The Platinum Card® from American Express: Worth the $550 Annual Fee?

The Platinum Card® from American Express is your ticket airport lounge access, exclusive pre-sales for events, hotel status, and more. The card is a charge card, not a credit card, that earns Membership Rewards points.

If you can maximize the benefits, the card might be worth the $550 annual fee.

The Platinum Card® Calculator

Ask Sebby crunches the numbers for you to calculate the Expected Value of the Platinum Card®. For the expected value of points, we derive the approximate dollar value based on the numbers you enter in the calculator. Scroll down to the end of the post to see our methodology.

The calculator below contains default figures and serve as an example only. Users should insert their own data for the most accurate results.

Welcome Offer

The Platinum Card® has a 60,000 point welcome offer after spending $5,000 on the card within the first 3 months of account opening.

American Express has a “once in a lifetime” welcome offer rule. To qualify for this offer, you must not currently have the card and/or have received a previous Platinum Card® welcome offer.

If you attempt to apply and you are greeted with a pop-up that says you aren’t eligible for the welcome offer, then you will not receive one.

Calculation Methodology

The results from the above calculator are based on your ability to reach the minimum spend requirement to earn the welcome offer, your amount of spend on different categories, how you plan to redeem American Express Membership Rewards, and how much relative value you assign to the other benefits.

The “Years” referenced in the calculator refer to the cardmember year, based on when you are approved for the card.

  • Year 1 = first 12 months of card membership

  • Year 2 = the following 12 months afterward

The Platinum Card® from American Express

  • Welcome offer: 60,000 Membership Rewards points, after $5,000 in spend within the first 3 months

  • Point Multipliers:

    • Earn 5X points points per $1 spent on flights booked directly with airlines or American Express Travel

    • Earn 5X points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com

    • Earn 1X points on all other purchases

  • Credits:

    • $200 annual airline fee credit per calendar year to use for incidental fees like baggage fees

    • Up to $200 Uber credit, distributed $15/month and $35 in December

    • Up to $100 Saks Fifth Avenue credit, issued in $50 increments every 6 months per calendar year

    • $100 Global Entry or TSA Precheck credit once every 4 years

  • Other Benefits:

    • Amex Concierge — score hard to get restaurant reservations and concert tickets

    • Centurion Lounge access for you and up to 2 guests

    • Priority Pass Select membership (airport lounge access), with up to 2 guests

    • Automatic Starwood Preferred Guest Gold Status

    • Automatic Hilton HHonors Gold Status

    • Transfer points to airline partners

    • No foreign transaction fee

  • Terms apply

The value of the “Other Benefits” is going to be different for everyone based on the cards you have in your wallet, and how often you can utilize them. In the calculator, you should enter the dollar amounts for how much you value the benefit.