- 5X Membership Rewards® Points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel
- 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels through American Express Travel
- Annual $200 statement credit on airline incidentals
- Statement credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck
- Access to the American Express Global Lounge Collection
- VIP status and $200 Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually
- Complimentary Gold status in Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors programs
- Complimentary membership in premium car rental programs
- Regular Purchase APR: See Pay Over Time APR
- Cash Advance APR: 25.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
- Penalty APR: See Rates & Fees
- Annual Fee: $550
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
At a Glance
Luxury is always within reach when you use The Platinum Card® from American Express. This exclusive rewards card offers premium travel rewards, a substantial 60,000 bonus points, and a host of additional perks for the savvy voyager. Uber Cash and complimentary lounge access are just a few of the more practical perks that lend ongoing value to Platinum Card members beyond the impressive signup bonus.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Travel often and can take advantage of a myriad of benefits including access to airport lounges and Uber credits
- Intend to sign up for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
- Prefer airline flexibility when redeeming their points for travel
- Are likely spend $5,000 within their first 3 months
- Will take advantage of exclusive events and experiences available only to Platinum cardholders
American Express Platinum Card® Review
Superior features, earning potential, and cardholder perks elevate the American Express Platinum Card® to a distinctly different level than other travel rewards cards. Granted, such exclusive treatment will cost a pretty penny – a $550 annual fee to be exact – but for those that like to travel in style, this card easily recoups the upfront cost with a bevy of statement credit opportunities and complimentary upgrades.
Earning Points with the American Express Platinum Card®
Despite of its frills, this card boasts a forthright rewards system that makes earning points painless. In terms of earning potential, the American Express Platinum Card® provides 5X points on flights booked with any airline directly. You also earn 5X points for flights and prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel. Bookings can be made over the phone or online with American Express Travel. All other purchases earn 1X point per dollar.
To start, new cardholders will earn a signup bonus of 60,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 within the first 3 months of opening the account. This is equal to about $600 toward flights. That’s a pretty heavy spending requirement – a little over $1,600 per month – which is why this card is best suited for those who have a significant annual travel budget.
Flexible Airline Rewards
The flexibility of the American Express Platinum travel card makes it a great option for those who aren’t loyal to a particular airline or want more than just travel perks. As such, point earnings can be redeemed for:
- Travel, including flights, cruises and hotels
- Merchandise through select stores
- Gift cards from select companies
- Statement credits toward eligible purchases on your bill
That said, you also have the option to transfer your rewards to a number of partnered loyalty programs. More importantly, you’ll need to choose a particular airline in order to access the $200 airline fee credit this card includes.
Each year you can select an eligible carrier and put this credit toward baggage fees and other incidentals, as long as you use your card to pay. Qualifying companies include but aren’t limited to: Hawaiian Airlines, Delta, Spirit, Southwest and Alaska Airlines.
This flexibility means you may miss out on some of the loyalty perks that dedicated airline cards typically provide, such as complimentary tickets or in-flight discounts. However, you’ll be able to put your points toward the carrier with the best price for your travel plans.
Note: You may need to have a minimum amount of points in order to start redeeming, depending on your redemption option. For example, you need at least 5,000 points to redeem with American Express Travel. After cashing in your introductory bonus, you’ll need to spend about $1,000 to build your points back up to this level.
If you’re looking to upgrade your trip from start to finish, The Platinum Card won’t disappoint. In addition to improving your in-flight experience, this card begins to offer perks before you even board the plane.
For starters, you can skip the check-in line with a $100 credit for Global Entry, or an $85 credit for TSA Pre✓® – whichever is charged to the card account first. (It’s worth noting that Global Entry includes TSA PreCheck, so it’s worth the extra $15 if you travel internationally often.) These credits are renewable every 4 or 4.5 years respectively, since you’re required to reapply.
Once you’re through security, your airport experience becomes even more enjoyable thanks to the American Express Global Lounge connection. Lounge access is one of the standout features of The American Express Platinum credit card, as it requires no spending minimum unlike traditional airline cards. With this benefit you can enter over 1,200 airport lounges in 130 countries, including:
- The Centurion® Lounge
- International American Express
- Delta Sky Club
- Priority Pass Select
Upgrade Your Stay
The benefits of The Platinum Card don’t end at the runway. Cardholders will also receive $15 in Uber Cash each month (and $20 in December). This boasts a total value of $200, which will come in handy for those trips to and from the airport. That way, you can forget paying expensive parking fees, or begging friends and family members to navigate the terminal for you.
If you’ve booked a hotel through American Express Travel for two consecutive nights, you’ll also enjoy a $100 hotel credit that can used on spa, dining, or resort activities. In addition, you get complimentary breakfast for two, room upgrades, early check-in (when available) and late check out, as well as free Wi-Fi. All this is estimated at about a $550 value, and you can choose from over 1,000 luxury properties.
Other American Express Platinum Card ® Benefits
When sizing up that American Express Platinum Card annual fee, you’ll want to analyze all the perks this card offers. Luckily, this card boasts many other benefits on top of those available for travel and hotel stays. Some of the most notable perks include:
- No foreign transaction fees
- Two $50 statement credits each year for Saks Fifth Avenue purchases, with no minimum required
- Platinum Card Concierge to help you organize your reservations or tickets to an event
- Exclusive events organized by American Express for Platinum cardholders
- Preferred seating at events when available
- InCircle Points can be redeemed for $100 gift cards to Neiman Marcus and other high-end stores
- Year-End Summaries, which can make it easy to prepare for tax season
To get a better sense of what your points are worth and the best way to spend them, you can use the Membership Rewards point calculator. Remember to select The Platinum Card to ensure you get the most accurate estimates.
Should You Apply for The Platinum Card®?
If you’re still wondering, “Is the American Express Platinum Card worth it?” it helps to take a step back. With an annual fee of $550, you’ll want to take advantage of all the statement credits and other perks the card offers to make it worthwhile.
The $200 airline fee credit, combined with $100 for Global Entry, $200 in Uber Cash and the $100 hotel credit already gives you a value of $600 in your first year. During years when you can’t cash in on Global Entry, you’ll have a difference of about $50.
Add on the 5X points for flights and prepaid hotels, and you can likely make up that difference just by booking one international trip. This doesn’t include the value of your lounge access, discounts on exclusive events, or any of the other hidden perks this card offers.
In short, this card is chock-full of convenience and ensures that you feel like a VIP whenever and however you travel. However, great perks come with great responsibility. High APRs and late fees are not for the lighthearted; it’s important to keep that in mind when considering if you meet the American Express Platinum Card® requirements. This isn’t a card you necessarily want to carry a balance with, if you can help it.
If you’re not quite ready for such a hefty annual fee, compare the American Express Gold Card® vs Platinum. The Gold Card offers 4X points on dining and groceries, along with 3X points for travel, for $250 annually. This could be a great way to work up to Platinum one day, since customers who carry both have the Gold Card’s annual fee waived.