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The American Express Platinum Cards (both business and personal) have undergone quite some changes over the past few years. We’ve seen them lose some benefits (particularly due to to airline mergers and their corresponding credit card partnerships), and we’ve also seen them add some benefits to make up for it. It seems like the Amex Business Platinum Card will soon have another benefit added.
Gogo inflight wifi passes with Business Platinum Card
Per an email sent out to those with the Amex Business Platinum Card, it looks like 10 complimentary Gogo inflight internet passes each calendar year will soon be a benefit.
This is presently a benefit on some corporate cards, and the way it works on them is that you simply purchase an inflight Gogo session, and then American Express reimburses you on your statement. Given that some Gogo sessions cost over $20, this has the potential to be quite a valuable benefit.
Personally, I have a Gogo Unlimited Pass, so it won’t be of much use to me. But I realize for many, 10 wifi sessions per year is more than enough, and this benefit will be extremely valuable in those situations.
Amex Business Plat sign-up bonus
The Amex Business Platinum Card is an all around very lucrative card. It offers a sign-up bonus of 40,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $5,000 within three months. There is a $450 annual fee, which isn’t waived the first year. That being said, as I’ll explain below, the annual fee is more than offset by the benefits. And despite the fact that I don’t put any spend on the card, it’s one I value immensely.
Amex Business Plat benefits
What makes this card so worthwhile?
- $200 annual airline fee credit
- $100 Global Entry/Pre-Check fee credit
- Access to Boingo hotspots
- Access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts
- Access to Delta SkyClubs
- Priority Pass Select membership
- Access to the American Express Centurion Lounges in Dallas, Las Vegas, New York, San Francisco, etc.
Amex Centurion Lounge
$400 in airline fee credits the first year
As I said above, while the Amex Business Platinum Card has a $450 annual fee, it does come with a $200 airline fee credit. Given how much I travel, that airline fee credit is good as cash to me, so by my personal accounting, that basically lowers the annual fee to $250 (though to clarify, you do still have to pay the full annual fee).
The cool thing is that the annual fee is based on your cardmember year (in other words, the year starts when you open the card), while the airline fee credit is based on calendar years.
That means if you apply for the card today, for example, you’d get a $200 airline fee credit to use in 2014, and then another $200 airline fee credit to use in 2015. In other words, that’s $400 in airline fee credits with your first annual fee. To me, that lowers the real cost of the first year’s annual fee to $50. And that doesn’t even account for all the other benefits.
And at least anecdotally the airline fee credit can often be used to purchase airline gift cards. For example, the past couple of years I’ve purchased two $100 American Airlines gift cards, and they were both reimbursed within days.
I’ve always had either a personal or business version of the Amex Business Platinum Card. It’s a no brainer for anyone for the first year, and for me it’s well worth $250 per year (after factoring in the $200 airline fee credit) to get all the other benefits, like access to Centurion Lounges, Alaska Board Rooms, Delta SkyClubs, etc.
And in terms of timing, now is the best time to apply, since you’ll potentially be reimbursed for both calendar years’ annual fee credits within a couple of weeks.
Now here’s to hoping that the Gogo inflight wifi benefit eventually expands to the personal card as well.