Upgrades to American Express Platinum & Business Platinum Cards (5x Points on Airfare + 50% Back in Points)


One more catch-up post from my vacation.

American Express has announced two new enhancements to their Platinum card lineup, one for their personal card and the other for their business card.

Link to Press Release

American Express Platinum Card (Personal)

Effective October 6, the Platinum Card will now earn 5x Membership Rewards points on flights booked directly with airlines or through American Express Travel.

This is a pretty straightforward benefit, though one key takeaway is that purchases through United’s MileagePlus X app will likely qualify for 5x points. I’ll try out a test purchase and report back later.

American Express Business Platinum Card

Also effective October 6, Business Platinum cardholders will now earn 50% points back when using Membership Rewards Pay with Points through American Express Travel to book a flight with their selected airline. They will also receive the benefit when booking a first or business class ticket with any airline.

This benefit should be very lucrative for many people, as Membership Rewards points are now effectively worth 2 cents per point when redeemed for travel. There are, of course, the following caveats:

  • The flight must be with the same airline you choose for the annual $200 airline fee credit or in business/first class, in which case it can be with any airline.
  • If the flight is with Southwest or Spirit Airlines, you must call (800) 553-9497 to activate this benefit.
  • The flight cannot be part of a travel package or booked with the American Express U.S. Representative Travel Network.

It was also announced that Business Platinum cardholders will now earn 1.5x Membership Rewards points per dollar spent on any purchase of $5,000 or more, though I don’t find this new perk as exciting as the other two above.

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