion Certificate?

The official terms and conditions for Companion Certificates say that you’ll receive the Certificate 8-10 weeks after you’ve met all the conditions for earning the Certificate. And remember, the conditions are that you’ve spent the threshold amount during your cardholder year, plus kept your card account open for at least 45 days after your anniversary date. So, it technically could be as long as 16.5 weeks after your anniversary date before you receive your Certificate.

We recently earned a new Companion Certificate through spend on a Barclays AA Aviator Silver card. Here’s the relevant timeline for receiving the Companion Certificate, which was generally consistent with our previous experiences:

  • Card Anniversary Date: 1/27/2019
  • Annual Fee (AF) Posted: 1/31/2019
  • Statement Close w/AF: 2/10/2019
  • Date We Paid AF: 3/7/2019
  • 45 Days after Card Anniversary Date: 3/13/2019
  • Received email re Companion Certificate: 4/3/2019
  • Received physical Companion Certificate in the US mail: sometime between 4/4 and 4/13/2019 (we were out of town, so unsure of the exact date)
    • Note that the email regarding the Companion Certificate contains a link where you can print it, so you don’t actually have to wait for the physical Companion Certificate to arrive in the US mail before you can use it.

Note that we received the email regarding the Companion Certificate exactly 3 weeks after we’d met all the conditions (that is, 3 weeks after the date that was 45 days after our card anniversary). Also note that we received the Companion Certificate a little more than 2 months after our card anniversary date.

For what it’s worth, the expiration date on our Certificate was 3/31/2020, so we actually had slightly less than 1 year to use it.

What Does the Email Regarding the Companion Certificate Look Like?

Our email came from “AAdvantage Aviator Silver World Elite Mastercard” and it was entitled, “Congratulations! You’ve earned a Companion Certificate.”

Here’s what it looked like:

A couple of things to note here:

  • One, the email has a link to a “Learn how to redeem” Youtube video, which you can access through this link:
  • Two, the email has a link where you can Print Your Companion Certificate

What Does the Physical Companion Certificate Look Like?

The physical Companion Certificate that you receive in the US mail consists of one double-sided piece of legal-sized paper. It looks like this:

Front of Companion Certificate:

Back of Companion Certificate:

Envelope containing Companion Certificate:

How Do You Book Flights Using a Companion Certificate?

Once again, the Companion Certificate is a bit tricky. You don’t just ring up the regular AA reservation line, and you can’t book your tickets online. And remember, you must book your tickets at least 14 days before the departure date.

The Companion Certificate booking process looks like this:

  • Call AA Meeting Services at 800-433-1790
    • Be sure to have all the information you need handy – flight numbers, passenger names and AAdvantage numbers, the STAR File number from your Companion Certificate, and your Barclays AA credit card
    • The AA Meeting Services desk is only open during certain hours:
      • Monday-Friday: 7:00 am until 11:00 pm Central time
      • Saturday-Sunday: 7:00 am until 8:00 pm Central time
  • Make your booking with AA Meeting Services over the phone
    • At this point you’ll be able to see a “Pending” ticket in your online AA account
  • Sign and date your Companion Certificate
  • Mail your Companion Certificate to the address provided by the AA Meeting Services agent
    • The address that we used most recently was: American Airlines, 5031 Commerce Park Circle, Department 108, Pensacola, FL 32505
    • The agent will ask you to:
      • Write your departure date underneath your return address on the outside of your mailing envelope
      • Include your record locator along with your Certificate (you can use a Post-It note or write it directly on the Certificate; we also wrote our record locator underneath our return address on the envelope)
      • Mail the Certificate right away

AA needs to receive your Certificate in the mail at least 7 days before your departure date, so it’s important to get it in the mail immediately (especially if you’re booking close to the 14-day cutoff). If AA doesn’t receive your Certificate in time, your tickets will not be issued.

Once AA does receive your ticket, they will process it. In your online AA account, the status will change from “Pending” to “Ticketed.” And at that time, you’ll see the charge for your tickets on your Barclays AA credit card.

As we mentioned earlier, Barclays has posted a Youtube video on Redeeming Your American Airlines Companion Certificate, which you can access here.


If you can use the Barclays AA Companion Certificates well, they can be quite valuable. Last year, I used my Companion Certificate to get myself, Philly and my Dad between DFW and South Bend, Indiana (SBN) for a Notre Dame football game. As you might expect, it’s not cheap to fly directly into SBN on a ND football weekend. Using the Companion Certificate allowed us to save about $1,000 compared to if we’d purchased 3 individual tickets. That was outstanding value for our Certificate, although, that said, it was a near-perfect use.

