Does your Amex feel light? Here’s why

Oct 3, 2019

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A few months ago, we had a TPG reader reach out to us about The Platinum Card® from American Express feeling lighter and flimsier, so we put it to the test, and it was indeed one gram lighter and bent more than before. This was because of the change to contactless cards by Amex, forcing the company to use different metal materials to incorporate the technology. Ultimately, it brought the Platinum card from the second-strongest metal card — behind the Black card — to fifth-strongest metal card.

Recently another TPG reader tweeted at Amex asking about the change, to which Amex responded:

Amex has confirmed with TPG that the new contactless metal cards (except the Centurion card) are not completely metal, and feature a plastic backside. That means the Amex Platinum, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express and the American Express® Gold Card will no longer be as clunky and heavy as before. Amex says that this change was implemented in July, although it appears that the Amex Gold card was made with a lighter-weight metal or plastic back earlier than then.

Related: Which card is right for you? Amex Platinum vs Amex Business Platinum

This also explains why some of our staffers with the old contactless Platinum and Gold cards have had issues using the “tap-to-pay” feature on New York City’s subway. In order for the contactless feature to work, the antenna needs to be able to reach the card reader, which the metal blocks.

If you’re a fan of the the “tap to pay” feature, this is good news for you as it’ll make it much more functional. However, if you’re all about the strength, durability and weight of your card then you’re out of luck. And if you’ve never thought about either of these things, then you probably didn’t even notice.

What do you think about this change? Would you rather be able to tap to pay or the satisfaction (or regret) of a good old-fashioned swipe and the clank of the metal? Personally, I think convenience is king and don’t mind the plastic backing.

Featured photo by The Points Guy.

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