Big signup bonus (Limited Time Offer): Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards® points. Offer expires January 25, 2017.
Lots of airport lounge access. Get into all Amex Centurion lounges, Delta SkyClubs, and Priority Pass lounges.
50% of your points back gets you a big 2 cents per point in value for flights. Whenever you book flights via the Amex website with your points, you’ll get 50% of your points back on one airline of your choice each year for all flights. It’s like getting 2 cents of cash value per point without dealing with the restrictions of airline miles. And if you book first or business class tickets, you’ll get the 50% points back for any airline – no need to stick with just one.
10 free Gogo wifi passes. Save big on inflight internet every year. Plus you get access to all Boingo wifi hotspots in airports and other places around the world.
Starwood and Hilton Gold status. So you can lock in better rooms and late checkout at thousands of hotels worldwide.
A $200 annual airline fee credit. Use it for bag fees, change fees, even some airline gift cards on one airline of your choice each year.
$450 annual fee. This is probably not for you if you don’t travel often and won’t make use of the airline lounge access.
Slow point earning. While the signon bonus is good, there are no category bonuses for your spending. It’s a straight 1 point per dollar spent, though you do earn 1.5x points per dollar whenever you make a purchase of $5,000 or more.
The Enhanced Business Platinum Card from American Express may or may not be worth the $450 annual fee, depending on how you plan to use the card. Don’t let the annual fee scare you off too quickly though! The Amex Business Platinum is packed with benefits that may be of significant use, especially for a frequent traveler.
The American Express Business Platinum card earns 1 Membership Reward point per dollar spent on all purchases. If you make a single purchase over $5,000 – the Amex Business Platinum will earn a bonus half Membership Reward point per dollar spent, or 1.5 Membership Rewards per dollar spent in total. There are generally other credit cards that earn more points or miles back for spending, but the Amex Biz Platinum has other benefits that still might make it worth it.
The American Express Business Platinum also offers the following benefits:
$200 Annual Airline Fee Credit (only available for a single chosen airline each year)
Lounge Access (American Express Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass, and Delta SkyClubs)
10 Gogo inflight wifi passes and unlimited Boingo Internet
50% Points Back on Airline Tickets (On all first and business class fares bookable with American Express Travel and economy tickets with your airline of choice each year – select your airline at americanexpress.com/airlinechoice)
$100 Fee Credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck (Available every 5 years)
Gold Status with Starwood Preferred Guest (which in turn gets you Gold status with Marriott Rewards)
In order to break even with the American Express Business Platinum card, you’ll want to be able to offset the $450 annual fee – though this isn’t as clear of a calculation as it often is with other credit cards because the value of many of the benefits is subjective to the holder of the credit card.
At the very least, every traveler should be able to make use of the $200 annual airline fee credit.
While this is meant to be used for incidentals, like onboard food purchases, seat upgrades, and checked bag fees, in practice it is often possible to purchase airline gift cards and later use those gift cards to actually pay for flights. You must designate an airline to be the airline that you will be able to use this credit for each year. It is possible to change the airline at the beginning of each year.
The last $230 is the most subjective part of the annual fee valuation. It depends on how much you plan to use the other benefits of the American Express Business Platinum card and how you value said benefits.
Airline lounge access is the most likely candidate for making the Amex Business Platinum a clear cut keeper – but this depends on how often you fly, which airline you fly, and/or where you fly from.
American Express Centurion Lounges are some of the nicest in the U.S., but they are not very widespread. Current U.S. Amex Centurion Lounges are located in Dallas (DFW), Houston (IAH), Miami (MIA), Las Vegas (LAS), New York (LGA), Seattle (SEA), and San Francisco (SFO). If one of these is your home airport and you fly at least a few times a year, you can easily get $230 in value out of this card.
Likewise, if you frequently fly Delta, the American Express Business Platinum is likely worth it. When flying Delta same-day, you’ll have access to all Delta SkyClubs.
The Priority Pass lounge network is quite extensive, with over 1,000 lounges, but is most useful when traveling abroad.
Finally, in terms of card spending, if you take advantage of the 50% points back feature, you’re essentially getting 2 cents per point in value for your points. That’s like earning 2% cash value for travel from your spending, which is a nice earning rate.