Middle Age Miles and Craig’s Dad at Notre Dame Stadium,
ready to “Play Like a Champion Today”

With any luck, this guide will help you get similar great value out of your Companion Certificates, and you’ll be on your way to a fun destination in the US!

Do you have further information, tips or tricks about the Barclays AA Companion Certificates? If so, please share with us and other Middle Age Miles readers in the Comments!

At Middle Age Miles, we love to bring you travel, credit card and points-and-miles information that you can use to help make your travel dreams come true. To see all of our tips and insights, please Like and follow us on social media at:

Please share and re-tweet our posts and tell all of your friends about Middle Age Miles! Thank you!

72 thoughts on “Everything You Need to Know About Barclays AA Companion Certificates

  1. Pingback: Barclays Aviator Card Now Comes With A Companion Certificate - Doctor Of Credit

  2. Pingback: Barclays Aviator Card Now Comes With A Companion Certificate | Daily Program Newspaper

  3. Pingback: Barclays AAdvantage Aviator Red Mastercard, 50K Bonus Plus Companion Certificate

  4. Pingback: Aviator Red now comes with a companion certificate

  5. Pingback: Expedia Coordinating a Hotel Conspiracy? Barclay AA Companion Cert Deep Dive, World Borders Crossing Story - Miles to Memories

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Warren – Many thanks for the comment and very kind words. Welcome to Middle Age Miles! I hope you continue to read and enjoy the site, and I look forward to hearing from you more. ~Craig

      1. Jeanne M Braswell

        I am unable to access or print my Companion Certificate using the instructions provided by the email I was sent or on the barcleycardus website under “Rewards and Benefits.” :(. Please address suggestions and recommendations to: jeanne.braswell@att.net

        1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

          Hi Jeanne – Two ideas here: One, they generally send a hard copy of the Companion Certificate in the mail. Not sure if you got this. Two, you should be able to access your Companion Certificate by logging in to your card account. Go to the “Rewards & Benefits” drop-down and select “Rewards activity.” Then click over to “Previous benefits.” There, you should find your Companion Certificate details, and there’s a link to print out the certificate as well. Hope this helps! ~Craig

    2. Thomas Noyes

      Can you tell me if Barclays or AA is extending the Companion Certificate since we are Quarantined for at least another month and it expires in July?

      Thank you

      1. Nikki Kirby


        Did you ever get an answer from anyone if AA is extending the Companion cert. or any of their other free tickets due to COVID-19?

        Thank you in advance.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Franz – You’re most welcome, and thanks for the compliment! I’m glad you enjoyed the article. And thanks also for reading Middle Age Miles. Good luck with your big spend bonus if you choose to do it! ~Craig

  6. Jennifer Shimmon

    Very helpful site ! I have been a platinum member and used many companion certificates for big savings over the years – I needed to look at blackout dates and my search found your article – nicely presented thanks for info – book marking this site as well – Jen

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Jen – Many thanks for your comment and kind words about the site. I’m glad you found Middle Age Miles and that our article on the companion certificates was helpful! I hope you continue to enjoy the site 🙂 ~Craig

  7. ENash

    You provided the exact detailed information I wanted to know about AA Companion Certificates! So thank you! The Red Aviator Mastercard now offers one companion certificate shortly after you receive the card, pay the annual fee, and use the card at least once. So no waiting for a year or $20K spend. Then, each year on the card anniversary date, your information applies.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi ENash – I’m glad you found what you needed. You’re most welcome! Very good point on the one-person companion certificate that’s now part of the sing-up bonus for the Aviator Red card. That benefit puts a lot more certificates in play, so hopefully our article continues to be valuable to people going forward. We’ll also plan to provide an update once we learn the blackout dates for 2021.

      I hope you continue to read and enjoy Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

  8. TThomas

    THANK YOU! I was unable to find any information on the companion certificate. This article answered EVERY question I had plus some I didn’t even think about. I can’t thank you enough and I’m looking forward to using my companion ticket. Like you, I’ll use when we need to fly into a smaller airport that’s typically more expensive.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi TThomas – Many thanks for the kind works, and you’re very welcome! I’m glad we were able to answer your questions. I think your strategy for getting the highest value out of the certificate in spot-on. And it seems like AA fares have risen a bit over the past few months, which can make the certificate all the more useful. Good luck using your certificate, and have fun on your travels! ~Craig

  9. Hilario

    Is it possible to use >1 companion certificate on the same trip with only 1 ticket for primary traveler? In my example I’ve got the Citibusiness AA card and just acquired the Aviator business card. If I make the spend requirement on both cards and get both companion certs, can I use them “together” with the same primary traveler ticket?

