The Business Platinum Card® from American Express is a premium travel rewards card for business owners. It attracts travelers with a large welcome bonus: Earn 120,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Platinum Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply. That’s worth a whopping $2,400 based on NerdWallet’s valuation of AmEx Membership Rewards points.
Once you earn the welcome offer, however, this card is not going to earn you tons of points on everyday spending. But what it lacks in rewards earning structure, it makes up for in benefits.
Things to know about The Business Platinum Card® from American Express
1. It comes with many benefits and statement credits
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express’s annual fee can be worth it for the premium benefits. The perks include:
$150 Adobe credit (valid on select annual prepaid subscriptions). Enrollment required.
$200 airline fee credit (toward incidental air travel fees).
$360 Indeed credit ($90 per quarter). Enrollment required.
$400 Dell Technologies credit ($200 between January and June and another $200 between July and December). Enrollment required.
Cell phone protection (up to $800 per claim twice per 12 months with a $50 deductible).
Fine Hotels + Resorts program.
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck credit.
Hilton Honors Gold status. Enrollment required.
Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status. Enrollment required.
No foreign transaction fees.
The Hotel Collection program.
The hotel elite status, travel credits and cell phone protections are helpful, but other benefits are not as easy to use. The business-related credits, such as for Adobe, Indeed and Dell purchases, require extra work to enroll and careful budgeting to maximize the amount of statement credit you can get throughout the year. They also come with all sorts of restrictions.
Before applying for The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, figure out whether these credits would align with your spending patterns.
2. Airport lounge access in included with card membership
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express members have plenty of options for lounge access when traveling through airports across the globe.
The following lounges are accessible to cardholders of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express:
Delta Sky Club (when flying Delta Air Lines).
Lufthansa Business Lounge (regardless of ticket class when flying with Lufthansa, Swiss International Air Lines or Austrian Airlines).
Lufthansa Senator Lounge (when flying business class with Lufthansa, Swiss International Air Lines or Austrian Airlines).
Priority Pass Select (enrollment required).
Some of these lounges, such as Airspace Lounge, Escape Lounges, The Centurion Lounge, Plaza Premium and Priority Pass, allow up to two guests per cardmember. Others, such as Delta Sky Club and the Lufthansa lounges, charge for additional guests. Terms apply.
Still, no other card, besides the personal version, The Platinum Card® from American Express, offers as many lounges among its benefits. Terms apply.
3. Holding the card costs a hefty sum
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express boasts plenty of benefits, but it comes at a price. Cardholders pay a fat annual fee of $695 for the privilege to hold the card and use it for purchases to earn rewards. Terms apply.
The fee is sizable, so it’s important you get enough value out of this card to offset its yearly cost to your business.
4. Travel, big purchases and business expenses earn rewards at a higher rate
The Platinum Card® from American Express offers bonus rewards in limited spending categories:
5x Membership Rewards points on flights and prepaid hotels booked via AmEx Travel.
2x Membership Rewards points on other AmEx Travel purchases, such as car rentals, vacation packages and cruise reservations.
Purchases in all other categories earn 1 point per dollar spent. However, you should be aware of another rewards earning opportunity. Terms apply.
Purchases at U.S. shipping providers, U.S. construction material and hardware supply stores, U.S. electronic goods and software stores earn 1.5x Membership Rewards. Purchases totaling at least $5,000 in a single transaction earn 1.5x Membership Rewards points as well (on up to $2 million in combined purchases per calendar year). If your business makes a lot of big payments or purchases in the aforementioned categories, you can rack up rewards faster. Terms apply.
5. Points are worth as much as 2 cents when redeemed for travel
American Express Membership Rewards points can provide lots of value, but only if you know how to redeem them. It’s important to pay attention how much rewards are worth when redeemed for travel.
For example, booking flights using Pay with Points through the AmEx Travel portal on most airlines yields a value of 1 cent per point. Hotel rooms, cruises, rental cars and vacation packages yield an even lesser value of just 0.7 cent per point. We don’t recommend redeeming Membership Rewards points this way.
A higher value AmEx Travel redemption would be using Pay with Points toward first- or business-class flights on any airline or economy flights on your preselected airline — the same carrier you select for a $200 airline incidentals credit. The AmEx Business Platinum cardholders receive a 35% rebate on redeemed points (up to 500,000 points per calendar year) on these particular redemptions, which increases their value to about 1.54 cents each. Terms apply.
Alternatively, you could transfer your AmEx Membership Rewards to some of the 1:1 airline and hotel partners. According to NerdWallet’s valuation, you could get about 2 cents of value by utilizing the sweet spots with certain transfer partners. Terms apply.
6. You don’t need an established business to qualify for a business card
As a business owner, you probably already have a business Employer Identification Number (EIN) and a limited liability company (LLC) or a corporation registration. However, as a startup or a sole proprietor, you might not have submitted paperwork yet.
The good news is that you don’t need an EIN to apply for a small-business credit card. Instead, use your Social Security number and personal credit history to apply for credit.
Even if you don’t have any revenue or profit — most startups don’t — you could be eligible for a small-business card. Just be honest on your application and provide accurate information about your business.
7. AmEx welcome offers are limited to once per lifetime
American Express is quite restrictive when it comes to card approvals and welcome offer restrictions.
The issuer limits members to one welcome bonus per lifetime on each of its cards. In other words, if you met minimum spend requirements and received a welcome bonus on The Business Platinum Card® from American Express in the past, you’re not eligible to receive another bonus even if you canceled the card.
If you’re considering The Business Platinum Card® from American Express
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express is a good premium card for travelers seeking benefits that aren’t tied to spending, such as airport lounge access, hotel status and trusted-travel program enrollment credits.
However, the business statement credits aren’t the most user-friendly. If your business already spends money with these merchants, then offsetting the annual fee will be much easier for you. Otherwise, consider a different small business card for your spending.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2022, including those best for: