Selecting an Airline With the AMEX Business Platinum & Why I Chose Southwest
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Besides the huge 100,000 point welcome bonus, a major reason I got The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN was the 50% points back perk.
Because I’ll get 2 cents per point when I use my AMEX Membership Rewards points to book coach airfare on my selected airline. So picking 1 of the 9 eligible airlines is important to make sure I make the most of this benefit!
Plus, the airline selection matters for earning the Business Platinum’s $200 airline incidental credit.
I decided on Southwest.
I’ll show you how to select your airline for the American Express Business Platinum airline credit.
Select an Airline for AMEX Pay With Points & $200 Credit
If you have the AMEX Business Platinum card, you’re eligible to receive a $200 statement credit each calendar year for incidentals on an airline of your choice.
And you’ll get 50% of your points back for coach tickets booked with Pay With Points on your selected airline.
You can choose from 1 of these 9 airlines:
- Alaska Airlines
- American Airlines
- Frontier Airlines
- Hawaiian Airlines
- Spirit Airlines
- United Airlines
You’ll be able to select an airline after you activate your card. Then, you’ll only be able to change your selection in January of each year.
How to Enroll and Pick Your Airline
The $200 annual credit and 50% pay with points perk only work after you select an airline. Here’s how to do it.
Step 1. Log-In to Your AMEX Account
Log-in to your AMEX account from the airline choice website.
Step 2. Pick Your Airline
Then, you’ll see a screen with a drop-down menu. When you click “Select an Airline,” you’ll see your options.Note: Remember, after you select your airline, you can NOT change it until January of each year.
Step 3. Confirm Your Selection
After you make your choice, you’ll see your airline selection underneath your Business Platinum card. I chose Southwest.
You’ll also get an email from AMEX verifying your selection.
Step 4. Use the $200 Airline Credit & Pay With Points Perk
You’re all set!
You can now use the Business Platinum card to pay for airline incidentals like in-flight beverages and get up to a $200 statement credit each calendar year.
Also, you can book any coach flight on your selected airline using Pay With Points and get 50% of your points back!Note: To get 50% of your points back with Spirit Airlines or Southwest, you’ll have to pay with your Business Platinum card. Then call AMEX Membership Rewards at 800-297-3276 to get your points back.
Why I Chose Southwest
I love Southwest because you can check 2 bags for free and there are no change or cancellation fees. And some Southwest flight attendants give very funny safety briefings!
Southwest is NOT a direct AMEX airline transfer partner. Before the new Pay With Points perk, there was no way to use American Express Membership Rewards points to book Southwest flights.
I selected Southwest because I’ll always get 2 cents per point when using Pay With Points.
That’s a better value than if I transferred Chase Ultimate Rewards points to Southwest or if I booked through the Chase Travel portal.
For example, I found a round-trip Southwest flight from Orlando to San Diego, which costs ~$344.
Or you can redeem ~22,000 Southwest points for the same flight.
In this case, your Southwest points are worth ~1.5 cents each (22,000 / $344 – $11 for taxes).
Because points on your Sapphire Reserve are worth 1.5 cents each when you book travel. So you can book the ~$344 flight for ~23,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points ($344 X 1.5 cents).
But you’ll use the lowest number of points when you book with AMEX Pay With Points. You’ll pay ~34,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points for the ~$344 flight. But, then you’ll get 50% points back. So in the end, it only costs ~17,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points.
And using Pay With Points you earn points and loyalty credit with Southwest because it’s basically like paying cash for a flight.
And with the airline you select, you’ll get 50% of your points back on coach flights when you use Pay With Points.
Choose wisely because you’ll only be able to change your selection in January of each year.
I selected Southwest because I’ll get 2 cents per point on all flights when I use Pay With Points. That’s better than I’d get using Chase Ultimate Rewards points!
Which airline did you select with your Business Platinum card?
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