      1. Hilario

        Thank you for the fast response! I’ve got a wife and 3 kids, and trying to figure out how to fly them a little more cheaply.

  10. Andy

    Hello – First, *thank you* for the insightful article.
    I do have one question – was the primary ticket charged separately from the companion ticket(s)?
    The scenario I’m thinking of is a ticket for work, for me, that will be reimbursed, with my spouse traveling with me on the companion ticket.
    Thank you!

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Andy – Many thanks for the kind words, and you’re most welcome.

      I believe that your scenario should work fine. Here are two pieces of info that should help you (info is from our most recent use of a Companion Certificate). One, on your credit card statement we had separate charges for the primary flyer and the companion – one charge for $600-ish, and another charge for $135-ish. Two, we received separate confirmation emails from AA for each flyer. The confirmation email from AA for the primary flyer showed a charge for the full $600-ish ticket. The confirmation email for each Companion showed a charge for $135-ish.

      Hope this works for you! ~Craig

  11. Sheila Robinson

    Can you book a trip by redeeming miles or do you have to pay for the trip in order to use the companion pass? I wanted to book a trip using miles for my ticket and use the companion pass for the 2nd passenger.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Sheila – Thanks for reading and sending the question. Unfortunately, you’ll have to pay for the airfare in order to use the companion pass. You can’t use miles.

      I hope you continue to read and enjoy Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

  12. Kashif Ahmed

    Thanks for the detailed information.

    Do you know if this can be used in an open jaw scenario.

    I am flying from DFW -> SFO but coming back from LAX -> DFW. Will this work.


    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Kashif – Thanks for the comment, and great question. My honest answer is that I don’t know for sure. I’m looking at a certificate now, and it just says “round trip.” That suggests to me that an open jaw might not work, but I’m not by any means sure of that. If you have a certificate, I’d say just call AA Meeting Services at 800-433-1790 and give it a shot.

      If you try, I’d truly appreciate it if you’d submit a follow-up comment here to let us know. Thank you! ~Craig

  13. Paul Hoffman

    Do you know if the “certificate holder” can fly business class and the “companion” flies economy? I’m very tall and simply can’t fit into today’s economy class seats, but my wife is short so she doesn’t have the problem and can sit in economy.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Paul – Good question. My best guess is that this wouldn’t work, although it makes perfect sense to me that it should, given that you’d be paying a higher fare for the primary passenger’s ticket than what AA would be expecting. Best way to find out would be to just call AA Meeting Services directly at 800-433-1790 and see if they can work something out for you. Best of luck in getting this done!!! ~Craig

  14. Jon

    Thanks for the info. Is the companion certificate good for just 1 round trip flight? Or does it act more like the companion pass on southwest airlines in which it’s good for multiple flights within a set time period? Thanks.

  15. Amy

    I have two round trip companion certificates that need to be used. Could I fly my husband and daughter both on companions tickets for the same flights if my ticket is full fare or do companion tickets have to be used separately?

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Amy – Assuming that you have 1-person companion certificates (and not the 2-person companion certs that can be earned with the Barclays AA Aviator Silver card), this won’t work. You can have 1 companion along with the 1 paid-fare certificate holder. Good idea though! ~Craig

  16. Alex

    Hi Craig,

    My girlfriend lives in a different state, I have companion certificate ready to use. Could I use the companion certificate even though we won’t be departing from the same airport?

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Alex – I’m sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but the primary traveler and companion have to be flying together on the entire route in order to use the Companion Certificate. Thanks for reading Middle Age Miles, though, and I hope you continue to enjoy it! ~Craig

  17. Carol Cantwell

    THANK YOU so much for this outstanding and informative article. As another person said, you have answered all of my questions and some I had not even thought of. I was debating whether to keep the card and pay the annual fee to obtain the companion certificate or not and could not find any details about the use of the certificate any where else.
    I very much appreciate you taking the time to even include pictures!
    I have book marked your website for future use.
    Thanks again for your invaluable help!

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Carol – You’re most welcome! I like your comment. One of the reasons we started Middle Age Miles is that there were a lot of questions like this where we found the online information to be too surface-level and not really dig down on the key questions. So, we write the content that we’d like to read and try to answer the questions that we’d have about things like card benefits.

