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TravelHow to maximize benefits with the Amex Platinum Card

How to maximize benefits with the Amex Platinum Card

The Platinum Card® from American Express is among the best premium travel rewards cards available. Thanks to its generous benefits and its ability to earn valuable, transferable American Express Membership Rewards points, it can be well worth the annual fee of $695 (see rates and fees) for many travelers.

The Amex Platinum’s current public offer is 80,000 Membership Rewards Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases within the first six months of card membership.

While this is an excellent welcome bonus, you may want to check the CardMatch tool for targeted offers — we’ve seen Amex Platinum bonuses of 125,000 points floating around in the past (though those offers are subject to change without notice)

Beyond the welcome offer, it is the Amex Platinum’s ongoing perks that can be even more valuable, including annual statement credits that can be worth up to $1,400 — or more if you really leverage them to their fullest.

Here’s a rundown of how to maximize the benefits of the Amex Platinum Card.

Amex Platinum benefits overview

  • Earn 80,000 Amex Membership Rewards points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on the card in your first six months of card membership
  • Earn 5 points per dollar for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel (on up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year, then 1 point per dollar)
  • Earn 5 points per dollar on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel
  • Annual Uber Cash of up to $200 ($15 in Uber Cash to use on eligible orders with Uber Eats and rides with Uber in the US every month plus a bonus $20 in December, for U.S. services)*
  • Annual airline fee statement credit of up to $200*
  • Up to $200 back in statement credits each calendar year on prepaid Amex Fine Hotels + Resorts or The Hotel Collection bookings (the latter of which requires a minimum two-night stay) with American Express Travel when you pay with your Amex Platinum*
  • Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit (up to $100 for Global Entry every 4 years or up to $85 for TSA PreCheck every 4½ years)
  • Up to $189 back per calendar year on your Clear Plus membership (expedited security, subject to auto-renewal)*
  • Up to $300 annual Equinox credit on select Equinox memberships when using your card (subject to auto-renewal)*
  • Up to $155 annually in statement credits toward monthly Walmart+ membership fees ($12.95, plus applicable taxes, monthly; subject to auto-renewal; Plus Up is excluded)
  • Up to $300 statement credit toward a SoulCycle bike (up to 15 bikes per calendar year); Must be enrolled in an Equinox+ membership to be eligible for this benefit
  • Up to $100 annually at Saks Fifth Avenue: Up to $50 statement credits from January to June; up to $50 statement credits from July to December*
  • Digital entertainment credit: Up to $20 in statement credits each month ($240 per calendar year) when you pay for eligible purchases with your card at one or more of the following providers: Disney+, The Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, Peacock, SiriusXM (ends May 7, 2024), The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal*
  • Airport lounge access, including Centurion Lounges and Studio locations worldwide*
  • Gold elite status with Marriott and Hilton*
  • Complimentary car rental elite status with Hertz Gold Plus Rewards**, Avis Preferred and National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive*
  • Various travel and shopping protections
  • Cruise Privileges Program
  • International Airline Program
  • American Express concierge service
  • ShopRunner membership*

*Enrollment required for select benefits, terms apply.

**Enrollment in the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards Program is required

Let’s focus on the benefits with the potential highest value and how you can maximize them year after year.

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$200 in Uber Cash

What it is: One of the more popular Amex Platinum perks is the annual Uber Cash of up to $200, allotted in $15 monthly increments except in December, when you’ll get a $35 credit ($15 plus a $20 bonus) for U.S. services. For anyone who frequently uses the ride-hailing service or its food-delivery platform, it shouldn’t be hard to get the full $200 in value from this benefit.

Make sure you add your Amex Platinum to your Uber account, and the credit will automatically be applied to your first domestic ride or food order each month.

Amex Platinum users get up to $200 in Uber credits every year. OLLY CURTIS/FUTURE PUBLISHING/GETTY IMAGES

Tips for maximizing: Note that these credits are only valid for Uber rides and Uber Eats orders in the U.S.

You don’t have to pay your balance with an Amex card to get the discount, meaning you could use the card for the portion of a ride covered by the statement credit and then pay the rest of the fare using another card with better earning rates.

