January 29, 2024
7 mins

The American Express Platinum Card® and Business Edge™ Card

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Summary.This comprehensive review explores Canada's American Express Platinum and Business Edge™ Cards. It covers their benefits, like travel perks and rewards, cost considerations, and suitability for different users...

American Express is a name synonymous with prestige and convenience. While their higher-level cards typically require good to excellent credit and solid income, they also have exceptional membership perks and benefits. With the Platinum Card® or Business Edge™ card, you also can earn redeemable points or statement credits.

American Express Platinum Card®

The American Express Platinum Card®

The American Express Platinum Card® is one of Canada's most prestigious credit cards, designed for those seeking luxury and exclusivity in their financial products. The following review explores the card's features, benefits, and potential drawbacks, helping Canadian consumers make an informed decision.

Features and benefits

From day one, the American Express Platinum Card® often offers a substantial welcome bonus in Membership Rewards points, which can be redeemed for travel, merchandise, or transferred to airline and hotel partners.

The current welcome bonus is 80,000 Membership Reward points. Cardholders then earn Membership Rewards points on every purchase, with higher rates for travel-related expenses. This feature is particularly beneficial for frequent travellers.

Beyond the welcome bonus

Beyond the initial welcome bonus, the American Express Platinum Card® continually rewards its users. The Membership Rewards program is renowned for its flexibility, allowing cardholders to redeem points for various rewards. These include travel bookings directly through American Express Travel, statement credits, and a wide range of merchandise.

Moreover, the card's partnership with multiple airline and hotel loyalty programs means that points can be transferred to these programs, often at a 1:1 ratio, unlocking even greater value. This feature mainly benefits those already established travel loyalty memberships, which can significantly boost their rewards potential.

Travel perks

The Amex Platinum Card® includes the following perks:

  • Airport lounge access: Complimentary access to over 1,200 airport lounges worldwide, including Priority Pass lounges and Amex's own Centurion Lounges.
    • Pro tip: Be sure to activate the Priority Pass feature; many lounges now only allow Amex cardholders with active Priority Pass access.
  • Hotel benefits: Elite status with hotel loyalty programs like Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors.
  • Travel insurance: Comprehensive travel insurance coverage, including trip cancellation, interruption, and emergency medical insurance.
  • Airline and shopping credits: Cover incidentals, use Uber Eats, shop at Saks, and work out at Equinox—all while earning annual statement credits.

The Platinum Card® travel perks extend beyond lounge access and hotel benefits. Cardholders also enjoy an annual travel credit, which can be used for any travel booking through American Express Travel. This credit significantly offsets the card's annual fee, making it an attractive feature for regular travellers.

The card also offers a unique International Airline Program, which offers discounted companion tickets, upgrades, and special fares on selected airlines. These benefits make the card an ideal travel companion, not just in terms of luxury and comfort but also in savings and convenience for leisure and business travel.

Dining and entertainment benefits

Whether travelling or not, cardholders can access the following benefits that are perfect for a date night:

  • Access to exclusive culinary events and reserved tables at top restaurants through the Global Dining Collection.
  • Special access to ticket presales and reserved seats for concerts, theatre, and sporting events.

Other benefits

Other Platinum Card® benefits include the following:

  • Platinum Concierge service for personalized assistance.
  • Access to unique experiences through Amex Experiences and Amex Offers.



High-end American Express cards generally come with higher annual fees and interest rates. The annual fee was increased by $300 on September 26, 2023, to $799 yearly. As with most premium cards, the interest rates for unpaid balances are higher. Interest rates range from 20.99% to 26.99%, depending on your account standing.

The high annual fee is often a point of consideration for potential cardholders. However, when the value of the benefits is fully utilized, many find that the card pays for itself. When evaluating the cost, it's essential to factor in the value of the welcome bonus, the potential rewards from spending, the comprehensive insurance coverage, and the luxury travel perks.

Furthermore, the card's status and prestige often open doors to exclusive events and experiences, adding an intangible value appreciated by those who seek more than just monetary benefits from their credit card.

Pros and cons of the Amex Platinum Card®

The following table summarizes the potential pros and cons of becoming a cardholder.

Extensive travel benefits and rewardsHigh annual fee ($799)
Comprehensive insurance packageRequires a good to excellent credit score
Exclusive access to events and experiencesMore beneficial for frequent travellers and high spenders

Who should consider this card?

