When to Book Through Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts vs. Chase Luxury Hotel and Resort Collection

Jul 10, 2019

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American Express and Chase both offer eligible cardholders access to luxury hotel collections. The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express will get you access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts (FHR), and an array of Chase cards — including the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve and some of their cobranded options — come with access to Chase’s Luxury Hotel & Resorts Collection (LHRC).

Each program comes with its own set of benefits, but many of them overlap. For cardholders who have access to both, there are situations where it makes more sense to book with one over the other.

Guaranteed Benefits With Amex FHR

When you book your stay through Amex FHR, you’ll receive the following benefits:

  • Room upgrade upon arrival, subject to availability
  • Daily breakfast for two
  • Guaranteed 4pm late checkout
  • Noon check-in, subject to availability
  • Complimentary Wi-Fi
  • Unique property amenity (valued at $100 or more)

Occasionally, you’ll also have access to special offers, such as a free fourth night stay.

Amex Fine Hotels and Resorts (FHR) can provide lots of benefits during your stay ranging from upgrades to late check-out. (Photo courtesy of Amex FHR Banyan Tree Mayakoba)
Amex Fine Hotels and Resorts (FHR) can provide lots of benefits during your stay ranging from upgrades to late check-out. (Photo courtesy of Amex FHR Banyan Tree Mayakoba)

While early check-in and room upgrades are subject to availability, you can count on receiving the other benefits with each stay, whether you’re booking one night or five.

Chase LHRC offers a similar lineup of benefits, but there is one notable difference: a guaranteed 4pm checkout. For larger families that take some time getting around in the mornings or night owls who would rather sleep in after a night on the town, late checkout can be a godsend.

More Transparent Pricing Through Chase LHRC

When you compare prices between Amex FHR and Chase LHRC, you’ll probably notice that the upfront cost for Amex rooms is often lower than what you’ll find with Chase for the same room type and dates. This is because Amex FHR doesn’t include estimated taxes and fees with their original pricing estimate listed on site.

Most of the time, prices are comparable between each program. However, Chase makes it easier for me to get a full picture of how much a room will cost per night. It’s a small benefit that rarely means significant savings with Chase, but I like that Chase is more upfront about room costs. I don’t want to have to go through the entire booking process to find out an accurate estimate of what a room will cost, especially when I’m comparing multiple properties before making official reservations.

Special Offers With Amex FHR

One of the unique advantages to Amex FHR is its list of special offers. When you search for properties at any given destination, you can sort by special offers. You can often find additional property credits or fourth night free awards, which can save you hundreds of dollars on your stay.

Keep in mind that these offers are subject to availability, and there is no guarantee that the specific property or destination you’re looking at has any worthwhile offers for the dates of your trip. However, when you can take advantage of an extra $100 dining credit or a fourth night free, it’s worth it to book through FHR.

Unique Property Benefit With Chase LHRC

Both hotel collections offer a unique property amenity with each stay, typically in the form of a property credit. However, in some destinations, travelers are starting to see Amex FHR offer more limiting credits. In these cases, Chase may offer a more compelling unique benefit.

Las Vegas is one example where you’ll find a lot of overlap between hotels and resorts available through both Amex FHR and Chase LHRC, including the Delano Las Vegas.

Through Amex FHR, your unique property credit is currently $100 for spa services during your stay.

Chase, on the other hand, is offering a $100 food and beverage credit.

Considering spa treatments including massages at the Delano often start at $170 and above (meaning the credit wouldn’t cover the full price), it’s likely you’ll find more value with the $100 food credit when you book through Chase LHRC.

When there’s overlap between the two programs, always double check prices and benefits with each program. As of late, I’ve seen Chase offer a wider array of unique amenities that often make it more beneficial for me to book through LHRC. That may not always be the case, and it really all comes down to how much you value certain types of amenity credits.

Bottom Line

Amex FHR and Chase LHRC are both great programs, and you can find value with both. Which you should book through really depends on the situation: Do you want guaranteed late checkout? What type of credit does each offer for properties in the area where you’re staying? Is there a special offer you can take advantage of?

For those who have access to both, it’s worth comparing your options before each trip. Sometimes one makes more sense than the other, but sometimes you’ll find comparable prices and benefits. In these cases, look at which card you’ll get the most value from. Also check to see if booking directly through the hotel website offers a better deal.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the 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.

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