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Editor’s note: This post has been updated with new information.
Over the past several years, we have seen premium cards evolve to attract and retain customers.
Two of the top cards for premium travel and lifestyle benefits are The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express. Both have revamped their perks in recent months. In fact, the Platinum card received a major refresh in July with a host of additional benefits, alongside an increase to the card’s annual fee to $695 (see rates and fees).
Although there are some overlapping benefits offered by the Amex Platinum and the Amex Business Platinum, there are important differences to consider when deciding which one is right for you. The July refresh deepened the divide between these two cards.
Let’s take a closer look.
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In This Post
Before we dive into more details, here’s a comparison of the two cards’ welcome offers, earning rates and major perks and credits.
|Benefit/perk||Amex Platinum||Amex Business Platinum|
|Welcome offer||Earn 100,000 points after you spend $6,000 on purchases in your first six months of card membership.||Earn 125,000 points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months of card membership.|
|Earning rates||Earn 10x points at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S., on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first six months
5x on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel (up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year)
5x on prepaid hotels booked on Amex Travel
1x on all other eligible purchases
|5x on airfare and prepaid hotels booked on Amex Travel
1.5x on purchases of $5,000 or more (up to 1 million additional points per calendar year, then 1x)
|Prepaid hotel booking credit Up to $200 annual credit valid on prepaid bookings at Fine Hotels + Resorts or The Hotel Collection properties made through American Express Travel||Yes||No|
|Lounge access Access to the American Express Global Lounge Collection including Centurion Lounges, Delta Sky Clubs when flying same-day Delta flights and Priority Pass Select, Airspace and Escape lounges (enrollment required)||Yes||Yes|
|Uber credit Up to $15 in credit to use on Uber rides or Uber Eats orders, with an additional up to $20 for the month of December||Yes||No|
|Clear membership credit Up to $179 annual statement credit for a Clear membership (enrollment required)||Yes||Yes|
|Digital entertainment credit
Up to $20 monthly statement credits applicable only for Audible, The New York Times, SiriusXM and Peacock (enrollment required)
|Equinox credit Up to $25 monthly statement credits to select Equinox memberships or a digital subscription to Equinox+ fitness app (enrollment required)||Yes||No|
|Airline fee credit Up to $200 annual statement credit which covers baggage fees as well as other incidental charges (enrollment required)||Yes||Yes|
|Dell credit Up to $100 on U.S. Dell purchases between January and June and another credit for up to $100 off between July and December (enrollment required)||No||Yes|
|Saks Fifth Avenue credit Up to $50 statement credit on Saks Fifth Aveune purchases between January and June and another credit for up to $50 between July and December (enrollment required)||Yes||No|
|Annual fee||$695 (see rates & fees)||$595 (see rates & fees)|
Each card comes with a generous welcome offer, but the minimum spend required to earn the bonus is where they really differ. You can earn the full 100,000 Membership Rewards points after spending just $6,000 on the Amex Platinum, but the Business Platinum requires a much steeper minimum spend of $15,000 to earn its 125,000-point bonus.
Based on TPG’s valuation of Membership Rewards points at two cents each, the Platinum bonus is worth $2,000. In contrast, the Business Platinum bonus is worth $2,500, making them some of the most valuable offers on the market.
Winner: Amex Platinum
Both cards earn 5x points when you purchase airfare and prepaid hotel rooms from Amex Travel. Still, the personal Amex Platinum also earns 5x on airfare purchased directly with airlines and airfare purchased with American Express Travel over the phone (up to $500,000 per calendar year).
Plus, new cardholders can earn a generous 10 points per dollar on eligible purchases at restaurants worldwide and when you Shop Small in the U.S., on up to $25,000 in combined purchases, during your first six months of card membership.
On the other hand, the Business Platinum card is great for business owners who regularly make large purchases with the card, since all purchases of at least $5,000 earn 1.5 points per dollar, up to 1 million extra points per year.
Winner: Amex Platinum
Travel and lifestyle perks
Gallery: How To Pick the Right Credit Card for Your Spending Habits (GOBankingRates)
Both of these cards excel when it comes to travel and lifestyle perks.
The 2021 updates added more benefits to both the personal and business variants of the Platinum.
Benefits offered to both cards
Enrollment required for select benefits.
Major differences with credits
There are several major differences when it comes to credits with these two cards.
First, the consumer Amex Platinum offers these exclusive perks.
Meanwhile, the Business Platinum card has the following exclusive perk:
Winner: This one will depend on where you shop the most. The Business Platinum’s Dell credits are nothing to sneeze at, but the winner will likely go to the personal Platinum for most.
American Express Membership Rewards points are one of the most valuable loyalty currencies out there.
One benefit that’s exclusive to the Business Platinum card is that when you book any flight directly with points through Amex Travel on your preselected airline — or business or first class on any airline — you’ll receive a 35% rebate of the points you used (up to 500,000 points each calendar year).
This is particularly useful if you don’t have flexible travel dates and award space isn’t available. You will need to have the full amount of points in your account at the time of booking.
If you plan to transfer your Membership Rewards points to one of the program’s airline or hotel partners, you should try to get at least 2 cents per point in value when booking award flights or nights. Of course, if you book business- or first-class flights, you can expect to get even more value out of these points.
A case for the Amex Platinum
If you’re looking for a premium card loaded with travel perks and you don’t have a business or the substantial expenses that come with one, the personal Amex Platinum should be just what you need.
While there are numerous credits on each of these cards, the personal Platinum comes out on top with a whopping eight credits (either monthly, annually, bi-annually or in the case of Global Entry credit, every four years). All of those credits help take the sting out of the card’s $695 annual fee (see rates and fees).
Throw in access to lots of airline lounges, substantial travel benefits and the Membership Rewards you can earn with the card (especially when you book airfare and get 5x), and this looks even better. And remember that you can add up to three authorized users to your Amex Platinum for just $175 per year (see rates and fees).
A case for the Business Platinum
For small-business owners, the decision isn’t quite so simple. The Business Platinum card currently has a welcome offer of 125,000 points after spending a total of $15,000 in the first three months, making it an incredibly attractive choice. However, the exact set of perks differs slightly.
Also, remember that the annual fees differ by $100, with the Amex Platinum carrying a $695 annual fee (see rates and fees) and the Business Platinum a $595 annual fee (see rates and fees). Neither is cheap, but the benefits and the annual credits offset much of the fee on either card, making both a solid choice for the frequent traveler.
Of course, for some cardholders, it makes sense to have both in their wallet. A small-business owner who wants to maximize travel for both business and pleasure and take advantage of the full range of Platinum benefits can hold both cards. Just make sure your professional and personal spending habits make both annual fees worth it. Combined, these cards come with almost $1,300 in total fees.
Additional reporting by Ethan Steinberg.
Featured image by The Points Guy.
For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum, click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex Business Platinum, click here.
Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.