These credits expire at the end of each month, so you won’t be able to roll over any unused credits.

$200 airline fee credit

What it is: With the Amex Platinum, you get up to $200 in statement credits toward incidental fees with one U.S. airline each calendar year. Enrollment is required.

Compared to other cards that offer airline fee or travel credits, the Platinum card’s terms are limited. For instance, you must specify one eligible U.S. airline each year with which to use the benefit ahead of time, and the credit doesn’t cover airfare.

Still, you can use your Platinum card to offset expenses ranging from luggage fees to seat selection, lounge access and more.

Cover American Airlines Admirals Club airport lounge membership fees with the card’s up-to-$200 annual airline fee credit. JT GENTER/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: You’re technically limited to the airline you select for the entire calendar year, but reports indicate that you might be able to change your selection by contacting customer service (either on the phone or via online chat). Although Amex doesn’t explicitly list which charges are eligible for this credit, it excludes the following expenses:

Airline tickets, upgrades, mileage and points purchases, mileage and points transfer fees, gift cards, duty-free purchases and award tickets are not considered incidental fees.

So try to stick within the parameters to avoid any issues.

$200 American Express Fine Hotels + Resorts credit

What it is: Another benefit of this card is the ability to make bookings through Amex Fine Hotels + Resorts program, which is available to Platinum, Business Platinum Card® from American Express and Centurion cardholders.

Amex FHR is essentially a travel portal that lets you book stays at a selection of luxury hotels and participating properties with a variety of benefits, including complimentary room upgrades when available, noon check-in when available, 4 p.m. checkout, daily breakfast for two, an experience credit worth at least $100 and more. At select hotels in the Amex FHR program, you can also enjoy a free night on multi-night stays — usually the third, fourth or fifth night.

Plus, you’ll get up to $200 annually in statement credits when you book a prepaid rate through Amex Fine Hotels + Resorts with American Express Travel. (This benefit can also be used for stays of at least two nights at properties in the not-quite-as-prestigious The Hotel Collection.)

American Express Fine Hotels + Resorts stays include a $100 unique property amenity, such as a food and beverage credit at the Loews Chicago Hotel. KATIE GENTER/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: Booking through Amex FHR and paying with the American Express Platinum could make sense for a shorter stay at an eligible property, especially with the on-property credit usually worth at least $100.

However, if you book a property with FHR that participates in a major loyalty program — like Marriott Bonvoy or Hilton Honors — you may not earn points on the stay or enjoy any elite benefits. Reports indicate that it sometimes happens, but since these reservations are technically through a third-party platform, you should be prepared to miss out on those perks.

Related: When to book through Amex Fine Hotels + Resorts vs. Chase Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection

Up to $100 Credits for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck enrollment fees

What it is: This is definitely one of the Platinum Card benefits you shouldn’t leave on the table. You can get a credit to cover the application fee for Global Entry once every four years (up to $100) or TSA PreCheck once every 4½ years (up to $85). Both trusted traveler programs expedite your experience at the airport — at customs and immigration with Global Entry, and at security checkpoints with PreCheck.

Once you’ve applied and been accepted for Global Entry, you’ll also be eligible for TSA PreCheck. Hence, Global Entry is generally the better option (although you’ll need to add your Known Traveler ID number to all your frequent flyer accounts to enjoy the benefits of PreCheck).

Tips for maximizing: You must charge the application fee to your Platinum card to get the fee waiver. You’ll only be able to take advantage of this perk every four years, but authorized users can also receive fee credits of their own. It costs $195 (see rates and fees) to add up to three additional users to your card account — see our guide on adding Amex Platinum authorized users for more information.

Related: Global Entry vs. TSA PreCheck: Which is better?

$189 Clear Plus membership credit

What it is: Clear is a program that essentially lets you skip the serpentine queue at TSA security checkpoints. It has its own lane that allows you to input biometrics such as fingerprints or an iris scan instead of waiting in line to hand your ID and boarding pass to a TSA officer. Just take a few seconds at a Clear kiosk, and you’ll be escorted directly to the big gray bins.

