REPORTS: AMEX Platinum Card Perks & Fees Going up soon. Am I now re-getting this card?

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We will receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertiser Disclosure, and advertiser partners, such as American Express, CreditCards.com and others visit this page.
 
Hilton Honors™ Surpass® Card from American Express

 

amex platinum card

I have held the non-Delta AMEX Platinum card so I cannot get the new card bonus again. Currently I hold the non-Delta AMEX Platinum business card. I love the latter because it brings me so much value and under a number of circumstances it gives me WAY more value than SkyMiles. It also gets me access to the Centurion lounge network that I enjoy visiting along the way as well as 10 Gogo passes that I can even use internationally when I fly Delta. These two perks alone make the business card worth the fee to me. Toss in the chance to very simply get $200 off Delta flights each year and the card is a no-brainer to hold. But as mentioned, I do not hold BOTH the personal and business versions. That, it seems, is about to change for me with the new perks on are on the way.

Per TPG  learn that a number of new real features are coming by the end of the month including:

  • $200 UBER credits (via $15 per month and $35 in December)
  • 5x Membership Rewards points for “eligible” hotels if booked via AmexTravel.com

These are the “real” changes but also another real change is the fee going from $450 to $550. So is it worth it? If you ride UBER each month and you book and pay for hotel rooms (I do both each month) the card now, even with the price jump, all of a sudden has become one to hold >>>IF<<< the eligible hotels are just about all hotels and the prices are similar to those I find starting at TopCashBack and then going to whatever site pays me the most money back. We shall see on this one!

I have NOT been attracted to the 5x points earnings for flights because I like the Chase Sapphire Reserve card travel protection if your flight is delayed more than 6 hours or overnight. Thus I have used that to pay for most of my Delta tickets (even if just the taxes etc.). Even if I do get the AMEX Platinum card again I doubt that will change unless AMEX includes a similar protection.

Non-value bits that will be included (non-value to me anyway). I see little value in metal cards but the new card will be metal. Who cares. It just means you have to burn up cards to destroy them when you need to or send them back to the company in a prepaid mailer. Also, it includes UBER VIP that just about everyone says is all but worthless. Then again, maybe there will be a push to improve the latter with the new AMEX tie-in.

Bottom line is simply this – I now see enough value to hold both cards rather than just the business one. Since I use UBER monthly my personal net cost to hold this card, even after the price jump, is now only $150 per year after the $400 in credits I will extract. I will be embracing booking most of my hotel stays, if they qualify, at AmexTravel.com and then use those points booking via my AMEX Platinum business card to get 50% points back.

For others this could be a deal breaker. Reports are if you get the card NOW you get a year at the lower $450 fee. After that, for some, simply holding the AMEX Platinum business card may be the smarter move vs. paying the higher fee.

What do you think? Are you, like me, reconsidering the AMEX Platinum personal card now or are the new perks not worth the new higher fee to you? Are you going to switch and get the business card for the lower fee and it’s perks instead? – René

 

UPDATE:  VFTW reports   Priority Pass perk will go to YOU+2 (vs just you free currently). Nice upgrade but still not as good as CSR that has unlimited guests (but in practice really only YOU+2).

UPDATE2:  Now the above confirmed on AMEX PR site.

 

The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

 

30 comments

  1. Seems like a much more competitive offering now. Just make sure you get a Personal version you haven’t had before (such as Schwab) so you get the opening bonus.

  2. If they change the cost of it in the UK, I’ll be voting with my feet. We get none of the benefits those in the US get (credit towards various bits and pieces), and the cost is £450, which is a lot of money in real terms compared to the US

  3. 100% negative change for me – i.e., no benefit for $100 extra AF. I never use Uber. Booking hotels through Amex means no status perks or stay credits. If I don’t care about stays, I can get better than 5X MR (even at 2 CPP using the 50% rebate) with Hotels.com – using either cash back portals + 10% rebate, or gift cards that I pick up at a 20% discount via PPDG and 5X Chase UR. Other changes are fluff at best.

  4. The only reason I will keep it is that it will cost me “only” $55 more to get Delta Sky Club access ($550 on Amex vs $495 on Delta). Thus, I am pretty sure I can get the $55 back by using Uber or the $200 airline credit. I just don’t get why Amex has to make it everything so complicated. Why do you need to book hotels using Amex Travel? Why the airline credit has to be only on incidentals on one airline only? Why Uber credit per month? You see, it all comes with some pain. Chase Reserve just gives you a plain $300 back to your statement as soon as you use the card for more than $300 in travel.

  5. @Santastico – I agree Chase makes this much simpler. However, to get value I will do what it takes. It is not “that” hard to do what they ask.

