AmEx Platinum Card Review (2018.10 Update: 75k Offer)

The Platinum Card from American Express Review

Application Link

  • AmEx Platinum. Possible to see 75k offer with $5,000 spending requirement. Note that you have to use the incognito mode or empty the cache in your browser to see the 75k offer. If you can only see the 60k offer, please try a few more times. Now the offer differs by location, you may need a VPN to see the big offer, see How to Use VPN to Get Amex Big Offers for details.
  • AmEx Platinum public link. If you can’t see the higher offer with the above link, you can also try this link.
  • CardMatch is a place to check targeted offer. You may get a 100k pre-qualify offer (after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months), the chance is very low though.

Benefits

  1. 75k offer: earn 75,000 Membership Rewards (MR) Points after spending $5,000 in first 3 months. The best public offer in recent years is 100k MR, and you may also get 100k targeted offer if you never have an AmEx card. Considering you can only get each AmEx credit card bonus once per lifetime, DO NOT APPLY when the offer is not 100k. If you are interested in the benefits of this card and can’t wait for the 100k offer to come, you can consider similar cards: AmEx Platinum Card for AmeripriseAmEx Platinum Card for Mercedes-Benz, or AmEx Platinum for Schwab. We estimate that Membership Rewards (MR) are worth about 1.6 cents/point, see below for a brief introduction. So the 100k highest welcome offer is worth about $1600!
  2. Earn 5x MR points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  3. Earn 5x MR points for hotels booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel. Earn 1 Membership Rewards Point per $1 spent on all  other purchases.
  4. $200 airline fee credit for incidental charges such as checked bags per calendar year. Because this benefit resets according to calendar year instead of when you opened the card, you can actually get airline fee credit TWICE during the first year! Note that this benefit is not automatically enrolled, you need to enroll and specify an airline by clicking here.
  5. $200 annual Uber credits ($15 per month, $35 in December). The credits will expire every month.
  6. New: $100 annual Saks Fifth Avenue credit: That’s up to $50 in statement credits from January through June and up to $50 in statement credits from July through December. Both online and in store will work. No minimum purchase required. Enrollment required.
  7. Complimentary access to the following airport lounges:
    • Priority Pass Select (PPS), you need to enroll it by yourself, and then a Priority Pass Select card will be mailed to you, free for up to 2 companions, note that AmEx issued PPS cards no longer give restaurant credit (they can only be used in PPS airport lounges);
    • Centurion Lounges, free for up to 2 companions;
    • Delta Sky Clubs, you need a Delta boarding pass on the same day, $29 per companion;
    • Airspace Lounges, free for up to 2 companions.
  8. Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Status. Use this link to activate.
  9. Complimentary Hilton Gold Status. Use this link to activate.
  10. Complimentary membership for Avis, Hertz, and National membership. Use this link to activate.
  11. Up to $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck application fee.
  12. Fine Hotels and Resorts (FHR): if you book hotels through FHR, you can enjoy the benefits of elite members; such as room upgrades, free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, etc. The benefits vary by hotels.
  13. Platinum Card Concierge service: for the busy or even lazy, you can use this service to book hotels or reserve restaurants and so on, the service is said to be very, very good.
  14. With this credit card, you can get access to Amex Offers, which often offers very good discounts at some stores. In the past we have seen offers like: Spend $15 or more and get $5 back at Walmart; Spend $75 or more and get $25 back on Amazon.com.
  15. No foreign transaction fee.
  16. Authorized users also have access to the airport lounges mentioned above, and each of them can get complimentary hotel status. The $200 annual air credit is shared between cardholder and authorized users.
  17. This card is relatively easy to get approved for because it is a Charge Card, not a Credit Card. Charge card means that you don’t have the option to pay only minimum payment, you have to pay your balance in full on the due dates. Note that Charge Card applications will also result in a Hard Pull, just like Credit Card applications.
  18. Charge Cards have no pre-set spending limit.
  19. Refer a friend: You can earn 15,000 bonus MR points for every approved account you refer, up to 55,000 MR points per calendar year.

Disadvantages

  1. $550 annual fee, NOT waived for the first year. Note that annual fee does not count towards the minimum spending requirement (and this is true for all credit cards)! 
  2. For up to three Additional Platinum Cards, the total annual fee is $175.

Introduction to MR Points

  • You can earn MR points with AmEx ED, AmEx EDP, AmEx Green, AmEx Gold, AmEx Platinum, AmEx Platinum for Schwab, AmEx Platinum for Morgan Stanley, AmEx Blue Business Plus, AmEx Business Green, AmEx Business Gold, AmEx Business Platinum, etc.
  • The MR points you earn on different MR cards will automatically go to the same MR account.
  • MR points never expire. You will not lose the MR points on one card if you close the account, but you will lose all of the MR points if you close all of the MR cards. In order to avoid losing your MR points, we recommend to keep the no annual fee AmEx ED.
  • If you have any of the MR cards, MR points can be transferred to some airline miles. One of the most common and best way to use MR points is to 1:1 transfer them to All Nippon Airways (ANA, NH) miles (Star Alliance). Other good options are: Air Canada (AC) (Star Alliance), Delta Air Lines (DL) (SkyTeam), British Airways (BA) (Oneworld), Asia Miles (Oneworld), Singapore Airlines (SQ) (Star Alliance), Flying Blue (SkyTeam), Virgin Atlantic (VS) (Non-alliance), etc. If you use MR in this way, the value is about 1.6 cents/point.
  • If you have any of the MR cards, you can redeem your MR points at a fixed rate about 1 cent/point towards air tickets on AmEx travel portal.
  • If you have AmEx Platinum for Schwab, you can redeem your MR points at a fixed rate 1.25 cents/point towards cash. If you don't want to spend time studying airline miles, this is a pretty good way to cash out the points. If you don't have this card, you can only redeem your MR points at a fixed rate 0.6 cents/point towards cash.
  • In summary, we estimate that MR points are worth about 1.6 cents/point.
  • For more information about MR points, see Maximize the Credit Card Points Values (overview), and Introduction to MR: How to Earn and Introduction to MR: How to Use (very detailed).

Recommended Application Time

  1. You can only get the welcome bonus once in a lifetime, so be sure to apply when the historical highest offer appears.
  2. AmEx doesn’t care about the number of hard pulls.
  3. You can try to apply for it when you have a credit history of 6 months.
  4. You must wait at least 90 days between the application for different flavors of AmEx Platinum cards, otherwise the application will be cancelled.

Summary

There used to be 100k public offers (that last less than one day) a few years ago, but since the annual fee is increased to $550, 100k public offers are never seen. Now only a few lucky people can get 100k targeted offer. The usual welcome offer is 75k (if you try hard in incognito mode and with good IP address). It is also a very good offer, and ranks #1 in our welcome offer rank in most days. If you are interested in the benefits of this card, and still want to wait for the 100k offer to come, you can also consider similar cards: AmEx Platinum Card for Schwab or AmEx Platinum for Morgan Stanley. Although this card comes with a $550 annual fee, some of the benefits can offset it by quite a bit: the $200 air incidental credit is a bit hard to get nowadays, so we value it at 70% of its face value and that’s about $140; the $200 Uber credit is distributed and expires every month, so we also use 70% of its face value which is about $140; the $100 Saks credit is worth about $70 if also valued at 70% face value. Then what’s left is about $200 equivalent annual fee. You can earn 5x MR points on air tickets with this card, and it is the best earning rate across all cards. Also this card now comes with a trip delay insurance which can be triggered by a 6+hrs delay, so this card is the best card to buy air tickets. There are also a lot of other benefits such as more lounge access than other premium cards, the FHR, etc. If you can take advantage of these benefits, this card may be a keeper.

If one day you don’t want to keep this card any more, but still want your remaining MR points, you can apply for the AmEx EveryDay (ED) (no annual fee) to keep the MR points and use them in the future.

To Do List After You Get The Card

  1. Enroll in Airline Incidental Fee Credit benefit and choose a carrier. You must enroll and choose a carrier prior to making a reimbursable purchase.
  2. Add your card to Uber or UberEats.
  3. Enroll in Saks Credit benefit.
  4. Enroll in Priority Pass Select (PPS) lounge benefit.
  5. Enroll in Marriott Bonvoy Gold status.
  6. Enroll in Hilton Gold status.
  7. Enroll for Avis, Hertz and NationalCar Rental status privileges.
  8. Enroll in Boingo American Express Preferred Plan (Wi-Fi internet access). [Update: This benefit is removed as of 2019.05.01]
  9. Apply for ($100 reimbursement) or TSA PreCheck ($85 reimbursement).

Related Credit Cards

Note that, although the look and benefits of the following cards are almost the same, they are different products, and they don’t affect each other’s welcome offer. See this post for the comparison of benefits.



Recommended Downgrade Options

  • AmEx Gold
  • You can not downgrade this card to any card with no annual fee.

After Applying

  • Click here to check application status.
  • AmEx reconsideration backdoor number: 877-399-3083. The “real” backdoor number of Amex is well protected. Different from Chase, the representatives from this AmEx reconsideration backdoor number only have the right to help you submit requests.

Historical Offers Chart

Application Link

  • AmEx Platinum. Possible to see 75k offer with $5,000 spending requirement. Note that you have to use the incognito mode or empty the cache in your browser to see the 75k offer. If you can only see the 60k offer, please try a few more times. Now the offer differs by location, you may need a VPN to see the big offer, see How to Use VPN to Get Amex Big Offers for details.
  • AmEx Platinum public link. If you can’t see the higher offer with the above link, you can also try this link.
  • CardMatch is a place to check targeted offer. You may get a 100k pre-qualify offer (after spending $5,000 in the first 3 months), the chance is very low though.

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