This card benefit gives you up to $189 back per calendar year on your Clear Plus membership — the exact price for which the membership retails. You may even be eligible for discounts thanks to any other associations you have, such as airline elite status with some carriers. However, as long as you have the Amex Platinum, you can receive free membership with Clear Plus.

Stack a Clear membership with TSA PreCheck and you’ll never have to wait. SUMMER HULL/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: Families can maximize this perk by combining it with other discounts to all access Clear Plus together. For example, general members of both Delta SkyMiles and United MileagePlus can enroll in Clear Plus for $179 (it’s even cheaper for those with elite status or cobranded credit cards). In addition, it costs $70 to add an adult family member to your account. And kids under the age of 18 can accompany adults for free.

As a result, if you sign up through Delta or United (for at most $179), add your spouse or partner (for $70), and then bring your child(ren) through the Clear Plus lane with you, you’ll only pay $60 for the entire family’s membership after your Amex credit.

Read more: Guide to using the new Amex Platinum Clear Plus benefit

$300 Equinox Credit

What it is: With the Amex Platinum, you’ll get up to $300 back annually on select Equinox memberships or on a digital subscription to Equinox+, the on-demand fitness app. Subject to auto-renewal; enrollment is required.


Tips for maximizing: The most practical use is a digital subscription to Equinox+, $39.99 monthly, so you can take live and on-demand classes online.

$155 Walmart+ credit

What it is: Walmart+ is a service that confers an assortment of benefits as a Walmart customer, including:

  • Free grocery delivery (must order at least $35 in products)
  • Free shipping on non-grocery items (no order minimum)
  • Discounts on prescriptions
  • Discounts at Walmart and Murphy gas stations
  • Included Paramount+ subscription

You’ll receive up to $155 per year in credits toward Walmart+ when you pay for your membership each month (subject to auto-renewal). Membership costs $12.95 per month (plus any applicable tax), meaning this perk effectively equates to free Walmart+ membership as long as you have the card (though you might be responsible for local taxes and fees; Plus Up is excluded)


Tips for maximizing: Since the credit is issued monthly ($12.95 + taxes), ensure you’re subscribed to the monthly membership instead of the annual one. Generally, the monthly membership is more expensive than the annual one, but your credit will fully cover the monthly cost.

Related: Fast shipping battle: We put Amazon Prime and Walmart+ to the ultimate test

$300 SoulCycle statement credits

What it is: You’ll receive up to $300 in statement credits when you use your Amex Platinum to purchase a SoulCycle at-home bike. You can use this credit for up to 15 bike purchases per calendar year.


Tips for maximizing: This is one of the least useful credits on the card, but if you’re interested in this particular perk, you must make your purchase through this link. If you purchase in a store or through the Equinox mobile app, you won’t receive the $300 statement credit. Also, this credit will not offset any accessories you may purchase for the bike.

$100 Saks Fifth Avenue credits

What it is: This perk is available in the form of two up-to-$50 statement credits per year. Your first up to $50 statement credit can offset purchases from January through June; a second up to $50 statement credit is available from July through December. You must register your Amex Platinum card through your Amex online account to receive this benefit before purchasing.


Tips for maximizing: There is no minimum purchase required to trigger these new statement credits, so you could make a purchase of $50 (or less) once every six months and not owe anything out of pocket once the credit posts to your Amex Platinum account.

Related: Your guide to the Amex Platinum Saks Fifth Avenue credit

$240 digital entertainment credit

What it is: You’ll receive up to $20 in statement credits each month when you pay for eligible purchases with your Amex Platinum at one or more of the following providers (enrollment required):

  • Disney+
  • The Disney Bundle
  • ESPN+
  • Hulu
  • Peacock
  • SiriusXM (ends May 7)
  • The New York Times
  • Wall Street Journal

Tips for maximizing: You can get up to a $20 monthly credit, so you can stack multiple subscriptions to get the most value. For example, a Peacock subscription ($4.99 per month) and a Disney Bundle Basic subscription ($12.99 per month) will allow you to use about $216 out of the full $240 in statement credits each year.

Related: Best credit cards for streaming services

Centurion Lounge access and more

What it is: Cardholders enjoy complimentary access to American Express Centurion Lounges. If you’ve ever visited one, you’ll know why this is a great perk.

