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Forums Payment cards American Express Amex Platinum Daily breakfast for two benefit

  • GrumpyDutchman 5 posts

    I normally don’t post and only read the site and forum. I wanted to ask the opinion of other in this forum.
    I’ve had Amex Platinum for many years and hardly ever use their travel booking for reasons that are not important right now.
    Recently I did find an offer for a hotel I like in San Francisco (The Palace) and one of the reasons why I used the program was because of the “Daily breakfast for two” and late checkout.
    When I arrived however I was given a nice letter that the breakfast is a maximum of $60 per room. If anyone has stayed in the Palace you’ll know that there is no way you can get breakfast for two below $60.-
    I wrote to Amex about this, not necessarily as a complaint but more as a: “why is this?” and the answer I had back from Amex is a reference to the T&C’s which states “The type and value of the daily breakfast (for two) varies by property; breakfast will be valued at a minimum of US$60 per room per day.” (you can only find that on the website if you look for it. It’s not mentioned on the booking confirmation)
    Now, I’m not a native English speaker (I’ve only been in the UK for 22 years) but the part that says: “valued at a minimum of $60 per room per day” doesn’t mean “maximum value of $60” to me….
    Am I barking up the wrong tree here?

    NorthernLass 8,274 posts

    Hi, @GrumpyDutchman! Great name. What did it actually say on your booking? Unless a specific amount was mentioned (e.g. “breakfast credit up to $60), I would expect as a minimum a buffet breakfast with no extra charges. I don’t think Amex have answered your question here, and from what you’ve written it looks as though either they or the hotel aren’t honouring the booking terms. Have you asked them to refund what you had to spend over and above the $60?

    Froggee 993 posts

    Firstly @Grumpy, if you’re Dutch then your English will probably be better than most natives as you will understand the concept of grammar.

    Secondly “breakfast for two” means “breakfast for two”, not a contribution towards breakfast. Given this is California, you’ll be expected to add 22.5% gratuity onto whatever the price is anyway. The Americans are now at the point where free breakfast can include this tip to avoid any ambiguity and awkwardness.

    If you’re feeling up to it, I’d be tempted to call up to cancel your American Express and explain the reason is that you feel that you were misled by the platinum travel booking service and it has led you to question the value you get from your card. They’ll undoubtedly give you some Avios to stay and that will make things right.

    Or you could go back to the travel people saying that you feel they are misrepresenting their offering and asking if they are regulated in any way as you feel they have not addressed your problem adequately and you would like to escalate it. I’d include what breakfast actually cost you to show the issue.

    Good luck (with this and the football)

    blenz101 24 posts

    Well the hotel have just offered the minimum they were required to do in order to comply with the offer. Neither they no AMEX have technically done anything wrong.

    Whilst it it true $30 won’t go far it will buy you a very basic breakfast with only a few dollars supplement required for other dishes.

    I’ve stayed in plenty of expensive boutique hotels that consider some well packaged pastries, piece of fruit and a juice box to be an inclusive breakfast so it really isn’t the end of the world to get $60 a day credit.

    Cancel the card if you’re not happy but nobody has done anything ‘wrong’.

    JDB 4,663 posts

    Quite a few hotels in cities only offer ‘continental’ breakfast even on their own B&B packages and the FHR terms do specifically state breakfast varies by hotel. Best book direct to save money and get the full breakfast.

    NorthernLass 8,274 posts

    @blenz101, I don’t think you’ve read this correctly. The offer is “breakfast for 2”, not a $60 credit. So some form of breakfast should have been available without having to pay extra (apart from the crazy American tips).

    GrumpyDutchman 5 posts

    Thanks for the answers…
    So here is what my booking confirmation said:
    Fine Hotels + Resorts complimentary benefits:
    US $100 Food and beverage credit to be used during your stay.
    Room upgrade upon arrival, when available
    Noon check-in, when available
    Daily breakfast for two
    In-Room Wi-Fi, exclusions apply
    Guaranteed 4:00 pm late check-out
    The T&C breakfast reference in the booking is this:
    Breakfast amenity varies by property, but will be, at a minimum, a continental breakfast.

    The best part is what Amex told me:
    “The benefit is daily breakfast, however, as stated in the T & C’s The type and value of the daily breakfast (for two) varies by property; breakfast will be valued at a minimum of US$60 per room per day. This states that the hotel has the duty to provide a breakfast to the minimum value of USD60.00 per room per day as a requirement of the Fine Hotels & Resorts Programme, the Place Hotel has chosen to set their limit at the minimum amount.”
    The benefits T&C’s listed here: are in conflict with the T&C’s on the actual booking.

    My question is; should Amex be stating that the value is a maximum and not a minimum of $60.
    Amex has served me well over the last 20 years but this is certainly making me an even grumpier dutchman.

    rams 224 posts

    My reading of that is they need to provide you $60 worth at least but not necessarily any more. And they’ve taken the latter approach

    GrumpyDutchman 5 posts

    Thanks Rams, I’ll just have to take it that free coffee doesn’t mean it includes the milk and sugar..

    NorthernLass 8,274 posts

    How much extra did you have to pay? At the very least any extra charges should be made clear at the time of booking. I would be Grumpy as well about this!

    GrumpyDutchman 5 posts

    Continental breakfast was $33 per person. Don’t get me wrong the place is great… but food is over priced. $10 for an avocado anyone?

    NorthernLass 8,274 posts

    Gosh, I thought they grew in California as well!

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