Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

15,000 Amex points for upgrading your Gold to Platinum – worth it?

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

American Express has sent an offer to some Preferred Rewards Gold cardholders offering them 15,000 Membership Rewards points if they upgrade to American Express Platinum.

Even if you did not receive this offer, it still seems that you can still take part – you are directed to this generic Amex website which appears open to any Amex Gold customer.

Is this a good deal?

Ordinarily, I would say ‘No’.  If you are interested in the Platinum card and already have an Amex Gold, the most effective thing to do would be to cancel your Gold card, wait 6 months and then make a fresh application for Platinum.

Because of the 6 month gap, you will qualify for the full sign-up bonus, which is currently 30,000 Membership Rewards points. This is obviously better than just 15,000 points.

However …..

At the moment, there is a good reason to consider Amex’s 15,000 point offer.

As I wrote here, the Cathay Pacific Gold card will cease to be an Amex Platinum benefit from 15th February.  As this card gives you almost all of the benefits of a British Airways Executive Club Silver card, including British Airways lounge access, it is well worth having.

If you currently have an Amex Gold, cancelling and waiting 6 months to apply for Platinum will be too late – the Cathay deal will have disappeared.

If you are an Amex Gold cardholder and are interested getting a Cathay Pacific Gold, this is a pretty good offer.

Remember that, whilst Platinum has a £450 annual fee, it is refunded pro-rata when you cancel.  You only need to spend £1,000 to trigger the 15,000 bonus points for upgrading, and you can order your Cathay card as soon as your Amex Platinum arrives.

If you found that the Platinum benefits didn’t work for you after 2-3 months, you could cancel for a fee refund – you would only be £75 – £110 out of pocket.  You would still have the extra 15,000 Membership Rewards points and the Cathay Pacific Gold card would remain valid for the full year.

The upgrade link is here if you are interested.  The Comments below suggest that your existing Gold card is immediately upgraded, so you will not have a separate Gold and Platinum card going forward.

The general American Express Platinum website, with more details on the card, is here.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – April 2023 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and unbeatable travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (104)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

    Presumably you lose your bonus MR categories as well?

    • Rob says:

      Yes, no bonus with Platinum

      • ROCKSTAR says:

        Does this involve AMEX doing a fresh credit check against your name and counting as a search on credit file?
        The reason I ask , as was looking to apply for the SPG card after the new year for the 20K SPG points. Didnt want to have unnecessary searches against the credit file.
        Currently hold the AMEX GOLD about to finish the first year in MAR 14.
        Any thoughts/ advice please?

        • Rob says:

          As you fill in a new application form, I get a sneaky feeling it will ding your credit report, yes.

      • Mike says:

        I read that you get 5 sub cards included in platinum, one extra platinum and 4 gold or green cards. As platinum doesn’t have any of the bonus MR points for extra spend, if you also got a supplementary gold card (same account, not a secondary account), would you also get the bonus spend categories?

        • Rob says:

          Very good question! I don’t think so, because all of the charges go onto your Platinum account – the only ‘Gold’ thing about the card is the benefits you get. They are effectively Gold-coloured Platinum cards.

          • Mike says:

            I have a gold charge card and a gold credit card (with MR points) and both cards earn different rates into one rewards account so it might be linked to the card rather than reward account

          • Rob says:

            My Mum has a Gold supplementary card on my account …. need to get her to use it. (I should confiscate it, really, as she only had it for the travel insurance and Amex has now blocked over 70’s from qualifying. It was a great deal before that, covering a large part of the value of my Platinum card.)

          • Dan says:

            Hi Raffles, any news on whether this worked or not? If you can still get the Gold benefits on a sub card (or another member of my family could that would be sweet!)

          • Rob says:

            Not heard anything yet from anyone who did it, still a bit early for the cards to have arrived I imagine

  • Will says:

    I can see the value to get cathy but also for those who’s first year gold is about to end. This will be something to give serious thought to over Xmas

  • Ralph says:

    Thanks Raffles, my AmEx Gold is one month old, I have received my 20k bonus, plus additional 2k thanks to you, thank you 🙂
    I planned to cancel this February first as we are flying to L.A.Jan 31st and so could use the two complimentary lounge passes that came with the gold card.
    If I upgraded to platinum would I also have to factor in the £150 Gold card cost when subsequently paying for (and subsequently cancelling) the plat card? Or do Amex refund pro rata the gold card annual fee when making the switch to plat?

  • Paul says:

    This is very interesting to me. My gold 1st year is due to end on 31st December and my wife’s Cathay card will expire towards the middle of February so it’s definately tempting. My only concern is I already have the BAPP (definately keeping this one) and I’ve just referred my wife for the gold and I’ve got a card on her account, would this cause me an issue if I upgrade and later cancel?

    • Frenske says:

      I don’t think it will be an issue, but be careful with having too many cards which require a minimum spend to activate the bonus. The companion voucher is potentially worth more than 15.000 MR points, so make sure you spend the £10K on the BAPP.

    • Rob says:

      No, should be OK, subject to Amex being happy to give your household another card.

      • Rob says:

        (Posting this in a more appropate place)

        Is the 6 months rule actually enforced? I ask because I know of people who applied for the Gold card while still holding a platinum card, and they got it and the signup bonus and they now hold both cards.

        • Rob says:

          Amex makes mistakes. Quite a lot of them. However, they also have clearly stated rules and you don’t have much defence if things don’t work out …..

  • Kiran says:

    I have the Gold card for a month now and have hit the sign up bonus. Question for me is do I go for 15K points now or wait for a potential 35K bonus in 6 months. Not bothered about CX Gold as I already have BA Silver.

    • Will says:

      would be amazing if they brought back the 50k bonus I got earlier this year for plat

  • Diane says:


    Does the Cathay card allow you to sign a person into the lounge ? – BH and I could both upgrade to platinum, but don’t think it would be a good idea to leaves the kids outside while we quaff some champers in the lounges !

    • Susan says:

      Yes, CX gold allows you to sign a guest in as long as s/he is also travelling on a One World flight that day. It does not have to be the same flight as the card holder.

  • Tony M says:

    Even without taking into account the CX gold, rather than cancelling the amex gold and waiting 6 months for the plat, as raffles suggested, why not upgrade to the plat, spend the 1k, cancel, and then wait 6 months. Would that work?

  • thesaver79 says:

    I wonder if there is any idea of when this promo will expire? Ideally I would like to wait until the new year to upgrade and apply for the gold credit card first in order to get an extra 3,000 MR.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.