A regular question I get asked by readers is how American Express Business Platinum differs from The Platinum Card.
With the recent fee increase on The Platinum Card (the personal card) I wanted to update this article. Remember that The Platinum Card is still offering the biggest ‘open to all’ sign-up bonus ever seen – 100,000 Membership Rewards points, worth 100,000 Avios.
We have a similar article on how American Express Platinum differs from American Express Preferred Rewards Gold which you can find here but it has not been updated for the recent fee increases.
What benefits are shared between American Express Business Platinum and personal Platinum?
Before we get onto the differences, which are modest, let’s look at the benefits which both cards share.
You can opt in for most of these benefits via this page of the American Express website. This page is not well promoted by Amex and a lot of Platinum cardholders don’t know it exists.
Airport lounge access
You will receive a free Priority Pass card. Priority Pass is a network of 1,300 airport lounges across the world, including SEVEN in London Heathrow. This includes the Club Aspire and Plaza Premium lounges in BA’s Heathrow Terminal 5. Your Priority Pass allows an unlimited number of free visits to their lounges. You can also bring in a guest for free.
You can also give a Priority Pass card to a second person via your free supplementary Platinum card. If this is your partner or spouse, you would both be able to get into the lounge for free and each bring in a free guest. This means that a family of four can get into a lounge if you give your partner the second card.
You can also access American Express Centurion lounges with a guest, including the new Centurion Lounge in Heathrow Terminal 3.
You will receive Gold status in the Marriott Bonvoy hotel loyalty scheme. This will give added benefits at Marriott, Renaissance, Sheraton, Westin, W, aloft, St Regis, The Ritz-Carlton, The Luxury Collection etc properties – 31 brands in total.
You will receive Premium status in the Radisson Rewards hotel loyalty scheme. This will give added benefits at Radisson Blu / RED / Individuals, Park Plaza and Park Inn hotels. One key benefit of Premium is the ability to activate ‘Discount Booster’ and receive an additional cash discount of c 10% in return for earning fewer points.
You will receive Gold status in the Hilton Honors hotel loyalty scheme. This is the best mid-tier hotel status to have, because you get free breakfast with it (hotels in the US give a cash credit instead towards any F&B spend). You will get benefits at Hilton, Waldorf Astoria, Hampton, Curio etc.
You will receive Gold status in the MeliaRewards hotel loyalty scheme. You will get benefits at Melia and INNSiDE hotels, with benefits including three 20% discount vouchers each year and ‘2 for 1’ breakfast.
There are also car rental status benefits with Avis Preferred and Hertz Gold Plus Rewards but these are, in all honesty, no better than deals that are generally available.
Hotel booking benefits
You can access the Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts Programme. This offers genuine added value benefits at a large number of luxury hotels across the world. These include a GUARANTEED 4pm check-out, free breakfast, an upgrade if available at check-in and typically a $100 credit towards on-property spending.
Day to day earning
Both cards earn 1 Membership Rewards point per £1 spent on the card, with a few exceptions.
Both cards receive Amex Offers for making purchases at specific merchants. In my personal experience, I receive slightly more offers on The Platinum Card than Business Platinum. The offers on Business Platinum are slightly more business-driven. It is rare for any of the generous hotel cashback offers we cover on HfP to appear on Business Platinum.
The following benefits are exclusive to American Express Business Platinum
You receive a £200 annual Amex Travel credit. This is awarded per membership year, not per calendar year. You receive £200 off a £200+ transaction at Amex Travel (flight or hotel) which is pre-paid. This is as good as cash to most HfP readers.
You receive a monthly 10,000 points bonus whenever you spend £10,000 in a statement month. If you spent exactly £10,000 per month – which is obviously unlikely – this would mean that you were earning an average of 2 points per £1, the most generous rate of any UK payment card.
You receive a free digital subscription to The Times and The Sunday Times. This is worth over £300, and if you currently pay for this it is a huge incentive to take out the card. I have come to value this benefit and would probably continue to pay for it even if I cancelled my Business Platinum card.
You receive £150 credit per year to spend with Dell. No minimum spend applies but the credit is split into two parts. You can earn £75 cashback between January and June and £75 cashback between July and December.