      I really appreciate the compliment. Thank you for bookmarking the site, and I hope you continue to enjoy Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

  18. Mary Hurlie

    Hi folks: fantastic site – thanks for all your research! My question is: can I ‘gift’ my companion ticket to someone for them to use as the primary traveler with a companion of their own? Specifically, can I gift the certificate to my spouse so that she can be the primary traveler and take me as the ‘companion’?

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Mary – Thanks for the comment and kind words. I hate to be the bearer of bad news for you, but the certificate is non-transferable. The certificate holder must be the primary traveler.

      Hope you’ve had a good weekend, and thanks for reading Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hey Fretmeister – Thanks for the comment and the kind words. I hope you can get some great value out of your companion certificate and use it for some fun travel.

      We appreciate you reading Middle Age Miles and hope you continue to enjoy it! ~Craig

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Michelle – As Kashif mentioned in another comment, the companion pass *does* work for connecting flights. I apologize for the delayed response but wanted to confirm that his comment is correct. Good question, and thanks for reading Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

  19. king1000

    This may be a dumb question, but are the blackout dates only for travel on those days, or that your trip can’t go over them? So for instance, March 6-9 is listed as a blackout/embargo time, but if my flight was out March 4th and returning March 11th, would that be acceptable? Thank you for your input.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi king1000 – Good question, not dumb at all. On the certificates, the blackout dates are only for travel on those days. In your example, your flights on 3/4 and 3/11 would be acceptable.

      This is confusing in part because AA Vacations has exactly the opposite rule. With AA Vacations, when they have sales/promos with blackout dates, then any trip can’t include the blackout date at all, either on flight days or any day in between when you’re on your trip.

      Thanks again, and hope you continue to read and enjoy Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

  20. Matt

    Hello Craig.

    My question is about the Companion Certificate and the “plus taxes and fees”. The flight I am looking to purchase is currently $696.40 (PSP to ORF). The price breakdown is:
    Fare 604.65
    Passenger Facility Charge 18
    Segment Tax 17.20
    Transportation Tax 43.35
    US Security Fee 11.20
    Does this mean the Companion Certificate “taxes and fees” will be $91.75 instead of “$21.60 to $43.20”? Thank you.

    Domer BA 91, BBA 91, MBA 96

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Matt – Great question. I have to confess, I’m not exactly sure what “taxes and fees” you have to pay on the companion ticket. But the certificate itself contains the “$21.60 to $43.20” language, so I don’t believe it would be contractually possible for AA to charge more than the $43.20. Every time we have flown round-trip to SBN using a companion fare, the total for the companion has been $135 and change, meaning that the taxes & fees must have been $36-ish.

      Best way to find out for sure on this is to call AA Meeting Services at 800-433-1790 and see what they quote you.

      Thanks for reading Middle Age Miles. Go Irish! ~Craig

  21. Sonya

    Hi there! You seem to know a lot on the subject, I could use some help. So we met the spend requirement and will be getting the certificate, I guess. We HAVE NOT paid the annual fee, were kind of sitting on it. I am not jazzed about this card at all with its horrible customer service over another issue I’ve had. I want to cancel it. Is there a way to do it after I get the certificate? Will I get my annual fee refunded or a prorated portion at least? I hope I don’t need to be a customer when I actually USE the certificate? Thanks for any help! I feel it’s sort of a scam as it’s not $99 as advertised because you’re paying the fee on top of that.

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Sonya – Good questions. I’m sorry about your bad experiences with your Barclays AA card. I’ve had mostly decent experiences with Barclays, although I had one issue a couple of years ago that still stings me a bit today.

      The first thing I’d do in your shoes is call Barclays customer service and see if you can get a retention offer. Sometimes Barclays has been known to waive the annual fee (or perhaps give a miles bonus offer based on spend). You have a better chance at this than most, given that you spent enough on the card to earn a companion certificate.

      If they won’t give you a retention offer, then you’ll have to pay the annual fee in order to get the companion certificate. They don’t issue the certificate until after you would have to pay the annual fee. I know, seems unfair.

      I’m pretty certain that Barclays does *not* offer prorated refunds for mid-year cancellations.

      You don’t still have to be a cardholder in order to use the certificate. Once the certificate is issued, then you can cancel and still use the certificate.

