Today I want to talk to you about my favorite American Express Credit Card. Here’s my review of the American Express Platinum Card. So this card had an annual fee of $550 and it just got raised to $695. Will I keep it? Will it still be my favorite card?
** At the time of writing, you can get 125,000 Membership Rewards. This is an excellent sign-up bonus! The usual bonus is 60,00 Membership Rewards.
Probably the number one reason I keep my Amex Platinum card is that it gives me access to the very best airport lounges. Although I love to travel, hanging out at an airport waiting to board or passing time during a connecting flight is one of my least favorite things to do! Being able to go to a nice airport lounge and relax takes all the sting out of that. I can find a comfy seat, watch a movie on my computer, find something to eat and drink and use a clean bathroom. I have even taken a nap in a recliner and, even better, I have taken a shower after several transcontinental flights! This really lets me feel refreshed and ready to go sightseeing when I arrive at my destination.
The American Express Platinum Card gives access to the best lounges, in my opinion with their Global Lounge Collection. These include:
That is a lot of lounges! With my American Express Platinum Card, I can literally find an airport lounge at almost any airport I travel to! Usually, it costs $35-$50 to enter an airport lounge. I value it at at least $20 and probably use one for myself and a friend 8 times a year. Conservatively, I value this benefit at $300+. I often use an airport lounge when I arrive at an airport and then during a connection. Most often, a friend or spouse is enjoying the benefits also! Trust me, once you spend time in an airport lounge, you won’t want to pass them up! My #1 reason to keep the American Express Platinum Card is being able to go to all these amazing lounges.
With this benefit, you have to preselect an airline that you will use this on. You can change this each year in January. Because I fly United a lot, that is the airline I have selected. These incidentals include checked bags and in-flight refreshments, and lounge passes. Because I have cards that usually cover my checked bag, I usually buy United Lounge passes for when I fly United since this card doesn’t cover a United Lounge. This is not the greatest benefit, but I use it anyway.
I always use this credit. It is available on a semi-annual basis, $50 during the first 6 months of the year, $50 during the last 6 months. I usually buy my more expensive creams or makeup with this credit. I can always find a code for free shipping so I basically am paying nothing for something I’d buy anyway.
If you use Uber regularly, this is a great benefit! Each month you can get a $15 Uber credit and in December a second $20 credit. All you need to do is pay with your Platinum card and signup ahead of time. You’ll even get a Uber VIP status so you’ll be matched with top-rated drivers! This is definitely worth $200 a year. Even better, you can also use it on Uber Eats! You can even get an Eats Pass, which gives you an unlimited $0 Delivery Fee and 5% off orders over $15 at eligible restaurants. this is complimentary for 12 months when you sign up with your Platinum Card. You can read here how to do that.
Every four years you have the opportunity to get a credit of $85 for TSA Precheck or $100 for Global Entry. This lets you breeze through security!
Just by holding the American Express Platinum Card, you suddenly have Gold Status with Hilton and Marriot hotel chains. Here’s what you can expect for those benefits:
Hotel status is another perk that makes every stay valuable and makes the high annual fee worth keeping the card.
One of the top ways to use your card is to pay for flights where you will earn 5 Membership Rewards for every dollar spent. This can really add up. You can also earn the same rate by booking hotels through amextravel.com. You will earn 1 Membership Reward for every dollar spent elsewhere. Additionally, you will earn 10x for evey dollar spent on restaurants and small businesses for the first six months you have the card – this is huge!
Let’s go over the new benefits now to see if they make up for the $145 increase in price.
With the new credits I will save get my Clear membership for free. I find this to make up for the $145 increase in price. Additionally, I will use the hotel credit each year and the streaming credits. It will also be nice to have that cell phone protection. All in all, the increased benefits more than make up for the increased cost.
Membership Rewards are the name of the points you get when you charge through your American Express Platinum Card. What we love about them is that they are transferable points. That means you can use them to transfer to select airline and hotel points. I have most recently used some of mine to transfer to Delta and a last-minute trip to Maui last winter.
Airline and Hotel partners include:
Not every transfer is a 1:1 transfer but many are. Additionally, there are often times when the transfer is a special deal and you can get more miles/points for your Membership Rewards.
My American Express Platinum Card is one of my favorite cards. I believe I will still get more value from it than the $695 I will have to pay for it annually. The important thing to remember is that the first year you apply for it you get bonus points too for meeting minimum spend. Currently, that signup bonus is 100,000 Membership Rewards after a minimum spend of $6,000 in six months. The usual sign-up bonus is 60,000 Membership Rewards.
With that 100,000 Membership Rewards, I could get at a one-way ticket in a business class seat. Or even better, I could book a roundtrip ticket on ANA to Japan and fly business. A one-way business class ticket would be worth more than $4,000 so I find the annual fee worth it the first year for sure. Try it for that first year and see if you want to keep it in your wallet indefinitely, like me! I hope my review of the American Express Platinum Card will entice you to try it out. What are your thoughts? Are the benefits worth the increased price for the annual fee?
Affiliate Disclosure: Travel Hacking Mom uses affiliate links. We may receive compensation if you use our links when applying for a credit card at no extra cost to you. This compensation does not impact how or where products appear on this site. Travel Hacking Mom has not reviewed all available credit card offers on this site. Thank you so much if you use our links!
Editorial Note: The editorial content on this site is not provided by credit card issuer. All opinions, reviews, and recommendations are expressed by the author, not the credit card issuer.