26 American Express Platinum Benefits to Maximize (Video) [2019]

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The Amex Platinum is a shiny (and heavy) metal card with a sleek design that’s a definite attention-grabber. But does it actually have a lot to offer in the benefits department? The answer is a firm “yes.”

The Platinum Card is all about the benefits and this article will walk you through all of the American Express Platinum benefits, so you’ll know exactly how much value these perks can bring you.

American Express Platinum benefits

1. Welcome offer: 60K to 100K

The Amex Platinum comes with a welcome offer of 60,000 Membership Rewards after you spend $5,000 in the first three months of card opening.

There are targeted offers like the Amex Platinum 100K offer that you can look into going after but even the standard offer of 60,000 points is above what most other premium cards offer.

Interested in the Platinum Card? Click here to find out more about the offer! 

2. Transfer partners

The Platinum Card’s points, known as Membership Rewards, can be transferred out to a long list of airline and hotel partners. Here’s a list of all of the Amex travel partners.

Airline transfer partners

  • Aeromexico 1:1.6
  • Air Canada (Aeroplan) 1:1
  • Air France KLM (Flying Blue) 1:1
  • Alitalia (Millemiglia) 1:1
  • Avianca LifeMiles 1:1
  • ANA 1:1
  • Cathay Pacific (Asia Miles) 1:1
  • British Airways 1:1
  • Delta Air Lines (SkyMiles) 1:1
  • El Al Israel Airlines 1,000: 20
  • Emirates 1:1
  • Etihad 1:1
  • Hawaiian Airlines 1:1
  • Iberia Plus 1:1
  • JetBlue Airways 250: 200
  • Singapore Airlines 1:1
  • Virgin Atlantic 1:1

Hotel Transfer Partners:

  • Choice Privileges Rewards (1:1)
  • Hilton Honors (1:2)
  • Starwood SPG (1000:333)

Some of my favorite partners are: ANA, British Airways, Asia Miles, Delta, Singapore, and Emirates. These partners offer great aspirational redemptions like the Singapore First Class SuitesANA First Class Suites, and Emirates first class.

Membership Rewards can be used on Emirates for first class flights.

3. 5X on airfare

For the longest time, the Platinum didn’t offer any bonus categories. But eventually Amex rolled out with two bonus categories: airfare and hotels (through the Amex portal).

The Platinum Card earns 5X on airfare purchased directly with airlines. This allows you to rack up Membership Rewards in a hurry if you are a frequent flyer. And these points are in addition to the miles that you’ll earn on your flight via the airline.

4. 5X on hotels through amextravel.com

You can also earn 5X on hotels when purchased directly through amextravel.com.

The issue with that the hotels must be pre-paid and you might lose out on receiving your elite status perks by booking through an OTA. Still, some hotels will still honor elite status and earning 5X on those purchases can be worth it in some instances.

I received Marriott Platinum perks at the St. Pancras in London even though I booked through an OTA (online travel agency like the Amex portal).

5. Amex Centurion Lounges

One of the greatest American Express Platinum benefits is its powerful lounge network.

The Platinum Card provides you (and up to two guests) with Amex Centurion Lounge access, which are some of the nicest lounges in the US. You can relax with specialty cocktails and enjoy hot food, shower facilities, and free wifi. Some Centurion Lounges even have a spa!

Here’s a list of the different Centurion Lounge locations:

6. Priority Pass lounges

The Platinum Card also provides you and up to two guests with Priority Pass Select access, which will get you into over 1,000 lounges all around the globe. These lounges vary greatly in terms of quality and features but some can be very nice and be an absolute life-saver between long flights.

7. Delta Sky Clubs

Whenever you fly Delta, the Platinum Card will get you into Delta Sky Clubs. Delta Sky Clubs are pretty solid lounges compared to many other domestic lounges. Unfortunately, guests are not complimentary and you’ll have to shell out $29 for each guest to come in to the lounge with you (but authorized users would be able to get in).

8. Additional Lounges

The Platinum Card also offers lounge access to other different type of lounges which also include:

  • Airspace lounges
  • Escape Lounges
  • Select Lufthansa lounges in Germany (MUC or FRA)
  • Eurostar Business Premier Lounges (London St. Pancras, Paris Gare du Nord, Brussels Midi/Zuid, and Ebbsfleet International.
  • Virgin Australia lounge access when flying Virgin Australia
  • Centurion Suite at the Barclays Center (open for sporting and entertainment events)
  • Centurion Suite at the Staples Center (open for sporting events — no complimentary food or drinks)
  • Universal Studios lounges (Orlando and Hollywood)

9. $200 airline credit

The Amex Platinum offers you an annual $200 airline credit which you receive on a calendar basis. You can utilize this travel credit in a number of ways such as to cover baggage fees, in-flight dining, and entertainment, and airport lounge passes. You can read more about this credit here.