Additionally, when you use your Amex Membership Rewards points to book tickets through the Amex travel portal, you are really booking a cash ticket. This means that you will be earning miles that you can later redeem for tickets as well as working toward airline status. This is not the case when you transfer your Membership Rewards to airline partners and make the redemption through them. You won’t receive the 50% points back right away, it may take several weeks.
If you’re a big spender and make purchases over $5,000 you’ll earn an extra half point per dollar spent, which can get you to an easy 3% cash value for travel from large purchases, which is a great deal.
You have a couple of different options when it comes to redeeming your American Express Membership Rewards points (see our guide to using Amex rewards for more details).
Transfer points to frequent flier miles. The most valuable way to use your points, as a general rule, is to transfer your points to American Express’ hotel and airline transfer partners. The value you get per point is variable in this case, and will depend on how you use them.
Pay for travel with points via Amex and get 50% of your points back. You can also pay with points and book through American Express’ Travel Portal. When doing this, you will receive a 50% rebate on the points you have used. Keep in mind that the 50% rebate is only available for first and business class tickets on any airline, or economy class tickets with one airline of choice each year (this is the same airline that your $200 annual airline fee credit is good for).
You won’t receive your 50% points rebate right away; it may take a few weeks. When you book tickets through the travel portal you will earn frequent flyer miles and elite qualifying miles toward status as you are effectively purchasing a cash ticket with your Membership Rewards points.
For example, if you select Delta as your airline of choice, and use your points for a $300 Delta ticket, you’ll pay 30,000 Amex points. Then you’ll get 15,000 points back. So your net cost is just 15,000 points for a $300 ticket, giving you a great 2 cents per point in value without having to hassle with the rules and restrictions of tickets with traditional airline miles.
You can book flights on different airlines with your points depending on how you choose to use them.
If you plan to transfer your points to one of American Express’ airline partners, you can book flights on that airline as well as any of the airlines partners, as is allowed with the miles in question.
As a reminder, American Express’ airline transfer partners are:
Flying Blue (Air France/KLM)
If you choose to redeem your Membership Rewards points through their Travel Portal, you can book just about any airline and any flight that you see available there. Southwest flights must be booked over the phone.
Remember that the 50% bonus is only applicable to first and business class flights on any airline, or with economy class flights booked with your airline of choice each year.
There are so many options for travel that you can book with your points, but to name just a few:
Book a ticket with KLM/Air France Flying Blue during one of their ‘Promo Award’ sales and fly two people round-trip from the U.S. to Europe for 50,000 Flying Blue miles in economy. Flying Blue considers destinations such as Israel and Tunisia to be part of Europe and are available at this price point.
Use Asia Miles to book a flight with up to four stopovers on a round trip award! You’ll have to be careful about minimizing fuel surcharges, but could plan a great trip with these miles.
The American Express Business Platinum card is rarely going to be your best option to earn points. The card earns 1 Membership Reward point per dollar spent on all purchases or 1.5 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent on purchases over $5,000.
On purchases under $5,000, you should generally be using another credit card, but on purchases over $5,000 the American Express Business Platinum might be a pretty good option depending on where the purchase is being made and what other credit cards you have.
American Express cards don’t have best-in-class travel protections. Nonetheless, here are the details of what you do get.
This card offers secondary coverable of up to $75,000 when rentals are less than 30 days as well as up to $5,000 in medical coverage for the insured. If the MSRP of the rental car when new is over $75,000, coverage is not available.
This card has no trip delay insurance.
This card has no trip cancellation or interruption insurance.
Amex has great emergency medical evacuation coverage for Platinum Card holders, that can get you to the nearest appropriate location to get the medical care you need, including via air transport. It won’t cover your medical bills, but it will help avoid exorbitant medevac charges.
Whether or not the American Express Business Platinum card makes sense for you depends on how you plan to use the card. As a general rule, it is not going to give you the most benefits for your spending – but we will go over those below – but it may still be a great option if you can make use of the non-spending related benefits like lounge access. We’ll take a look at the Amex Business Platinum compared to a few competitors based on the following monthly spending pattern:
With this spending pattern and only the American Express Business Platinum card in your wallet, you would earn 5,000 Membership Rewards points per month. As a reminder, you would also have lounge access to American Express Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass, and Delta SkyClubs (when flying Delta same-day). You also receive a $300 airline fee credit, Boingo and Gogo internet access, and a $100 Global Entry/TSA PreCheck fee credit every five years. The annual fee is $450.
