10 things to do when you get the Amex Platinum
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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with new limited-time offers from American Express.
If you were recently approved for The Platinum Card® from American Express, congratulations! This is one of the best premium credit cards on the market, thanks to the extensive benefits it offers to regular travelers.
With it, you’ll be able to take advantage of perks such as 5x points on airfare booked directly with the airline or via Amex Travel (on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year, starting Jan. 1, 2021) and 5x points on prepaid hotels booked through American Express Travel (or directly with airlines for airfare), up to $200 in annual Uber credits and more. The $550 annual fee (see rates and fees) may seem hefty, but the benefits that come with the card far outweigh that fee.
Claim the annual airline fee and Uber credits
One of the best perks of the Amex Platinum card is its annual up to $200 airline-fee credit for one airline. Make sure to select your desired airline on the Amex website before making a purchase. Since you get this credit every calendar year, you can potentially use it twice during your first year as a member, giving you a $400 return in the first 365 days. Use it for fees such as airline lounge passes and checked bags.
Technically, you can’t purchase tickets or use the credit for award taxes and fees; however, depending on how the airline codes your purchase, you may get reimbursed for some of those costs (though we don’t recommend banking on it). Although buying an airline gift card used to trigger the credits, this no longer works on most airlines.
Amex Platinum cardholders also get up to $200 in Uber credits each year, as well as Uber VIP status. Once you add the card to your Uber account, you’ll receive $15 in credit to use each month, plus an additional $20 in December. The credit also works for UberEats. But the credit won’t be automatically applied — you’ll need to specifically request to use your credit by opting to pay with Uber Cash. Credits can be applied to rides within the United States and expire at the end of each month. See our guide for more details on how to get started.
Request Gold status from Hilton and Marriott
You have to manually enroll with each chain in order to get the benefits of Gold status from the Hilton Honors and Marriott Bonvoy loyalty programs. You can get your Hilton Honors Gold by enrolling on the Amex website. Call 800-525-3355 to enroll for Marriott Bonvoy Gold.
Because of the perks with both programs, we value Hilton Honors Gold status at $1,255 and Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status at $840, assuming you spend a certain number of nights at each chain’s hotels. Once you have status at either chain, you can request a status match with many other loyalty programs, such as Best Western Rewards, Radisson Rewards, Choice Privileges and Wyndham Rewards.
Sign up for Global Entry (and TSA PreCheck)
Customs lines continue to grow at international airports in the U.S., which makes this a good time to sign up for Global Entry. When you enroll in this trusted-traveler program with your new Amex Platinum card, you’ll get a credit for up to $100 to your account to cover the cost (and again when you renew every four years). Global Entry almost always ensures you’re eligible for TSA PreCheck as well, making it much easier to go through TSA security.
However, note that Global Entry enrollments have been halted until at least July 1, 2020, due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. If for some reason you are still traveling and have a pending application for Global Entry, CBP’s interview on arrival service remains available at all 60 participating airports.
This is a perk you’ll definitely want to take advantage of as soon as possible once CBP opens again. If you already have Global Entry, you can use the credit for another family member — just pay for their application fee with your Amex Platinum card.
Get your car rental program elite status
In addition to Gold Hilton Honors and Gold Marriott elite status, you are also eligible for status with several car rental programs, including Avis Preferred, Hertz Gold Plus Rewards and National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive status. You’ll need to enroll for each program on the Amex website.
Shop at Saks
Enroll in this program and get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue or saks.com on your Platinum Card. That’s up to $50 in statement credits from January through June, and up to $50 in statement credits from July through December.
Sign up for free two-day shipping with ShopRunner
ShopRunner gives you free two-day shipping and free return shipping on eligible items at participating online stores when you use your Amex Platinum. This is a nice benefit if you have your eyes on something and want to get it within two days — especially because expedited shipping can be expensive. Enroll for the service at ShopRunner’s Amex site.
