Card Know How

A Guide to Choosing the Best Alternative to the Amex Platinum Card

The Platinum Card from American Express has long been a favorite among frequent travelers for its luxurious perks and extensive rewards program. However, recent changes to the card have left many cardholders wondering if it’s still the best option for them.

In this article, we will explore the changes to The Platinum Card from American Express, as well as alternative card options to consider.

Changes to The Platinum Card from American Express

1.1 Higher Annual Fee and New Annual Statement Credits

One of the biggest changes to The Platinum Card from American Express is the increase in the annual fee. Previously, the annual fee was $550, but it has now been raised to $695.

While this increase may seem steep, it comes with new annual statement credits that can help offset the cost. Cardholders now receive up to $300 in annual Equinox credits, which can be used towards memberships or purchases at Equinox gyms.

Additionally, cardholders can receive up to $200 in annual statement credits for prepaid bookings with Fine Hotels & Resorts or The Hotel Collection. These statement credits can go a long way in making up for the higher annual fee.

1.2 Options for Existing Cardholders

If you’re an existing cardholder of The Platinum Card from American Express, you have a few options to consider. First, you can choose to keep the card and take advantage of the new benefits and statement credits.

While the higher annual fee may be a deterrent, the added value of the Equinox credits and hotel statement credits may make it worthwhile for frequent travelers. Alternatively, you can choose to downgrade your card to a different American Express card with a lower annual fee.

This allows you to maintain your relationship with American Express while still enjoying the benefits of their rewards program. Keep in mind that downgrading your card may result in the loss of certain benefits, so it’s important to weigh the pros and cons before making a decision.

If the changes to The Platinum Card from American Express no longer align with your financial goals or travel habits, you may also consider canceling the card altogether. Canceling a credit card can have an impact on your credit score, so it’s important to be mindful of this before making a decision.

However, if you have other credit cards that offer similar benefits and rewards, canceling The Platinum Card may be the best option for you.

Card Options to Replace Amex Platinum

2.1 Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card

If you’re looking for a credit card that offers similar benefits to The Platinum Card from American Express, the Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card is a strong contender. With this card, you’ll enjoy access to Delta Sky Club lounges when flying with Delta, as well as a companion certificate each year upon renewal.

Additionally, the card offers elite status with Delta, which can provide additional perks such as priority boarding and complimentary upgrades. The Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card also offers a generous rewards rate of 3 miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta.

This can add up quickly for frequent travelers. As a welcome offer, new cardholders can earn a significant bonus miles after meeting the spending requirements within the first few months of card membership.

2.2 Chase Sapphire Reserve

Another card to consider as a replacement for The Platinum Card from American Express is the Chase Sapphire Reserve. While it does come with a higher annual fee of $550, it offers a range of benefits that may outweigh the cost for frequent travelers.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve provides an annual travel credit of $300, which can be used towards any travel-related expenses. This credit can help offset the annual fee significantly.

Additionally, cardholders have access to over 1,200 airport lounges worldwide through the Priority Pass Select program. In terms of rewards, the Chase Sapphire Reserve offers a competitive rewards rate of 3 points per dollar spent on dining and travel, and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

These points can be transferred to a number of airline and hotel transfer partners, providing flexibility in redeeming rewards. As a welcome offer, new cardholders can earn a generous sign-up bonus after meeting the minimum spending requirements within the first few months of card membership.

This can be a great way to kickstart your rewards earnings.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the changes to The Platinum Card from American Express have prompted many cardholders to reassess their options. While the increased annual fee may be a drawback for some, the new annual statement credits can help offset the cost.

Existing cardholders have the option to keep the card, downgrade to a different American Express card, or cancel altogether. If you’re looking for alternatives, the Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card and the Chase Sapphire Reserve are both strong options with their own unique benefits and rewards programs.

Ultimately, the best credit card for you will depend on your individual needs and spending habits. 3: Downgrading to American Express Gold Card

If you’re considering downgrading from The Platinum Card from American Express, the American Express Gold Card is a compelling option to consider.

