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VS

Compare the Features and Benefits of Southwest Rapid Rewards® Plus Credit Card and
The Platinum Card® from American Express

Detailed Comparison Overview

Key Facts
Annual Fee
Avg. Min. Credit Score
Ongoing APR
Balance transfers fees
Best Multiplier
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
Bonus Offer
Rating
Review
Key features
Unique Card Benefits
Secondary Car Rental CDW Waiver
Extended Warranty
Purchase Protection
Trip Protections
Free Checked Bags
Roadside Assistance
Travel and Emergency Assistance Services
No Fees for Authorized Users
Free Access to Credit Score
Airport Lounge Access
Annual Statement Credits
Grants Hotel Status
Grants Car Rental Status
Earns Transferable Points
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Reimbursement
Return Protection
Cell Phone Protection
Has No Preset Spending Limit
Concierge Services
Metal Card
Annual Fee
$69
Avg. Min. Credit Score
670-850 *
Ongoing APR
21.49%-28.49% (Variable)
Balance transfers fees
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Best Multiplier
3x Airfare

Applies only to tickets purchased directly from Southwest. Other airfare earns 1X.

2x Transit
2x Cable / Internet / VOIP Phone
2x Cellular Phone Service
2x Streaming Services
1x Everything Else
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
$0.014
Bonus Offer
Earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Rating
YBCC Card Rate Stars Filled
YBCC Card Rate Stars Empty
(3.73) Our Review

Our ratings are determined by the authors and editors on our team. Each individual card feature is compared against all other cards we offer and the total score is an average of those 4 ratings.

Review

The Southwest Plus Card charges the lowest annual fee of any Southwest credit card, making it a tempting option for travelers that enjoy flying Southwest.

In exchange for the modest $69 annual fee, cardholders will be reimbursed for up to two EarlyBird Check-In purchases each year, get 25% back on inflight purchases on Southwest Airlines, plus get 3,000 bonus points each card anniversary.

Get 25% back on Southwest inflight purchases.

Cardholders earn 2 Southwest points per dollar spent in a range of spending categories, including Southwest purchases (including inflight purchases), Southwest Rapid Rewards hotel and car partners, local transit, commuting, rideshare, internet, cable, phone services, and select streaming services.

Points earned count toward earning the Southwest Companion Pass. However, Southwest Plus Credit cardholders won’t get Tier Qualifying Points toward earning A-List Status. If you want to earn Tier Qualifying Points, you’ll need to get the Southwest Priority or Premier Credit Card instead.

Southwest Plus cardholders can't earn Tier Qualifying Points on purchases

In addition, the Southwest Plus credit card charges foreign transaction fees on overseas purchases. While that might not be a problem for some travelers, international flyers may want to get the Priority or Premier Card instead.

Frequent Southwest flyers should consider the Southwest Priority Credit Card instead. Although it charges the highest annual fee of any Southwest credit card, the card offers a $75 Southwest annual travel credit, four Upgraded Boardings every cardmember anniversary, and a 7,500-point anniversary bonus. Plus, the card doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee. Those perks more than offset the additional annual fee.

Lastly, this card is great for getting a large piece of the to a Southwest Companion Pass with the bonus offer, since the points earned from the signup bonus count. Read our guide on earning a Southwest Companion Pass for up to two years via new account bonuses.

Read more
Unique Card Benefits
yes
Secondary Car Rental CDW Waiver
yes
Extended Warranty
yes
Purchase Protection
yes
Trip Protections
yes
Free Checked Bags
yes
Roadside Assistance
yes
Travel and Emergency Assistance Services
yes
No Fees for Authorized Users
yes
Free Access to Credit Score
yes
Airport Lounge Access
no
Annual Statement Credits
no
Grants Hotel Status
no
Grants Car Rental Status
no
Earns Transferable Points
no
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Reimbursement
no
Return Protection
no
Cell Phone Protection
no
Has No Preset Spending Limit
no
Concierge Services
no
Metal Card
no
Annual Fee
$695 (Rates and fees)
Avg. Min. Credit Score
670-850 *
Ongoing APR
See Pay Over Time APR
Balance transfers fees
-
Best Multiplier
5x Airfare

Earn 5x Membership Rewards points on airfare (booked directly with the airline or via AmexTravel.com and on prepaid hotels when booked via AmexTravel.com), up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year.

5x Hotels

Only when booked via AmexTravel.com; Otherwise, hotels will earn 1X points per dollar spent

1x Everything Else
Avg. Point Value
(Learn More)
$0.017
Bonus Offer

Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Terms apply.

Rating
YBCC Card Rate Stars Filled
YBCC Card Rate Stars Empty
(4.25) Our Review

Our ratings are determined by the authors and editors on our team. Each individual card feature is compared against all other cards we offer and the total score is an average of those 4 ratings.

Review

In many ways, the American Express Platinum card is the crème de la crème of premium travel rewards credit cards. There are not only a laundry list of embedded perks — from hotel and rental car elite statuses to complimentary access to airport lounges through the Global Lounge Collection — but this card also can provide serious value in the form of statement credits with partner merchants. You can see the full list of benefits above.

Truth be told, it may require some work to fully maximize the card’s many perks but it shouldn’t be difficult to recoup at least some, if not all, of the card’s $695 annual fee (Rates and Fees).

An overhaul of the Platinum in 2021 showed Amex wanted to expand this card well beyond travel. While it’s unlikely the Platinum will ever fully shed its decades-long roots in the travel sphere, Amex also hopes to play a role at the top of your wallet whether you are at home or away.

Of course, on the travel front, the card still earns 5X on airfare purchased directly with the airlines or through the Amex Travel portal (on up to $500,000 of airfare purchases per calendar year), 5X on prepaid hotels, provides the most access to lounges of any card issuer, and has built-in travel protections and elite-status perks. This is on top of all the other relatively-recent lifestyle benefit additions — from Uber credits, Equinox credits, preferred restaurant reservations with Resy, and much, much more.

airfare-the-platinum-card-from-american-express

 

A few notes you need to know:

Amex now has language restricting you from getting the bonus on this Card if you have or have had this card OR have had this Card, the Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Charles Schwab, the Platinum Card® from American Express Exclusively for Morgan Stanley or previous versions of these Cards.

Additional Platinum cards are $195 each.

If you want an Authorized User card with none of the benefits, that is still available as the “Companion Platinum Card.” They will simply be able to make charges that post to your account.

Bottom Line:

While the Platinum is a solid choice for most cardholders looking to level up their travel experience, consider other options from both Chase and Capital One including the $550-per-year Chase Sapphire Reserve and $395-per-year Capital One Venture X credit card.

Rates and Fees for the The Platinum Card® from American Express

Read more
Unique Card Benefits
yes
Secondary Car Rental CDW Waiver
yes
Extended Warranty
yes
Purchase Protection
yes
Trip Protections
yes
Free Checked Bags
no
Roadside Assistance
no
Travel and Emergency Assistance Services
no
No Fees for Authorized Users
no
Free Access to Credit Score
no
Airport Lounge Access
yes
Annual Statement Credits
yes
Grants Hotel Status
yes
Grants Car Rental Status
yes
Earns Transferable Points
yes
Global Entry / TSA PreCheck Reimbursement
yes
Return Protection
yes
Cell Phone Protection
yes
Has No Preset Spending Limit
yes
Concierge Services
yes
Metal Card
yes

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