A warning about slow AMEX Platinum credits – reader “Bob” lost TSA Pre Check!

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american express amex global entry goes and tsa precheck 100 credit (1)

There are so many great perks of the non-Delta AMEX Platinum cards. One of them is that they will refund you the fee for Global Entry ($100) that includes free TSA PreCheck when you pay for the fee with your card. The perk has been around for YEARS and back in 2011 my credit for the fee showed up in a matter of days!

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But over the past few months there have been some issues. For some unknown reason, many of the credits that AMEX pays out have been very slow to post to card holders accounts. But here is my warning – Please don’t call and ask why.  I expect these things to smooth out soon so just be patient – please!

Why am I making SUCH a big deal about this? Well very, I mean VERY, bad things can happen when you call. Like what you ask? Notice what happened to one reader, we’ll call “Bob“, when he called a little while back. Take it away Bob!

“I’m a Delta Diamond Medallion Million Miler ever since they started the Diamond level. I fly a bunch, that is, about 4 domestic flights a week. When the TSA Pre-check random assignments stopped (plus I read your warning post back in March) I decided it was at last time to enroll in the Global Entry service with TSA Pre Check. One cool thing I learned from you was that my AMEX Platinum card (that I got from your blog) offered a full rebate when I paid with the card. So, after taking my time, I at last did it.

The point of my story, and need for advice is this: I inquired with AMEX about the rebate that seemed to be taking forever to credit to my account, and they turned it into a dispute with TSA and pulled my application payment rather than just issuing the credit as promised. Then, you will never believe what happened next! TSA revoked my Global Entry and TSA PreCheck membership!!! GASP!!!

I’ve since called AMEX to get the payment re-sent ASAP to TSA but I’m concerned I’ll have to go through the whole interview process and explain in person. In the meantime I’m missing the Pre-check when I fly! Any advice for working with TSA to get this reinstated sooner rather than later and limit the missed Pre-check? Thanks” – Bob

Ruh-Roh Bob! This is just not good. This, in addition to 100 other reasons, is why we do not call and we wait. When there is something like this, that is clearly in the T&C from AMEX, they will at some point, make it right. AMEX is really good about honoring commitments to card holders (at least when they are in print). So I reached out to Bob and gave him this advice:

“OK two things must happen. First, clearly, AMEX must fix payment. I would also ask for some points or something for the mess up on their part. Next, you must contact CBP or Customs and Border Patrol as they must fix it at this point. I hope you can explain the issue and, if you must, pay with maybe another card. The main thing is fixing it at this point”!

Bob said thanks for the advice and this is what he wrote back to me that happened next.

“I’ve contacted Amex and they have reversed the refund. Also, an Amex supervisor was kind enough to send me an email that outlines their reversal so I can present that to CBP. Fortunately my travels have me in a city on Monday that has an enrollment center. I will walk that letter in there as soon as I land and hopefully get the membership re-activated. I’ll send you a note after that and let you know how it turns out. Lesson learned not inquire about a rebate with Amex! Thanks again for the quick reply and leveraging your contacts.” – Bob

I have to say, after having had TSA PreCheck, I cannot even dream of having to go back to standard security lines no matter what my airline status years from now (or whatever airline I am loyal to at the time that is).

Well a number of weeks went by and Bob just e-mailed me back over the weekend with some great news. He tells us that:

“Believe it or not I finally got my trusted traveler status back just this past week. It took that long for an airport based CBP office to finally convince the D.C. office to flip a switch. The bureaucracy is just amazing. At least it was finally turned back on. Again, my thanks for the help and all you do on the blog!” – Bob

Bob, that is music to my ears. I am so happy it worked out at long last and you are once again in “3 beep land” with most of the rest of us.

So again what to take from this little Bob-event. Clearly, don’t call. I have a new test working for a $50 Delta AMEX credit and will post when it hits and just how long it took from start to finish. If it does not hit, in a month or two, I will follow up with AMEX. But clearly, we all need make sure when it comes to Global Entry that we make sure the rep does not in any way reverse the charge as that is NOT what you are after. You are NOT challenging the charge or disputing it – you simply want the internal AMEX credit as per the T&C of card membership!

So did Bob ever get his $100 AMEX Global Entry credit that was due him after all this mess? He informed me that he in fact DID get the credit at last and even a bit more for the issue. – Rene

UPDATED INFO: See this post reg credits working once again!

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Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express.

 

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5 comments

  1. Interesting. Agree with OP, please let us know about $50 reimbursement. I, like many others I suspect, am awaiting my own.

  2. @Don @Geoff – Yep will be SURE to post as soon as either auto credit posts or, after a while, I have to call to find out what is up. I will not do that until 1NOV at soonest. Want to give it time to auto-post.

  3. The $100 airline credit that comes with the gold MR Amex posted to my account within 24 hours of making the reservation on the airline website. And the reservations were made on a Sunday. I have to say I was impressed with their speed. I hope this was merely a communications gaffe and nothing more.

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