Unboxing the American Express OPEN Enhanced Business Platinum Card

Through January 25, 2017, American Express is offering up to 100,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points on the Enhanced Business Platinum Card.

Through January 25, 2017, American Express is offering up to 100,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points on the Enhanced Business Platinum Card.

As you may have read on one of many blogs, the Enhanced Business Platinum Card from American Express OPEN is offering a very lucrative signup bonus right now. You can earn 50,000 American Express Membership Rewards Points by spending $5,000 in the first three months of card membership. If you spend $15,000 during that time, you will earn an additional 50,000 bonus points. That is 7.67 points/dollar on $15,000 of spend, an outstanding rate that you won't find elsewhere. At 1.9¢/point, this bonus has a potential value of $1,900. The offer is valid through January 25,2017 and I receive no compensation from Amex for writing about this offer.

Of course, $15,000 is a lot of spending in three months. I would not normally come close to this - I do not engage in any of the "manufactured spending" techniques of some in the points and miles blogosphere - but there is a chance I can do this in the early part of 2017.

Will I spend $15,000 before the end of March 2017?

If I transfer enough of my routine spending to one card, I can easily satisfy the $5,000 spending threshold. In fact, I recently did this with Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN. That card is also offering 50,000 Membership Rewards points with $5,000 of spend. An additional $10,000 over that time is a pretty steep hill to climb as my expenses are just not that much. However, I am planning to get married early this year and that may present an opportunity to complete the additional spending. I am not going to overspend just for travel points, but I decided to apply for this card earlier this month knowing that wedding expenses could provide a rare opportunity achieve such a high spending threshold. Even if I do not meet the $15,000 spend level, the card with its current offer is valuable enough to warrant an application. And applying before the end of 2016 allows me to get the $200 airline credit now and again after the first of the year since this benefit is based on calendar year.

Benefits of the Enhanced Business Platinum Card from American Express OPEN

In addition to the sign-up bonuses, the Business Platinum Card offers numerous benefits that make the card attractive. Some of these benefits include:

  • Membership Rewards Points
    • 1.5 Points/dollar for purchases of $5,000 or more
    • 2 Points/dollar for travel booked through the American Express Travel website
    • 1 Point/dollar for all other purchases
  • $200 Airline fee credit (based on calendar year)
  • Global Lounge Collection
    • American Express Centurion lounges in select airports
    • Delta Sky Club
    • Priority Pass Select lounges
  • 50% bonus rebate when using Membership Rewards Points via Pay With Points through American Express Travel
  • American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts - When booking through this program you receive various perks including noon check-in when available, room upgrade upon arrival when available, daily breakfast for two people and guaranteed 4P late checkout
  • Starwood Preferred Guest Gold membership
  • Fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application

These benefits don't come cheap as the card carries a $450 annual fee that is not waived the first year. However, if you use the airline fee credit, your net annual cost falls to a much more reasonable $250. And since that credit is based on calendar year, you can earn a total of $400 in fee credits before your next annual fee is due. You can get full details on the card here. Even though this is a business credit card, there are many activities that qualify as a business and will make you eligible for this card.

Unboxing my new card

I applied for the card a couple of weeks ago and was approved instantly. The card arrived in regular mail a few days later in a cardboard box.

The Enhanced Business Platinum Card ships in a plain cardboard box. (click to enlarge)

Once you open the box, you will find an envelope which contains the card itself. In addition there is a glossy booklet that provides an overview of the card benefits and features. The booklet is nicely produced with large colorful photos printed on heavy stock.

Inside the box is an envelope with the card and a glossy booklet reviewing the card features. (click to enlarge)

Inside the box is an envelope with the card and a glossy booklet reviewing the card features. (click to enlarge)

The booklet covering card benefits includes colorful photos and is printed on heavy paper stock. (click to enlarge)

The booklet covering card benefits includes colorful photos and is printed on heavy paper stock. (click to enlarge)

The Enhanced Business Platinum Card from American Express OPEN. (click to enlarge)

Conclusion

Overall, the presentation of a new Enhanced Business Platinum Card is very substantial. The packing is not necessarily elegant nor is it quite as impressive as that of the Citi Prestige Card. What really makes the Enhanced Business Platinum Card from American Express OPEN stand out is the large number of benefits as well as the very lucrative sign-up bonus. While points-earning on this card is weak compared to the Citi Prestige Card and other competing top tier credit card products, the benefits alone make it very possible that I will renew the card next year. And, if you are into this kind of thing, the prestige of an American Express Platinum card is hard to beat.