Amex Concierge - Platinum/Centurion FAIL

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PlatinumAMEX94
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Amex Concierge - Platinum/Centurion FAIL

Postby PlatinumAMEX94 » Wed Oct 29, 2014 3:34 pm

Recently there was an author, Rick Riordan, Percy Jackson series, who came to Boulder Colorado. It was held at the Boulder Theater, so tickets were being sold. Time got the best of me and when I went to purchase a few tickets, they were sold out.

So I called American Express Concierge and first asked if a black card member could get tickets that were not available for a platinum member. The answer is no. Same level of service. So I told her that I wanted at least 2 tickets, good ones and I would hold the line. She made some phone calls and a few minutes later said no, they called the theater the bookstore, but they did not have any connections to that establishment to call in a favor.

I was extremely disappointed and said I would have to voice my experience. I just could not believe that they didn't have a relationship with someone, the owner, the manager, agent or publicist that could have made that happen. If I said, "Hey this is Johnny Depp and I want to go, or this is Matt Damon hook me up" it would have been the same? My polite and very friendly representative assured me she said she did everything she could.

I went to the store a few weeks after his presentation. Evidently they didn't sell as many books as they thought and I found a shelf full of "autographed copies".
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Postby AMEXPlatino86 » Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:39 pm

As much as I would be just as disappointed in your situation, as anything in life nothing is guaranteed. Asking them for tickets that may or may not be available, reservations to a restaurant that could be full, or search for a rare item that could be in existence for sale. In addition, timing also plays a part. Waiting till the 11th hour hinders that process. So sort to speak, it's a little bit of luck, a little bit of timing, and a little bit of your connection.
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Postby thom02099 » Wed Oct 29, 2014 6:35 pm

While it's understandable that you were disappointed, seems to me the same "FAIL" would have also happened with Visa or MasterCard Concierge service.

Knowing the Boulder Theater, this really doesn't surprise me.
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Postby lobbythis » Wed Oct 29, 2014 10:37 pm

Sounds like high expectations instead of fail. I don't see how Amex or anyone has absolute power over other people, venues, events, businesses, etc.

"Concierge" is literally offered to some degree on so many cards. It's just a fancy word to make you feel special.

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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Wed Oct 29, 2014 10:43 pm

thom02099 wrote:Knowing the Boulder Theater, this really doesn't surprise me.


I'm not from Colorado. Why is it not surprising?

Do they have a reputation for bad service? Or for treating all customers the same, regardless of spending ability?

I can understand why some places don't give special treatment to Platinum or Centurion holders. A Centurion holder at a fancy restaurant might order $1000+ of heavily marked-up alcohol for their party, when other customers are ordering cheaper drinks and low-margin food. There is economic sense to pamper the big spenders, so a restaurant might set aside a table or two just in case a big spender shows up.

At a fast food restaurant, a Centurion holder wouldn't get to cut the line or have a table reserved. There's just no economic justification to give favors to anyone when every customer is getting a $5 meal.
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Postby takeshi » Thu Oct 30, 2014 8:12 am

Expectation sounds like the issue here. Concierges can have more pull with certain places but, as stated above, there's no guarantee.

PlatinumAMEX94 wrote:If I said, "Hey this is Johnny Depp and I want to go, or this is Matt Damon hook me up" it would have been the same?

If you were either of them you wouldn't need a charge/credit card concierge to pull strings for you. Do you really expect a card that you're holding to make you equivalent to a Hollywood celebrity?

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Postby djrez4 » Thu Oct 30, 2014 9:15 am

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:I'm not from Colorado. Why is it not surprising?

Do they have a reputation for bad service? Or for treating all customers the same, regardless of spending ability?


No. It's just a small venue that brings in very popular artists and performers. Almost every show there sells out.
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Postby thom02099 » Thu Oct 30, 2014 9:42 am

djrez4 wrote:No. It's just a small venue that brings in very popular artists and performers. Almost every show there sells out.



And they sell out quickly. It can be extremely difficult to get tickets to certain shows there, so a "premium performer" would be next to impossible for ANY concierge service to pull strings or call in favours to get tix.

And it's in Boulder. They bring in a very eclectic mix of entertainment. They don't grant special favours, because they don't have to.
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Postby whit » Thu Oct 30, 2014 9:58 am

CarefulBuilder14 wrote:I'm not from Colorado. Why is it not surprising?

Do they have a reputation for bad service? Or for treating all customers the same, regardless of spending ability?

I can understand why some places don't give special treatment to Platinum or Centurion holders. A Centurion holder at a fancy restaurant might order $1000+ of heavily marked-up alcohol for their party, when other customers are ordering cheaper drinks and low-margin food. There is economic sense to pamper the big spenders, so a restaurant might set aside a table or two just in case a big spender shows up.

At a fast food restaurant, a Centurion holder wouldn't get to cut the line or have a table reserved. There's just no economic justification to give favors to anyone when every customer is getting a $5 meal.


I think this is a bit funny that you'd say those in the same breathe or paragraph.

I encounter people with little spending power as well as great spending power alongside slap me silly spending power

it's usually the middle folks that are the most haughty; ones that will have great expectations and be very vocal about it, dramatic flair and what not

whetheras the slap me silly ones..they're more quiet. they will ask for it but not demand. more polite and pleasant to deal with and while I'll give everyone the same type of service..great if not above and beyond imho

I usually will dig at it harder for those who are more respectful and grateful

which is why those who have little spending power will probably get the same persistent manner as the slap me silly ones

I notice the same type of behavioral towards myself..I explained what happened for one of my clients while overseas in Thailand and although we couldn't get the end result that we wanted after escalating it several times over; she volunteerly sent an email of apology and, a cash card of $50.

attitude wins over cash everytime

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Postby CarefulBuilder14 » Thu Oct 30, 2014 10:25 am

whit,

I did mean those as two distinct questions, and not an either/or situation. My idea of 'bad service' in this context was that the ticket sales office could be disorganized.



Extending the restaurant example, though, I have to wonder...

What would happen if you called the Amex Platinum concierge for last-minute seats at a high-end restaurant, got VIP treatment by the restaurant staff, but then failed to spend a lot of money there? Or spent a lot but paid for the meal with a CSP?

Would that put you on an Amex 'watch list' as a sort of free-rider? Once if you pay the AF, how strong is the expectation that you'll spend a lot more money than most customers each time you use the concierge to get reservations?
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