Do not apply for the American Express Platinum Card without seeing my review. You already know its prestigious but you probably don’t know just how many perks it has to offer! Review the Platinum Card benefits for yourself and you will see what I mean...
To begin with, the benefits are simply unparalleled by any other credit card, period. This American Express Platinum Card review will guide you through what it offers, but contact AmEx directly for full details on a given benefit.
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Air Travel Benefits:
Unlimited First-Class Airport Lounge Access
We all know how stressful air travel is these days, however the first-class airport lounges are the exception. The American Express Platinum provides you and your family (or two other people) complimentary access to these exclusive sanctuaries with multiple airlines.
Unwind with plush chairs and sofas. Use the complimentary phones, fax, and internet. The meticulously clean, upscale restrooms can be a lifesaver when you’ve been traveling all day long (some even have showers). My favorite benefit is the complimentary food and drinks; sandwiches, hors d'oeuvres, juices, beer, wine, etc.
The American Express Platinum Card offers you no-cost airport lounge access across the globe:
Unlimited access for any one of these would normally cost you hundreds of dollars per year.
- Delta Sky Club
- American Airlines Admirals Club
- US Airways Club
- Priority Pass Select lounges (you're free, guests are $27/each)
Companion Tickets For International Flights
Receive a companion ticket when you buy a qualifying business or first-class ticket for an international flight (book through AmEx Travel Services to take advantage of this "International Airline Program" benefit).
There are over 20 airlines that participate in this including Delta, Virgin Atlantic, Air France, Cathay Pacific, China Airlines, Japan Airlines, KLM Royal Dutch, Mexicana, AeroMexico, Lufthansa, South African, Etihad, Emirates, and others. Of course, any applicable taxes/surcharges/service fees will be charged for the free ticket (as is customary for companion tickets).
This is such a valuable benefit because even if you just use it once, you will probably be saving thousands of dollars. If you regularly travel overseas, this perk is a must-have.
Expedited Entry Thru U.S. Customs
Global Entry is a program run by the U.S. government which let's pre-approved, low-risk travelers get speedy entry back into the country - no processing lines and no paperwork!
Instead you are granted access to self-serve kiosks where you can scan your fingerprint and passport to confirm ID and make a customs declaration (if applicable).
The application for this program costs $100 but simply pay with your Platinum Card and the fee will be credited to your account. If approved, your Global Entry membership is good for 5 years.
$200 Reimbursement For Airline Fees
Another favorite AmEx Platinum travel benefit is that you will get up to $200 in airline fees reimbursed every year! Simply select your favorite airline (any airline) and you will be eligible to receive statement credits to cover up to $200 for any incidental fees from that airline (checked luggage fees, in-flight food/drinks, on-board entertainment, etc).
$100,000 Travel Accident Insurance
As the old saying goes, plan for the best but prepare for the worst. When you're traveling as an eligible common carrier conveyance passenger (on a plane, ship, bus, or train) you are insured by up to $100,000 in the event of dismemberment or accidental death (in which case your beneficiaries would be paid). Simply pay for eligible travel with your AmEx Platinum charge card - it's that easy. If you were to buy such coverage on your own, it would cost you quite a bit of money, especially for international travel.
This is another valuable benefit which the Platinum Card provides. For carry on and checked luggage, you're covered for up to $3,000. Keep in mind this is on top of the airline’s coverage, so your total coverage is even higher. To qualify for this no-cost benefit, just pay for your ticket using your American Express Platinum Card.
Transfer Points To Frequent Flyer Programs
The value of this benefit cannot be overstated. Only Membership Rewards let's you transfer points directly to mileage programs at over 20 airlines and hotels (see list at right).
This makes your points more valuable, because the conversion to miles is on a 1 for 1 basis with most airlines.
So instead of spending 25,000 points on a $250 retail gift card, you could convert the points to 25,000 frequent flyer miles with a participating airline of your choice. As you know, FF miles are usually worth much more than a penny per point, since you can redeem flights at set increments (like 25k miles for domestic roundtrip).
That means your actual realized value may be up to 2-3 cents or more per point, when compared to the cost of buying the same ticket on your own (i.e. using 25,000 miles for a roundtrip ticket that would normally cost you $600).
Warning: There are many credit cards on the market that advertise "miles" that can be used on "any airline, any flight, anytime." Those are NOT airline frequent flyer miles. They basically operate like cash back cards, because each "mile" is worth exactly $0.01 that can be applied towards the purchase of a flight. Only AmEx allows you to convert points into real miles on 20+ airline/hotel programs.