  6. Sigh. The no-FHR update happened while I was sleeping. So now I’m not nearly as enthusiastic. No prepaid hotels for me, thanks. They need to rethink this “benefit.”

  7. Will the Mercedes card and other co-branded cards AFs also increase?

    I would only consider this if I got a new customer signup bonus. (I already have the AMEX Platinum personal card.). The uber and hotel benefits aren’t valuable to me.

  8. @JP – It seems (with what we know now) it will be an across the board $100 jump yes so consider applying now as it will be on all the co-branded/co-marketed cards.

  9. @Santastico: Why Amex Travel? Commissions. Why monthly Uber? Breakage. Amex is seriously struggling and can’t compete directly with Chase (though the CSR reportedly cost Chase $300M last quarter…). I too hate the Amex credit for incidentals only – I haven’t spent a dime on incidentals in at least five years…

  10. I see this card as an amazing value for me .. love the Uber credits and understand the reason why they’d split the amount over months .. where I fly I think there are more Delta Sky Clubs than Centurions .. does the card also cover Delta Sky Club access?

  11. @Beck – So far yes! (And to me that is good news, I like the OPEN biz product just the way it is)!

  12. @Dante – Agree. Yes you can get into Sky Clubs AND AND AND this card will also work with the new elite Choice Benefit “Guest Pass” option as well. 🙂

  13. Does the monthly Uber credit work if a single ride is less than $15? In other words, does AMEX simply credit the ride(s) up to $15 regardless if you spend $15 once or in pieces?
    And how do they reimburse if we charge the ride to a Visa or Mastercard assuming our Uber and AMEX accounts are somehow linked?

  14. @Geoff – TPG indicates it will be $15 total per month so for example 2x$7.50 rides should work. I am unclear on how NOT billing to card will work. What I hope will work is buying $15 gift cards some way to just lock them in. Time will tell just what does or does not work once up and running.

  15. The gift card idea is compelling to extract max value, but it’s also a PITA.
    AMEX loves details.

  16. Any idea if the UBER credit applies to authorized users cards, like the Sky Club and Priority Passes? Meaning 4 X $200 credits?

  17. @MO – It seems ONLY primary. That is an AU card that charges UBER it does apply to primary but not extra. No you will not get the extra perks. Only primary card.

  18. Rene, any idea what AMEX means about “Expansion of Global Lounge Collection”?

  19. @Sam – They are adding HKG and many more clubs over the next few years. Expect Centurions to popup more and more. Me likeeeeee 😉

  20. IMO AMEX is expanding the number of Centurion lounges and lounge access generally (Priority Pass) in an effort to retain/get as many Platinum card holders as possible. They are feeling the pain of competition and recent relationship changes. Throw in Marriott/SPG acquisition and it only gets worse for them.

  21. @DDiamond – Good point. It will be interesting if SPG cards go bye bye like Costco did. Then they are really hurting. But on the plus side the Membership Rewards points keep growing in value (unlike SkyMiles)!

  22. Rene, any chance Delta(as AMEX’s partner) might start getting a bit perturbed by the 50% point rebate thing with Biz Plat?
    I’d rather get mileage credit and use MR’s than accumulate and burn Sky Miles(assuming we can) and/or transfer and pay tax and fees with no elite credit.
    Heck, might this make the airlines reduce mileage requirements to compete with MR’s?
    You think Delta might see diminished Peso burn given the current scenario.

  23. @Geoff – Delta is mean to most of it’s partners but I doubt to the one who is one of the most profitable in the company’s history no.

  24. I don’t use Uber (it is a horrible company), and I don’t prepay hotels. This is a total loss for me. I doubt that I will renew at my September date.

  25. A little data point here: I called Amex to cancel my Platinum card. Never before had I been placed on hold so much when I call to cancel a card — they must be dealing with plenty of unhappy people today.

    They bounced me around a bit and told me all about the 5x on airline purchases, Uber credit, and metallic card. Still told them to cancel. Then they offered me a $150 statement credit or a spending/points challenge: 5,000 MRs now and 15,000 more if I spend $3000 in the next three months. I tried negotiating but it was take-it-or-leave-it. (I took the 20,000 challenge.)

    Because I have the Enhanced Biz Platinum card with 50% MR rebate on airline redemption for my selected airline, those 20,000 points really end up being worth about $400. Combine that with the $200 in Delta GCs I bought with my incidental credit and $200 in Uber credit (of which I’ll realistically use about $150), I’m coming out ahead, even with the additional card holder fee.

  26. Rene’ both my husband and I hold the Amex Plat cards. We also hold personal and biz delta reserve cards. Any reason we should keep the Amex Patinum if we always use our reserve cards?

Leave a Reply

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