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This might be the best Amex card combo: Amex Gold and Amex Business Platinum

Nov. 27, 2022
11 min read
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Given how fluid points and miles programs can be, we often advise in favor of diversifying the types of travel rewards you earn. After all, you wouldn’t want to spend years saving up rewards points only to see that dream flight or night slip out of reach when a program suddenly devalues (or eliminates) its award chart.

However, it’s sometimes a good idea double down with a specific rewards program – especially if it’s one where the points are transferable to a number of different airlines and hotels. And it can make even more sense when one or more of the cards that earns those points is posting a particularly high welcome bonus.

One such program is American Express Membership Rewards. Not only do these points transfer to Amex's airline and hotel loyalty partners, but they are also redeemable in any number of other ways. Plus, the cards that participate in the program are also some of the best in the rewards space.

Among them, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express and the American Express® Gold Card are currently offering phenomenal, introductory welcome offers that might have you considering whether to apply for one, the other, or both.

In fact, pairing the Amex Business Platinum and Amex Gold cards might be the best Amex card duo possible, thanks to their highly complementary earning structures and benefits packages.

By carrying both and using them for different purposes, you can rake in even more points, even faster, while enjoying all the benefits the Amex Business Platinum confers and the Amex Gold’s stellar earning rates.

Here are some of the reasons you might want to keep both in your wallet.

Related: The power of the Amex trifecta: Platinum, Gold and Blue Business Plus® Credit Card from American Express

Two cards, two bonuses

THE POINTS GUY

Let’s get the awkward part out of the way. Both cards charge pretty high annual fees – $695 for the Amex Business Platinum (see rates and fees) and $250 for the Amex Gold (see rates and fees). That’s up to $945 in fees each year, which is pretty costly — but can be offset by these cards' introductory offers, some of the best we've ever seen.

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The Amex Business Platinum has a welcome offer that lets you earn 120,000 bonus points by spending $15,000 on purchases in the first three months of card membership. Get the Amex Gold and spend $4,000 in the first six months of card membership, and you earn another 60,000 bonus points.

Without even taking their bonus spending categories into account, you’d be looking at an overall points haul of at least 180,000 Amex Membership Rewards points by hitting those requirements. TPG currently values Amex points at 2 cents apiece, so that’s around $3,600 in value – though potentially much more, depending on how you redeem them.

Related: Everything you need to know about Amex Membership Rewards

Sure, that’s a lot of money to lay out, but if you’re strategic and have some work and personal expenses coming up that you can leverage to meet a new card’s minimum spending requirement, this could be an excellent one-two option.

Another reason you might want to consider applying for these two cards, in particular, is if you already have, or even if you had in the past but have subsequently closed another Amex product. For instance, if you currently carry The Platinum Card® from American Express or the American Express® Business Gold Card, or had it in the past and closed it, you might be ineligible to earn its welcome offer again per Amex’s application eligibility rules. If you haven’t had the Amex Gold Card or the Amex Business Platinum, though, these two cards could be some of your best bets to keep on accruing Amex points at a healthy clip.

Related: Card showdown: Amex Business Gold vs. Amex Business Platinum

Keep things professional

Speaking of card combinations, there are many great reasons why you might want to get both a personal and business card. Doing so can help you separate your work and personal expenses. Putting higher, work-related spending on a business card can keep that activity off your personal credit report – which can, in turn, help raise your personal credit score by lowering your debt-to-credit utilization ratio.

The Amex Business Platinum’s business-related statement credits and special earning rates (see below) are two more great reasons to put your work-related spending on that card instead of a personal one. Then you can designate the Amex Gold Card for more everyday things like groceries and dining expenses.

Earning overdrive

One of the biggest selling points to getting both the Amex Business Platinum and the Amex Gold Card is how you can mix and match their bonus earning opportunities to maximize your everyday spending.

Use the Amex Gold Card to rack up 4 points per dollar on dining at restaurants and groceries at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 a year, then 1 point per dollar), plus 3 points per dollar on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.

Use the Amex Business Platinum for 5 points per dollar on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com, plus 1.5 points per dollar on eligible purchases at U.S. construction material and hardware suppliers; electronic goods retailers and software & cloud system providers; shipping providers; and on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more everywhere else (up to $2 million per calendar year total).

ISABELLE RAPHAEL/THE POINTS GUY

Related: Use these cards to maximize large purchases

To get a bit more granular, if you tend to book airline tickets directly with airlines, you can continue doing so with the Amex Gold Card since it earns 3 points per dollar whether you use it to pay through the airline or Amex Travel.

However, if you can shift more of your travel bookings to Amex Travel, you can leverage the Amex Business Platinum’s 5 points per dollar earning rate not just on airfare but also on prepaid hotels.

