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American Express Platinum

Jan 07, 2024 By Triston Martin

Even among the "premium" cards, which we can approximately describe as those with annual fees of $250 or more, some cards are more premium than others. This is true even within the ranks of premium cards. The primary reason many exist in the first place is to provide ordinary people with a flavor of the high-end lifestyle. Others, on the other hand, are intended to enhance the luxury lifestyle of those currently pursuing it as a more pleasurable experience.

The card's annual fee of $695, which was previously $550 but was increased to that amount on July 1, 2021, is among the highest in the industry. However, payment of that fee grants access to an extensive array of benefits centered on travel, entertainment, dining, shopping, and wellness. It is about more than reducing financial costs. Getting more value out of the money you spend is the goal here. The original luxury card might be the right choice if you have a high spending capacity and expectations.

Key Features

  • Card type: Travel and upscale accommodations.
  • Cost per year: $695.

Bonus offer:

You will be rewarded with 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after making purchases totaling $6,000 on your new Card during the first six months of your Card Membership. There are certain restrictions.

Rewards:

  • Five Membership Rewards points will be awarded for every dollar spent on booked flights directly with airlines or through American Express Travel, up to a maximum annual spending limit of $500,000.
  • Five points will be awarded for every dollar spent on prepaid hotel reservations made via American Express Travel.
  • One point will be awarded for every dollar spent on any other purchases.

The basic value of a Membership Rewards point ranges from around half a penny to one cent, depending on how the points are redeemed. In most cases, the most valuable redemption options involve travel and gift cards.

The points may also be transferred to other travel reward programs, and the value of those points can increase further if they are redeemed after being transferred. When redeemed in this manner, estimates that each Membership Reward point is worth up to 2 cents, which means that travelers who take advantage of the transfer possibilities have a good chance of maximizing the value of their points.

This Card is Best For

This card is especially suited for frequent travelers with a high spending capacity and a desire to travel in luxury with access to various upscale benefits. The rewards rate of five points for every dollar spent on hotels and airlines is one of the highest rewards rates that can be found on any travel credit card. Additionally, this card stands out from other premium credit cards on the market thanks to its variety of travel perks.

However, generous rewards are required for this card for it to be worthwhile, as the annual fee of $695 is one of the highest available on the market. That expenditure may be recouped via a variety of spending combinations; however, none of those combinations include spending that is considered to be moderate.

For instance, if you spend $10,000 a year on flights, you will receive 50,000 points, which can be redeemed for $500 in ticket purchases through American Express Travel. These points can also be used for other travel-related purchases. You would earn an extra 30,000 points if you spent an additional $6,000 on hotels each year, and those points would be worth $210 if used on hotel purchases made via American Express Travel.

Therefore, if you spent that combination of money, you would receive the equivalent of $710 from your resultant points, making the membership cost worthwhile. However, to receive that incentive, you will need to spend $16,000, which accounts for travel and lodging costs. Using this card would only earn about $60 or so on that extra spending due to its meager point-per-dollar-spent default rewards rate.

Rewards Redemption

You need to be registered in American Express's Membership Rewards plan and charge a qualifying transaction to your American Express Platinum card via the American Express travel program to be able to redeem points and pay for them with them.

Following the completion of a transaction, points will be subtracted from your account while the monetary value will be added to the card. The remaining balance will be left on the card if the points are insufficient to pay the transaction's total cost. A minimum of 5,000 points is required to make a redemption with Amex.

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