      Hope this helps. Good luck, and thanks for reading Middle Age Miles! ~Craig

  22. Sonya

    Hi Craig and thanks so much for your reply. I appreciate it! They didn’t give us the retention offer, my husband called them. Weird as we spent so much with them, it was the only card we used all year. So I wonder if I can pay the fee, wait till I get the reimbursement and still cancel within the 60 day window to get all of it back? You think it could work? The window to cancel is 60 days from the day the fee posted, right? I am upset with them because I had an issue with merchant and they did 0 to back me up on it, telling me to go deal with merchant directly. Also, their call center is the worst!

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Sonya – I’m pretty certain that Barclays makes sure that the certificate doesn’t actually issue until after the 60-day window for an annual fee refund closes. For an example, see the “timeline” section of this article. Annual fee posted on 1/31/19; certificate received on 4/3/19 (62 days after the annual fee posted). I don’t believe that timing is at all accidental on Barclays’ part. The card agreement terms are clear that you must keep your card account open for at least 45 days after your anniversary date and then the certificate will issue 8-10 weeks thereafter (in our case, it actually issued only 3 weeks after the 45-day period).

      That said, would it be *possible* that you could keep the card open for 45 days after your anniversary date and therefore qualify according to the cardholder agreement terms, but then cancel before your 60-day after AF-posting deadline, and still receive the certificate even though your account was then canceled? Maybe. In addition, you might have a legal argument that you met the written conditions to earn the certificate, and that Barclays was still *required* to issue it even though you canceled later. I would expect you’d get zero sympathy from Barclays for that argument, and it would almost certainly be way too much trouble to try to force them to give you a certificate.

      Sorry, long answer, but I was trying to think through all the angles. (And yes, I knew what you meant about getting the certificate, not reimbursement!) ~Craig

    1. Sonya

      I wanted to send an update, perhaps this might be helpful. So we did get the email with this certificate and still in the cancellation window, woo-hoo! Now, like everyone else, I am confused as to how I get it. I need to mail it?! I thought we just call the number on there when we’re ready to book. So sorry, dumb question probably. The window to cancel the card expires in about 2 weeks, better hurry I guess.

  23. James Messenger

    Great information Craig. thank you. One question I did not see answered (although you seemed pleased with the cost of your Notre Dame trip) – the price you got from “Meeting Services” for your (cardholder) ticket – was it the same as what could be found on the regular website?

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi James – Glad you enjoyed the article. Yes, same price through Meeting Services as on the AA.com website. ~Craig

  24. Walter Kurtz

    Hey Craig, thanks for the info.

    I just got the companion cert and was wondering if you know if the companion cert can be used when the primary traveler books his flight with miles as opposed to actually paying for the flight with cash?


    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Walter – Thanks for the comment. The Companion Cert requires a paid fare; won’t work on an award booking. ~Craig

  25. James

    Although your article is well written and very informative, I still believe this pass is trash compared to the Southwest companion pass.
    1. Only 1 time use
    2. Unable to use miles on primary flyer
    3. Companion still cost about $130
    4. Can only be done over phone and have to physically mail the certificate (hopefully it doesn’t get lost in the mail)
    5. Many blackout dates
    6. Only contiguous 48 states
    7. Many more!

  26. Tom

    Can you tell me if Barclays or AA is extending the Companion Certificate since we are Quarantined for at least another month and it expires in July?

    Thank you

  27. Pingback: Barclays Aviator Companion Certificate Guide [2021] - UponArriving

  28. Brian Vulgaris

    I believe I was taken advantage of this promotion when it was initially presented to me aboard an AA flight a year ago. I paid the $99 fee for the card, made a purchase, and received my 60,000 miles. I also received my companion certificate. So far so good.

    I just called to reserve a flight using the Companion certificate….pay the $99 and use my 60,000 miles.

    Guess what?….YOU CAN’T USE YOUR MILEAGE POINTS WITH THE COMPANION CERTIFICATE. I need to purchase a ticket, and THEN pay $99 for my companion.

    what kind of sense does that make? This was not explained when initially presented, nor does it state this anywhere in any of the literature….why even have the 60,000 mileage points if you can’t use with the companion certificate.

    Very disappointed and angry with this program

    1. Craig at Middle Age Miles Post author

      Hi Brian – Thanks for the comment. I certainly agree that the terms of these credit card sign-up deals often are not transparent based on what’s said on the flights. You’re definitely right that you must purchase a ticket to use the companion certificate – it’s not valid on a mileage redemption. You certainly have my sympathy on this! ~Craig

  29. Hilario

    Has anyone tried crediting the companion ticket to another One world airline and seeing how many miles it earns?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

%d bloggers like this: