Normally you’d need to be a dedicated patron of a specific hotel or car rental loyalty program to achieve their coveted elite status levels and reap the corresponding benefits. There are a lot of reasons to do so, of course, including room upgrades and bonus earnings with hotel programs and VIP check-in and checkout, even vehicle upgrades, from the rental car companies.
But there is another way to enjoy the benefits of elite status without the hassle of counting stays or car rentals when you carry a credit card that comes with complimentary elite status.
The Platinum Card® from American Express, with its collection of premium travel benefits, has a known reputation for being one of the best travel rewards cards out there. And included in its long list of benefits is complimentary hotel and car rental program elite status.
We’ll expand on this specific perk as knowing and utilizing the benefits you have on your card can simplify your life, provide economic benefit, and make your travel more comfortable.
Stay with us as we provide you with all you need to know about the Amex Platinum card’s hotel and rental car program elite status benefits.
Hot Tip: The hotel and car rental elite status benefits mentioned in this article also apply to the Business Platinum Card® from American Express.
Amex Platinum Card – Quick Overview
Before we discuss the valuable hotel and car rental program elite benefits you can expect from the Amex Platinum card, here’s an important overview of the card’s core benefits and a link you can use to access a list of any pertinent fees and interest rates, plus a breakdown of any terms and conditions that apply.
Hot Tip: Check to see if you’re eligible for a welcome offer of up to 150,000 points with the Amex Platinum card! (The current public offer is 80,000.)
Hotel Program Elite Status
Primary cardmembers of the Amex Platinum card and authorized users can enjoy hotel program elite status with both Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors loyalty rewards programs.
Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status
The Amex Platinum comes with complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status which would normally require 25 nights stayed at Marriott properties within a calendar year.
What will Gold Elite status get you? Here’s a summary of everything you can expect to receive.
- Free premium Wi-Fi
- Enhanced room upgrades when available
- Receive the fifth consecutive award night fee
- 2 p.m. late checkout
- 25% additional bonus points
- No blackout dates
- A dedicated reservation line
- Reservation guarantee
- Up to 500 welcome bonus points each stay
- Access to PointSavers discounted award nights
- Use a combo of points and cash to pay for your reservation
- Use points for on-site expenses
- Member-only room rates and no blackout dates
To learn more about Marriott Bonvoy elite status, how to achieve it, and the benefits of each level, you’re sure to be an expert after digesting all the information in our comprehensive overview.
Hilton Honors Gold Status
Cardmembers also receive complimentary Hilton Honors Gold status. Normally you must have completed 20 stays or 40 total nights within a calendar year to reach this level. You could also achieve Gold status by earning 75,000 Hilton Honors base points in a calendar year.
Here are benefits you can expect with complimentary Gold Elite Status:
- Room upgrades to executive level when available
- Complimentary breakfast
- Late checkout
- Free Wi-Fi
- Waived resort fees on award stays
- Fifth standard award night free
- 2 free bottles of water
- 80% additional bonus points
- Elite rollover nights
- Milestone bonuses
Hot Tip: Please note that hotel elite status does not happen automatically. When you receive your card, you must register to start receiving benefits. We don’t want you to miss out on any benefits of the Amex Platinum card so we’ve put together this checklist of everything you should do when you receive your new Amex Platinum.
Additional Hotel Program Benefits
While technically not complimentary elite status, you can’t dismiss the elite-style benefits cardmembers do enjoy at these unique hotel property collections worldwide.
Your hotel experience will be positively enhanced when using your Amex Platinum card to stay at Fine Hotel & Resorts properties.
- Room upgrades, based on availability
- Breakfast for 2 each day of your stay
- Early check-in, late checkout
- Complimentary Wi-Fi
- A special amenity unique to the property location with a value of at least $100
Stay for 2 days or more and receive these valuable benefits.
- Upgraded room, if available
- $100 room credit that can be used for on-site amenities such as dining, spa, etc.
- 5x earnings when booking prepaid hotel nights through Amex Travel
Bottom Line: The Amex Platinum card comes with complimentary Gold level elite status with both Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors loyalty programs. Cardmembers enjoy additional benefits including a $200 credit for prepaid stays at American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts and on 2-night stays at The Hotel Collection properties.
Car Rental Program Elite Status
Using your Amex Platinum card to reserve and pay for your rental car reservation can result in vehicle upgrades, discounted rates, VIP pick up and return, and other perks that make your rental car experience better.
