Both the new AAdvantage Citi MasterCard and the Chase Preferred Sapphire card give you 50000 Miles without the hassle of Avios points. I checked out a BA roundtrip from the US to London, it takes 100,000 Avios Points and $372 in fees. Within Europe it takes 4500 Avios Points. However, to go from Munich to Paris you are routed through London to Paris which takes 9000 Avios Points plus taxes and fees and increases the flight time dramatically.
US to London for 100,000 points and fees...CRAZY! I really am not happy with the avios points. I think the only good option is to use their partner ,AA or LAN with the avios points.
It's helpful to understand where it is a good niche player - on those short direct hauls, often to places where the fares are high (and there may not be as much airline competition)...for example Miami to to Caribbean. It's better there with them than AA. So they have their niche now and provide a better value than the other legacies do in certain situations. They can be used in concert with the AA program.
I pointed out this recent offer for Canadians in the LL community and it shouldn't be compared to offers in the US for a couple of reasons. One, it is only available to Canadians. Two, generally the US credit cards offers are much better than the Canadian ones.....apple and oranges.
Agree with you. Bonniejoy pointed out that she thought San Juan to EIS for 4500 Avios points was a good deal. Even MUC to London is a good deal at 4500 Avios points, but anything beyond has you flying via London doubling the Avios points needed within Europe. Of course, for Canadians it is a good deal where fewer such credit cards are available.