You can book hotels through Amex’s Hotel Collection with either card. The Amex Gold Card earns 2 points per dollar on those bookings, while the Amex Business Platinum earns 5 points per dollar. However, with the Amex Business Platinum, you also have access to even higher-end properties and more valuable perks through Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts.

Related: Everything you need to know about The Hotel Collection, an under-the-radar Amex Gold perk

Stretch your points further

Amex has a Pay with Points feature, where you can redeem Membership Rewards for reservations made directly through Amex Travel. You get 1 cent per point toward flights, and less than that for other types of bookings, such as hotel stays.

However, Amex Business Platinum cardmembers receive a 35% rebate using Pay with Points in two circumstances:

  • For a first- or business-class ticket on any airline.
  • For a ticket in any cabin on the same airline they designate for their annual up to $200 airline fee credit.

This benefit is capped at 1 million rebated points per calendar year (so you’d have to redeem around 2.86 million points to max it out). By using points from your Amex Business Platinum account and receiving that 35% rebate, you automatically up your points from 1 cent apiece to 1.54 cents – a 54% premium.

ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY

While Pay with Points isn’t for everyone, there are a few great reasons to use it. First, you get a solid value of 1 cent per point redeemed this way (or more with the Amex Business Platinum). Second, you don’t have to worry about transfer partners or times or award availability with a particular airline. Finally, when you redeem via Pay with Points, it’s basically like paying cash for your ticket, so you still earn elite miles and credit for your travel.

Related: How to decide whether to use cash or miles for airline tickets

Statement credits galore

The final reason for carrying both the Amex Business Platinum and the Amex Gold Card is to stack their various statement credits.

The Amex Gold Card provides up to $10 per month in Uber credits toward either rides or Uber Eats orders in the U.S., plus a further $10 per month in dining credits as enumerated above for a potential total of $240 in statement credits each year. If you use the card to make a The Hotel Collection booking of two nights or more, you get a $100 onsite credit for qualifying activities. Enrollment required for select benefits.

Related: How to use Amex Gold’s new $10 monthly Uber credit

For its part, the Amex Business Platinum comes with a plethora of statement credits. Among those to look out for are up to $400 per year in statement credits toward Dell purchases, up to $360 per year with Indeed, up to $150 per year with Adobe and up to $120 toward wireless phone bills. For business travelers, the card also comes with up to $200 in annual airline incidental fee credits, up to $189 annually for a Clear membership, and up to $100 toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck periodically. Enrollment required for select benefits.

AMERICAN EXPRESS

Maximize all these statement credits from both cards in the first year, and you’re looking at almost $2,000 in potential value. What’s more, none of these statement credits overlap from card to card, so you don’t sacrifice anything by carrying them both.

Other benefits

While the Amex Gold Card is short on other perks, the Amex Business Platinum includes a lot more benefits.

Related: The different flavors of Amex Platinum – which one is right for you?

Those include advantages like access to various airport loungesAmex Centurion Lounges, Delta Sky Clubs, and Priority Pass lounges among them – plus the ability to register for Gold elite status with both Marriott and Hilton. Cardholders also get elite status with various rental car agencies, plus the International Airline Program discounts for folks who fly premium cabins. Enrollment required for select benefits.

ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY

Related: 8 things to do when you get the American Express Business Platinum Card

Earning aside, these benefits alone can make carrying the Amex Business Platinum worth it.

Bottom line

It’s usually a good idea to diversify the types of travel rewards points you earn. However, given how versatile they are, it can also make sense to double down with one program or another, including Amex Membership Rewards.

The right mix of Amex cards will depend on your needs and spending habits. But the Amex Business Platinum and Amex Gold Card make a winning combination thanks to their corresponding perks portfolios and bonus spending categories. You can get both to leverage not only lucrative introductory offers but also excellent everyday points accrual rates and other benefits to enhance your travel experience.

Apply here for The Business Platinum Card® from American Express with a 120,000-point bonus.
Apply here for the American Express® Gold Card with a 60,000-point welcome bonus.

For rates and fees of the Amex Gold card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex Business Platinum card, click here.

Additional reporting by Ryan Wilcox.

Featured image by CARLINA TETERIS/GETTY IMAGES
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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How we chose these cards

Our points-obsessed staff uses a plethora of credit cards on a daily basis. If anyone on our team wouldn’t recommend it to a friend or a family member, we wouldn’t recommend it on The Points Guy either. Our opinions are our own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by our advertising partners.
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TPG featured card

Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review
Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site

Rewards

3 - 4X points
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.

Intro offer

60,000 bonus points
Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Annual Fee

$250

Recommended Credit

670-850
Excellent/Good
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

    60,000 bonus points
  • Annual Fee

    $250
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees