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If you’re in the market for a luxury travel card with a generous sign-up bonus, The Platinum Card® from American Express could be what you’re looking for. It offers 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months. If you use your points to book a flight through American Express Travel, that’s a $600 value.
To find out if The Platinum Card® from American Express is one you’d like to add to your wallet, read on. We’ll take a look at eligibility requirements for the welcome offer, examine sign-up bonuses on competing cards and consider the ongoing rewards rate.
60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.*
Up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees & more at one qualifying airline*
No foreign transaction fees & exclusive airport lounge access*
- Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
- Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
- 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
- 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.
- Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
- Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
- $550 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees
See additional details for The Platinum Card® from American Express
In this article:
- Eligibility exclusions for the bonus
- Rewards and perks
- Compare to competing sign-up bonuses
- The bottom line
Eligibility exclusions for the bonus
In order to make sure you’re eligible for the welcome offer, here are some things to consider.
American Express has a once-per-lifetime card bonus policy. This rule means that each customer can only get a welcome offer for a specific card once in the customer’s lifetime — so if you’ve ever cashed in on The Platinum Card® from American Express’s sign-up bonus in the past, even if you canceled the card years ago, you won’t be able to qualify for the current welcome offer.
Also know that if you cancel or downgrade your card account within 12 months of acquiring it, American Express reserves the right to not credit membership rewards points to your account, to freeze points or to remove points that you already have.
Pay attention to what constitutes an eligible purchase toward the welcome offer — there is a variety of exceptions, such as purchasing prepaid cards or gift cards, that won’t count toward the required spending you need to do to earn the bonus.
Consider the ongoing rewards and the perks
The Platinum Card® from American Express offers 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5X Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com. The annual fee is $550.
So how much are these rewards points worth? It depends how you redeem them. If you book flights through American Express Travel, each point is worth 1 cent. So, if you want to make a purchase worth $200, you’d need 20,000 points to cover it.
Points can also be transferred to frequent traveler program partners — most at a 1:1 transfer rate. Other redemption options include paying with points, redeeming points for gift cards, covering your card charges, upgrading travel and shopping at merchant partners. The value of points when using these options varies, ranging from 0.5 cents per point to 1 cent per point.
But where this card truly stands out is its travel perks:
- Uber rides with platinum: Receive Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus of $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.*
- By Invitation Only®: American Express has exclusive events from sporting and fashion to fine dining, art and performances for Platinum Card Members.*
- American Express Global Lounge Collection: Access to 1,200+ airport lounges around the world.*
- Fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck: Apply for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck and every four years you’ll receive a credit to cover the cost.
- $200 airline fee credit: You can receive up to $200 in statement credits for checked bags, in-flight refreshments, and other fees when you select an eligible airline.*
- Fine Hotels & Resorts: If you book your hotel stay with Fine Hotels & Resorts you can receive complimentary benefits including room upgrades when available, breakfast, late check-out, early check-in and more.*
- Upgrade to gold status in select programs: Cardmembers can upgrade to Gold Status in the Marriott Bonvoy™ and Hilton Honors™ programs.
- Platinum travel service: Travel counselors are available to assist in making travel arrangements.
- Baggage insurance plan: You may be covered if your luggage is lost, damaged or stolen, when you pay for your ticket with your card. Check your card’s full terms and conditions for more information.*
- Global dining collection: You can gain special access to various reservations and experiences at popular restaurants, and the opportunity to meet chefs at exclusive events.*
- Premium Global Assist® hotline: Qualify for select referrals and services including medical, legal and financial when you travel over 100 miles from your business. You’re responsible for the costs charged by third-party service providers.*
- Premium car rental privileges: Receive complimentary membership including special upgrades and discounts at premium car rentals.*
- Car rental loss and damage insurance: Pay for your rental with your card and you may be covered for the cost of damage or theft. For more information, see americanexpress.com/CRLDIterms.*
- Preferred seating: Cardmembers get exclusive access to premium seats for events.*
- Entertainment Access®: You can gain access to exclusive events and presales for concerts, sporting events, Broadways shows and more in select cities.*
Compare with competing welcome offers
Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
$300 Annual Travel Credit, Airport Lounge Access, and Flexible Redemption Options
- Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Named "Best Premium Travel Credit Card" for 2018 by MONEY® Magazine
- $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
- 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. 3X points on dining at restaurants & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. $0 foreign transaction fees.
- Get 50% more value when you redeem your points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Access to 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide after an easy, one-time enrollment in Priority Pass™ Select
- Up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓®
See additional details for Chase Sapphire Reserve®
The annual fee on the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is $450 and the sign-up bonus is a chance to earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. With the additional 50% value you get for redeeming points for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal, the bonus is worth $750.
Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®
Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases & 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
- Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
- Admirals Club® membership for you and access for guests traveling with you
- Complimentary Admirals Club® lounge access for authorized users
- Earn 10,000 AAdvantage® Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) after you spend $40,000 in purchases within the year
- No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
- Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
- First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 8 companions traveling with you on the same reservation
- The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 17.24% - 25.24%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi's discretion.
See additional details for Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®
The annual fee on this card is $450 and the sign-up bonus is a chance to Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.
According to ValuePenguin, which is owned by CompareCards.com’s parent company LendingTree, AAdvantage® miles are worth $0.0135 each. This means the Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite™ Mastercard®’s signup bonus is worth $675 in cash value.
The bottom line
The $550 annual fee on The Platinum Card® from American Express is steep — though if you travel enough to use the $200 annual airline fee credit and Uber credits (which can add up to $200 a year), that effectively reduces the annual fee substantially. Still, it’s not cheap.
To recoup what’s left of the annual fee after credits, if each point is worth 1 cent, it would take $3,000 spent on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and/or prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com. So if you’re looking for a card that can recoup its value based on rewards points, The Platinum Card® from American Express may work for you if you spend a bit on flights, hotels and Uber rides. Plus, if you travel extensively and value the lengthy list of perks that come with this card, it might be exactly what you’re looking for in a travels rewards card.