When it comes to managing your business operation effectively, having the right business card plays an important role. There are plenty of business cards from which to choose, but few financial institutions do a better job of business card offerings than American Express.
The company has strongly demonstrated its ability to understand what business owners need and steps up by issuing a diverse collection of business cards appropriate for just about any type of business.
Today we’re taking on the task of comparing 2 very different Amex business card options. The Business Platinum Card® from American Express and the Business Green Rewards Card from American Express each offer their own unique value for specific businesses.
Our article will break down that value by category in an effort to help you determine which is the better card for your business.
The Value of a Welcome Bonus
Amex Business Platinum Card
Amex Business Green Card
There’s no question the Amex Business Platinum card comes with a more valuable welcome bonus, however, you’re paying a much larger annual fee for the card. Is that extra fee worth it and will your business utilize all the benefits that come with the card?
As we continue with our comparison and break down how the cards function in each category, we’ll answer those questions.
Bottom Line: Although the Amex Business Platinum card comes with a bonus worth far more than the welcome bonus on the Amex Business Green card, the card also comes with a higher annual fee.
Comparing Earning Potential
Both of our featured cards earn Membership Rewards points, a valuable currency that has several flexible redemption options that we’ll cover next.
First, let’s look specifically at how your business could earn rewards on each of these cards.
|Amex Business Platinum Card||Amex Business Green Card|
- 5x points on flights and on prepaid hotels booked through Amex Travel
- 2x points on cruises purchased through Amex Travel
- 1.5x points on eligible purchases in key business categories, as well as on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else (cap applies)
- 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases
- Terms apply
- 2x points per dollar spent on eligible travel purchases via Amex Travel
- 1 point per dollar on all other purchases
If your business involves purchasing travel, you’ll find earning opportunities with either card. Beyond those earnings, the Amex Business Platinum card takes over with bonus earnings in several common business expense categories during the initial 3 months of being a cardmember.
If you’re running a small business and you can utilize Amex Travel, you’ll still earn 2x points per dollar spent on the Amex Business Green card. Also, if you are a small business and make a lot of purchases that are not bonus category purchases, you may do better with this card and its lower annual fee.
Comparing Redemption Options
With both of our cards earning Membership Rewards points, the cards will have similar redemption options. There is 1 advantage with the Amex Business Platinum card, however.
Here are the options you’ll have on each card when using your Membership Rewards points at redemption time.
|Redemption Options||Amex Business Platinum Card||Amex Business Green Card|
|Redeem for travel|
- Redeem points at 1 cent each for qualifying flights via Amex Travel
- Receive a 35% rebate when using points to book flights via Amex Travel (redeem for business and first class flights or any flight with airline pre-selection; a 1,000,000 point rebate maximum applies each year)
- Redeem points for 1 cent each for flights via Amex Travel
|Transfer points to travel partners||Transfer to 20+ airline/hotel partners; most transfer ratios are 1:1 and a small fee applies|
|Redeem for statement credits||Redeem for statement credits at the rate of 0.6 cents per point|
|Additional redemption options||Upgrade eligible flights, gift cards, Amazon, Uber, and other shopping partners|
Both cards offer the option to redeem your points for 1 cent each for flights via Amex Travel and for other qualifying travel (via Amex Travel) for a lesser value per point that can vary. Both cards also have the potential for even greater value when points are transferred to travel partners.
The real edge goes to the Amex Business Platinum card that has the additional feature of a 35% flight bonus when points are redeemed for qualifying flights via Amex Travel.
Bottom Line: While both of our cards offer several options for redeeming your Membership Rewards points, the best value is realized when redeeming points for flights via Amex Travel or transferring points to travel partners. The Amex Business Platinum card offers the additional benefit of a points rebate of 35% for business and first class flights via Amex Travel or other flights from a preselected airline.
Statement credits offer a direct economic benefit when making specific qualifying purchases with your card.
The Amex Business Platinum card comes with the following statement credits on defined purchases:
The Amex Business Green card does not offer any statement credits for specific purchases.
To learn more about maximizing the statement credits offered on Amex cards, you’ll want to check out this article on that specific topic.
Travel Benefits and Protections
Frequent business travel can be tedious, exhausting, and even expensive if things should go wrong. If your business involves any travel, having benefits and protections that can save you money or make your travel more comfortable can be valuable.
Premium rewards cards such as the Amex Business Platinum card, which come with higher annual fees, normally offer greater benefits. Let’s look at how this correlation holds true by comparing our featured cards in this category.
|Travel Benefit or Protection||Amex Business Platinum Card||Amex Business Green Card|
|Worldwide lounge access|
|Hotel and rental car program elite status and benefits|
- International Airline Program — Enjoy discounted international airfare when purchasing business or first class airline tickets
- Delta Sky Club access for members flying same-day on Delta
|Car rental insurance||Secondary car rental insurance with the option to purchase Premium Protection for 1 low fee — $12.95 to $24.95 for the entire rental period|
|Trip cancellation, trip interruption|
- Receive up to $10,000 per trip, $20,000 maximum per card each 12-month period
|Trip delay reimbursement|
- Receive up to $500 for eligible expenses when your trip is delayed more than 6 hours
- Receive up to $2,000 per checked bag, $3,000 per carry-on bag for lost, damaged, or stolen baggage
|Travel assistance services|
- Premium Global Assist Hotline
- Included in Premium Global Assist Hotline with no stated limit
- Assistance with making emergency arrangements only; the cost of actual services rendered are not included
|Travel accident insurance|
- Up to $500,000 for accidental death or dismemberment
- Up to $100,000 for accidental death or dismemberment
Bottom Line: The Amex Business Platinum card offers the best overall collection of travel benefits and protections, making it the perfect travel companion. Plus, the Amex Business Green card charges foreign transaction fees, while the Amex Business Platinum card does not.
