Comparing Every Version of the American Express Platinum Card: 2019 Edition

American Express offers several versions of the Amex Platinum Card: Amex Platinum (Regular), Business Platinum, Ameriprise Financial, Charles Schwab, Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, and Amex Corporate Platinum.

Some variations might require a relationship with the co-brand, and while others don’t. Each card also has a “super power” that makes it unique.

In this post, we’ll focus on comparing the personal variations of the Platinum card.

Comparing Every Version of the American Express Platinum Card

Relationship Requirements

To qualify for the Charles Schwab, Morgan Stanley, and the Goldman Sachs Amex Platinum cards, you need a relationship with the respective company.

You’ll need to following requirements for each card:

  • Charles Schwab: Open and active Schwab account

  • Morgan Stanley: Must have an open Morgan Stanley account with at least $5,000 in assets

    • Amex will close or claw back the bonus from any accounts that are not sufficiently funded

  • Goldman Sachs: Relationship with Goldman Sachs; by invitation only

Ameriprise Financial encourages a relationship to get the card, but it's not enforced. 

MR Intro Offers (non-targeted offers)

The public offers for the Vanilla, Ameriprise Financial, Charles Schwab, and Morgan Stanley versions of the Platinum card are 60,000 points after $5,000 in spend within the first three months of account opening.

Information about the Goldman Sachs version is not publicly available.

Expected Value: Year 1

All of the variations of the Amex Platinum card have a $550 annual fee along with a handful of benefits to offset the annual fee. After factoring in the credits, the effective annual fee is -$150.

  • $200 airline incidental credit per the calendar year

  • $100 statement credit to Saks Fifth Avenue, issued semi-annually

  • $200 Uber credit ($15/month, $35 in Dec)

Use our calculator here to see how much value you can expect from the Amex Platinum card.

Expected Value: Year X

After the first year, the annual fee, Saks credits, and Uber credits remain the same. Assuming you can use all of the credits, the effective annual fee in Year X is $50.

You might be able to derive even more value from the other benefits like Centurion Lounge access and hotel status.

Authorized Users

For the Vanilla, Ameriprise, Charles Schwab, and Goldman Sachs variations, you can add up to 3 authorized users for $175. Even if you add one authorized users, you'll still be charged $175.

Morgan Stanley gives you one authorized user for free and charges $175 for the next three authorized users.

Membership Rewards Earning Rate

All of the Amex Platinum variations have the same spending multipliers:

  • Earn 5x on flights booked directly or with Amex Travel

  • Earn 5X on hotels booked on Amex Travel

  • Earn 1X on all other purchases

Super Powers

Each variation of the Amex Platinum has its own unique "super power."

Ameriprise Financial

  • Earn 5,000 MR points for every $20,000 in spend, up to 30,000 additional MR points per year

  • Might be able to get a retention offer upon cardmembership renewal

Charles Schwab

  • Transfer MR points to Schwab at 1:1.24 rate

  • Appreciation bonus based on how many assets you have inn Schwab

    • $100 for $250,000 in assets

    • $200 for $1,000,000 in assets

Morgan Stanley

  • Free first authorized user

  • Transfer MR to Morgan Stanley at 1:1 rate

  • Spend $100,000 and get $500

  • $550 engagement bonus for Reserved Premier Cash Management