American Express has announced a sharp rise in annual fees on many of its UK personal and business credit and charge cards.
There will be no compensatory change in any of the benefit packages.
However, there will be some fantastic bonuses available from today to encourage new sign-ups. These cover The Platinum Card (covered today), Preferred Rewards Gold (covered tomorrow) and the Marriott card (covered this Friday).
Which American Express cards are getting fee increases?
Here are the changes which apply from today for new applications:
- The American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card increases from £160 to £195 per year (the first year remains free)
- The Platinum Card increases from £575 to £650 per year
- The Harrods American Express Card increases from £150 to £195 per year
- The Nectar Credit Card increases from £25 to £30 per year (the first year remains free)
- The Marriott Bonvoy Credit Card increases from £75 to £95 per year
- American Express Business Gold increases from £175 to £195 per year (the first year remains free)
Other cards remain unchanged.
What happens to existing cardholders?
If you currently have any of these cards, you will not pay the new fee immediately.
You pay the new fee from your first billing date after 29th February 2024.
This means that, for example, if your Platinum card renews on 1st January, you will still only pay £575 on 1st January 2024. The new fee will not kick in until 1st January 2025.
Why is Amex increasing fees?
American Express strives to deliver industry-leading rewards, value and customer service to all our Cardmembers. In order to continue to provide the same level of benefits, and due to the rising costs of providing these benefits, rewards and services, we are increasing the annual fees on a handful of our Cards. We know that our Cardmembers value the wide range of benefits and services they receive, and are confident our Cards continue to provide great value for money relative to the annual fees.
What is happening with the end of partial fee refunds?
American Express still intends to push ahead with the abolition of pro-rata fee refunds when cards are cancelled mid-year.
The new plan is that pro-rata fee refunds will be available until at least 29th February 2024.
This replaces the original cut-off date of 1st October 2023.
This means there is some good news ….
With pro-rata refunds still available until at least 29th February 2024, you could take out one of the exceptionally good sign-up bonuses launched today and still benefit from a pro-rata refund if you cancel within the next four and a bit months. The exact date for the ending of refunds is still to be confirmed.
The deals are:
- The Platinum Card – 100,000 Membership Rewards points bonus (details and application form here, article today)
- American Express Preferred Rewards Gold – 30,000 Membership Rewards points bonus (details and application form here, article tomorrow)
- Marriott Bonvoy American Express – 40,000 Marriott Bonvoy points bonus (details and application form here, article on Friday)
To work out if you qualify for any of these bonuses, read this HfP article which breaks down Amex’s rules into bitesize chunks. If you have a BA Amex card, the only bonus you MAY qualify for is 100,000 points (=100,000 Avios) on The Platinum Card.
Want to earn more points from credit cards? – December 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:
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.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 30,000 Avios) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. You receive 25,000 points if you spend £3,000 in three months and a further 5,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
SPECIAL OFFER: Until 9th January 2024, you will receive a huge 100,000 Membership Rewards points (convertible to 100,000 Avios) with The Platinum Card. You receive 75,000 points if you spend £10,000 in six months and a further 25,000 points if you hold the card for 15 months. You can apply here.
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 – 30,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY), FREE for a year & four airport ….. Read our full review
The Platinum Card from American Express
Crazy 100,000 points (TO 9th JANUARY) and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review
Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard
15,000 bonus points 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:
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
American Express Business Platinum
40,000 points bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review
American Express Business Gold
20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year 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.