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AMEX Platinum & CSR

thecreditman
Established Member

AMEX Platinum & CSR

Does it make sense to have both an AMEX Platinum and a CSR in rotation? I used to have a CSR when it first came out, but never an AMEX Platinum. Seems like overkill to have multiple $550+ AF cards, even though I know the CSR fee comes down considerably when used properly. What are your thoughts?




Message 1 of 27
26 REPLIES 26
wasCB14
Super Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

It depends on your travel habits.

 

For example, if you spend a lot on hotels and rideshares, but also fly a lot and can use the airport lounges, having both can make sense.

 

Platinum is still the quirkier of the two. It has more in credits but they are harder to use. CSR has been moving in that direction, though.

Spend: BofA PR + WWFCR, BBP, Schwab Platinum, CFF+CF, Costco, Discover
Perks: IHG49, Hyatt75, Delta Platinum, "Old" SPG95
SD/AAoA Ballast: Arrival, CFU, DC
Upgrade/downgrade games: BCE, EDP
SUB: JetBlue, Amex Platinum
Mostly earning MRs and cash back as I use up hotel and airline points spread across several programs.
Message 2 of 27
NoHardLimits
Regular Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

I have an Amex Platinum and am an AU on spouse's CSR.  I had my own CSR last year, but downgraded to Freedom Unlimited after the CSR annual fee increase.  To keep some of the travel and dining rewards rates, it made sense to go the route of the $75 additional user fee rather than the net $250 fee for my own card.  With the recent changes to Freedom Unlimited, I can now earn 3 UR points on dining with no annual fee and still combine points with spouse's CSR.  I'm planning to remove myself as AU before the next annual fee hits.

June 2021 Snapshot -

Scorecard: Clean, Thick, Mature, New Account
FICO8:
VantageScore3:
Inquiries:
New Accounts: 2/24, 1/12, 0/6
AAoA: 10 years
AoOA=AoORA: 33 years
AoYA=AoYRA: less than 1 year



Total Credit Card Limits: $375k (includes $42k AU and $32k business)
Utilization: less than 1%

Installment Loans: none open
(all mortgages, auto loans, and student loans FINALLY paid off, though 5 closed tradelines are still reporting)
Message 3 of 27
NRB525
Super Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

If someone travels regularly, then it can make sense to have a Platinum and a CSR. This is especially true if one wants to only carry two cards.  

However, if travel is not common ( such as now ) then jumping in to get both doesn't seem like a good plan. 

High Bal Jan 2009 $116k on $146k limits 80% Util.
Oct 2014 $46k on $127k 36% util EQ 722 TU 727 EX 727
April 2018 $18k on $344k 5% util EQ 806 TU 810 EX 812
Jan 2019 $7.6k on $360k EQ 832 TU 839 EX 831
March 2021 $33k on $312k EQ 796 TU 798 EX 801
May 2021 Paid all Installments and Mortgages, one new Mortgage EQ 761 TY 774 EX 777
Message 4 of 27
UpperNwGuy
Valued Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

Ha!  You're worrying about justifying TWO high annual fee cards, and I recently decided that I can't even justify ONE.

 

For the last 30 years I've been a frequent traveler, and I've always had at least one high annual fee travel card.  When it became obvious to me that the COVID-19 pandemic would be around for at least a couple of years, I downgraded all my high annual fee cards to no-fee cash-back cards.

 

When travel resumes (perhaps 2022), I may get another high-end card, but I won't pay the fee during the pandemic.

Daily Carry: PenFed Power Cash • NFCU Flagship • NFCU More Rewards • Chase Freedom Unlimited
Sock Drawer: PenFed Promise • NFCU cashRewards • Chase Freedom • Chase United MileagePlus • UNFCU Azure
Message 5 of 27
K-in-Boston
Moderator

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

As someone with six cards that have AFs in the $400-$550 range, yes absolutely it can be worth having both Platinum and CSR depending on your spending, travel habits, types of redemption, and which other cards you hold.  While many of my cards have overlapping benefits (i.e. Delta SkyClub access with Platinum, Business Platinum, and Delta Reserve, or an untold number of Global Entry credits on these and several lower annual fee cards I have), each offers enough benefit to keep for me since I have a fairly significant amount of annual spend, travel often (granted not as often the past 7 months), all cards either transfer to Delta or a partner airline such as Virgin Atlantic or KLM/Air France or allow me to book airfare at a rate of 1.5 cpp or greater, and I hold other MR- and UR-earning cards that make it fairly easy to rack up significant points balances.  It may not be for everyone, but if the math works there's no one answer for whether it makes sense to have multiple high AF cards; it'll always vary depending on the cardholder.

Message 6 of 27
GrandBaker
New Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

The real question is will you in terms of dollars or convenience/comfort come out ahead of using both those cards. You are correct in asking yourself (and us) this question because it's $1100 we are talking here. More if you have AU's. So fire up a spreadsheet and throw in the details of how you plan to use these two cards for the next year and you will have your answer. 




Message 7 of 27
GrandBaker
New Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

@K-in-Boston  Well said! This in a nutshell 

It may not be for everyone, but if the math works there's no one answer for whether it makes sense to have multiple high AF cards;




Message 8 of 27
wasCB14
Super Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR

I used to have both, but gave up on CSR in January because:

 

1. I generally found MRs more rewarding because of transfer bonuses.

2. Amex Platinum's travel protections improved.

3. I have plenty of Hyatt points and United miles, and Southwest doesn't fly my routes.

4. BofA PR and WWFCR with PH give me some pretty attractive cash back rates on my non-Amex spend.

Spend: BofA PR + WWFCR, BBP, Schwab Platinum, CFF+CF, Costco, Discover
Perks: IHG49, Hyatt75, Delta Platinum, "Old" SPG95
SD/AAoA Ballast: Arrival, CFU, DC
Upgrade/downgrade games: BCE, EDP
SUB: JetBlue, Amex Platinum
Mostly earning MRs and cash back as I use up hotel and airline points spread across several programs.
Message 9 of 27
longtimelurker
Mega Contributor

Re: AMEX Platinum & CSR


@GrandBaker wrote:

@K-in-Boston  Well said! This in a nutshell 

It may not be for everyone, but if the math works there's no one answer for whether it makes sense to have multiple high AF cards;


Right, and another factor is disposable assets.    A quick analysis might show, for example, "If I do make these two trips in 2021, then I will be way ahead, otherwise a loss"     If you have "enough" money, the $550/$1100 AF and the prospect of a loss if things don't go to plan may not really matter at all.   With much less money, you may not want to take the chance, or at least wait until you have a much better idea about whether those trips are going to happen.

Message 10 of 27
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