Don’t Forget Your EXTRA $200 – $500 Fee Credit

When American Express announced the loss of American and US Airways lounge access for their Platinum and Centurion cardholders, they recognized that this would be a big blow for many of their members.

And so they targeted various ‘extra’ bonuses, perhaps based on the frequency with which their card had been used to access these lounges.

I was offered an extra $200 airline fee credit. Some of the offers were for as much as $500. Some folks report having called in and being rewarded with as much as 30,000 Membership Rewards points. (And others, a goose egg.)

My assumption is that I was using my British Airways Gold status to access American lounges too much, to the exclusion of my Platinum card, and that’s why I got the lower offer.

At the $500 level American Express was basically buying you a club membership to replace the access you were losing from the card.

The key is that you couldn’t use the fee credit right away. You had to wait until after March 22 when the lounge membership ended.

Some members, receiving their offer in December, may have decided not to cancel their card because they were mollified by this gesture… but with three months passing may have forgotten.

The fee credit, if you’ve been targeted for one, needs to be used by December 31. If you don’t know if you were targeted, call American Express to find out.

American Express is clearly willing to reimburse larger amounts than with their standard fee credit, at least in some instances, since they’ve offered the suggestion to some to actually buy a club membership with their additional credit that comes on top of the annual $200 airline fee credit offered with the Platinum card.

Nonetheless I approached my fee credit the way that I do my annual credit, which is to buy airline gift cards and to do it in a smaller denomination.

Here’s my purchase, and my credit:

It took 3 days for the credits to post.

If you have an American Express Platinum or Centurion card, remember that you may have an ‘extra’ fee credit to use in 2014. Use it.


About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. @lucky – I used $50 of my AA rebate to buy a AA gift cert. On the Amex bill, the charge reads the same way that your statement reads (except that it’s only $50). The rebate has not shown up yet. I’m hesitant to call that in, as I’m pretty sure you aren’t supposed to use it for gift cards.

    What do you advise? Wait a few more days? If I need to call it in, what “charge” can I say that it is?

  2. I called specifically about this and was offered $100 airfare credit and 3500 points after $1000 spend. I took it as it was the best I could get.

  3. Totally did this – exact same thing. Got $350 in credits and am thinking of using them for a free trip to the Caribbean later this year. Thanks Amex (and you for the reminder)!

  4. We’re these physical gc’s? I got a 300 e-gc and it did not get credited, though my offer was 500.

  5. Had tried in the past and did again today – nothing being offered apart from 100$ credit. So probably they are looking at the past usage of the card to gain access to lounges.

  6. I called and only got offered $100 credit. I asked if they could give me anything more and was told no. Better than nothing. Thanks Gary for the reminder.

  7. I’m pretty naïve here-what is an aa gift certificate-how do I get one, and how long are they good for?

  8. @gary, I used $50 of my AA rebate to buy a AA gift cert. On the Amex bill, the charge reads the same way that your statement reads (except that it’s only $50). The rebate has not shown up yet. I’m hesitant to call that in, as I’m pretty sure you aren’t supposed to use it for gift cards.

    What do you advise? Wait a few more days? If I need to call it in, what “charge” can I say that it is?

    (sorry for mistyping your name earlier….)

  9. I already have more UA vouchers than I can use this year, so I’m planning on waiting closer to the end of the year before redeeming to prolong the GC’s expiration. I’m a little nervous about forgetting, though. Can I count on you for a reminder again at that time? 😉

  10. @Gary, It showed up on my AMEX statement on 4/13 so it was probably done a couple of days before that.

  11. I got a $500 credit after calling in on zero day. My average spend on this card has been $40 per month and I’ve used it for the club no more than twice in 2013. No rhyme or reason…

    I picked up $500 of Komen cards so they got $50 too. No rebate yet from 14 days.

  12. @Matt and others: Just because you were offered the credit does not mean your account was correctly coded with the offer. I gave up on waiting for my credit to post and called them up and they said they would have to retroactively add the code.

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