Let’s look at some of the benefits provided for cardholders by 3 of the major rental car companies.
National Emerald Club Executive Status
Your Amex Platinum card offers complimentary Emerald Club Executive status with National Car Rental that includes the following benefits:
- Guaranteed vehicle upgrades
- 1 free rental day after 6 rentals
- Convenient pick-up and drop-off with e-receipts
- 20% discount using code
- Dedicated reservation line
Additional Car Rental Program Benefits
You’ll feel like a VIP with these additional complimentary rental car program benefits.
Hertz Gold Plus Rewards
Hertz Gold Plus Rewards offers several base benefits and is free for anyone to join. However, when signing up via the Platinum Hertz Gold Plus Rewards site and adding code #211762 to your profile, you’ll unlock several complimentary Amex Platinum card benefits.
Be sure to reserve and pay for your Hertz rental car with your card, then expect to enjoy this combination of benefits via Hertz Gold Plus Rewards and the Amex Platinum card:
- Bypass the counter and go straight to your rental car
- Complimentary 1-class car upgrade when available
- Free additional driver — spouse or domestic partner
- Receive special savings or best available rates
- Rent luxury cars from the Hertz Prestige Collection and receive special discounted weekend rates
- 10% Hertz Gold Plus Rewards bonus earnings
- 4-hour grace period for returns
- Terms and conditions apply
Avis Preferred Car Rental Program
While anyone can enroll in the Avis Preferred car rental program, linking your Amex Platinum card will allow you to save your preferences, your personal information, and your preferred payment options, which can facilitate making your future rental reservations easier.
Using your Amex Platinum card as an Avis Preferred member, you can expect to receive these benefits:
- Go right to your car with worldwide expedited service
- Discounts on published rates, up to 25% (use code #7569000)
- 1-car upgrade when available (use code #UUNA007)
- Use the Avis app to select your car, extend your rental, or make changes
- Earn Avis Preferred Points for every dollar you spend
Hot Tip: In addition to several rental car program perks, the Amex Platinum card comes with secondary car rental insurance. Cardholders also have access to Premium Car Rental Protection for 1 low fee that covers the entire rental period up to 42 days. Prices range from $12.25 to $24.95 for the entire period depending on location and level of coverage selected. Learn more about Amex Platinum’s car rental insurance and benefits.
Additional Benefits of the Amex Platinum Card
While the complimentary hotel and rental program elite statuses are great, those are just a few of the premium travel benefits that come with the Amex Platinum card.
You’ll also enjoy these additional value-added perks that can add comfort to your travels, provide value-added redemption options, and even save you money.
Worldwide Airline Lounge Access
The Amex Platinum card is a rock star and second to none when it comes to providing worldwide airline lounge access. Relax, grab a drink, and savor a bite to eat at any of these lounge network properties:
Most lounges allow the cardmember to bring 2 additional guests. Authorized users on the card also enjoy lounge network privileges.
If lounge access is important to you during your travels, you’ll want to know about all the best credit cards for complimentary access.
Earning and Redemption Options
Membership Rewards points earned on the Amex Platinum card are some of the most valuable flexible rewards currencies.
Statement credits are important because they provide economic value that can offset the cost of an annual fee. You can expect to receive statement credits for the following purchases made with your card:
Alternative Card for Business Owners
The Business Platinum Card® from American Express
Hot Tip: Check to see if you’re eligible for a huge welcome offer of up to 150,000 points with the Amex Business Platinum! (The current public offer is 120,000.)
If you’re a business owner, you may want to consider the Amex Business Platinum card instead of the personal Amex Platinum card. You’ll find the same hotel and rental car program elite status perks and additional benefits that cater directly to the business owner who travels.
Our article offers a complete comparison of the 2 cards and some insight as to which card would be a better match for your situation.
Selecting a credit card based solely on its hotel and rental car program elite status offerings is probably not a prudent idea. It is prudent, however, to understand all of the benefits that come with your card and how they can be utilized to offset the annual expense of having a premium travel rewards card.
If you’re spending a lot on flights, value worldwide lounge access, and can take advantage of statement credits for specific purchases, you’ll find tremendous value with the Amex Platinum card.
Receiving complimentary hotel and rental car program elite status and additional benefits are just icing on the cake of other premium travel benefits that come with the card.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.