For years the Starwood American Express has had no annual fee the first year and $30 after that. They’ve now upped the post-first year fee to $45.
I’ve just been billed my $30 fee in August, so I’m good for at least a year. And I don’t yet know whether existing cardmembers are being grandfathered in at the old amount or will be pushed up to $45 with their next renewal. (My guess is the latter, I just haven’t checked yet.)
Still, the annual fee is lower than most reasonable points-earning cards, which frequently range from $60 – $85. So this is hardly reason to cancel. Presumably Amex realizes this.
Meanwhile the Starwood American Express small business card is still first-year free and $30 thereafter. While this too may go up, perhaps they’ve left the lower fee in place because the card has only been around a little over a year and may not have gotten traction yet. They’ll want a succesful card before they increase the fee.