American Express Discussion


#1

This pops up quite a bit in various different threads, so I thought it might be a good idea to keep it under one roof.

I’m not sure you could call them a FinTech as such, but their app, with its instant notifications and spending breakdown is very good, and their service is next level (in my experience).

I’ve said this before, but I see no good reason why everyone who can, doesn’t put all of their spend on a credit card that offers you something in return - Anything.

Personally, I rotate a Gold Charge Card with my wife, so we take advantage of the sign up bonuses (generally accruing around 60-80,000 points per year - Enough for a family of 4 to fly anywhere in Europe.

I’ve worked out this is probably better than the cash back cards they offer, and I cancel the card before paying the annual £140 fee.

So, who else uses an Amex and how do you use it?


(Dan Mullen) #2

I do as much spending as I can on my Amex - basically, wherever will accept it. All my fuel and most of the monthly grocery shopping go on it, so the cash back adds up fairly quickly.


#3

Will they be able to provide all those perks in the future? From what I remember their interchange fees were supposed to be capped at lower level than what they are now?


#4

I have a fuel card with work, so I’m gutted my fuel doesn’t go through it!

There aren’t many places I shop that don’t take it now.

A few random online places perhaps!


#5

Does that come from the interchange or the annual card fees?


(Jordan Taylor) #6

I also like how Amex integrates into Google Pay, so even though I’ve not used GPay for a particular transaction, it still shows an up to date history as if I had.

I use the Platinum Cashback card for anywhere that accepts it. Fuel is my biggest spend.
I’ve also referred my missus which earned me a sweet £30 cashback bonus, and can refer a few others this year it seems.

I chose cashback over rewards as I’d prefer to have the physical money, but would be happy to look into rewards next year if it works out better.

Thanks!


(Dave) #7

Works the same way with Apple Pay, and it is very useful as you say.


#8

I have the platinum everyday cashback, and put most of my spend through them. The biggest outlier is lidl which doesn’t take amex, sadly.

I also have a NatWest reward credit card (which also pays 0.5-1.0% cashback) but use amex wherever possible because of their excellent customer service.

From time to time I do think I should get the gold card, but because I mostly fly to locations that aren’t served well by BA etc I never feel its really worth it…


#9

When I looked at the flying options outside of Europe, the taxes alone seemed to be about 80% of the usual flight cost, and like you said, not worth it.

Inside of Europe and it’s completely different.

Flights for 4 people to Lanzarote were costing around £1300 with your “budget airlines” and around £1800 for BA.

With the points, I had to pay the tax, which was £115 quid for everything!

But it’s not exactly a pain free situation when trying to get the flights in the first place.


#10

I’ve never tried Amex before but the high level of customer service that everyone seems to praise them for does sound appealing. Is there a difference in general level of service/support between their free cards and their cards with annual fees (aside from perks like Airport lounge access)?

Can you expand on this?


#11

Not sure about the levels of CS, but here’s a recent experience of mine.

Meant to apply for my card through my wife’s referral code… didn’t… called them to ask them to cancel the first one, and i’d reapply again (providing it didn’t hit my credit score).

They said it was fine, but I later learned that I had 2 hard searches done (1 for each application), despite one of the applications being cancelled.

When I called and went through the very easy complaints procedure, I had a letter a few days later explaining the situation, and that they’d investigate.

A week later was the resolution letter, saying they had investigated, listened to the calls, and found I was indeed correct, and they’d advised me wrongly in the first instance.

They’ve now said they’ll cancel the 2nd search!

So even when they get it wrong (errors happen), they stil nail the service afterwards.

As for the flight booking.

There are only so many seats each flight has where you can use reward points. You have to book almost a year in advance if you know you want to go somewhere specific, and even then there is no guarantee you’ll get the flights you want.

Once booked, it’s all plain sailing, it’s just the hassle of finding the flight in the first place!

Much easier if it’s just for 2 people though (or even 1 person).


#12

Only thing that bugs me with Amex is that they removed their email customer service - you either have to wait around on a live chat discussion or write them a letter (!) - used to be much easier when you could just chuck everything in an email.


(Dave) #13

Amex customer service has been good when I’ve had to use them in the past.

One time I called them, during the conversation I happened to mention I hadn’t been able to take advantage of the cashback for a month or so (it was some reason that was not really their fault or mine, but I can’t remember what) and they offered to add £20 cashback to my account as a goodwill gesture. I didn’t ask for it or complain, it was just in the course of the conversation about something else.

They tend to own the issue and empower the customer service people to get the job done.

I also find I can make use of the offers they have too, whereas with other cards the offers are not always that relevant. I’m currently getting 10% off everything spent at Morrisons in December on top of 1% cashback.

I do agree that removing the email customer service was a disappointment, but I’ve used the live chat feature two or three times and there hasn’t been much of a delay and the same high level of customer service was given.

Edit: Forgot to mention, you can make business purchases on a personal Amex too as it isn’t against their T&Cs.


(sam) #14

Is the Costco amex any good?
I have always used a clubcard MC, but the points seem a bit ahem pointless since the devalued them all. Plus I don’t shop at Tesco anymore?


#15

I have the Costco card and really like it. 3% on dining (even including things like McDonalds), 2% on travel and 1% on everything else for the price of the Costco membership I’d have anyway.

I have no complaints and love seeing the cashback come in

And I think the card looks cool as well, even if I have to have my picture on the back.


(sam) #16

So it replaces the Costco membership?


#17

Yeah, Costco is a big part of it really, which is OK because I live quite near one.

You have to go to a Costco store to have a photo taken, unless there is a recent one on file, and it replaces your usual Costco membership card and the back has your photo and the Costco membership on the back.

Also, the cashback is paid in a Costco voucher, which is easily exchanged for cash at the desk in store.


(sam) #18

Sounds good. I’ll look into this. Can you double it up with Costco executive membership?


(Adrian) #19

Had the platinum everyday cashback card for about 6 months now and generally put as much as I can through it - really happy with the app & have been pleasantly surprised by acceptance, as I assumed I was going to struggle to use it anywhere.

One of the best parts that I didn’t know about before having the card was the offers section where you can get cashback for various purchase - I know a number of banks do this now for their debit cards but I have found the amex ones to be much better. I’ve also been able to make use of American Express Invites to get some gig tickets in pre-sale which was good.


#20

It’s actively encouraged as far I can remember. I have trade myself but the example picture up in Costco is an executive card.

It really comes into its own if you have to pay for work travel expenses that you can then claim back. 2% on hotels, trains etc is unbeatable.

Plus, as everyone else says, the app and offers really are good.