How-to Guide: Free Avis First Status! (For World Elite Mastercard Holders)
Many credit cards offer perks and benefits just for using the card such as extended warranties, automatic rental car insurance, travel insurance etc… Most of these are pretty basic for credit cards these days but some offer enhanced benefits that may or may not be published such as access to airport lounges, free Boingo access, reimbursed Global Entry fees, etc…
While I was browsing through the benefits of the credit cards that I hold, I discovered a hidden gem for my American Airlines Citi / AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard: free enrollment in Avis First.
Full Avis World Elite Benefits:
- Save up to 20% on each rental
- Enjoy complimentary membership to Avis Preferred®, where available
- Enjoy complimentary upgraded membership to Avis First®
- Save up to 20% on the rental portion of Avis’s chauffeur service, WeDriveU®
- Enjoy other special promotions, subject to location and availability
This is in addition to the standard Avis First benefits:
Avis First Benefits
- Continued access to Avis Preferred Service — skip the lines and go directly to your vehicle.
- Two-Day Weekend rental rewards – earn rental days free of time and mileage charges after every fourth qualifying rental of 2 consecutive rental days. Other restrictions apply.
- Single Car Class Upgrades, when available – to arrive at your destination in style.
- An exclusive toll free reservation number line to assist with any questions or needs you may have with regard to your rental.
- A members-only website that will provide you with access to your rental and reward information.
How to Get It
1. Obtain a World Elite MasterCard
First of all, you’ll need to have a World Elite MasterCard, here are a few examples:
- Bank of America / Virgin Atlantic World Elite MasterCard (Black Card) – Annual fee $90
- Bank of America / Virgin Atlantic World Elite MasterCard (White Card) – Annual fee $49
- Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard – Annual fee $89
- Barclaycard / Hawaiian Airlines World Elite MasterCard – Annual fee $89
- Capital One / GM (Chevrolet, Buick, GMC or Cadillac) BuyPower Card World Elite MasterCard – Annual fee $0
- Citi / American Airlines AAdvantage Executive World Elite MasterCard – Annual fee $450
- Citi Prestige World Elite MasterCard – Annual fee $450
2. Enroll in Avis Preferred (even if you already have an account!)
According the rep I spoke with at MasterCard Travel Services, the Avis crew is unable to upgrade an existing account that has not been created with the special World Elite link. So, even if you already have an Avis Preferred Wizard Number, you’ll need to follow this link and create a brand new account: ENROLL FOR AVIS PREFERRED.
3. Call MasterCard World Elite and give them your Avis Wizard Number
With your newly created Avis Wizard number from step two, call MasterCard Travel Services at 855-802-1387 and explain that you want to take advantage of the Avis First upgrade and they should know exactly what to do. You’ll simply provide your Avis Wizard number and done!
4. Done! Check your Avis account in a few days
You should be all done! I checked my Avis account a few days later and found that I had been successfully upgraded:
Within about a week of seeing the confirmation on my online profile, I received the welcome packet in the mail:
Warning! There are links floating around the web that supposedly take you to the Avis First/World Elite sign up page but they only register you for Avis Preferred, not Avis First:
- Create a new Avis Preferred number using the link above (ENROLL FOR AVIS PREFERRED) before calling as existing Avis accounts are not upgradeable.
BOTTOM LINE: Make sure you’re getting all of the benefits out of your credit cards! Avis First will help you in getting free upgrades and preferential treatment, so there’s no harm in signing up. While some of the annual fees are steep, the Virgin Atlantic White Card only costs $49 per year.