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Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?

Valued Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?


@icedwrote:

@redpatwrote:

@UpperNwGuy

Not so, my airport has an Escape Lounge and I have been using that one instead of Admiral's because the food and drink offerings are better.  In addition, they have added Centurion Lounges and I know travel frequently that now has one and go everytime I'm there. 

 

Amex did give up access to the Admiral Lounges but have more than made up for it.  thThere isn't a better card on the market at offers lounge access like amex.  Nobody offers 5x points.  Amex seems to be the only one adding to their rewards and perks program when others try to be amex and end up nerfing perks because in all honesty amex has the secret sauce for those who travel a lot. 


What secret sauce and perks am I missing as a frequent traveler? My priorities are lounge access, point accrual, and insurances (car/medivac/cancellation/etc), and as a frequent traveler I get the first for free on any international itinerary (which all frequent flyer programs on international carriers bestow at a mid-level of statu). American Express' travel insurances are somewhat inferior to similar offerings, even on the platinum, and the 5x earning is very narrowly-focused compared to other offerings as well.

 

I'll admit that when I fly Delta domestically, American Express is the only show in town with consistent lounge access, but for the other carriers American Express doesn't offer much of anything except the Uber credits (and not much at that) and the occasional Centurion lounge (there's 8 in the entire US; by comparison, there's 34 Delta Sky Club and 39 United Club locations).  Internationally with Delta, I'm in business so lounge access is a given there.

 

It's a matter of personal preference on whether one card of another fits their needs, but to state categorically that AmEx is the best game in town and the "secret sauce" for frequent travelers is just simply not true.

 


I said there is no one that offers lounge access coverage like Amex.  I fly AA exclusively but having access to Centurion and Escape Lounges have benefits to a large number.   The 5x could be narrowly focused for you but not me and I book first class for Domestic flights and Business Class for business travel internationally.  Therefore, 5x is huge and I'll give up travel interruption insurance for the additional points, I think I can afford that myself if things change now and then.  I've learned along time ago when you are flying in and out of airports you have to role with the punches and everything is out of your control if there are delays, cancellations or natural disasters.  Sooner or later you will get home.

Amex Plat | Amex EDP | Amex PRG | Ink+ | Chase Reserve | Amex BRG | Barclays AA | Citi AA exec | Amex SPG
Message 41 of 93
Established Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?


@redpatwrote:

@iced

I said there is no one that offers lounge access coverage like Amex.  I fly AA exclusively but having access to Centurion and Escape Lounges have benefits to a large number.   The 5x could be narrowly focused for you but not me and I book first class for Domestic flights and Business Class for business travel internationally.  Therefore, 5x is huge and I'll give up travel interruption insurance for the additional points, I think I can afford that myself if things change now and then.  I've learned along time ago when you are flying in and out of airports you have to role with the punches and everything is out of your control if there are delays, cancellations or natural disasters.  Sooner or later you will get home.


Chase MileagePlus Club offers United Club membership, which extends to every Star Alliance airlines' lounge in the world. That easily rivals American Express' + Delta's coverage internationally. Same with Citi AA World Elite and Admiral's Club membership and their OneWorld partners, as you know. There is something to be said for the person who does fly Delta a lot and books Delta tickets for the 5x points plus the lounge access, but they also lose out on things like 3x for all other travel/dining such as what the CSR offers, so it's trade-off where one's personal priorities must be evaluated. No single card among them has it all.

 

Thus, different strokes for different folks, which was my point - there is no single card or even bank that's the obvious defacto choice for frequent travelers.

Message 42 of 93
Valued Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?


@iced

Chase MileagePlus Club offers United Club membership, which extends to every Star Alliance airlines' lounge in the world. That easily rivals American Express' + Delta's coverage internationally. Same with Citi AA World Elite and Admiral's Club membership and their OneWorld partners, as you know. There is something to be said for the person who does fly Delta a lot and books Delta tickets for the 5x points plus the lounge access, but they also lose out on things like 3x for all other travel/dining such as what the CSR offers, so it's trade-off where one's personal priorities must be evaluated. No single card among them has it all.

 

Thus, different strokes for different folks, which was my point - there is no single card or even bank that's the obvious defacto choice for frequent travelers.


The cards that you mentioned are all Airline specific cards with annual fees of $450 with no offset of $200 airline credit or $200 uber credit bringing the cost of the card down to $150 at the least.  Name one non-airline card that has the lounge coverage that Amex Plat offers?  I have moved MR points to Avios to fly AA.  So it just doesn't apply to Delta.

Amex Plat | Amex EDP | Amex PRG | Ink+ | Chase Reserve | Amex BRG | Barclays AA | Citi AA exec | Amex SPG
Message 43 of 93
Established Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?


@redpatwrote:

 

The cards that you mentioned are all Airline specific cards with annual fees of $450 with no offset of $200 airline credit or $200 uber credit bringing the cost of the card down to $150 at the least.  Name one non-airline card that has the lounge coverage that Amex Plat offers?  I have moved MR points to Avios to fly AA.  So it just doesn't apply to Delta.


