- $7500 one-time initiation fee
- $2500 annual fee
There is no signup bonus.
It takes around $250,000 – $350,000 in spend in a year across American Express products to be able to request an invitation to the Centurion card ($500,000+ to request a Business Centurion card).
And the card is basically just an American Express Platinum card with a few add-on benefits.
Like the Platinum card, Centurion cardmembers receive:
- Lounge access. Both Platinum and Centurion members get access to Delta lounges (when flying Delta same day, but no free guests); Centurion lounge access (Centurion members get better champagne than Platinum members and reserved tables); Priority Pass Select.
- Starwood status. Both Platinum and Centurion members receive Gold status.
- Hilton status. Platinum members receive Gold status, Centurion members Diamond, but there’s not much of a material difference in published benefits between the two status levels.
- Fine Hotels & Resorts bookings. Luxury hotel reservations with throw-ins like breakfast, upgrades, and late checkout. Centurion members generally get an extra throw-in benefit.
Unique Centurion elite status benefits are:
- IHG Rewards Club Platinum status. For all those times that Centurion members stay at Holiday Inn. Platinum is not even top tier and even the top elite level offers super weak benefits. (And Intercontinental hotels have their own separate status program: Ambassador)
- Delta Platinum status. Although The Points Guy writes “Delta Platinum status has been nice for flexibility in changing awards and earning more miles on Delta flights” it’s actually a hobbled Platinum status that doesn’t get bonus miles for flights.
Both card products get an airline fee credit, Global Entry application fee reimbursement, and concierge services. The Centurion concierge can be a designated person, rather than luck of the draw with Platinum, but it’s the same company and not a true high end concierge service (and is often considered to lag mid-tier services like Bluefish).
With the personal (but not business) Black Card you may receive luxury gifts — such as gift cards for luxury retailers who want to introduce themselves to you.
Ultimately you’re paying $7500 upfront plus an incremental $2000 a year over the Platinum Card for Delta Platinum elite status. That won’t be close to worth it for most people — save the money, use some of it for paid domestic first class (your upgrade percentage is higher that way anyway), if you must.
With the Centurion card you used to get:
- Starwood Platinum
- Hyatt Diamond
- US Airways Platinum
Now with the Black Card you’re really paying for prestige and exclusivity. It was cool when Kanye West dropped references to it in 2004. But that was… 2004.
I went to the malls and I balled too hard/ ‘Oh my god is that a black card?’/ I turned around and replied, ‘Why, yes/ But I prefer the term African-American Express’