The American Express Platinum Card® is ideal for:

  • Frequent travellers who can maximize the travel benefits.
  • Individuals who appreciate luxury experiences and exclusive access.
  • High spenders who will earn enough points to offset the annual fee.
  • Those looking to qualify for the American Express Centurion card.
    • Pro tip: Spend over $250,000 on your Platinum Card® each year, and you will likely be invited to the program.

The American Express Platinum Card® in Canada is a top-tier choice for those who value luxury travel and exclusive experiences. While the high annual fee and interest rates are considerations, the extensive benefits and rewards can make it an asset for the right user.

American Express Business Edge™ card

The American Express Business Edge™ card

The American Express Business Edge™ card is a popular choice for Canadian business owners looking for a credit card that combines rewards with business-friendly features. This review will explore the card's advantages, disadvantages, and suitability for various business needs.

Features and benefits

You can earn a generous welcome bonus of up to 67,000 Membership Rewards points, subject to certain conditions like minimum spend in the first few months. You also receive an enhanced earning rate on business essentials, including office supplies, electronics, rides, gas, and food. Regular earn rate on all other purchases.

Business solutions

The American Express Business Edge™ card also stands out for its digital tools that aid business owners. The card has access to Amex's online account management and the Amex Mobile App, where transactions can be tracked in real time, helping businesses monitor and control their expenses efficiently.

The ability to set customizable alerts and reminders for payments further aids in maintaining a healthy credit score, which is crucial for any business. These digital tools, along with the detailed monthly statements and annual summary reports, make financial management more streamlined and less time-consuming for busy entrepreneurs.

Travel benefits

Travel insurance coverage includes car rental theft and damage insurance. Users can also access Amex Offers, providing savings on business-related travel expenses.

Other perks

Cardholders can access the American Express Invites® program, offering special events and experiences. They also receive dedicated customer service.



The current $99 annual fee is highly competitive, especially considering the rewards and features. Standard interest rates apply for purchases (20.99%) and cash advances (21.99%).

Pros and cons

The following table summarizes the potential pros and cons of becoming a cardholder.

Strong rewards program tailored to business expensesAnnual fee, although reasonable, may deter some small businesses
Valuable insurance coverage and business toolsRewards are more beneficial for businesses with high spend in specific categories
Flexibility in managing employee spendingLimited airport lounge access compared to other higher-tier cards

Who should consider this card?

The American Express Business Edge™ card is well-suited for:

  • Small to medium-sized businesses with significant expenses in the card's bonus categories.
  • Business owners looking for a card that offers both rewards and expense management tools.
  • Enterprises seeking to streamline employee expense reporting.

The American Express Business Edge™ card in Canada is a robust option for businesses seeking maximum rewards on everyday expenses. With its competitive annual fee, valuable rewards program, and business-centric benefits, it offers a balanced proposition for various business needs.

The benefit of pooled rewards and limit-setting

In addition to the primary cardholder benefits, the American Express Business Edge™ card's features for managing employee spending are noteworthy. The ability to add employee cards not only simplifies expense management but also helps accumulate rewards faster. Each purchase made by an employee contributes to the overall rewards pool, maximizing the return on business spending.

The card also provides control mechanisms to limit employee cards, ensuring that business expenses are within budget. These features make the card an excellent tool for businesses looking to optimize spending while maintaining control over their finances.


  • What is the credit score requirement for the American Express Platinum Card®?

    Applicants typically need a good to excellent credit score to qualify for this card.

  • Can Membership Rewards points be transferred to airline partners?

    Points can be transferred to several airline and hotel loyalty programs, offering great flexibility.

  • Does the card offer any family benefits?

    Cardholders can obtain additional cards for family members and enjoy many of the same benefits.

  • Is there a foreign transaction fee?

    The American Express Platinum Card® usually does not charge foreign transaction fees, making it ideal for international travel.

  • What is the minimum income requirement for the American Express Business Edge™ Card?

    There’s usually no minimum income requirement, but creditworthiness and other financial criteria are considered.

  • Can Membership Rewards points be used for business travel?

    Points can be redeemed for business travel expenses, including flights and hotel stays.

  • Is there a limit on the number of Employee Cards?

    Additional cards can be requested, typically with a limit based on the business’s creditworthiness and needs.

  • Does the card offer any special benefits for large business purchases?

    While the card provides rewards on purchases, specific benefits for large transactions may vary and should be verified with American Express.

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