Hotel & Other Travel Perks:
Free Hotel Upgrades & Benefits
AmEx has partnered with over 700 hotels/resorts to offer a wide array of perks and upgrades. This program is called Fine Hotels & Resorts and it is exclusive to Platinum & Centurion "black card" members:
As you can imagine, this is an extremely valuable benefit which will save you a lot of money. In fact based on double occupancy, you're getting over $450 in complimentary benefits each time you use it!
- Free room upgrade when you check-in, if available
- 4:00 PM late checkout
- Complimentary breakfast for two each morning
- Additional perks like $100 food/drink/spa credits, complimentary third night stays, etc. are offered at many properties
No Foreign Transaction Fees
Almost every credit card on the market tacks on a 3% surcharge for purchases made outside the US (and even purchases made inside the US get slapped with the fee if the company is based elsewhere). With this AmEx you will never endure a surcharge.
Personal Concierge Service
Odds are that you’re probably too busy with work to be hassled with the tedious things in life… making dinner reservations, booking travel, or having to call around to locate that hard-to-find item.
Fortunately, you now have the benefit of a personal concierge service to handle virtually any request, any time, anywhere. Simply call your personal concierge directly, tell them what you want, and they will do all the leg work. This is especially useful if you’re trying to get last minute dinner reservations or sold out tickets.
Roadside Assistance Coverage
(up to a $200 value per year)
Why spend money on an AAA membership? As part of your Platinum Card membership, you’re covered up to four service calls per year, with $50 of coverage each time, in the US, Canada, and Puerto Rico.
Car Rental Collision Coverage
Pay for your rental car using your American Express Platinum and you’re covered in the event of an eligible collision.
This is especially helpful in foreign countries that have narrower streets and more aggressive drivers than what we’re typically accustomed to. Please note there are a few countries which are not included (six excluded at the time of this review). Customer service can provide you the details.
Premium Car Rental Program
Enjoy the privilege of skipping lines and paperwork, going straight to your car. Get free vehicle upgrades and savings when available. These perks and others are made possible through your complimentary enrollment in Hertz #1 Club Gold, National Car Rental’s Emerald Club, and Avis Preferred.
Normally to obtain these status levels, you would need to pay fees and/or be a frequent customer. However Platinum Cardmembers are granted access to these programs for no additional cost, regardless of how often (or not) they rent from these companies.
How many times have you bought something new which is accidentally damaged, lost, or even stolen a few days or weeks later? Whether its a pricy article of clothing, electronics, or something else... if you bought it with your Platinum Card, your eligible purchases are protected!
For the first 90 days on eligible purchases, you're covered up to $10,000 per occurrence (up to $50,000 per calendar year) to repair, replace, or reimburse you for the affected item(s). This is truly one of the most valuable American Express Platinum card benefits; I have used it on numerous occasions. It’s a very simple process (all it took was a phone call for me) and it saved a great deal of money, which I otherwise would have lost.
At one time or another, we’ve all bought something that we later could not return. Whether we lost the receipt or the store simply doesn’t accept returns, if you made that purchase with your Platinum charge card, then American Express will accept your return and reimburse you, up to $300 per item, $1,000 annually.
Automatic Extended Warranty
Being that most merchandise is made overseas these days, an extended warranty is now more important than ever. However if you’re a smart shopper, skip the extended warranty at checkout and instead just pay for any eligible merchandise using your AmEx Platinum Card. They automatically double the original manufacturer’s U.S. warranty coverage, up to one full additional year. You’re protected up to $10,000 per item, $50,000 per year. So enjoy piece of mind next time you buy that eligible flat screen or computer. Like the other Platinum Card benefits, this doesn't cost you anything extra.
Only the Platinum and Centurion "black card" participate in the Membership Rewards First (MRF) program, which is AmEx's highest level of rewards. Redeem your MRF points for travel, merchandise, and just about anything else at very favorable conversion rates (your points go far). You get 1 point per dollar on virtually every dollar spent and they never expire.
I know a longtime Centurion cardmember whom recently switched back to the Platinum since many of the benefits are identical. The biggest difference is that the Centurion will cost you $7,500 in fees just for the first year, while the Platinum Card is only $450 and you still get all of the above benefits... it easily pays for itself many times over!
Using the link below, the spend requirement to earn the bonus is only $2k within your first 3 months.
Use this link to earn 25K Membership Rewards points after you spend $2,000 during your first three months of Card membership