Reader John emailed Amex last week to cancel his Platinum charge card.
When they responded, Amex tried to persuade him not to cancel but to downgrade to a new ‘secret’ card – Gold Rewards Plus.
This appears to be a hybrid of the Platinum and Preferred Rewards Gold cards:
- It comes with the same travel insurance package as the Platinum card (to be confirmed – the email implies it is the same but I haven’t seen the documentation)
- It comes with permanent double points on travel and overseas purchases (as per Preferred Rewards Gold)
- It comes with 1 year of double points on supermarket and petrol spend (as per Preferred Rewards Gold)
- It offers 7,500 MR points each year when you renew, subject to spending £15,000 (as per Preferred Rewards Gold)
- It offers four airport lounge passes (Preferred Rewards Gold offers two)
The annual fee for this card is £285.
This is, frankly, a shockingly bad deal.
Basically, it is the Preferred Rewards Gold card plus travel insurance.
Yet, Preferred Rewards Gold comes with a 20,000 point sign-up bonus, no fee for Year 1 and £125 thereafter.
Gold Rewards Plus has NO sign-up bonus and is £285 per year from Day 1!
Interestingly, the ONLY way to get this card is to downgrade from Platinum. John was told that if he didn’t accept the deal now, it would not be available to him later (lucky him, I think!).
It seems pretty clear that this is a knee-jerk reaction to try to keep some money from people who are cancelling Platinum to avoid the new £450 fee.
Amex couldn’t even be bothered to create a new card design. They will just send you a bog-standard Gold card with a different cover letter and throw in some travel insurance, whilst charging you £285!
Must try harder, boys …..