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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here – Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card from American Express, Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express

Many people have reported being targeted for the 100,000 point offer for The Platinum Card from American Express through the CardMatch Tool. Be sure to check for yourself to see what offers are available to you (there is no credit check)!

This past week, TPG reader JG tweeted me to ask:

@thepointsguy I’m going on a two-week trip and staying at Starwood hotels. Is it more worthwhile to use my SPG Amex or the Amex Platinum, which  just offered me 50,000 points for a $5,000 spend?”

I would recommend putting the actual hotel spend on the Starwood Preferred Guest American Express (which, for the month of June 2014, is offering a sign-up bonus of 30,000 miles for new cardholders) – unless any of those hotels are outside of the U.S. Unfortunately, the SPG Amex charges foreign transaction fees, so I don’t recommend using it while abroad. The fees you would accrue from an overseas spend could easily negate most, if not all, of the value of your Starpoints.

While in other countries, use a card like The Platinum Card from American Express, which charges no foreign transaction fees (and recently added some great new benefits for travelers). Personally, I use the Chase Sapphire Preferred card for all my international hotel stays, because not only does it have no foreign transaction fees, but I also earn 2.14 valuable Chase Ultimate Rewards points for every dollar spent.

The Starwood Preferred Guest American Express is the right choice for Starwood hotels stays - unless the properties are overseas
The SPG American Express is the right choice for Starwood stays in the U.S., but foreign transaction fees make it a poor choice when staying in Starwood properties abroad

One of my wishes for 2014 is that SPG Amex will dump their dopey foreign transaction fees, just like the Delta Amex cards did in May. SPG is a global hotel brand, and I think it would behoove them greatly to make it more practical for loyal SPG customers to use the company’s co-branded credit card at their own properties – no matter where they happen to be located.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Up to $200 for Uber rides annually. Credit and Uber VIP status available to Basic Card Member only.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com.
  • As a Platinum Card Member, you can enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
N/A
Annual Fee
$550
Balance Transfer Fee
See Terms
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.