10. $200 Uber credit

The Amex Platinum gets you a $200 Uber credit but it works a little differently. Each month you’re given $15 but that amount expires at the end of the month (for December you get $35).The best part is that you can use the Uber credit for Uber Eats!

Together these travel credits cut down the annual fee to only $150. And you get the airline credit on an annual basis so you could actually receive $600 worth of credit before you even have to pay your second annual fee. Amex Platinum and Centurion cardholders also automatically get Uber VIP when they add their card into the Uber app.

Use the $200 credit towards lounge memberships like this United Club at Houston (IAH).

11. $100 Saks credit

With the Platinum Card, you’ll get a special $100 Saks credit. The way it works is that you’ll get $50 from January to June and another $50 in the second half of the year so you don’t get it all at once. There are a number of smaller purchases you can make at Saks to make this credit worth using.

Things like champagne flutes, passport holders, and tons of other random things can be purchased. While gift cards are subject to exclusion, some have had success purchasing those and re-selling them for a cash agin.

12. Hilton Honors Gold

Hilton Honors Gold elite status will get you free breakfast, upgrades, late check-out, and sometimes even lounge access. It’s one of the best mid-tier statuses to have and could bring you real value in terms of money saved. Also, sometimes you can find special promos to quickly jump up to Hilton Diamond status — the top tier.

13. Marriott Gold elite status

With the Platinum Card, you’ll also get Marriott/SPG Gold elite status. Unfortunately, after the Marriott/SPG merger, gold status is no longer worth what it once was because it no longer comes with perks like a free breakfast.

Get special perks at Hilton hotels like the Conrad Maldives.

14. Car rental benefits

The Amex Platinum rental car benefits are for:

  • National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive
  • Avis Preferred
  • Hertz Gold Plus Rewards

The Avis Preferred and Hertz Gold Plus Rewards aren’t true elite statuses since pretty much anybody can sign-up for them. However, they do get you some perks like upgrades and skip the line privileges.

However, the Emerald Club Executive for National Car Rental is a true elite status with perks like being able to choose any car (full size and above) in the “Executive Area” and only pay the Midsize rate, get faster Free Rental Days (6 qualified car rentals = 1 Free Rental Day), and always get guaranteed a free upgrade when you reserve using the Midsize rate. (Country exclusions apply).

American Express Platinum benefits for Car rentals
Get rental car upgrades with the Platinum Card.

15. Global Entry/TSA Pre-Check $100 credit

It seems like every card offers this perk nowadays. But if you don’t currently have it, Global Entry will get you through immigrations and customs in a breeze and it comes with TSA Pre-Check so you’ll get through security in a breeze too.

More and more airlines are joining TSA Pre-Check and Global Entry interviews can be done upon arrival at the airport now so these perks are as useful as they’ve ever been.

16. American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts

The Platinum offers access to the Fine Hotels & Resorts.

This is a cool program where you can receive special perks when you book hotels like upgrades, free breakfast, $100 credit, wifi, and late check-out. It’s also possible to still earn your points for your preferred hotel loyalty program.

The rates are usually among the best rates for the hotels and they’ve got a full roster of popular five-star luxury hotels like the Ritz-Carlton, St. Regis, Conrad, Four Seasons, etc. And the Platinum Card even earns 5X on Fine Hotels and Resorts. Read more about the program here!

The Ritz-Carlton Hong Kong, a member of the Fine Hotels & Resorts.

17. American Express Concierge

The Amex concierge service is one of the lesser discussed American Express Platinum benefits but it can help you with just about anything. Typical requests are for hard to get dinner reservations, flowers and gift deliveries, and tickets to shows and events. But the concierge service can help you out with random requests as well so don’t be afraid to ask away!

The American Express Concierge number is 800.525.3355 (go with option 2).

18. International Airline Program

The International Airline Program is one of the best kept secrets of the Platinum Card. That’s because you’ll be able to save big time on certain types of flight, including: premium economy, business class, and first class flights. The amount you are able to save varies but in some cases you could save hundreds or even thousands of dollars on these flights, easily offsetting the cost of the $550 annual fee.

