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Wow, this is disappointing. Last October, American Express announced some major changes to both The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Enhanced Business Platinum® Card from American Express. Specifically:
- The Amex Personal Platinum Card offers 5x points on airfare purchased directly with airlines or through Amex Travel.
- The Amex Business Platinum Card offers a 50% refund on Pay With Points redemptions, when redeeming on your designated airline in economy, or on any airline in first or business class. Pay With Points ordinarily gets you one cent of value per point, meaning that you’re getting two cents of value after the refund.
On top of that, even more changes were recently made to the personal Amex Platinum Card.
Anyway, one of the fantastic benefits of the Amex Business Platinum Card that I’ve been loving is the 50% rebate when using the Pay With Points option, which has essentially been an opportunity to get two cents of value per Membership Rewards point. For example, in conjunction with The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express, this has been an opportunity to get up to a 3% return on my base spend.
I recently shared my experience taking advantage of this great benefit to book first class tickets to Hawaii, a market where first class award seats can otherwise be tough to come by.
Even though this benefit was just introduced several months ago, it’s already being cut. Per The Points Guy, as of June 1, 2017, major changes are being made to the Amex Business Platinum Card Pay With Points feature:
- The Amex Business Platinum Card Pay With Points benefit will be reduced from a 50% refund to a 35% refund (meaning you’re getting ~1.54 cents per point of value, rather than 2 cents per point)
- There will be a cap of 500,000 rebated points per year
- The rebate is already taking 6-10 weeks to post, rather than just a day, as was the case before
It’s reported that this benefit was extremely popular, and that “it simply isn’t possible to continue offering such a rich return.”
There’s no doubt this was extremely generous, though it’s also bizarre to me that they’d introduce the benefit (which people are using exactly as intended), and then take it away just months later. This was a very straightforward benefit, so I’m not sure what exactly they’re surprised by.
I’ll be very sad to see this benefit discontinued. I guess I’ll be redeeming as many points as possible using the Pay With Points feature in the next month or so.
Did you ever take advantage of the Pay With Points 50% rebate?