Book ultra-high-end hotels and restaurants
The Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts program gives you elite-like benefits at top hotels, including noon check-in (when available), room upgrades upon arrival (when available), daily breakfast for two people, complimentary Wi-Fi, guaranteed 4 p.m. late checkout and, at some properties, a third or fourth night for free. Plus, you’ll earn 5x points on stays booked online through FHR, and you’ll even get elite benefits and hotel loyalty points during your stay.
You also have access to The Hotel Collection, which offers room upgrades and up to $100 in hotel credits. You must stay at least two nights and can book your stay through American Express Travel Services online at amextravel.com or by phone at 800-297-2977.
The Global Dining Collection gets you special access to fine dining restaurants around the world. The program includes events with top chefs such as Massimo Bottura, owner of Osteria Francescana, a three-Michelin-star restaurant in Modena, Italy. Book available events and restaurants by calling the Concierge number on the back of your card. These perks are only available to Platinum, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express and Centurion cardholders.
Contact the Platinum Concierge to make travel arrangements
Booking your own reservations can be a daunting task, especially at high-demand restaurants and events. As an Amex Platinum card member, you have access to a special phone service that helps you with these bookings, as well as with finding a perfect dinner spot or even delivering items on demand. You’ll need to call to activate this benefit, and make sure you sign up for texting when you do so to make things more convenient. There are also Platinum Travel counselors available to provide you with custom itineraries and tailored recommendations.
Carry your card when you travel for lounge access
One of the greatest travel perks of the Amex Platinum is lounge access. You’ll get access to Centurion Lounges, Delta Sky Clubs (when you have a same-day flight on Delta), Airspace Lounges, Escape Lounges, Plaza Premium Lounges and Priority Pass lounges (you’ll need to request your membership card here) with the card. Centurion Lounge agents can look up your account info if you do end up leaving your card behind, but access will be quicker if you have it with you. The new Centurion Lounge in Phoenix is now open, and you can check out our guide to all the lounges you can get into with the Amex Platinum.
Add up to three authorized users
With your new Amex Platinum card, you can add up to three authorized users to your account for a total of $175 per year (see rates and fees), which can really help you maximize the value you’re already getting from being a cardholder. Authorized users are eligible for many of the same benefits as the main accountholder, including lounge access, Global Entry/TSA PreCheck reimbursement, hotel elite status and Fine Hotels & Resorts benefits. However, authorized users don’t get the Uber credit or separate airline incidental credits.
If $175 is too steep, you can add additional Gold Card cardholders to your Platinum Card for free (see rates and fees). However, note that this Gold Card isn’t the same as the American Express® Gold Card that offers 4 Membership Rewards points on dining and U.S. supermarket purchases (up to $25,000 in purchases each calendar year; then 1x). Instead, additional Gold Card members get the same earning rates as your Platinum card, but without access to most of the same card benefits that are given to additional Platinum Card holders.
Bonus: Limited-time perks
American Express announced limited-time promotions for some of its U.S.-issued consumer and business cards, including the Amex Platinum. Cardholders can now receive up to $320 in statement credits on select streaming and wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers (up to $20 per month) from now through December 2020.
The Amex Platinum can be tremendously valuable for frequent travelers. Once you have the card, start using the many benefits right away. From getting an annual airline-fee credit to a Global Entry application fee credit to Uber credits to Marriott Gold status and Hilton Honors Gold status, it’s easy to get a lot of value from the card despite its $550 annual fee (see rates and fees).
Additional reporting by Benét J. Wilson
Featured photo by Wyatt Smith/The Points Guy
For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum card, please click here.
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WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points Terms Apply.
TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200
CARD HIGHLIGHTS: Delta Sky Club and Centurion lounge access, up to $200 annual airline fee credit and up to $200 in Uber credits annually
*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.
- Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
- Enjoy VIP status and up to $200 in Uber savings on rides or eats orders in the US annually. Uber Cash and Uber VIP status available to Basic Card Member only.
- Earn 5X Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel. Starting January 1, 2021, earn 5X points on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.
- 5X Membership Rewards® Points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
- Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year in baggage fees and more when you select one qualifying airline.
- Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. That’s up to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. Enrollment required.
- $550 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees