Given how much consumer behavior has changed in the past several weeks, many of the credit card benefits that members used to appreciate aren’t as valuable anymore.
Therefore we’re seeing card issuers get creative with perks, so that members have an incentive to keep their cards. Last week we learned that Amex would be making some changes to cards as of May, and we now have the details of those.
Amex’s new cardmember perks
Amex is introducing new limited-time offers, services, and solutions to support customers and their evolving needs with staying connected, dining at home, and running a business remotely.
With these new perks, some of which launch today:
- Some US consumer cards will receive limited-time credits for streaming and wireless services and new bonuses on US supermarket purchases
- Some US small business cards will get access to statement credits on wireless, shipping, and Dell Technologies purchases, and offers for remote work tools
- There will also be a variety of Amex Offers across food and wine delivery services, online retail, business services, and supplies
New Amex Personal Platinum Card perks
The Amex Personal Platinum Card is adding the following perks:
- Up to $320 in statement credits on select streaming and wireless telephone services purchased directly from US service providers; get up to $20 per month per category, from May through December 2020
- A $200 Amex Travel credit, tied to renewing your card; find out the full details here
Assuming you can maximize these perks, this is huge value for the card. See this post for tips on how to maximize the Amex Platinum streaming and wireless credits.
New Amex Business Platinum Card perks
The Amex Business Platinum Card is adding the following perks:
- Up to $320 in statement credits on wireless telephone services purchased directly from US service providers and US purchases for shipping; get up to $20 per month per category, from May through December 2020
- Up to $200 in additional statement credits for US purchases with Dell Technologies, for a total of up to $400 in statement credits in 2020 when added to the existing Shop Dell with Business Platinum benefit; receive $100 in additional statement credits from May 1 through June 30, 2020 and $100 in additional statement credits between July 1 and December 31, 2020
These are some incredible perks, assuming you can take advantage of them.
New Amex Green Card perks
The Amex Green Card is adding the following perk:
- Up to $80 in statement credits on wireless telephone services purchased directly from US service providers; get up to $10 per month, from May through December 2020
The Amex Green Card is incredibly compelling to begin with, and this only makes the card even more of a no-brainer.
New Amex Marriott Card perks
The Amex Marriott Cards added the following perks:
The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant will earn 6x Bonvoy points at US supermarkets, on up to $7,500 in eligible purchases (May through July 2020) The Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card $300 Marriott statement credit can be used towards eligible purchases at US restaurants, including takeout and delivery (June through August 2020)
It’s nice that the $300 credit that usually has to be used at hotels can now be used at restaurants, since that should be worth face value to many. While the 6x points at supermarkets is good, personally it’s still not the card I would use for grocery purchases.
On August 3, 2020, Amex added a benefit on its co-branded Marriott Bonvoy cards where you’ll earn (registration required):
- 10X Marriott Bonvoy points at U.S. Gas Stations (up to $7,500 on eligible purchases)
- 10X Marriott Bonvoy points at U.S. Restaurants (up to $7,500 on eligible purchases)
- 10X Marriott Bonvoy points on eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels (up to $7,500 on eligible purchases)
How to Enroll in 10x earning
- Eligible Card Members will receive an email communication with details on these offers, as well as terms and conditions.
- Card Members will be able to review and enroll in the offers via “Amex Offers” through their online account or the Amex Mobile app. They can enroll at any time during the offer period (August 3 – October 31, 2020).
New Amex Hilton Card perks
The Amex Hilton Cards are adding the following perks:
The Hilton Honors American Express Surpass® Card and Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card will earn 12x Honors points at US supermarkets on eligible purchases (no cap on earning) (May through July 2020)
- The Hilton Aspire Card $250 Hilton resort credit can be used towards eligible purchases at US restaurants, including takeout and delivery (June through August 2020)
- Bonus points earned through eligible purchases on all Hilton Amex cards that post to members’ accounts between May 1 and December 31, 2020, will be considered base points for the purposes of earning elite status (including lifetime Diamond status)
- Unexpired free weekend night rewards as of May 1, 2020, and new weekend night rewards issued until December 31, 2020, will be valid for any night of the week, and not just weekends; furthermore, those issued between May 1 and December 31, 2020, will be valid for 24 months
I’m happy that the $250 Hilton credit that’s usually limited to resorts can now be used at restaurants.
While credit card spending counting towards base points for status sounds nice, the reality is that you get Diamond status just for having the Aspire Card, so that’s not going to get me to put any spending on the card.
New Amex Delta Card perks The Amex Delta Cards are adding the following perk: The Delta SkyMiles Reserve, Platinum, Gold, and Blue will earn 4x SkyMiles at US supermarkets (May through July 2020) While this bonus category is better than nothing, I was hoping they’d offer more perks for co-brand cards. Many people get airline co-brand cards for the travel benefits, and those aren’t worth anything right now.
How Amex defines these bonus categories
Some are probably wondering how Amex defines “select streaming services” and “wireless telephone services purchased directly from US service providers.”
You can find all of Amex’s category definitions here and here, though this applies to bonus categories rather than statement credits. My assumption would be that they’re using the same definitions, though I’m working on clarifying that.
If so, select streaming services includes the following:
Amazon Music Unlimited, Apple Music, Apple TV+, AT&T TV Now, Audible, CBS All Access, Disney+, ESPN+, Fubo TV, HBO Max, HBO Now, Hulu, iHeartRadio, Kindle Unlimited, Luminary, MLB.TV, NBA League Pass, Netflix, NHL.TV, Pandora, Peacock, Prime Video, Showtime, Sling TV, SiriusXM Streaming and Satellite, Spotify, Stitcher, TIDAL Music, YouTube Music Premium, YouTube Premium, YouTube TV
Select wireless telephone services would include purchases directly from merchants like AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, etc. Generally the following wouldn’t qualify:
- Purchases from authorized retailers, resellers or third party sellers
- Purchases for hardware (e.g phones and accessories) or repair services
- Bundled services offered by wireless companies for TV, internet and VoIP
- VoIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) services
My take on these new Amex perks
Obviously not all perks here are created equal, though at least some of these perks are awesome:
- The Amex Personal Platinum offering up to $320 in credits is awesome, and for anyone who can take advantage of those benefits, this should more than justify any loss of travel perks for the year
- The Amex Business Platinum benefits are potentially even more valuable, given that there’s also an added Dell credit
- The Amex Green Card is so valuable to begin with and has a reasonable annual fee, so the $80 worth of potential statement credits is the icing on the cake
- Hilton and Marriott letting you use hotel credits at restaurants is great as well
A couple of further thoughts:
- None of the bonus categories on grocery stores excite me much, since I value 5x Ultimate Rewards points at more than any of the above
- I do find it confusing how some benefits are May through December, some are May through July, some are June through August, etc.; they sure aren’t making this easy to keep track of
- Some might be confused about why the Amex Gold Card doesn’t have any extra perks; presumably, Amex feels the card is compelling enough as is, since it offers 4x points at restaurants globally and U.S. supermarkets, offers a $10 monthly dining credit at select restaurants, etc.
These are some awesome new perks from Amex. While not all cards are benefiting equally here, personally I’m especially excited about the new Amex Platinum perk, as well as being able to use my Hilton Aspire credit at restaurants.
What do you make of these new Amex perks, and which are you most excited about?