While it may not offer the same level of luxury perks as The Platinum Card, it still provides a range of benefits that can enhance your overall credit card experience. 3.1 Benefits of American Express Gold Card

The American Express Gold Card is known for its strong rewards program and dining-focused benefits.

Here are some key benefits that make it an attractive option:

– Membership Rewards: Like The Platinum Card, the American Express Gold Card also earns Membership Rewards points. These points can be redeemed for a variety of rewards, including travel, statement credits, gift cards, and more.

The flexibility of Membership Rewards allows you to use your points in a way that aligns with your preferences. – Dining and Uber Cash Credits: One of the standout features of the American Express Gold Card is the dining credits it offers.

Cardholders receive up to $120 in annual dining credits, which can be used at participating restaurants and food delivery services. Additionally, the card provides up to $120 in Uber Cash credits that can be utilized for Uber rides or Uber Eats orders in the United States.

– Rewards Rate: The American Express Gold Card offers a competitive rewards rate, with 4 Membership Rewards points earned per dollar spent at U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 in purchases per year) and 4 points per dollar spent at restaurants worldwide. Cardholders also earn 3 points per dollar spent on flights purchased directly from airlines or via amextravel.com.

Furthermore, all other eligible purchases earn 1 point per dollar spent. The higher rewards rate in popular spending categories like dining and groceries can accumulate points quickly.

– Welcome Offer: New cardholders have the opportunity to earn a generous welcome offer after meeting the minimum spending requirements within the first few months of card membership. This can be a significant boost to your points balance right from the start.

While the American Express Gold Card may not offer the same level of premium travel benefits as The Platinum Card, its emphasis on dining rewards and statement credits can make it a worthwhile choice for those who spend a significant amount on food and drink. 4: Chase Sapphire Preferred Card

If you’re looking for an alternative to The Platinum Card from American Express that comes with a more affordable annual fee, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is a strong contender.

It offers a range of benefits that can make it an excellent choice for both travel and everyday spending. 4.1 Affordable Alternative to Amex Platinum

One of the standout features of the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is its reasonable annual fee of $95.

Compared to the higher annual fees of premium travel cards, the Sapphire Preferred provides a compelling value proposition. Here are some key benefits of the card:

– Rewards Rate: The Chase Sapphire Preferred Card offers 2 points per dollar spent on dining and travel, including airfare, hotels, rental cars, and more.

All other eligible purchases earn 1 point per dollar spent. This rewards rate can add up quickly and provide valuable points for future redemptions.

– Transferable Points: One of the most valuable aspects of the Sapphire Preferred Card is the ability to transfer points to a number of airline and hotel loyalty programs. This feature provides flexibility and allows you to maximize the value of your points by redeeming them for high-value travel options.

Some of Chase’s transfer partners include airlines such as United, Southwest, and British Airways, as well as hotel chains like Hyatt and Marriott. – Travel Perks: While the Sapphire Preferred Card may not offer lounge access like The Platinum Card, it does provide some useful travel perks.

Cardholders enjoy primary car rental insurance when they pay for the rental with their card, trip cancellation/interruption insurance, and baggage delay insurance. These benefits can provide peace of mind and save you money in certain situations.

– Welcome Offer: Like many other travel rewards cards, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card offers a generous welcome bonus for new cardholders who meet the minimum spending requirements. This bonus can provide a significant boost to your points balance and help you earn valuable rewards sooner.

While the Sapphire Preferred Card may not have all the luxury perks of The Platinum Card from American Express, it offers a strong rewards program, transferable points, and valuable travel perks at a more affordable annual fee. This makes it an excellent alternative for those looking to maximize their rewards without breaking the bank.

In conclusion, downgrading from The Platinum Card from American Express does not mean sacrificing all the benefits and rewards you enjoy. The American Express Gold Card offers a range of dining-focused benefits and a competitive rewards program.