These spaces offer gourmet food, craft cocktails and comfortable places to rest. If your home airport or others you travel through frequently have Centurion Lounges, this benefit alone might be worth getting the card — though these spots have seen crowding issues recently.

One of the perks is complimentary access to American Express Centurion Lounges. ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: The Amex Platinum Card also entitles you to Delta Sky Club access (during same-day travel with the airline; limited to 10 annual visits from Feb. 1, 2025), and you’ll gain unlimited entry to Priority Pass lounges (although not restaurants) and several others. Enrollment is required.

Elite status with Hilton and Marriott

What it is: The Platinum Card allows members to register for automatic Gold Elite status in the Marriott Bonvoy program along with Hilton Honors Gold elite status. Both hotel chains offer on-property benefits such as late checkout and bonus earnings on stays to elite members. Enrollment is required.

Marriott Gold Elite status may net you some perks during stays at Marriott properties such as The Westin Langkawi Resort & Spa in Malaysia. KATIE GENTER/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: Hilton Honors Gold elite status — which usually requires 20 stays, 40 nights or earning 75,000 Honors base points — includes an 80% points bonus on stays, provides complimentary breakfast (or an on-property credit) at most hotel brands and entitles you to space-available upgrades.

Meanwhile, standout benefits of Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status — which usually requires 25 nights — include a 25% points bonus on stays, upgrades to enhanced rooms and free premium internet.

Car rental program elite status

What it is: In addition to Hilton and Marriott elite status, you’ll get status with a few car rental programs. You’ll get Avis Preferred Plus, Hertz Gold Plus Rewards President’s Circle* and National Car Rental Emerald Club Executive status. You’ll need to enroll for these benefits on the Amex website.

*Enrollment in the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards Program is required.

With elite status at a car rental agency, you may be able to skip the line and select your own car. ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: Regardless of how often you rent cars, go ahead and register for these programs since doing so may allow you to skip the counter and/or get upgraded cars when you rent with these companies. With demand (and prices) for rental cars remaining high, having elite status may be a big help when getting the transportation you want.

Travel and shopping protections

What it is: American Express offers extensive shopping protections and travel coverage when you use your card to make eligible purchases. These protections include:

  • Trip delay protection*: If your trip is delayed by more than six hours for a covered reason, you may be eligible to be reimbursed up to $500 per covered trip for reasonable additional expenses, at up to two claims per consecutive 12-month period
  • Trip cancellation and interruption protection*: If you need to cancel or interrupt your trip for a covered reason, you may be eligible for reimbursement of up to $10,000 per covered trip and $20,000 per card per consecutive 12-month period
  • Extended warranty**: Extends eligible manufacturer’s warranties of five years or less by up to one additional year
  • Purchase protection**: Protects recent purchases against theft, accidental damage or loss for up to 90 days from the purchase date, at up to $10,000 per claim and $50,000 per account per calendar year
  • Return protection***: If you try to return an eligible item within 90 days from the date of purchase and the merchant won’t take it back, American Express may refund the full purchase price (up to $300 per item, up to a maximum of $1,000 per calendar year per card account)

*Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for details. Policies are underwritten by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.

**Eligibility and benefit levels vary by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for details. Policies are underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

***Eligibility and benefit levels vary by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for details.

If your travel is delayed by more than six hours, you may be covered by the Amex Platinum trip delay coverage. DARREN MURPH/THE POINTS GUY

Tips for maximizing: When making a purchase for which you might later benefit from shopping or travel protections, be sure to save your receipt. Start a claim as soon as possible if you need to use your card’s protections.

Related: Our guides to Amex shopping protections and Amex travel coverage

Bottom line

Although the Amex Platinum isn’t necessarily the best card for everyday spending, the average consumer should have no trouble recouping the annual fee thanks to its array of perks. Of course, if you spend more heavily on travel, especially if you’re lucky enough to be able to charge reimbursable business travel to your personal credit cards, you may come out even further ahead.

Just make sure you know the terms of each benefit — including which ones require enrollment — so you can make the most of the card each and every year.

Apply here: The Platinum Card from American Express

For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum Card, click here.


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