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American Express Platinum or Gold Card?

by Mr Credit Card

Update – American Express is in the midst of updating their Platinum Card. We expect the new features and updates to be available later today. Please bear in mind that some information on this page regarding the card may be outdated at this moment.

In this comparison review, we will look at the differences between the American Express Gold, Premier Rewards Gold and Platinum version. We’ll find out at the end that these cards (especially the Premier Rewards and Platinum) can be complimentary and many people have both (we’ll explain why). We’ll also highlight the circumstances where one is better than the other. Below is the chart highlighting key features.

Earning Miles 1X – all purchases 3X – airline tickets
2X – Groceries & Gas
1X – all purchases
Gold Card Events Yes Yes Yes
Hotel Booking Perks Gold Hotel Connections Gold Hotel Connections Fine Hotel & Resorts
$200 Airline Credit No No Yes
International Companion Ticket No No Yes
Global Entry Membership No No Yes
Cruise Credits No No Yes – $100 Onboard Credit

Similarities

The most basic similarity among these cards is that the reward program is the same (well, almost) for all cards. Membership Rewards allows you to transfer points to their airline partners and hotel partners. Platinum cardholders are entitled to MR First program (which simply means there are a few high end luxury rewards). But for all intents and purposes, all these cards have the same program. Furthermore,

  • All cards allow you to earn unlimited points which do not expire.
  • There are no preset spending limits for these cards.
  • They are have the Gold Card Events feature – For those who are not familiar with it, American Express sponsors events like concerts, theaters etc. And they are normally some good seats which they make available to card members before the general public has access to them.
  • They have almost similar travel and shopping insurance type features.

Differences

  • How you earn points? – Ironically, the most effective card among the three in terms of points earning capacity is the American Express Premier Rewards Gold Card, where you can earn triple points for airline ticket purchases and double points for gasoline and supermarket purchases. The other two cards just allow you to earn the standard one point per dollar on all purchases.

    The Premier Rewards Gold also gives you 15,000 bonus points when you spend $30,000 a year on the card.

  • Hotel Booking Perks – Both the Gold and Platinum versions have hotel booking perks. Platinum has got the Fine Hotel and Resorts program.

    The program has lots of hotel partners and when you use your Platinum Card to book with them, you get perks like a $100 hotel voucher (which I frequently use at their spa), free room upgrade if available, late checkouts and complimentary continental breakfast.

    Recently, the Gold series has also added a similar perk called the Gold Hotel Connection. Their partners include Fairmont, MGM in Vegas, Destination Hotels and Resorts, Hilton, Preferred Hotel Group, KSL, Loews, City Center (Vegas), Omni, Radisson, Thompson and The PUBLIC Hotel in Chicago. You get $75 resort credits and room upgrades (if available) if you book with American Express Travel and stay two consecutive nights.

  • Extra Platinum Perks – Aside from these differences, the Platinum Card comes with the following extra perks that are not available in the Gold version. Examples include airport lounge access, no foreign transaction fees, global entry fee payment, $200 airline credits, cruise credits and concierge service.

    Verdict and Opinion

    After looking through their features, the similarities and differences, we can safely make the following statements.

  • 1. The Platinum Card is All About Benefits – You pay a $450 annual fee a year. And it is all about benefits. They have more perks than most other credit cards. And if you use your perks, you could easily cover the cost of the annual fee. For example, making use of the airline credits ($200), joining the Hertz Gold membership ($60), joining the Platinum Status on Starwood, getting a couple of hotel credits when you book your hotels with FHR are some ways to reap the benefits. Getting access to Delta, American Airline
  • The Premier Rewards Gold Is Great For Earning Points – While the Platinum Card is full of great benefits, the Premier Rewards Gold the the king in terms of the points you can earn. It is really hard to beat triple points on airline tickets. You would think the the Plat would at least match it, but this is not the case. They also have the advantage of giving members 15,000 MR points if they spend $30,000 a year on the card. Both the Plat and regular Gold do not have this feature.
  • So which is actually the better card? – Well, the simple answer would be to say that if you are more concerned about points (who would not be), then the Premier Rewards Gold would be the easy choice (read our review here).

    And if it is benefits that you are after, then the Plat should be your choice.

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16 Responses to “American Express Platinum or Gold Card?”

  1. Jeremy Says:

    Hey there, thanks for the site! Here are some things that didn’t make sense to me:

    “The Amex Platinum also has arrangements which hotels where you get special amenities and services at fine hotels and resorts.”

    This sentence does not make grammatical sense.

    “If not, then the American Express´┐Ż Preferred Rewards Gold Card will surface.”

    Do you mean suffice? If you mean the card will ‘surface,’ you’re saying that the card will somehow come about without your doing anything. I’m pretty sure you mean ‘suffice’ as in ‘the Gold card will be good enough.’

    I love your site and I hope these suggestions are helpful!

    Jeremy

  2. Fred Johnson Says:

    Jeremy,

    You meed a life. We all knew what he meant.

  3. Fred Johnson Says:

    Jeremy,

    What I meant to say is you “need” a life. You do not “Meed” a life.

    For we all know Meed means “a reward or recompense”

  4. Mr Credit Card Says:

    Fred

    Thanks for the kind words. But I’m also fine with folks pointing out my spelling errors

    Mr CC

  5. Mariel Says:

    Mr. CC Thanks for the explaination. Im just applying for an AX and this really helped.

    *** Please dont ck my spelling errors***

  6. E Says:

    Great info!! Thanks. Hey Jeremy – get a liffe

  7. Paul Says:

    I am considering upgrading to Platinum from Premier Gold. In the past year I was able to get third row center theater tickets in Chicago to Addams Family (I liked it; critics did not) and obtained terrific box seats to see the top tennis players in the world compete in a Cincinnati warm-up to the US Open. Those advantages are worth a lot to me. Would Platinum be better for that? Also, does that “buy one business class and get one free” thing really work, or is it heavily restricted? Glad I found this site.

  8. Mohammad Waheed Says:

    I am waiting for my AMEX Platinum card, which should be arriving soon.

  9. John Says:

    I jist clicked my upgrade button on site. Less than 7 bus days should get mine. Had some card listed on upgrade screen but that thing was like 5k….. Plat looks better and i can justify he 450 dunno what the other one it offered gave besides mega price.

  10. diane Says:

    Hi

    One area you did not mention is purchase protection

    Gold only covers 1000. Plat covers up to 10,000

  11. Mr Credit Card Says:

    Thanks – I’ll have to insert that in the post!

  12. marshall Says:

    it’s a honor to have either card because its not just given out to anyone so everybody with a gold or platinum should feel priviledge just look around at folks face when you whip it out LMAO! Now take that VISA,Master Card or Discover. rich get richer and the poor use other cards. AMEX RULES! thats when you know you made it no revolving credit for me i hate carrying cash

  13. Drew Says:

    More on the traveling; Platinum will wave the currency exchange fee.

  14. Les Says:

    If i have a business platinum, how do i get additional premier reward gold for that extra $15000. Thanks

  15. Mr Credit Card Says:

    just apply for it.

  16. Deb Says:

    I just recently went to NY and purchased a great necklace. I have lost it or it was taken out of my home. I have been having extensive work done in the house.
    I have the American Express Gold Premier Card. How do I approach them about this purchase and loss.

    Thanks,
    D

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