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Credit cards have become an integral part of our lives, providing us with convenience and financial flexibility. Among the most popular and rewarding credit card options available in the market, American Express has established itself as one of the leading players. In this article, we will be comparing two of their most well known credit cards — the American Express Platinum and American Express Gold. Both offer benefits and perks to its users as well as options to accumulate Amex Membership Rewards points on purchases.
|Annual Fee $695
|Annual Fee $250
|Current welcome offer of 125,000 membership points after spending $8,000 on purchases in the first 6 months after card activation.
|Current welcome offer of 60,000 membership reward points after spending $6,000 on purchases in the first 6 months after activating your card.
|Earn 5X points on flights booked directly with airlines or through Amex Travel (amextravel.com).
|Earn 3X points for all flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com
|Uber Eats & Rides: You will receive $15 in Uber Cash to use on eligible orders with Uber Eats and rides with Uber in the US each month, plus a bonus $20 in December.
|You’ll receive $10/month in Uber Cash to use on eligible orders with Uber Eats and rides.
|5X points on prepaid hotels booked through Amex Travel.
|4X points at restaurants including delivery and takeout.
|$189 in annual statement credit towards your Clear Plus membership.
|4X points at US supermarkets, with a $25,000 yearly cap.
|Receive a $200 yearly statement credit on prepaid Fine Hotels and Resorts or the Hotel Collection stays booked through American Express travel. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two night stay.
|4X points for all purchases with Uber Eats.
|$200 Airline fee credit: This benefit allows you to select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your card. This includes baggage fees, ticket change and cancellation fees.
|1X points on all other purchases.
|1X points on all other purchases
|Points will not expire as long as your card remains active.
|Points never expire if your card remains active.
|No foreign transaction fees.
|No foreign transaction fees.
|Automatic Hilton Honors and Marriott Gold Elite status.
|Trip interruption and cancellation insurance up to $10,000 per trip / $20,000 per year.
|Secondary Car Rental loss and damage insurance.
|Trip delay and baggage insurance coverage.
Additional benefits of the Gold credit card is the $120 dining credit option. Each month, you can earn up to $10 in statement credits when you use your Gold card to pay for purchases at participating food delivery services including GrubHub. Another perk offered is access to The Hotel Collection. This allows you to enjoy signature benefits at select mid to high end hotels when you book your stay through American Express Travel. These perks may include room upgrades, complimentary breakfast, and late check-out options.
The American Express Global Lounge Collection is a premium feature that comes with the Platinum Card membership. This exclusive perk offers card members access to more than 1,400 airport lounges in over 500 airports worldwide. Some of the most popular lounges include Amex Centurion Lounges, Delta SkyClubs, and Priority Pass Select lounges. Note: At most lounges, your card will only get you in for free and it’s pre-flight access only unless you have a layover. Finally, if you spend $75,000 in a year period, you will get an upgraded that allows two additional guests free access.
The Platinum card, like the Gold, also comes with access to The Hotel Collection — but the Platinum card brings access to the Fine Hotels & Resorts (FHR) program, which includes most high end hotel and resort properties around the world. The FHR program grants you early check-in (when available), room upgrades (also when available), experience credits of $100-$150 for things like dining, spa treatments, or shows (options vary by resort), and daily breakfast credit of around $65. Additionally, you’ll receive confirmed 4PM late checkout.
Platinum Card Statement Credits
Statement credits offer a great way for American Express Platinum Card members to save money and justify the high annual fee. Some statement credit offers available to Platinum card holders are:
- $240 Digital Entertainment credit: Purchases made with your Platinum Card can be rewarded up to $20 in statement credits every month when you spend on Audible, Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM, and The New York Times. To receive this benefit, you must make these purchases directly from the respective provider.
- $155 Walmart credit: Walmart+ members can take advantage of a range of shopping perks – online and in-store. Become a Walmart+ member, simply use your Platinum Card to pay for the monthly membership fee and you will receive a statement credit that covers the full cost each month.
- $300 Equinox credit: When you use your Platinum Card to pay for an Equinox+ subscription or any Equinox club membership you will receive up to $300 in statement credits per year, no matter what option you choose.
- Receive a $200 yearly statement credit on prepaid Fine Hotels & Resorts or the Hotel Collection stays booked through American Express travel. The Hotel Collection requires a minimum two night stay.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit — This benefit allows you to select one qualifying airline (you can change your selected airline once a year) and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your card. This includes baggage fees, ticket change and cancellation fees.
- $189 in annual statement credit towards your Clear Plus membership.
- Receive either a $100 statement credit every 4 years for a Global Entry application fee or a statement credit up to $85 every 4.5 years for a TSA PreCheck. If you qualify, you should go with Global Entry membership, since it includes TSA PreCheck access.
Both American Express Platinum and American Express Gold credit cards offer excellent benefits for occasional travelers, but it is clear that the Platinum card offers an enormous edge for frequent travelers. The annual fee may be steep, but the perks associated with the Platinum Card like lounge access, statement credits for Clear, airline charges and other travel essentials can easily make up for the fee if you travel on a consistent basis. Additionally, the 5X points Platinum card holders earn on airfare and hotels is another appealing feature.
On the other hand, the American Express Gold card is an option that offers less frequent travelers solid benefits and rewards. It doesn’t include the extensive perks offered in the Platinum card, but may be a better fit for you due to the significantly lower annual fee and access to the same exceptional Membership Rewards program.
Editorial Note: Information and opinions articulated in this article are solely those of the author’s, not those of a credit card company, bank, airline or hotel chain. This article has not been reviewed or approved by or otherwise endorsed by any of these companies or organizations.