I've talked about how I recently cancelled my Amex Business Platinum card in past videos, but I wanted to explain my thought process.
Business cards and credit score
To start off with, I got the Amex Business Platinum card last year, and one of the reasons why I applied was that it had less of an impact on my credit score.
When you apply for a credit card, it affects your average age of accounts, and it usually comes with a hard credit inquiry. For example, if you currently only have one credit card and it's exactly two years old, and you apply for another card right now, then your average age of accounts is one year. You'll also get a hard inquiry and increase your total number of accounts.
The card increases your number of accounts, but it decreases your average age of accounts. If you decide to cancel the card, it stays on your credit report for 7-10 years from the date of closure.
The benefit of a business card is that it doesn't affect your average age of accounts or total accounts. You'll still receive a hard inquiry, and if you default on payments, you're still responsible. If you cancel the card, it won't affect your credit score.
Interested in the Amex Business Platinum? Click on the Business Cards banner in the right side column under "Categories" to view the current offer.
For me, this was the best ways to try out the Platinum card without having a negative mark on my credit report. In Year 1, I received positive expected value:
- $200 travel credits per the calendar year ( I received two since I applied in mid-2016)
- Hamilton tickets at retail value
- Centurion Lounge access
I considered keeping it long-term because at first, they offered a 50% rebate on flights booked through American Express. For example, if you wanted to book a flight at 50,000 MR points, they would give you a rebate of 25,000 MR points.
Earlier this year, they modified the flight rebate perk by lowering to 35%. The lower rebate makes MR points worth 1.25 cents per point.
In Year 2, I would pay the $450 annual fee and only receive one $200 travel credit, making the effective annual fee $250.
When the annual fee hit my account, I tried calling Amex to get a retention offer of at least $250 (13,000 MR points) in value to keep the card, but that didn't happen. I made three calls within a month to try and get a retention offer.
You usually have one month to either downgrade or cancel the card to avoid the annual fee. During my first call, they offered $150 in statement credit. The second call, they didn't give me a retention offer, and in my final call, they offered 5,000 MR points. Again, I'm a firm believer that if you aren't getting positive expected value from a card, you should not keep it.
Since I had the Everyday card that earns Membership Reward cards, I moved the MR points from the Amex Business Platinum card to the Everyday card.
Choosing between Amex Platinum variations
So why did I choose the regular Amex Platinum card instead of the other variations? My reason is that I don't have a use case for the Mercedes- Benz, Goldman Sachs, or Morgan Stanley variations. This left the regular Platinum, Ameriprise, and Charles Schwab.
I didn't go for the Ameriprise variation because I get a lot more value from getting a signup bonus and paying the annual fee.
The reason why I chose to get a personal card instead of keeping the business one is that the effective annual fee of the personal one is cheaper. With the Business card, it's $450 annual fee with $200 travel credit, making the effective annual fee $250. The Personal card's effective annual fee is $150 after $200 in Uber credits and $200 travel credit.
One important note is that the value you get from a card is subjective. For example, if you don't have Uber in your city or if you don't travel often, then you should not get the Amex Platinum. Only get a card if it makes sense for your spending habits and lifestyle.
View the current public Amex Platinum offers by clicking the link below.