I have read too many articles about American Express Platinum card benefits that are incomplete. Nobody is willing to list out all of the benefits, they are just showing you the cherry picked benefits, which is great, but doesn’t paint the full picture. If you travel a lot, and spend moderately, this may be the card that you are looking for.
When I first heard about the American Express Platinum, it was from my father in law. He told me that you can transfer the points to all these different airlines, and you can use the points for hotels. That alone was enough to sell me at the time when I didn’t know much about credit cards. Now that I know the power of this card, I struggled to find something to share with him that would explain ALL of American Express Platinum card benefits. That is why I decided to put together my own list that would help him and others understand the full capability of Amex Platinum Benefits. Follow below.
1. The American Express Global Lounge Collection
When it comes to American Express Platinum Card benefits, this one is my favorite. Why? Because just by enrolling in Priority Pass (which is included with your platinum card), you now have access to 1,000+ lounges in 500+ airports all around the world. If you are flying somewhere, there is a good chance that they will have a lounge. What is so good about a lounge though? Well, for starters, all of the lounges I have been to have free food. There is much more space than the common areas in the airports, and they have private bathrooms, free drinks, plenty of plugs for your electronics, etc… And I haven’t even touched on the American Express Centurion lounges yet. These lounges are the premier lounges that are a part of the Amex Platinum Benefits arena. Each one is unique, but they all offer premium chef created food, showers, drinks, and more. Some even have massage therapists for guests. The global lounge collection in total is extensive, and if you travel 6 times per year with a partner, you will be saving at least $360 per year. That calculation comes from the assumption that you are eating lunch or dinner in each of you departing destinations, and the average lunch outside of the lounge would be $15 per person.
2. Free Global Entry and TSA Precheck
If you have never experienced TSA Precheck, now is your chance to make it happen for free! The goal here would be to apply for Global Entry and when you are approved for Global Entry, you get what is called a “Trusted Traveller Number”. When you book any flight, all participating airlines will have a box for your trusted traveller number. When you apply that to your booking, you will automatically have TSA precheck for that flight. You will skip the security line and you can go straight to your lounge and enjoy the free food. Although Global Entry/TSA Precheck is only $99 every 5 years, I have to put it towards the top of the list because I would have never known about this perk if I never experience American Express Platinum card benefits for myself.
3. $200 worth of Uber credit per year
This one is very straight forward. All you have to do is add your American Express Platinum to your Uber account, and you will get $15 worth of credit per month, and $20 worth of credit in December. So if you take a $15 ride from point A to point B, essentially it is free. Or if you take a $20 Uber ride in March, essentially you are only paying $5. Credits are also applied automatically, so you don’t have to worry about contacting anyone.
4. $200 on airline fee credits per year
Airlines will always try to nickel and dime you for everything possible. In this case, checked bags, carry on bags, oversized bags such golf clubs or surfboards can really start to crank up the price on your already expensive vacation. American Express knows that this is a pain point for many, so they went ahead and decided to give its card holders a $200 airline credit to cover these costs per year. The only catch is that you can only select one airline per year, and once you lock that airline in, you can’t change it out until the new calendar year.
5. Hilton and SPG automatic gold upgrade
You will need to enroll in this, but once again, it is free with American Express Platinum card benefits. Once you are enrolled, you can get things like late checkout, free room upgrades, complementary food vouchers, and more. A great example of how powerful this benefit can be is when my wife and I were on our honeymoon, we stayed at the Waikiki Beach Marriott. We originally had booked the cheapest oceanfront room possible, but upon arrival, they upgraded us to the best room that they had. The penthouse suite. It was truly an amazing experience with views of diamond head, and the whole entire Waikiki Beach. If you are ever in the area, or are thinking about going, take a look at why you shouldn’t hike the Koko Head stairs in the middle of the day.
6. Shoprunner free 2 day shipping
If you love Amazons free 2 day shipping, but can’t find the product you are looking for on Amazon, this is the next best option. Again, it is free to to sign up and you can use the service in 140+ online stores.
7. Car loss damage insurance covered by Amex
One of the most obnoxious things about renting a car in a foreign country is when they hit you with the “required loss damage waiver” right as you arrive and there is no way around it. Well, all you have to do before your trip is call up the Amex Platinum Benefits phone number on the back of your card and tell them to send you their loss damage insurance waiver, and you can show them to the agent at the car rental company. This has saved me hundreds if not thousands of dollars while traveling around the world.
8. $100 hotel credit for the American Express Hotel Collection
With select hotels, you can get a $100 credit, which actually can help cover the hotel room charges. Let’s say you book a hotel room for $300 for 2 nights, you will only end up paying $200 out of pocket and American Express will cover the rest. There is a catch here. You have to choose from their list, and the hotel has to be at least $150 per night.
9. Elite status with Avis, Emerald, and National Car rental agencies
This is actually a lot more powerful than some people give the service credit for. With your Amex Platinum benefits, you can enroll in the elite statuses of these car companies for free. As a test, I enrolled in all of them to find out which has the best options. At this point, for me it is Avis all the way. Just by being a member, which is of course free with the Amex Platinum, you can get a complimentary upgrade in many locations. Also, out of all 3 rental car agencies, I have found that Avis is the most affordable.
10. 5X Points on airfare bookings
Book your airfare directly with the airlines, and you will get 5 times the points. This adds up, especially if you are travelling regularly for work. If you book $1000 worth of airfare, you will get 5000 points for that booking. In some circumstances, that can buy you a one way domestic ticket on select airlines. Not bad!
11. $100 credit per year on Saks Fifth Avenue shopping
This is one of the newer American Express Platinum card benefits, and I will admit, I was excited when I first heard about it. I thought that maybe I could get my wife a little gift and essentially it would be free. My excitement quickly dwindled when I learned that Saks Fifth Avenue is one of the most expensive stores in the world, and everything is significantly overpriced. If you have too much money, this is probably where you shop. Anyways, the catch here is that you only get $50 per half year. January through June you get $50. July through December, you get $50. Just buy yourself a new pair of $50 socks twice per year, and take advantage of this enticing but average deal.
12. 5x points on eligible hotels
5 times points is always a great sounding benefit, but when you realize that it is only for select hotels, your enthusiasm starts to fade. Unlike 5 times points on airfare bookings, which is available for ALL airlines, the hotel points benefits only works on a few hotels, and expensive ones at that.
13. Fine Hotels & Resorts exclusive suite benefits
I shouldn’t be knocking this one, because I know there are a lot of wealthy people out there that like to take advantage of this “perk”, but let me tell you a secret. The people that are getting this perk do not need the perk. The hotels that these are available for are $500+ per night hotels, and they are already making so much money, that these benefits can easily be shelled out to people who are already paying the big bucks. Exclusive suite benefits come in the form of meal vouchers, spa vouchers, and activity vouchers.
There is an extensive list of American Express Platinum card benefits, and you can enjoy them too, all you have to do is sign up. We wanted to create a full list of all of the benefits, including benefits that even cardholders do not know about. If you think you are ready to take the next step and get yourself an Amex Platinum, follow my personal signup link and get 60,000 points if you spend $5,000 within the first month.
What has your experience been with the American Express Platinum card benefits? Leave us a comment or head over to our contact page to give us some feedback.