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If you’ve never had The Business Platinum® Card from American Express, this is your clarion call. In February 2019, the annual fee is shooting up to $595 (!!!).
You can still apply to earn up to 75,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after meeting tiered minimum spending requirements and pay a $450 annual fee. But you need to open your account before January 2019 to get the lower rate!
We don’t know when AMEX will pull applications or what the welcome offer will be. So here’s your chance to get the card with its current benefits AND sample the new additions while saving $145 in the process. For that reason, I’m considering opening the AMEX Business Platinum card NOW.
I’ll explain why!
2 Months Before Big AMEX Business Platinum Card Changes, 1 Month to Take Action
Read our review of the AMEX Business Platinum
I’ve never had the AMEX Business Platinum Card. That’s important to note because AMEX only allows you to earn the welcome offer on each card once per lifetime.
In the past, I’ve held The Platinum Card® from American Express and the Mercedes-Benz version (which was discontinued), but never the small business variation.
If you open the AMEX Business Platinum after January 2019, you’ll pay the bigger annual fee, so you have ~1 month to get the card in its current form. Here’s what’s changing:
- Annual fee is jumping from $450 to $595
- Complimentary access to WeWork for 1 year (valued at $2,700)
- Statement credits up to $200 toward Dell purchases
- Increased Hotel Collection hotel credit of $100 (up from $75)
Other perks, including $200 in airline incidental credits, 5X AMEX Membership Rewards points on airfare, and access to airport lounges, will remain the same. Here’s our full review of the AMEX Business Platinum Card.
Plus, at $450, that’s a full $100 cheaper than the personal version of the card. And right now, you can earn up to 75,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points as a welcome bonus.
- 50,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after you spend $10,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.
- 25,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after you spend an additional $10,000 on qualifying purchases within the same timeframe
We don’t know when AMEX will pull applications to formally introduce the new changes, or what the welcome bonus will be in February 2019. But if you apply now, you’ll lock-in the $450 for a year. And you can use the credits for $145 less before your card membership renews at the higher rate.
Nope, Not a Fan of the Changes
I’m currently without an AMEX Platinum Card for the first time in years. Paying nearly $600 for a card’s annual fee is ridiculous. I have a hard time justifying it, no matter how many amazing perks AMEX adds.
But the new benefits are not amazing at all. I’m not impressed with the AMEX Business Platinum Card changes.
I use Apple products (thanks, art school), so the Dell credit is lost on me. I don’t play video games, and don’t want accessories for the sake of using a credit. It’s oddly specific that AMEX chose Dell as a computer provider.
And the WeWork access? There are 5 locations in Austin, and one of them is ~5 minutes from me.
But I’m naturally antisocial and find my productivity nosedives in “open concept” offices. Waaaay too much distraction (AKA “networking”). I guess I could drop in and swig some craft beer every once in a while.
I had a coworking space in New York and ended up spending way more money eating out. And if you already have an on-site office, having another one would be pointless. And that’s if there’s even a WeWork space near you.
I suppose if you’re a freelancer in a WeWork city who uses Dell products, these changes are amazing. But that’s a very niche group. For everyone else, it’s just another $145 a year, which sucks.
My Plan With the AMEX Business Platinum Card
So while I find the changes useless at best, I’m planning to open the AMEX Business Platinum Card. Because I want to pay $450 for a year and earn more AMEX Membership Rewards points while I know the big welcome offer is still around.
But as it stands, I’ll have to make a plan to meet a LOT of minimum spending. The full spending requirement is $20,000 in the first 3 months of account opening, or ~$6,667 per month ($20,000 / 3).
You’ll end up with 95,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points, which are worth nearly $1,400 worth of airfare by using the Pay With Points rebate benefit.
That’s also enough to fly to tons of places in Business Class when you transfer the points to travel partners.
I’ll likely make payments with Plastiq (which is running a promotion for small business owners right now), and switch all my spending to the card, to meet the full spending requirements.
Why I Want to Apply Now
I want to keep access to AMEX’s network of awesome Centurion Lounges for at least another year.
I’m between Dallas and Austin right now, and the Dallas Centurion Lounge, in my opinion, is the best in the network.
Plus, with regard to the up to $200 airline incidental credit, I can use it in December 2018 and again in January 2019. I know which airline gift cards still work for reimbursement, so that’ll get me another $400 in airfare.
And I’ll definitely use the 10 Gogo in-flight Wi-Fi passes. Paying $450 for all this is worth it for me. Not to mention the big welcome bonus!
I highly doubt I’ll keep the card when the annual fee renews at $595. But it’s worth getting now to get all the cool perks for a year at $450.
And who knows, maybe I’ll find a nifty Dell product and change my mind about WeWork spaces. 😉
If you open or renew your AMEX Business Platinum Card after January 2019, you’ll pay an increased $595 annual fee. But if you apply in December 2018, you can lock-in a lower rate of $450 for a year, and earn a huge welcome offer of up to 75,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after meeting tiered minimum spending requirements.
We don’t know when AMEX will pull card applications or what the new welcome bonus will be, so you have ~1 month to pick up this card in its current form. Then, you’ll get access to the new perks to see how you like them before the fee renews at the higher rate!
That’s why I’m planning to get this card while I can, because I’ve never had it. And while the $200 Dell credit and access to WeWork spaces are too niche for my liking, I’d like to keep access to Centurion Lounges for a year and score $400 in airfare with the airline incidental credits.
Overall, I’m disappointed with the changes, but I’ll give it one last shot before they kick in. If you’re in a similar position, I recommend applying ASAP so you can use 2018’s credits, get a lower annual fee, then have access to all the new perks in 2019.
Will you apply for this card before changes and bigger fee take hold?