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Review: the American Express Platinum credit card

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This is our review of the American Express Platinum credit card, also known as The Platinum Card from American Express.

Is Amex Platinum worth the £575 fee? We look at the card benefits below.

This review is part of our series of articles looking at the major UK loyalty credit cards and discussing whether or not they are worth applying for. These articles are linked to the relevant sections of the ‘Credit Cards‘ area of the menu bar. Our other UK airline and hotel credit card reviews can be found here.

Key link: American Express Platinum application page

Review American Express Platinum credit card

Key facts: £575 annual fee

The representative APR is 470.7% variable, including the annual fee.  The representative APR on purchases is 30.7% variable.

Reward credit cards generally have high interest rates and are not suitable for anyone who does not pay off their full balance each month. If you do not clear your balance, you should look for a non-rewards credit card with a low interest rate.

This article was updated on 1st September 2023, and all of the information is correct as of that date. Ignore the original publication date shown.

About The Platinum Card

The American Express Platinum credit card is issued directly by American Express.

Note that The Platinum Card is no longer a charge card. In August 2022 it swapped to being a standard credit card. This means that you no longer have to pay off your balance in full at the end of each month, although you will pay interest if you don’t.

What is The Platinum Card sign-up bonus?

You receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points when you spend £4,000 within three months.

Membership Rewards points can be converted 1 to 1 into Avios, so you would receive 30,000 Avios per points. Click here to see what other reward programmes are Membership Rewards transfer partners.

What are the rules for qualifying for the sign-up bonus?

The bonus is only available to customers who have not held a personal American Express card which issues Membership Rewards points in the previous 24 months.  This would include Green, Gold, Platinum and the American Express Rewards credit card.

You are OK if you currently or recently only had a British Airways, Marriott or Nectar American Express card.  All that matters is that you have not held a card offering Membership Rewards points.

You will receive the sign-up bonus if you have a Corporate or Business American Express card via your job and you receive Membership Rewards points from it.

You will definitely receive the bonus if you are only a supplementary cardholder on someone else’s American Express card. As far as Amex is concerned, that card belongs to the primarily cardholder and does not make you an ‘existing cardholder’.

If you do not qualify for the bonus, you can still apply.  You still receive the other card benefits, which are substantial.

Review The Platinum Card from American Express UK

Any other benefits with Amex Platinum?

The card has substantial benefits – easily the best package of any UK loyalty card.

  • You receive travel insurance for yourself and your family. You can insure one other family group by giving the head of that household the free supplementary card on your account. Some benefits require you to pay for your trip with an American Express card, but the core medical benefit is automatic. There is an age limit of 70 on the travel insurance.  For legal reasons, you need to opt-in to the travel insurance benefit by ticking the relevant box on the application form.
  • You receive full car hire insurance, with no requirement to pay with your Platinum card
  • You and your supplementary cardholder will each receive a Priority Pass card. This gets the cardholder plus a guest into 1,300 airport lounges across the world for free, including the Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5 reviewed here. As you get two Priority Pass cards, each of which allows a free guest, you can get a family of four into a lounge – as I do on a regular basis.
  • You can also access the pleasant Plaza Premium Lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5. This is not part of Priority Pass but American Express Platinum cardholders can get in, with a guest, by showing their Platinum card at the front desk. You can also access all other Plaza Premium lounges globally, including Heathrow Terminal 2, Heathrow Terminal 4, Edinburgh and Gatwick North.
  • You will receive permanent status in various hotel schemes:
  • Gold in Marriott Bonvoy
  • Premium in Radisson Rewards
  • Gold in Hilton Honors
  • Gold in MeliaRewards
  • Other benefits include Eurostar lounge access in London, Brussels and Paris whatever your class of travel. (The Amex website does not mention Brussels but it does work there.) You also receive lounge access when flying with Delta although any guests must pay $29.
  • You receive £150 per year to spend in over 160 UK restaurants. The spend can be cumulative and spread across different restaurants.
  • You receive £100 of Harvey Nichols credit each year. This is split into £50 from January to June and £50 from July to December. It is valid online or instore. There is no minimum spend – if you buy just £50 of items, you will not pay a penny.
  • There is also an exclusive hotel booking scheme called ‘Fine Hotels & Resorts’ which offers valuable additional benefits on your stays. If you are a regular visitor at five star hotels then you can recoup your entire membership fee via FHR bookings. I wrote more about Fine Hotels & Resorts here – for me, the guaranteed 4pm check-out on every stay is invaluable, especially for weekend breaks.