The American Express Business Gold Rewards card earns 3 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent in one of the following categories: Airfare purchased directly from the airline, US purchases in advertising for select media, US purchases at gas stations, US purchases for shipping, or US computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers.
You’ll earn 2 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent in the remaining four categories and 1 Membership Reward per dollar spent on all other purchases. Assuming that Airlines is your 3X category, you would earn 7,000 Membership Rewards points per month based on the spending pattern presented above. This card has a $175 annual fee that is waived the first year.
The Chase Ink Preferred earns 3x Chase Ultimate Rewards per dollar spent on travel, online advertising, and telecommunications, up to $150,000 worth a year across the three categories. Travel is pretty broadly defined and includes things like parking, tolls, and train tickets, but doesn’t include gas. Based on the spending pattern above, you would be able to earn 9,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards each month for a $95 annual fee, waived the first year.
The Capital One Spark Cash for Business earns 2% cash back on all purchases for a $59 annual fee, waived the first year. By going this route, you will be able to earn $100 in cash back every month using the spending pattern above.
The US Bank FlexPerks Business Edge gives you the opportunity to choose earning 2 FlexPerks per dollar spent on airfare, gas, or office supply stores, 2 FlexPerks per dollar spent on cellular providers, 3 FlexPerks per dollar spent on charity, and 1 FlexPerk per dollar spent on all other purchases. Again, assuming that airfare is your category of choice, you would be able to earn 6,000 FlexPerks every month based on the spending outlined above. If you redeem your points for airfare, you could get as much as 2 cents per point in value (20,000 point redemption is airfare up to $400). This card has a $55 annual fee that is waived if you make more than $24,000 in purchases during your cardmember year.
It depends. Typically, American Express will not report small business credit cards to the credit bureau unless the account is seriously delinquent.
It is possible to share Membership Rewards points in some cases. It isn’t possible to share Membership Rewards points directly, but it is possible to transfer your points to the airline or hotel account of an authorized user of your credit card. Read our full article to find out more about sharing Membership Rewards points with others.
If you have other credit cards that earn American Express Membership Rewards points your Membership Rewards points will automatically be combined into the same Membership Rewards account.
No. The American Express Business Platinum card does not have Chip + PIN functionality – just offering standard Chip capability.
If you cancel your credit card and you do not have another credit card that earns Membership Rewards points, you will forfeit all of your unredeemed points. If this is the case, make sure to redeem your points before you cancel your card. If you do have another credit card that earns Membership Rewards points, you don’t need to worry about your points when you cancel your card because your Membership Rewards account is linked to all Membership Rewards-earning cards that you have.
You can get the annual fee refunded for up to 30 days from the closing date of the billing cycle in which the fee was posted. Beyond that time, you will not be able to get any amount of the annual fee refunded.
The best offer that is currently available is to earn up to 100,000 points. You can earn 50,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 on your American Express Business Platinum card within the first 3 months of card membership and earn a further 50,000 after spending an additional $10,000 ($15,000 total) within the same timeframe.
You receive complimentary access to American Express Centurion Lounges, Delta SkyClubs when flying Delta same-day, and the Priority Pass network of lounges.
No. Transfers only go in one direction – from American Express Membership Rewards points to Delta miles. It is not possible to transfer Delta miles to American Express Membership Rewards points.
While Amex doesn’t have its own portal for earning points via shopping, Yes, you can (and we recommend that you do!) go through the Amex shopping portal whenever you are shopping online to earn even more miles or cash back in addition to your credit card rewards.
Follow @MileCards on Twitter for the latest updates and new offers
Foreign Transaction Fee Waived
Points Can Transfer to Airline Miles ?
Leave a comment below -- we'll reply shortly -- no need to use your real name. Or, use the email form at the top of the page for private advice.
"These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered."
Or, consider other cards for 50,000 or more miles or points that transfer into United miles with additional flexibility for your everyday spending.
$1,000 toward travel or transfer to United, Southwest, and more.
Citi®/ AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ MasterCard.