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Amex Goes Big On The Platinum Card! Higher Annual Fee. Higher Bonus. Higher Credits.

- Jul 1, 2021 Credit Card Info, Credit Card Offers0 comments

Two days ago we posted about the rumors going around about benefits changing on the Amex Platinum card. Most of the rumors seem to have been true. Here’s what changed!

Huge new welcome bonus

Earn 100,000 points after spending $6,000 within the first 6 months. Plus earn 10 points at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S. on up to $25,000 in combined purchases within the first 6 months (terms apply).

That’s a total of 350,000 points that you can earn, right there!

Many local stores are eligible for Shop Small, so you can accumulate your Amex points real easy, though I doubt my readers spend $25,000 within 6 months on purchases at Shop Small stores and restaurants (though I wouldn’t be surprised if they do, I’ve got myself some rich readers:). Here’s the Shop Small Map for all merchants under Amex Shop Small so that you know where to shop. If you multiply all you spend at these stores by 10 points, it may turn out to be a lot of points.

Annual fee increased

The annual fee on the card did go up to $695, from the previous $550.

$919 in added credits

Here are the new credits Amex has added to the Platinum card along with the annual fee increase. These new credit benefits are also available for existing cardholders, even those who locked in the $550 annual fee.

  • New! Get $200 credit for prepaid hotel bookings per year.  Bookings must be made at Fine Hotels and Resorts and The Hotel Collections, through Amex Travel.
  • New! Get $179 credit for CLEAR per year. CLEAR, which is becoming available at more and more airports, gets you better and faster security check-in at the airport and gets you through check-in, security, and boarding quickly and easily. This credit was also added to the Platinum Business card.
  • New! Get $300 credit for Equinox. Get fit with $25 per month that you can apply towards the $39.99 monthly fee for Equinox and the fitness app. 
  • New! Get $240 credit for Digital Entertainment. Get $20 a month on purchases at the following providers: Peacock, Audible, SiriusXM, and New York Times.

In the previous post, we had mentioned some benefits changing, but no benefits actually did change. So you can continue to enjoy the benefits you enjoyed until now and now also enjoy some new benefits while you’re at it.

Does $919 in added credits justify an $145 increase in the annual fee?

It’s definitely hard to maximize some of these benefits, but let’s see.

  • $200 credit for prepaid hotel bookings per year. This benefit is very restrictive, being that it’s only for hotels part of the  Fine Hotel and Resorts and The Hotel Collections, and the booking needs to be made through Amex Travel. Even though I’d have liked to see this benefit a lot less restrictive, there definitely are properties you can find at your destination with The Hotels Collections. Amex Travel claims there are more than 600 hotels across 75 countries. And at the end of the day, $200 is $200, so even though it may not be your first choice hotel, search for a property at your destination and go off with your $200. It can easily cover a full night at the hotel which is nothing to laugh about.
  • $179 for CLEAR is great for those that hold CLEAR of value. CLEAR can get you from check-in to boarding easily and smoothly. This credit was also added to the Platinum Business card.
  • $300 for Equinox is a teaser. You get $25 per month that you can apply towards the $39.99 monthly fee!?! So this credit does not pay your full membership. This benefit seems to be just an incentive, or a good marketing strategy by Equinox, to get you to sign up with Equinox. 
  • $240 for Digital Entertainment is also a restricted credit and does not seem worth it because of two reasons. One, you can only use it at these 4 providers: Peacock, Audible, SiriusXM, and New York Times. And two, these entertainment apps are cheap, each costing between $4-$12 a month so I see it as hard to maximize the full $20 value. Unless there’s someone who is entertainment crazy and uses all of these subscriptions.

 Here are the complete details of the so-called “new” Amex Platinum card.

Card Details
Welcome Bonus

Earn 100,000 points after spending $6,000 within the first 6 months. Plus earn 10 points at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S. on up to $25,000 in combined purchases within the first 6 months (terms apply).

Rewards

- 5 points on flights booked directly with airlines and Amex Travel on the first $500,000 you spend within a calendar year
- 5 points on prepaid hotels booked directly with Amex Travel
- 1 point everywhere else

Foreign Transaction Fee

No foreign transaction fee.

Authorized User Fee

Platinum level $175 for the first three then $175 per additional cardholder. Gold Level $0

Benefits
Upgraded Status

Hilton Gold status.

Marriott Gold status.

Uber VIP.

National Emerald Club Executive status.

Avis Preferred Club status (publicly available).

Hertz Gold Plus status, plus, get free upgrades, an extra 4 hours to return your car, and one free additional driver.

Credits

Get a $200 airline incidental fee credit each calendar year.

New! Get a $200 statement credit each calendar year on prepaid Fine Hotels and Resorts and The Hotel Collection bookings through Amex Travel.

New! Get a $240 Digital Entertainment credit, up to $20 per month, on purchases at the following providers: Peacock, Audible, SiriusXM, and New York Times.

Get $15 in Uber Cash credits for U.S. rides each month plus a bonus of $20 in December, which is a total of up to $200 annually.

New! Get a $300 Equinox statement credit, $25 per month on select memberships. Enrollment is required.

New! Get a $179 CLEAR statement credit per year.

Global Entry and TSA pre-check

Get a statement credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre-Check every 4-4.5 years.

Lounge Access

Access to 1,200+ airport lounges, with a complimentary membership to;

Priority Pass Select

Centurion Lounges

AirSpace Lounges

Escape Lounges

Delta Skyclub lounges (when flying Delta)

Select Lufthansa lounges (when flying Lufthansa, Austrian Airlines, or Swiss)

Trip Cancellation Insurance

Coverage for canceled or interrupted travel due to an unforeseen medical emergency etc. Max $10,000 per person per trip, max $20,000 per year.

Auto Rental Collision Insurance

Secondary worldwide coverage on rentals up to 30 days (excluding Australia, Italy, and New Zealand). Max $75,000. You can purchase an Amex premium plan that will offer primary coverage up to 42 days. Max $100,000.

Lost Luggage Reimbursement

Get up to $2,000 per person for lost or damaged luggage. Max $10,000 per trip for NY residents.

Trip Delay Reimbursement

If your flight is delayed for 6+ hours, you can claim up to $500 per trip to cover expenses like meals, lodging, toiletries, medication, and other personal use items. Max 2 claims per year.

Return Protection

Not happy with a purchase? Get a refund on purchases that have passed the store return policy - up to 90 days from date of purchase. Max $300 per claim, max $1,000 per year.

Extended Warranty Protection

Get one additional year to your original manufacturer's warranty time. (Will only cover if the original warranty is for 5 years or less). Max $10,000 per claim, $50,000 per year.

Cell Phone Protection

Get reimbursed for up to $800 per claim (with a $50 deductible) if your cell phone is damaged or gets stolen. To activate coverage, you need to pay your monthly cell phone bill with your Platinum credit card. Max 2 claims per year.

Purchase Protection

Get refunded if your purchase is damaged, lost, or stolen, up to 90 days from the date of purchase. Max $10,000 per claim, $50,000 per year.

 

Was this article helpful?

Sam Sam has nearly a decade's worth of experience educating his many readers on everything credit. Sam spends his days checking out credit cards for a full report, from the minute benefit details to the shebang of welcome bonuses. Plus studying the ins and outs of building proper credit. It’s his favorite pastime and he loves sharing it with others.

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