- American Express Platinum Priority Pass Enrollment
- Can You Bring A Guest On Amex Priority Pass?
- Your Complete Guide To The American Express Platinum Changes For Both Personal & Business Cards
American Express Platinum Priority Pass Enrollment – In 2018, I told my wife that I plan to apply for a credit card with an annual fee of S$1.7,000. She looked at me in disbelief when I told her it was good value for money.
After four years, since my wife suggested I write this article, it’s safe to say she’s finally a convert…
American Express Platinum Priority Pass Enrollment
Amex offers 3 different credit cards within its Platinum line. As you can imagine, entry requirements and annual fees differ (see image below), but so do the benefits.
Can You Bring A Guest On Amex Priority Pass?
The elusive Amex Centurion Card is by invitation only, and we’ve also included it below for completeness. We love the family portrait.
In this article, we’ll focus on the Amex Platinum Charge Card and discuss whether it’s really worth the S$1,728 annual fee (spoiler: we think it is).
The Amex Platinum Charge Card is ideal as a lifestyle card with lots of travel and dining benefits. In addition to the published benefits, we have also had positive experiences with ad hoc offers, member promotions and gifts provided by the Amex team. We believe it’s easy to get around S$4.5,000 in value in the first membership year and over S$3,000 in value in subsequent years, which more than justifies the S$1,728 annual fee.
Bonus Tip: Another benefit of the Amex Platinum Charge Card is the preferential exchange rate for Amex Rewards points (for airline/hotel points) compared to the Amex Platinum Reserve Card or Amex Platinum Card. So, individuals currently accumulating Amex Rewards points on these two other cards may pay to upgrade to the Platinum Charge Card, as Amex Rewards points can be accumulated and redeemed at a discounted rate.
Your Complete Guide To The American Express Platinum Changes For Both Personal & Business Cards
Amex has a one-year fee policy. This means that if you hold two Amex Platinum cards (i.e. Amex Platinum Charge Card + Amex Platinum Reserve Card), you will only have to pay the annual fee for the more expensive card and get the benefits of both cards at the same time!
However, please note that the ‘one year fee policy’ applies only to original Platinum Recharge Cardholders who received a Platinum Reserve Card before November 1, 2022, and not to new incoming Recharge Cardholders. Below we list selected benefits of both cards.
Above was the summary. Below we detail the key benefits of the Amex Platinum Charge Card and the Amex Platinum Reserve Card in a little more detail.
Reminder: Amex has a one-year fee policy (but only for legacy Platinum Recharge Cardholders who received a Platinum Reserve Card before November 1, 2022). This means that if you hold two Amex Platinum cards (i.e. Amex Platinum Charge Card + Amex Platinum Reserve Card), you will only have to pay the annual fee for the more expensive card and get the benefits of both cards at the same time!
Is The Amex Platinum Worth The $695 Annual Fee?
There are some overlapping benefits with the Amex Platinum Charge Card, such as access to the Tower Club, participation in the Amex Love Dining and Chillax programs.
Note that the above list is not exhaustive! In the next section, we will try to assign a value to the most important benefits of the Amex Platinum Charge Card.
In our opinion, it’s easy to get around S$4.5,000 in value from the Amex Platinum Charge Card in the first year of membership and over S$3,000 in subsequent years. A breakdown of how we arrived at these numbers is shown in the table below.
The difference in earning value between the first and subsequent years of membership is due to “Bonus Amex Points” which are only offered to new cardholders (this will be covered later).
Amex Platinum Charge Card: Why We Find The $1.7k Annual Fee Cheap
Cardholder Tip: When the annual card fee is due in subsequent years of membership, cardholders can call the Amex Hotline and request a “Card Retention Bonus.” The bonus usually starts at 20,000 points, but high card spenders can be offered up to 60,000 points.
For simplicity, we still assumed a valuation of S$1,350. Please note that registration on your Amex online portal is required to take advantage of these credits.
Each year, cardholders are entitled to 1 night’s stay at participating hotels (see the full list here). At a minimum, you could do a local stay at either the St Regis (Executive Deluxe Room) or the Fullerton Hotel (Premier Courtyard Room).
A valuation of $400 would be relatively conservative in my opinion, given that these hotels are priced above $500 in the post-covid world.