Shopping Benefits and Protections
Extended Warranty — Receive 1 additional warranty year extension for eligible items with a manufacturer’s warranty of 5 years or less. Maximum $10,000 per item, $50,000 per card account per year.
Purchase Protection — If an eligible item is damaged or stolen within the first 90 days after the purchase date, you could receive up to $10,000 per item, $50,000 per account, per year.
Return Protection — If the return of an eligible item is not accepted by the merchant, you could receive up to $300 per item, up to $1,000 per year. Return protection is not offered on the Amex Business Green card.
Amex Offers — Login to your online Amex business card account and select from dozens of offers that can save you money or provide elevated earnings when making specific purchases.
ShopRunner Membership — Receive free 2-day shipping and discounts at over 100 retailers.
Bottom Line: Both of our featured cards offer a similar collection of shopping benefits and protections with the exception of return protection which is only offered on the Amex Business Platinum card.
Business Management Tools
All American Express business cards come with business management tools that help you organize and manage your business expenses.
Here are some of the key business management tools you’ll find on our featured cards.
- Pay Over Time —Decide whether you want to pay eligible purchases in full each month—or pay over time with interest
- ReceiptMatch and QuickBooks — Easily keep track of expenses by attaching receipts, tags, and notes to your transaction register and upload to QuickBooks.
- Account Alerts — Set up alerts for payment reminders, limits on employee spending, and custom alerts to identify unauthorized purchases.
- Online Account Management — View your activity and statements utilizing the Amex mobile app or website.
Amex Business Platinum Card vs. Amex Business Green Card — Summary
We’ve looked closely at 2 very different cards and covered a lot of information.
Let’s summarize how the cards fare overall.
Best for Earning Rewards — The Amex Business Platinum card offers elevated earnings on travel and common business purchases, making it the better card for earning rewards.
Best for Redemption Options — Both of our cards have similar redemption options with the exception of 1 key advantage when booking flights via Amex Travel with points. The Amex Business Platinum card, with its 35% flight bonus rebate, offers the better value at redemption time for flights.
Best for Travel Benefits and Protections — The Amex Business Platinum card is one of the ultimate premium travel rewards cards and comes with all the benefits and protections to prove it. However, for an entry-level business card, the Amex Business Green card does offer some benefits and comes with a lower annual fee.
Best for Statement Credits — The Amex Business Platinum card offers the option to receive hundreds of dollars in statement credits after making specific purchases. This potential value can only be maximized, however, if you will be utilizing all the offers.
Best for Shopping Benefits and Protections — Shopping benefits and protections are down on the list when selecting a business card, however, the Amex Business Platinum card edges out the Amex Business Green card with the additional benefit of return protection as well as cell phone protection.
Bottom Line: With all the bells and whistles of a premium travel rewards card, the Amex Business Platinum card delivers everything a business that involves travel needs. However, don’t overlook the Amex Business Green card if you have a large number of employees making purchases.
Alternative Amex Business Cards
The Amex portfolio of business cards is vast and varied. To determine the best card for your business, you’ll need to match up the earning categories to your business spending mix, determine how your business could benefit from different redemption options, and calculate the value of the travel/shopping and statement credits that your business will realize.
Here are a couple of additional Amex business cards to consider:
American Express® Business Gold Card
The Amex Business Gold card offers stellar earning potential on common business purchases, valuable travel redemption options, travel and shopping benefits and protections, and a productive collection of business management tools.
American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card
If you’re a busy small business owner looking for simplicity in a business card, the Amex Blue Business Cash card might be a fit.
Hot Tip: To view a collection of the best Amex business cards and the benefits offered, we’ve compiled this helpful list.
Our comparison today illustrates the wide variety of choices you have when it comes to selecting an Amex business rewards card.
While the Amex Business Platinum card appears to reign supreme in nearly every category we’ve compared in today’s article, the card won’t be the best choice for every business. If your business does not involve travel, for example, a different card may be a better match.
Your challenge when selecting the right business card for your specific operation will be to match the earning potential of the card to the mix of your actual business expenses. In addition, you’ll want to make sure the card you select offers redemption options that add value to your business bottom line or could serve to facilitate a personal travel goal.
And finally, the benefits offered on your selected card should result in a value that exceeds any annual fee.
Also, please be aware that we have not included every benefit available on each card in this article, only key core benefits. You’ll want to review each card’s Guide to Benefits for a list of all benefits and the terms and conditions.
The information regarding the Business Green Rewards Card from American Express was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Business Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card, click here.