Got Platinum!

American Express forum. Talk about AmEx credit cards like Blue, Gold, Platinum, Centurion, and more.
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Z06Biker
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Postby Z06Biker » Mon May 13, 2013 1:21 am

I agree. Though I don't own a Centurion card, and I suspect no other frequent member on this board other than FastSRT8 does, my opinion is that the card is not designed for customers who are obsessively lusting after points, memorizing redemption categories or clamoring for automatic elite-tier status.

This is not to say those fortunate enough to qualify for such a card are idiots who don't understand the value of the dollar, nor that they don't value automatic benefits, but rather that those who have attained such levels of success (financial, in this respect) seek to belong to an exclusive club of unsurpassed service and extraordinarily personalized attention. The kind of bespoke freedom that one cannot place a dollar amount on. You may or may not choose to use the protections, insurances, complimentary award statuses or benefits programs associated with the Centurion; but you always know it's there in a pinch...

...Like if your son or daughter decides they don't like the Clydesdale you bought them for their 16th birthday, and you need to return it. I jest.

In short, it doesn't come down to math. It doesn't place into an algorithm. And I mean this in the least elitist way possible (hey, I'm not even a Centurion holder myself!), but if you have to think that hard about whether you should get one or not (assuming you could), it probably wasn't invented with you in mind.
AMEX: PRG Gold, Business Simply Cash, Business Costco, BCE.
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Barclaycard Arrival World Mastercard
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Sevenfeet
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Postby Sevenfeet » Mon May 13, 2013 9:05 am

Z06Biker is right. Let's say that on Wednesday night you find yourself the winner of the upcoming Powerball jackpot and after taxes, you're suddently liquid to the tune of $150 million+. For just about everyone here, once you pay off every debt you've ever had including your mortgage, you're still $150 million+ liquid. Go out and buy a few new toys (cars, electronics, maybe a new house), you're still probably $150 million + liquid.

Somehow I think your perspective begins to change on whether that latest CLI from $5000 to $10000 on your credit card matters anymore, or that you saved $50 last quarter on cash back cards. For example, I expect to save $2000 on cash reward cards this year. But just 3% return on investment of $150 million is about $4.5 million annually. Suddenly, $2000 becomes "walking around money" instead of "hard earned dollars".

FastSRT8 said he carried just two cards...the Centurion and another card for situations where someone doesn't take Amex. Centurion is a tool and a service for customers who no longer worry about day to day personal budgets. Sure you might still have the frugality you had when you didn't have money, but Centurion customers are just different than most other Amex charge customers regardless.
Cards:
American Express Platinum (NPSL)
Penfed Platinum Reward Visa ($28K)
Chase Freedom Visa ($25K)
Fidelity American Express ($20K)
American Express Blue Cash Preferred ($20K)
Bank of America Cash Rewards MasterCard ($20K)
Citi Thank You Preferred Visa ($9.5K)
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US Bank Cash + Visa Signature ($7K)
Discover IT ($4K)

DoingHomework
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Postby DoingHomework » Mon May 13, 2013 9:15 am

What Mr. Feet said is true. But I can afford the Centurion. I'd choke on the $5000 initiation fee on principle but would not mind the $2500 annual if I got my money's worth out of it. The problem is, when I try to compare benefits side-by-side, I get most, but clearly not all, of the benefits of the Centurion with my platinum card. I don't really care if my heirs get $500,000 instead of $250,000 if I die. The insurance benefits and purchase protection might be a little better but I hardly ever use those.

Honestly, I have never spent $250,000 in a year so I am probably not the kind of guy they are looking for. But I do stay in nice hotels, travel fairly frequently, and otherwise use many of the platinum benefits. But I stick with one airline.

I get invites to events, but they always seem to be in NY. I would not go to NY if you paid me. I live on the west coast. Why incur 10 hours of flight time and lose a weekend or more for a 2 hour concert? AMEX really needs to connect with more events in other cities like Las Vegas, LA, and San Francisco.

Sevenfeet
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Postby Sevenfeet » Mon May 13, 2013 10:22 am

Agreed. Just because you won't technical miss a $5000 fee doesn't mean you like paying it. Most rich people understand wasting money is a good way not to be rich. But in this case, the $5000 fee isn't really for Amex to make a profit on (there probably aren't enough Centurion customers to make a material difference). It's mostly to keep a layer of exclusivity for the customer base...i.e., to keep the "riff raff" out. :)

I'm sure that some wealthy folks have no problem spending $250K a year or more in regular purchases and expenses...i.e., living like Justin Bieber. But I have a friend who is a famous rock and roll star and despite his large home and lifestyle traveling the world, knowing what I know of him, I can't imagine even he would regularly spend that kind of money personally year after year (his business and record label is a different matter).
Cards:

American Express Platinum (NPSL)

Penfed Platinum Reward Visa ($28K)

Chase Freedom Visa ($25K)

Fidelity American Express ($20K)

American Express Blue Cash Preferred ($20K)

Bank of America Cash Rewards MasterCard ($20K)

Citi Thank You Preferred Visa ($9.5K)

Chase Sapphire Preferred ($7.5K)

US Bank Cash + Visa Signature ($7K)

Discover IT ($4K)

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FastSRT8
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Postby FastSRT8 » Mon May 13, 2013 11:34 am

All valid points.

The best way to determine if you need the card or any card with a fee has been stated above. If you have go think about it and can't make the decision quick, then most likely you don't need it.

Everything is a tool. If you don't need it, don't get it.
Carpe diem quam minimum credula postero!

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FastSRT8
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Postby FastSRT8 » Mon May 13, 2013 11:36 am

Very well said.

Z06Biker wrote:I agree. Though I don't own a Centurion card, and I suspect no other frequent member on this board other than FastSRT8 does, my opinion is that the card is not designed for customers who are obsessively lusting after points, memorizing redemption categories or clamoring for automatic elite-tier status.

This is not to say those fortunate enough to qualify for such a card are idiots who don't understand the value of the dollar, nor that they don't value automatic benefits, but rather that those who have attained such levels of success (financial, in this respect) seek to belong to an exclusive club of unsurpassed service and extraordinarily personalized attention. The kind of bespoke freedom that one cannot place a dollar amount on. You may or may not choose to use the protections, insurances, complimentary award statuses or benefits programs associated with the Centurion; but you always know it's there in a pinch...

...Like if your son or daughter decides they don't like the Clydesdale you bought them for their 16th birthday, and you need to return it. I jest.

In short, it doesn't come down to math. It doesn't place into an algorithm. And I mean this in the least elitist way possible (hey, I'm not even a Centurion holder myself!), but if you have to think that hard about whether you should get one or not (assuming you could), it probably wasn't invented with you in mind.
Carpe diem quam minimum credula postero!

rockyrock
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Postby rockyrock » Tue May 14, 2013 2:17 am

IMHO if your mindset is still concerned with getting your AF out of the card (or any card) you probably need to stay where you are at or possibly even move down a notch.
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Chase: Freedom & UA Club USAA: Signature Visa & American Express
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