On the other hand, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card provides a strong rewards program, travel perks, and transferable points at a more affordable price point. Both cards have their own unique advantages and can be excellent alternatives to The Platinum Card.

Ultimately, the best card for you will depend on your individual spending habits and travel preferences. 5: Citi Premier Card

If you find yourself ineligible for Chase credit cards due to their strict application requirements, the Citi Premier Card is an excellent alternative to consider.

With its competitive rewards program and valuable benefits, the Citi Premier Card offers a compelling option for those looking to maximize their rewards and enjoy added perks. 5.1 Alternative for Those Ineligible for Chase Cards

Chase credit cards have become increasingly popular in the travel rewards space, but their strict application requirements, such as the 5/24 rule, can make them inaccessible to some applicants.

If you’re in this situation, the Citi Premier Card is a great alternative to consider. Here’s what makes it stand out:

– Annual Fee: The Citi Premier Card has an annual fee of $95, which is quite reasonable considering the benefits and rewards it offers.

This fee is significantly lower than many other travel rewards cards, making it an attractive choice for cost-conscious cardholders. – Rewards Rate: The Citi Premier Card offers a competitive rewards rate.

Cardholders earn 3 ThankYou Points per dollar spent on travel, including gas stations, airfare, hotels, and more. Additionally, they earn 2 points per dollar spent on dining out and entertainment, and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

The bonus categories can help you accumulate points quickly, especially if your spending aligns with these areas. – Transfer Partners: Similar to other travel rewards cards, the Citi Premier Card allows you to transfer your points to a variety of airline partners.

This feature provides flexibility and allows you to transfer your points to the loyalty program that offers the most value for your redemptions. Some of Citi’s transfer partners include airlines such as JetBlue, Singapore Airlines, and Virgin Atlantic.

– Hotel Discount: Citi has also partnered with ThankYou.com to offer cardholders a 4th night free benefit on hotel bookings. When you book a hotel stay of four consecutive nights or longer through the ThankYou travel portal, you’re eligible for a statement credit for the cost of the fourth night.

This benefit can result in significant savings, especially for those who frequently stay at hotels. – Travel and Shopping Protections: The Citi Premier Card offers a range of protections for travelers and shoppers.

These include trip cancellation/interruption insurance, travel accident insurance, baggage delay protection, and extended warranty coverage. These protections can provide peace of mind and help mitigate unexpected expenses.

– Welcome Offer: New cardholders of the Citi Premier Card have the opportunity to earn a generous welcome bonus after meeting the minimum spending requirements within the first few months of card membership. This bonus can jumpstart your points balance and allow you to immediately enjoy the benefits of the card.

While the Citi Premier Card may not have the same level of recognition as some other travel rewards cards, it offers an attractive package of benefits and rewards at a more accessible entry point. If you’ve been deemed ineligible for Chase cards or simply prefer a different card issuer, the Citi Premier Card can be an excellent alternative.

In conclusion, not being eligible for Chase credit cards doesn’t mean you can’t access valuable rewards and benefits. The Citi Premier Card offers a competitive rewards program, transfer partners, valuable travel and shopping protections, and a reasonable annual fee.

It can be an excellent choice for those who aren’t eligible for or prefer not to pursue Chase cards. Consider your spending habits, travel preferences, and financial goals to determine which card aligns best with your needs.

In conclusion, the changes to The Platinum Card from American Express have prompted many cardholders to reassess their options. While the higher annual fee may be a deterrent for some, the added benefits and statement credits can help offset the cost.

Existing cardholders have the option to keep the card, downgrade to a different American Express card, or cancel altogether. The Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve, American Express Gold Card, and Citi Premier Card offer compelling alternatives with their own unique benefits and rewards programs.

It’s important to consider your individual needs, spending habits, and travel preferences when choosing the best card for you. Whether you’re a frequent traveler or a more casual spender, there is a card option that can provide valuable perks and rewards.

Take the time to research and compare these alternatives to make an informed decision that aligns with your financial goals and lifestyle.

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