What is the annual fee on American Express Platinum?


You will receive a pro-rata refund of your annual fee if you cancel. Amex will be removing the ability to obtain a pro-rata refund during 2024 – the exact date is not yet confirmed – but until that point you can cancel for a refund of your unused months.

The Priority Pass airport lounge card is cancelled immediately if you close your Platinum card. However, the hotel status cards will continue to work until they expire naturally.

If you are self employed, remember that you could offset the card fee against tax as long as you used it exclusively for business-related expenses.

American Express Amex Platinum card review

What do I earn per £1 spent on the card?

You receive 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent on the card. This is equivalent to 1 Avios or other airline mile per £1 if you choose to transfer them.

What is a Membership Rewards point worth?

Anything from ‘quite a bit’ to ‘a lot’ is the answer!  This article looks at the best use of American Express Membership Rewards points and what they are worth.

Realistically, Membership Rewards points are worth at least 0.66p. This is because you can convert 1 point into 1.33 Nectar points via the new Avios partnership. 1.33 Nectar points are worth 0.66p when spent at Sainsbury’s, Argos or eBay.

I value airline miles at 0.75p – 1p each (this is conservative) so that is your valuation if you transfer to an airline programme.

Some of the hotel programmes also offer good value. You can choose from Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy and Radisson Rewards.

Historically there were occasional transfer bonuses of 20%-30% to various airlines, including British Airways and Virgin Flying Club, although we have not seen any for the last few years.  If you see reports of American Express transfer bonuses to Avios, they are almost certainly discussing cards issued outside the UK.

You can take a look at the full list of Membership Rewards options here.

Is The Platinum Card a good card to use when travelling?

As Amex adds a 3% foreign exchange fee, you might want to get a separate free credit card to use abroad.

Unfortunately there are no credit cards with 0% foreign exchange fees worldwide which earn airline or hotel points. (The Virgin Atlantic credit cards have 0% FX fees in the Eurozone.)  One option is to get a free card from Currensea. Currensea is a simple but clever idea. You pay abroad with your Currensea Mastercard debit card. Currensea translates the cost to Sterling with just a 0.5% fee (83% less than Amex charges) and withdraws the money from your bank account. You can find out more about Currensea by clicking here. Currensea is free so there is no risk in giving it a try.

Is there a minimum income for Amex Platinum?

You can apply for the card with a minimum personal income of just £35,000.

Conclusion: Is Amex Platinum worth the £575 annual fee?

Whether or not the American Express Platinum fee represents value for money long-term depends on how many of the card benefits you will use. I have had a Platinum card since 1999 and can justify the cost based on how we use the travel benefits, especially the travel insurance, car hire insurance and the Fine Hotels & Resorts programme.

It is very easy to give the card a trial for a year to see if it works for you. The sign-up bonus of 30,000 Membership Rewards points plus £300 of dining credit and £100 of Harvey Nichols credit means that you can’t help but come out on top for the first year.

Remember that the sign-up bonus of 30,000 Membership Rewards points is the largest bonus of any personal points card on the market. It would convert into 30,000 Avios or Virgin Points for example. If you converted the Avios points into Nectar points, you would have £200-worth.

For on-going spending, 1 point per £1 is not outstanding. A lot of American Express Platinum cardholders keep the card for its benefits but put their spending on other cards.

The application form for The Platinum Card can be found here.

(Want to earn more miles and points from credit cards?  Click here to visit our dedicated airline and hotel travel credit cards page or use the ‘Credit Cards’ link in the menu bar at the top of the page.)

Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points. The site discusses products offered by lenders but is not a lender itself. Robert Burgess, trading as Head for Points, is regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as an independent credit broker.

Comments (72)

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

  • Ian says:

    Which medical insurance needs you to pay with the card?