The closest airline-agnostic would be the Chase offerings with PriorityPass, which isn't a lounge as far as I'm concerned. It has a travel credit which brings it down to $150 as well, and the individual isn't beholden to using $200 worth of Uber evenly distributed throughout the year (which some don't do or at least not evenly enough to maximize the value) to attain it. I'm not sure why this is relevant, though. For the frequent non-Delta traveler who wants lounge access, all those Sky Clubs aren't available after this year (starting 2019, you can only access a Sky Club with a Delta or partner boarding pass). This means those travelers are still going to be better served with an airline co-branded card with lounge membership unless they have the fortune of only travelling to sites American Express has lounges at. For those travelers, the Plat effectively becomes a $150-$350 AF card to be used for booking flights and Ubers. Even for this year, airlines are often in different terminals at airports, and some travelers who frequent one airline aren't keen (or have the time) to schlep to a different terminal just to use the Delta lounge.

 

I can go on about the 5x MR on flights vs something like the CSR's 3x on all dining/travel, but the obvious conclusion is that which is better is completely dependent on how heavily one's flight spend is versus hotel/dining/etc.

 

Again, situational. Broad strokes bad.

Message 44 of 93
Established Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?

Millenials.

Over $182,000 in credit across 12 cards.

FICO ranges from 786 -818 as of 6/17/2017
Message 45 of 93
Valued Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?


@icedwrote:

@redpatwrote:

 

 

I can go on about the 5x MR on flights vs something like the CSR's 3x on all dining/travel, but the obvious conclusion is that which is better is completely dependent on how heavily one's flight spend is versus hotel/dining/etc.

 

Again, situational. Broad strokes bad.

 


You don't have to go on, I have the CSR, lol!  

Amex Plat | Amex EDP | Amex PRG | Ink+ | Chase Reserve | Amex BRG | Barclays AA | Citi AA exec | Amex SPG
Message 46 of 93
Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?

Personally I don't think there is anything wrong with the charge cards; and with all due respect, I think the wrong question is being asked. It's not are AMEX charge cards no longer trendy anymore it's are people actually waking up an realizing that they should only get cards that fit their spending/travel habits.

 

There are way too many threads on myfico to count of people who admit to never traveling (or traveling rarely maybe once a year) but want to apply for the CSR or the AMEX Platinum with the hefty AFs. Constantly the more veteran members on here tell them that they can't recommend the person applies for the card because they don't know that person's spending/traveling habits. Still people for some reason feel like they don't have a great credit portfolio if they don't have a AMEX in there, and to some people, the design of the AMEX charge cards are the "legendary AMEXs."

 

For some of us who actually get cards that fit our spending and travel habits, any AFs on a card is chump change compared to what we get back. In most cases people end up saving money with the card by paying the AF. 

 

Back on topic...if people finally realizing that they should only get a AMEX charge card because it fits their travel/spending habits (and not because everyone else has it and it looks cool) is considered charge cards not being trendy anymore then I welcome it. I can't wait for everyone to get back to only applying for cards they need versus applying for cards because everyone else is running around with it and/or applying because it makes their credit portfolio look cool Smiley Very Happy



STATUS: Gardening since November 2017 (until May 19, 2018)
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CURRENT FAVORITE CARD: Chase Amazon Prime Visa Signature
Message 47 of 93
Highlighted
Established Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?

Amex has no "secret sauce."  Nevertheless, if I lived in Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis, or Salt Lake City, I would probably get the Amex Platinum, because in those four cities, Delta is the only game in town, and Amex provides the best way to use a credit card to access Delta benefits.  But I don't live in a Delta hub, so the Platinum wouldn't do anything for me.

In my wallet: Chase Sapphire Reserve • PenFed Power Cash Rewards
Also have: Chase United MileagePlus Explorer • UNFCU Azure • NFCU cashRewards • NFCU Go Rewards • PenFed Promise
Message 48 of 93
Valued Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?

I don't care if they're trendy. I use the card for the benefits. 

 

Personally I like being on the only one in the room with an AMEX PRG or an AMEX Platinum because I don't want to lump myself in with the massses who don't know how to use plastic (or metal) properly... You know, those people who carry large balances on a 24.99% interest rate card for long periods of time, and claim a $5 reward.

 

I also like how the charge cards keep my potential overpspending in check. I specifically obtained an AMEX for the Premier Rewards Gold card back in the day, but eventually I grew my relationship to include revolvers. 

 

Oh, and when I had fraud on my local credit union's credit card, it took them 11 days to get me a replacement. AMEX would have one on my door step by the next day or the day after depending on what time I reported the unauthorized activity. 

 

AMEX may not be the best, but they know where to provide services to make their customers happy, with the exception of lacking trip cancellation/interruption insurance. 

AMEX Schwab Investor Card
AMEX Everyday Preferred
AMEX Ameriprise Platinum
NFCU Amex More Rewards
USAA Limitless
Discover It
NFCU Cash Rewards
Citi ThankYou Premier
Amex Delta Platinum
Message 49 of 93
Frequent Contributor

Re: Amex Charge No Longer Trendy?

If AMEX still backdated newer accounts like they use to, I think more people would apply.  At least that was my justification for getting a Gold Card last time I had one.  Ah, the good ol' days.

2017/09 FICO8: EQ:585, TU:549, EX:580 | No opened accounts | 1 unpaid CO, 1 paid CO + related Col | several lates 2.5+ yrs ago
Current FICO8: EQ:702, TU:670, EX:669 | CC Util 4.6% | 2 paid CO + 1 related Col (all fall off 12/2018) | 3x 30 day lates 3-6yrs ago
AAoA: 10 to 11 years; Opened Acc Only: 4 months
INQ (Eq/Tu/Ex): 2 / 1 / 2
Message 50 of 93