Those of you with an American Express Platinum card probably know of the $200 airline fee credit that’s in place since late last year. Thanks largely to American Express’ relationship with Continental ending, both in terms of the ability to transfer Membership Rewards to OnePass as well as the ability to access Continental Presidents Clubs, they’ve added a slew of new benefits.
For many of us, actually using the $200 fee credit is a challenge for a variety of reasons. First of all, you have to commit to one airline, which proved to be a big issue for me. I don’t pay “traditional” airlines fees, like checked bag fees, standby fees, etc. So I wasn’t sure what to use the credit for. Beyond that, what constitutes a “fee” is very vague, so there’s always the concern of buying something, only to not be reimbursed.
After following the discussion on FlyerTalk, it became clear that what’s defined as a “fee” and what isn’t is largely a function of the amount of the charge. In other words, it seems that American Express considers most relatively small airlines purchases to be fees.
So now that I’m flying American I figured I might as well try buying some American Airlines gift cards, since it’s money I would spend anyway. I bought four $50 American Airlines gift cards ($50 is the smallest increment in which American Airlines sells gift cards) three days ago, and today a credit appeared for all four purchases.
So that’s no guarantee it’ll work for everyone, but if you have a small purchase you were going to make anyway, you might as well give it a try through this program. Some are reporting that taxes on award tickets (if they’re small amounts), discounted airline tickets using vouchers, etc., are posting credits.