The Unique Benefits Of The Platinum Card® From American Express
Cardholders receive a free status upgrade to their hotel loyalty programs and this benefit also applies to additional cardholders. Below is a list of participating loyalty programs and which major hotel chains belong to each.
The value of this benefit is really difficult because it depends on how often you travel, how likely you are to get a room upgrade, and the various benefits you might be eligible for with elite loyalty status, which can include benefits like free breakfast, early check-in and late check-out.
The most rewarding upgrade I had, which I imagine was a once-in-a-lifetime upgrade, was an upgrade to the Hilton Singapore Presidential Suite, which retails for $2,000 a night and up. This happened in 2019 and I was surprised that it was offered to someone who only has Hilton Gold status (Diamond status is above Gold). And of course we had to videotape the room.
How much did the stay cost? Only S$300 net. I originally booked a King Hilton Executive Suite for ~S$500 nett (when Hilton had a 20% discount) and stacked the Amex Platinum Charge Card ad-hoc promotion (S$200 off on S$500 spend at Hilton).
How To Maximize Your Amex Platinum Benefits
Cardholders are entitled to unlimited airport lounge access (for main/additional cardholders and 1-2 guests per card depending on lounge rules). Participating lounges include:
While it’s not uncommon to offer airport lounge access (even for entry-level credit cards), the Amex Platinum Charge stands out with three features:
To estimate the value of this lounge access benefit, we could look at how much a Priority Pass membership costs (see image below). The “Prestige” tier, which allows unlimited lounge access, currently sells for $469 per year and doesn’t even come with hosting privileges.
Personally, I would appreciate the airport lounge benefit at S$360. Assuming I used the lounge four times a year without guests and valued each visit at S$30, that would mean an annual value of S$120 for me. As two supplementary cardholders would also be eligible for this benefit, I would value this benefit at S$360.
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To get the full 132,500 bonus Amex points (for new Amex applicants) or 85,000 bonus Amex points (for existing Amex cardholders) in the first year for incoming Platinum Charge cardholders, you must get a referral from an existing card member and spend 6 S$000 within the first 2 months of card membership. The breakdown is as follows:
Note that you will also receive base points (0.78125 miles per S$1) for the above spend.
Amex points have very flexible uses, including conversion to loyalty program miles, hotel loyalty points, gift cards or to offset credit card spending. It’s also worth noting that Amex points do not expire.
Many would suggest that the conversion to air miles would be desirable, and 132.5,000 Amex points would convert to 82,813 air miles (enough for a one-way First Class Saver flight to Japan on Singapore Airlines). Alternatively, the 132.5,000 Amex points can also be used to offset S$636 in credit card spending, which is less desirable.
Things To Do Immediately After Getting Your New Platinum Card From American Express — The Shutterwhale
The Amex Platinum Charge builds on the card’s benefits (most recently added Comoclub membership upgrades and $150 Fashion Credit), and the current sign-up promotion is the best we’ve seen in a while. To recap, past welcome gifts for new cardholders included the likes of a 1-night stay at Fullerton Bay Hotel, OTO Quantum Advanced Massage Chair (retail S$3,480), 48″ Omnidesk Pro 2020 (retail S$840), 60 –80,000 Amex points (equivalent to up to 50,000 air miles) and before that it was a 2 night stay at a High End hotel (personally we redeemed ours for 2 nights at Banyan Tree Bali which was selling for S$800 per night back then) .
While not an express benefit of the Amex Platinum Charge Card, older cardholders can rely on Amex’s “one-year fee policy” and apply for a “free” Amex Platinum Reserve Credit Card with its eligible benefits.
One such benefit would be a free two-night stay at participating Frasers Hospitality hotels (see full list here). Higher value options include Frasers Suites Geneva and Fraser Suites Paris La Défense.
In addition to the official benefits mentioned above, we enjoyed ad hoc offers, membership events and gifts given out by the Amex team. These ad hoc benefits were not taken into account when evaluating the benefits of the card as described above in Section 1.
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Just so you know, this is not a sponsored post. And if you’ve read this far, you’d already sense our genuine enthusiasm for this card.
If you feel this card could be useful to you and wish to use it, please consider using it