Not every airline participates in the program. Currently, here is the list of airlines that participate:

  • AeroMexico
  • Air China
  • Air France
  • Air New Zealand
  • Alitalia
  • Asiana Airlines
  • Austrian
  • British Airways
  • Brussels Airlines
  • Cathay Pacific
  • China Airlines
  • Delta
  • Emirates
  • Etihad Airways
  • Iberia
  • Japan Airlines
  • KLM
  • Lufthansa
  • Qantas
  • Qatar
  • Singapore
  • South African Airways
  • Swiss
  • Virgin Atlantic

You’ll notice that notably absent are domestic carriers United and American.

19. Authorized users

One of the best perks of the Platinum Card is that you can add up to three authorized users for only $175. These authorized users get most of the perks like Centurion Lounge access and Priority Pass. They even get Global Entry credits. So $175 for all of the perks is worth it.

You can also add up to 99 Gold Card authorized users for free. You can read more about the Amex authorized user benefits here.

20. Amex Offers

Amex Offers will get you discounts on all sorts of different purchases like department stores, restaurants, hotels, airfare, and everything else in between. If you only utilize a handful of these a year you could still end up saving anywhere from $100 to $500+ on larger purchases.

21. Travel protections

Lost or damaged Luggage

  • Will pay a benefit for the Replacement Cost, up to $3,000, for each Covered Person on a Covered Trip for Loss of carry-on Baggage.
  • Will pay a benefit for the Replacement Cost, up to $2,000, for each Covered Person on a Covered Trip for Loss of checked Baggage

Premium Roadside Assistance

Up to four times a year, Amex will help you out with complimentary roadside assistance including: towing services, winching, jump starts, flat tire change when a spare is available, lockout service when the key is in the vehicle, or delivery of up to two gallons of fuel. Some restrictions do apply.

You can call 1-800-333-AMEX to request this service when needed.

Secondary car rental coverage

If you use your Platinum Card to book a car rental you’ll be covered with secondary car rental coverage. This isn’t quite as good as the primary rental car coverage offered by the Chase Sapphire Reserve.

One area where the Platinum disappoints is that it doesn’t offer things like baggage delay and trip interruption built into the protections of the Platinum Card. For the Platinum, you’d have to purchase travel insurance before your trip to get these benefits.

22. Purchase protections

Purchase protections

  • Covers your new purchases for 90 days against damage or theft up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per Card Member account per calendar year.

Extended Warranty Protection

  • Provides two additional years if the original manufacturer’s warranty is between one year and five years limited up to a maximum of USD $10,000 per occurrence

Return Protection

  • You can be reimbursed for eligible items that the store won’t take back within 90 days of purchase, up to $300 per item, $1,000 per year.

23. Amex Platinum benefits for military members

Under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, (SCRA), Amex offers several military member benefits like waiving the annual fee (even the $550 fee for the Platinum Card!). They also waive other fees like late payment fees. You can request your SCRA benefits with this link.

24. Amex Platinum Special Events

  • Membership Experiences (take advantage of presale tickets and special events)
  • By Invitation Only® (invites to high profile events like Cannes, celebrity chef events, etc.)
  • American Express® Preferred Seating (get better seats at games, concerts, shows, and other big events).
Amex Platinum Special Events
Get special seating at evens like Yankee games.

25. Misc American Express Platinum Card benefits

In addition to all of the American Express Platinum Card benefits above, there are tons of other special perks to be aware of.

  • Private Jet Program
  • The Boingo American Express Preferred Plan (going away May 2019)
  • Amex Auto Purchasing Program
  • Departures Magazine
  • InCircle®
  • Year-End Summary
  • Cruise Privileges Program
  • ShopRunner (get free two day shipping and free returns)

You can find out more about all of these here

26. Amex Platinum Refer a Friend

Did you know you can earn extra points when friends and family use your referral links?

The program is called Amex Refer a Friend and you can earn up to 55,000 Membership Rewards a year.

To learn more about the program click here.

Credit score and income requirements

To enjoy all of these premium benefits you’re going to need a good solid score and good income. Luckily, there are no strict cut-offs for eligibility but you can read more about the requirements here.

Final word

As you can see, there are a ton of American Express Platinum benefits that can be at your disposal. If you only take advantage of a hand full of these benefits you can easily recoup enough value to more than cancel out your annual fee. And many of these can make your life much easier, especially if you do any kind of traveling. I highly suggest to closely look at all of these perks and consider how much value they could bring you in your everyday life.

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