You receive £300 credit per year to spend with online recruitment group Indeed. No minimum spend applies. The credit is split into one x £75 cashback for each calendar quarter.
The following benefits are exclusive to The Platinum Card (personal)
You receive £300 per year of dining credit. This is split into two chunks – £150 per calendar year to spend at roughly 160 UK restaurants, and £150 equivalent per calendar year to spend at 1,200+ international restaurants.
You receive £100 per year of Harvey Nichols credit, split into a £50 credit for each half-calendar year. You can order items instore or online.
You receive Eurostar lounge access irrespective of your class of travel. You cannot bring a guest but your partner could accompany you if you issued them with the free supplementary Platinum card. Staff will often allow children in at quiet times but this is not guaranteed and a family may be turned away.
The following benefits differ between Business Platinum and The Platinum Card
The Platinum Card (personal) is issued as a credit card.
The representative APR is 704.6% variable, including the annual fee. The representative APR on purchases is 31.0% variable.
American Express Business Platinum remains a charge card, meaning that you MUST repay your balance in full every month.
In reality, since I doubt many of our readers pay interest on the credit card balances, this is not a key difference.
Both cards have an annual fee of £650 per year.
Annual fees are tax deductible for the percentage of spending which is done for business purposes. This applies to both the personal and business card.
Both cards require a personal minimum income of £35,000 per year. Amex still looks at your personal income even if you are applying for Business Platinum.
The key difference is with fee refunds on card cancellation.
Until at least 29th February 2024, you can cancel The Platinum Card (personal) for a pro-rata fee refund. From some point after this date (TBC), fees will not be refundable if you cancel part-way through the year.
The annual fee on American Express Business Platinum will continue to be refundable at any point.
The Platinum Card (personal) usually has a bonus of 30,000 Membership Rewards points. Business Platinum has a bonus of 40,000 Membership Rewards points.
Until 9th January 2024, the bonus on The Platinum Card is increased to its highest ever level – 100,000 Membership Rewards points.
The sign-up bonus rules are different between the two cards:
- You receive the bonus on Business Platinum if you have not had any Membership Rewards card, personal or business, in the previous 13 months
- You receive the bonus on The Platinum Card if you have not had any personal Membership Rewards card (Business cards are not counted) in the previous 24 months
This means than an existing holder of Business Platinum could get The Platinum Card bonus but an existing holder of The Platinum Card could not get the Business Platinum bonus.
Both cards come with comprehensive travel insurance. The coverage with Business Platinum is stronger in some areas – you are covered up to the age of 80 (vs 70 for The Platinum Card) and there is no requirement to pay for anything on American Express to receive full coverage.
Even if you are not between 70-80 yourself, remember that you can cover family members by issuing free supplementary cards to them, up to the limits allowed by each card.
Refer a friend bonuses
Both cards allow you to earn up to 90,000 Membership Rewards points per calendar year by referring friends for American Express cards.
Business Platinum cardholders receive a higher bonus of 18,000 points per successful referral, compared to 12,000 points for holders of The Platinum Card. These numbers are often higher during regular promotions.
There is no obvious answer to the question of whether American Express Business Platinum is better than The Platinum Card ……
….. assuming, of course, that you have some sort of business – or are in the process of launching one – and so qualify for Business Platinum.
I have both cards, so I get the best of both worlds. I would find it difficult to choose if I had to, because when I consider the benefits which are unique to each card:
- I value the Eurostar lounge access on my personal card, and living in London I ensure I use the £100 of Harvey Nichols credit. It is easy to use the £150 of UK dining credit each calendar year, although using the £150 of international credit requires a little more planning.
- I have come to value the free subscription to The Times and The Sunday Times via Business Platinum. It is easy for me to use the £200 of annual Amex Travel credit. I have also ordered the odd Dell item with my free credit.
Please take a look at the official American Express websites if you require additional information about any of these benefits, especially insurance.
Remember that The Platinum Card currently has a special bonus of 100,000 Membership Rewards points until 9th January 2024, which converts to 100,000 Avios.