Almost anyone can have a credit card. But not just anyone can have an American Express Platinum Charge Card. For a start there’s a minimum income requirement of $100,000 a year. Then there’s the $1,200 p.a. annual fee, which may deter even some high income earners. But once you jump over those two hurdles, you enter a world of prestige and privilege with a seemingly endless list of benefits. American Express have bent over backwards to make you feel special.
A charge card, not a credit card
This is not a credit card, so there’s no messing about with interest rates and balance transfer options. There’s no effective interest rate because there’s no minimum payment opportunity. You will be required to pay off the total amount of your purchases on the card each month, so don’t choose this card unless you are willing and able to do so. But because of the monthly billing cycle, you will in fact get Up to 44 days on purchases credit each month. Up to four supplementary cardholders can be included in your account without paying additional annual fees.
Great rewards program and 100,000 bonus points
One of the best things about this card is the membership of the American Express Ascent Premium Membership Rewards program. And, when you spend more than $1500 in the first three months of holding the card, you’ll receive 100,000 points to kickstart your points earning and even let you make an early redemption if you wish. You can transfer your points to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program on a 1:1 basis, so those 100,000 points alone could be redeemed for five Qantas business class flights between Sydney and Melbourne (worth a total of around $3,750, less fees and charges). You won’t qualify for the bonus points if you have held any kind of AmEx card in the previous 18 months.
There’s a total of ten airline points programs to which you can transfer your AmEx Ascent Premium points: Qantas Frequent Flyer, Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer, Emirates Skywards, Etihad Guest, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, Air New Zealand Airpoints , THAI Royal Orchid Plus, Malaysia Airlines Enrich and Cathay Pacific Asia Miles. Points can also be transferred to three ‘Frequent Guest’ programs: Hilton HHonors, Starwood Preferred Guest and Priority Club Rewards. Alternatively, you could use the points for other forms of travel through the AmEx Platinum travel service, for gift cards to use at major retailers, or convert them into cash credit against your card account balance.
Tiered points earning system
The tiered points earning system is a little complicated but extremely rewarding:
But note that the number of points you can earn at the 3 and 2 points per dollar rate is capped. That is, once you have earned a total of 300,000 points in any year, from all sources, the earning rate drops to 1 point per dollar for all suppliers (except utilities &c, which remain at 0.5 points).
Valuable travel benefits
AmEx knows that prestige cardholders are regular travellers, so there is a long, long list of tempting built-in travel and entertainment benefits:
More details about the free insurance cover
As you would expect with a card of this high status, there’s a host of built-in insurance cover at an above-average rate.
As you would expect, the travel insurance cover is activated by paying the full fare for your trip with your card. But you can also activate it by paying the fare with AmEx membership rewards points, or with any type of rewards or frequent flyer points provided you use your card to pay the associated taxes and surcharges for the booking. Also, if you can prove that the travel merchant would not accept AmEx cards, meaning that you had to use another means of payment for your fare, you’re still covered.
The insurance cover provided with this card leaves almost nothing to chance and is generous in many of its provisions, appropriate to the probable high-end lifestyle of the typical cardholder.
Is there any competition?
This card is really in a class of its own because of the high rewards earning rate, the flexibility to transfer to other reward schemes and the truly valuable complimentary travel and insurance benefits. But if the $1,200 p.a. annual fee is just too much, you could take a look at other high income cards, such as the ANZ Frequent Flyer Black Credit Card ($495 annual fee) or the Westpac Altitude Black Credit Card ($395 annual fee).
Why should I want this card?
If you’re a well-heeled frequent traveller who likes to enjoy life’s luxuries as well as the peace of mind provided by exceptional travel and purchase insurance cover, the $1,200 p.a. should not be too difficult to justify, especially in the first year when the 100,000 points cover the fee several times over if used to their maximum advantage to purchase business class flights or even first class upgrades.
Great card, just not a lot of stores accept them. When you do go to use them they also charge a fee at petrol stations, etc. I do use mine for grocery shopping every now and then at Woolworths — I get $20 off which is great. It would be a better card if it was accepted in a lot more places.
This card is the best card I have ever used. It gets accepted pretty much anywhere, in Australia or overseas.
There are very attractive rewards for frequent flyers, and customer service is the best in the business. There are great security features attached to it.
i use it for daily expenses, booking and buying stuff online, and over-the-phone transactions.
I recently obtained this credit card and so far it has been accepted at most places and I have earned all the points I was promised.
There is a yearly fee of approximately $340. However, you receive a complimentary domestic return flight every year, which covers the cost of the fee. There are also free Virgin lounge passes.
There are great rewards, the staff are very helpful, and I have never had any issues with the card. I have managed to save enough points to fly myself and my partner overseas and back.
I have no complaints at all. I love the trust of the company and wouldn’t go with any other one.
I love this card. Great offers can be saved to the card. Fees are reasonable, but often they give a loyalty bonus around renewal times (if you ask).
When I contact them, I always receive excellent customer service, day and night. The online and app access are good also. Overall, a great deal.
Great card with excellent benefits, especially for a frequent traveller. The unlimited spend amount, combined with the lounge access, included travel insurance cover and travel and concierge services make this an invaluable card for the frequent international traveller.
The only downside to the card from my perspective is the size of the annual fee.
Apart from the $1,200 annual fee, this card is a great product for a luxury lifestyle. It has access to a wide range of worldwide airport lounges, complimentary insurance coverage, complimentary elite hotel and car rental memberships, and an annual domestic return flight on Virgin Australia. This card is a charge card, which works well only if you repay your full balances every month.
I don’t really like credit cards much, but having the Platinum American Express credit card is rewarding. It has great rewards, an excellent app, and is even compatible with Apple Pay. It definitely destroys all the other credit card companies.
The downside is that the credit card is a bit expensive and not all places accept it, but it is always my first choice by far.
This card earns triple points at supermarkets and double points for fuel and purchases with Qantas—it’s great when planning overseas trips for travel bookings. You can use these points to upgrade to Premium Economy and Business Class and for basically no added cost. The team at American Express are great to deal with and always provide great customer service.
Simple and easy to use, stress-free with maximum rewards.
I get double points for every dollar spent and the benefits and rewards accumulate quickly, so you can purchase anything, within your points limit, until your heart’s content. With fifty five days to pay your credit card back, interest-free, the American Express Platinum Card, makes life less complicated and care-free.
Valuation based on the assumption of making a $250 claim once every 5 years. There is no retail market for all-encompassing extended warranty insurance covering more than one item, so no premium saving.
Valuation based on the assumption of making a $200 claim once every 5 years. There is no retail market for this type of insurance, so no premium saving.
Refund cover if retailer refuses return
Most major retailers have 100% guaranteed returns, but not all do. Valuation assumes making a $100 claim once every 5 years.
American Express Platinum Travel credit
Cardholder gets $200 American Express Platinum Travel credit each year to redeem for flights, car hire, and accommodation.
Free night(s) at hotels
Valuation based on complimentary Accor Plus membership, which delivers one free night per year in Australian or Asia Pacific Hotels. Hotel standards vary, but $150 is a reasonable median price.
Interstate flight inconvenience insurance
Valuation based on similar domestic travel insurance policies available online that include interstate flight inconvenience.
Overseas travel insurance
Valuation based on similar annual travel insurance policies available online for trips of up to 60 days.
Valuation based on similar roadside assistance insurance policies available online.
Transit accident insurance
Valuation based on similar global transit accident insurance policies available online.
|Total estimated value||$1,597|
|Net customer value||$397|