Don’t Leave Money on the Table: Make the Most of Your AMEX Platinum Credits!

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The Platinum Card® from American Express comes with some of the best credit card benefits out there.  Possibly the most generous perk comes in the form of 4 types of credits which can help offset the $550 annual fee. (See Rates & Fees)

These credits are in addition to the 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points you’ll earn after spending $5,000 on purchases with your new card in the first 3 months.  That’s potentially worth thousands of dollars in flights depending on how you redeem the points!

The AMEX Platinum Welcome Bonus Can Get You a Ton of Big Travel!  But If You Don’t Use Your Credits You’re Missing Out!

Here’s more about all the credits you’ll get with the AMEX Platinum card and how to make the most of them!

Get More Than Your Annual Fee Worth With the AMEX Platinum

Apply Here:   The Platinum Card® from American Express

Read our review of the American Express Platinum Card

When you apply for the AMEX Platinum card, you’ll earn 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening.

You’ll also earn:

  • 5 AMEX Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on airfare (booked either directly with the airline or through AMEX Travel)
  • 5 AMEX Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on prepaid hotels booked on AMEX Travel
  • 1 AMEX Membership Rewards point per $1 on everything else

And the benefits you get with the AMEX Platinum, like airport lounge access, are among the best of any card.

The $550 annual fee is NOT waived the first year.  But the credits you get with the card can make up for much of the annual fee!

$200 Airline Incidental Fee Credit

The AMEX Platinum comes with up to $200 credit annually for airline incidental fees on your selected airline.

This benefit is available for all Platinum card holders and resets each calendar year.  The bad news is if you don’t use the entire credit by December 31, you lose it.  BUT the good news is that if you got an AMEX Platinum card now, you can redeem the $200 credit until December 31 and redeem another $200 on January 1.

This means you can get the $200 twice in the first year of card membership, which takes a $400 bite out of the annual fee!

Take the Sting Out of Airline Fees With the AMEX Platinum Airline Incidental Fee Credit

The one catch is that you are required to choose an airline before you can get a statement credit.  You can choose from:

  • Alaska Airlines
  • American Airlines
  • Delta
  • Frontier Airlines
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • JetBlue
  • Southwest
  • Spirit
  • United Airlines

Once you select an airline you can use the credit for any of the following approved items:

  • Checked baggage fees
  • Overweight / oversize baggage fees
  • Change fees
  • Phone reservation fees
  • Pet flight fees
  • Airport lounge day passes and annual memberships
  • Seat assignment fees
  • In-flight amenity fees (beverages, food, pillows / blankets, etc)
  • In-flight entertainment fees (excluding wireless internet)

The credit cannot be redeemed for any of the following purchases:

  • Airline tickets
  • Seat upgrades
  • Miles or points purchases
  • Trip or baggage insurance
  • Duty free purchase
  • Award ticket fees
  • Gift cards issued by airlines

That said, many folks report success being able to use the $200 credit towards airline purchases not included on the eligible list.  Since this technically isn’t allowed per the card terms and conditions, there’s no guarantee you’ll get reimbursed, so proceed with caution!

$200 Uber Credit

A recently added AMEX Platinum perk is up to $200 in Uber credit each year, which you’ll get in $15 increments each month, except in December when you get $20.

If you use ride-share services, even occasionally, you should have no problem getting the full $200 in value from this benefit.  And if you don’t use Uber to get around town, you can also apply the credits toward Uber Eats purchases.

Get up to $200 per Calendar Year in Uber Credits, Which Also Works for Uber Eats!

As an added bonus, you’ll also get Uber VIP status which matches riders with top-rated drivers in the area.

To make the most of this benefit, add your AMEX Platinum to your Uber account and the credits will appear in your Uber app.  Keep in mind that you can only use the credits on rides in the US and the credits expire at the end of each month, so you can’t roll over any unused credits to the next month.

$100 Saks Fifth Avenue Credit

When you register your AMEX Platinum card with the “Shop Saks with Platinum” program, you’ll get up to $50 in statement credits from January through June, and up to $50 in statement credits from July through December.

There’s no minimum spending requirement beyond the $50, but certain purchases, like Saks Fifth Avenue gift cards or in-store restaurant spending, do not qualify.

If You Like Shopping at Saks Fifth Avenue, You’ll Get up to $100 in Credit Each Year!

One way to make the most of this benefit is to shop Saks Fifth Avenue through an airline, credit card or hotel shopping portal.  This will allow you to earn rewards or points from other programs while still shopping (and getting a discount) with your AMEX Platinum.

$85 TSA PreCheck or $100 Global Entry Credit

If you are a frequent traveler and want to skip long security lines, you can get one Global Entry statement credit ($100) or one TSA PreCheck statement credit ($85) every 4 years when you charge the application fee to your AMEX Platinum card.

Save Valuable Time at the Airport With TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, and Use Your AMEX Platinum to Get a Credit for the Application Fee!

Taking advantage of this credit is easy.  When you apply for either of these programs, pay the application fee using your AMEX Platinum card. If you already have TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, you can still redeem the credit by paying for someone else’s application.

Bottom Line

When you add up all of the AMEX Platinum credits you can redeem in the first year of card membership, paying the $550 annual fee is easily justified (up to $400 in airline credits + up to $200 in Uber credits + up to $100 in Sak’s credit + $85 or $100 TSA PreCheck/Global Entry credit = $785 or $800 in total credits).

This doesn’t even include the extra points you’ll earn by using your AMEX Platinum or even more earnings you can get from shopping through rewards portals.  And you can get tremendous value from other AMEX Platinum benefits, like airport lounge access!

Most importantly, the credits you’ll earn are in addition to the generous 60,000 AMEX Membership Rewards point welcome bonus you’ll earn after meeting the minimum spending requirement for the AMEX Platinum.

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

Million Mile Secrets features a team of points and miles experts who have traveled to over 80 countries and have used 60+ credit cards responsibly to accumulate loyalty points and travel the world on the cheap! The Million Mile Secrets team has been featured on The Points Guy, TIME, Yahoo Finance and many other leading points & miles media outlets.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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