    • Rob says:

      Read the latest version of the policy doc. Nothing, if anything, major medical related stuff requires Amex use.

  • Polly says:

    Do I still qualify for bonus if I’m holding BA Amex Premium plus card ?

    • Rob says:


      • Polly says:


        • Polly says:

          For the priority pass +1 guest, do they hv to be on same flight?

          Out of curiosity, if I have 2 guests, can I bring one in under BA status and the other under priority pass?

          • Andrew J says:

            If it’s a lounge that BA is using and PP are using them yes that’s fine. And no the additional passenger doesn’t need to be on the same flight when using PP.

  • Wave says:

    Do I still get the platinum insurance if I pay the travel costs with amex gold?

    • Rob says:

      Yes, if its in your name or the name of your Plat supp cardholder.

  • Dirtyneedlebluesky says:

    When you rent a car do you still take out the basic/standard insurance that usually come with the car (CDW) or is there a way to remove this to save more money on the rental?

    • Rob says:

      You have to take the legally required minimum insurance for the country you are in, eg in the UK CDW of £750 or whatever, which is always included in the headline price. Fundamentally you need to pay what is shown at the time you book but you don’t need to spend a penny on top however pushy they get.

      • Colin MacKinnon says:

        Yes you!
        In Mexico, got stung for over £700 – take it or leave it. And, since the guy at the counter next to us was being told his car had been given to someone else because his flight was three hours late and he hadn’t called them, and they had no cars left, we didn’t want to give him ours!

        In Panama, they took the insurance but insisted on charging for the included “extra driver”. Or you don’t get the car.

        Both times, Amex said: you signed the contract with those charges on it. Tough.

        • Colin MacKinnon says:

          Yes, you do!

          ( can’t seem to edit on the phone)

      • Dirtyneedlebluesky says:

        Thanks for confirming 👍

  • ExpatInBerlin says:

    I have the BAPP, is it possible for me to refer an eligible person and receive a referral bonus via my BAPP even if they sign up to the Plat rather than the same card as me please?

    • Andrew J says:

      Yes. You will receive the referral bonus which relates to the card you are referring from, not the card referring to. So a Plat card holder would get 24k points for referring someone to a free BA blue card for example. This in a way is another benefit of the Plat card – an easier route to your 90k annual allowance of referrals.

  • Anthony Heather says:

    Be careful with the full car hire insurance, caught out before, last time in Costa Rica, where had to pay $15 a day, even though I had the printed Amex Ins Cert. You never know if the Car Hire firm is trying it on, this was Avis, but are they better than anyone else? Does anyone know of an online source, saying what insurance you have to buy which is not covered by Amex or other insurance? Ant

  • Myriad says:

    I’ve considered the Platinum card a few times but it’s two conceptual flaws have just put me off. 1 point per whole pound is pitiful and currency fees on a card with a half a grand membership fee is baffling. The Gold card having double points for flights (and triple of their travel agency) but not on their “travel” card usually answers what card you should have.

    While gettig rid of the FTX fee would probably be enough to change my mind, it’s a hard sell to someone like me, but I guess I’m just not the market.

    Might just go for the platinum upgrade for the bonus points then go down to basic rewards card and reconsider my main card.

    (Though making the Gold card metal without a fee increase might sweeten the deal)

    • dougzz99 says:

      I detest metal cards, they have no purpose. They’re heavy and tend to spoil wallets, hard to destroy when you’re done with. The Platinum is a card for benefits and not using. For use it compares very poorly with cheaper Amex products.

      • Errol says:

        Metal cards are great for people who travel frequently. I travel about 50 weeks a year for up to 8 months at a time, often staying long periods in places with no post and sometimes no DHL or Fedex. Plastic cards are a pain as they crack and break and deteriorate. Few banks like mailing cards overseas and even fewer will pay for DHL. Metal cards just last. They are slightly heavy and are best kept away from plastic cards. You just need tin snips to destroy.

  • sloth says:

    I realise there is a lot of guessing involved but does anyone have an inkling on when the next enhanced SUB bonus may be on offer, based on previous timings…?

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

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