The Business Platinum Card® from American Express can be a good way of saving money on things like airport lounge access, or in-flight internet access. If you’re interested in pure savings on things you charge to your small business credit card, you have other choices such as the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express.
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express Review: Premium Benefits for Business Travelers
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express can be a great card, provided that the benefits you get out of it are worth its hefty annual fee of $595 (See Rates & Fees). If you or your employees frequently travel through airports, and need Internet access on-the-go, this card can provide you with some cost saving solutions – including complimentary Boingo service, 10 annual Gogo passes, and expansive airport lounge access. Other, less expensive, small business credit cards tend to focus on providing savings on every purchase a business makes – whether through the form of travel miles or cash back. The Capital One® Spark® Cash for Business, for example, can provide a company 2% cash back on every purchase made. While The Business Platinum Card® from American Express has these kinds of rewards as well, they are not as good as ones we see on other cards – therefore, one should really only consider this card for the benefits we outlined earlier.
Many of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express core benefits are restricted to the primary account holder – that means those holding employee cards will not be able to use them. Key among those are lounge access and Boingo hot spot access (restricted to 10 devices). Still, if you use either of those benefits – even just for yourself – the card should more than pay for itself.
Finally, another feature worth noting, especially for business travelers, is the Amex Platinum concierge. These can feel like having a personal assistant on the go, and can help cardholders with certain requests – anything from booking restaurant reservations to ordering flowers.
Bottom Line: There is a lot of great value one can get for their business through The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, in the form of all its side-perks. If you're interested in purely saving money on every purchase, we recommend looking at other cash back and reward credit cards.
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express Benefits & Features
The primary benefit of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express comes from all the “side perks” it offers – lounge access, Global Entry/TSA Pre✔ credit, $200 Airline Fee Credit, etc.
At its core, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express still earns rewards with every purchase. As a cardholder, you'll get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com. Get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's an extra half point per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. All other spending gets just 1 point per $1. We generally value MR points at $0.01, but you can squeeze better value out of them by transferring them to a participating airline partners. These point valuations put the rewards rate of this card at anywhere between 1% and 5% - skewing closer to 1%, most of the time. You can read more on Membership Rewards, and their optimal uses in our guide.
Airport Lounge Access Program
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express card’s major selling point is the access it grants to various lounges worldwide - Centurion Lounges, Delta Sky Club®, Airspace Lounges, and Priority Pass Select. The two most noteworthy members of that group are Centurion Lounges and Priority Pass. Access to these will be granted only to the primary account holder - employees who have been added as authorized users do not qualify.
Centurion lounges are some of the best-regarded airport lounges around – providing high quality amenities and luxury. American Express has been pushing their development in the past year, so it’s likely we’ll see more of Centurion Lounges popping up in the near future.
The Priority Pass membership gives access to over 850 lounges worldwide – a value of approximately $399 annually. These will vary in luxury, depending on which airports you are staying at. This benefit primairly makes up for the limited number of Centurion, Delta Sky Club®, and Airspace lounges available to Platinum cardholders.
35% Airline Bonus
Whenever you use your Membership Rewards points to pay for a flight using ‘Membership Rewards® Pay with Points’, you will receive 35% of your points back.
It works as follows: using 40,000 points to pay for airfare directly will get you a value of about $400 by itself. If you get 35% of those redeemed miles back, you are walking away with a $400 value plus another 14,000 points back in your pocket (35% of 40,000 is 14,000). Those extra points are valued at about $140 (14,000 x $0.01).
Internet Hotspot Access
Having The Business Platinum Card® from American Express also gives users access to Gogo in-flight and Boingo WiFi hot spots – we conservatively value this benefit at $598 annually, though you could get more out of it, if you need other employees using internet. With Gogo Air, each cardmember (basic plus additional cardholders) is entitled to 10 single-segment WiFi passes. A single pass is worth up to $12.95 – therefore each year you could be getting a value of up to $12.95 x 10, per employee/cardholder.
The Boingo service is tied to the primary account, however it allows WiFi access on up to 10 devices. The most comparable plan you could purchase directly from their service costs $39 per month.
For business owners who need to always be connected to internet, on the ground and in the sky, this benefit can be helpful. Boingo hotspots do not offer the greatest coverage, and we’ve seen reports of people questioning their coverage maps. Keep that in mind, when evaluating this card.
Additional Travel Benefits: $200 Airline Credit, Global Entry/TSA Pre✔ Fee Reimbursement
Finally, there are a few more monetary incentives to applying for The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, aimed at frequent travelers - airline credit, and TSA Pre/Global Entry fee reimbursement.
Every year, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express cardmembers select an airline, for which they will receive up $200 in fee credit. This can be used to pay down things such as in-flight meals, and baggage fees. Purchases made by your employees on any additional cards issued under the account qualify for this benefit – however it all pulls from the same $200 pool. That means you can only save up to $200 in fees per account.
If you find yourself frequently going through airport security, you have no doubt heard of TSA Pre✔/Global Entry programs. By filling out an application, and going through an interview, you will be able to go through an expedited line when it comes to TSA and customs. Both these applications come with a fee, and if you use your card to pay for one of them, that fee will be covered. TSA Pre✔ costs $85, while Global Entry comes in at $100. You only have to pay these fees only once every 5 years, meaning that the annual savings from this benefit comes out to just $17-$20.
For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here.
How Does The Business Platinum Card® from American Express Compare To Other Credit Cards?
In order to come to a decision about The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, it’s important to see it against the backdrop of other offers. Below we profile the card against such options.
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express vs The Platinum Card® from American Express
The Platinum Card® from American Expressis the non-business variant of Amex's platinum cards. Although it doesn't come equipped with the 35% Airline bonus or GoGo internet access, it comes with an easier to get welcome bonus (60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.) The Platinum Card® from American Express is slightly less expensive, charging a $550 annual fee (See Rates & Fees). From a business stand-point, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express makes the most sense - especially if you want to provide company cards to your employees.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here.
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express vs SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express
The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express is on the complete opposite end of the business card spectrum from The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, in that it focuses on savings rather than luxury. The SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express provides a 5% cash back savings on the first $50,000 in annual spending at office supply stores and U.S. wireless telephone services. On top of that, businesses get to choose 1 category among 8, where they get to earn 3% back (with the same $50k cap as the 5% offer). This is a greater return then you can hope to get, per purchase, with The Business Platinum Card® from American Express. As long as you don't care about the in-flight internet or the lounge access benefits, the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express is the card to get.
For rates and fees of the SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express, please click here.