Get money back to your card each time you eat out.
The American Express Platinum card comes with a host of extras, including travel insurance, £100 credit at Harvey Nicholls and airport lounge access. It all sounds pretty good and no other card offers as much.
But those perks need to be weighed against an annual charge of £575. That’s huge. I’ve not been convinced the perks are worth the fee.
So could this new offer could change things? £300 of free food certainly beats any other freebie out there. Here’s how the Amex Platinum Dining credit will work.
What is the American Express Platinum dining credit offer?
Until December 2024 you’ll be able to get up to £300 credit on restaurant dining per year. The allowance resets each 1 January, when you’ll get another £300 allowance.
The £300 is split into two parts. The first £150 is for spending at UK restaurants. The next £150 is for spending at overseas restaurants. However, it’s only at participating restaurants.
You don’t need to spend the £150 in one go. You’ll get the credit on each eligible payment you make up to that cap of £150. And again for the overseas credit.
So spend £55, and you’ll get £55 back. But if the next spend is for £100, you’ll only get £95 credited to your account.
For overseas spending you will still have to pay the transaction charges for using the card abroad, so remember to factor that in.
How to get the £300 dining credit
You obviously need to have the American Express Platinum card. Some existing American Express cardholders will be eligible for a welcome bonus (it depends on which cards you have had in the last two years), while other freebies include:
- 2 x £50 Harvey Nicholls credit each year
- Annual worldwide family travel insurance
- Airport lounge access
- £10 monthly credit at Addison Lee
But the card isn’t cheap. As mentioned there’s an annual £575 fee. You can read my full review here.
To get the restaurant credit, you’ll first need to activate the offer in your Amex account. Then use your main Platinum credit card to pay for the meal. It won’t work on supplementary cards.
It’s worth noting that third party payment systems, which can include some card readers, might mean the credit is rejected. There’s nothing you can do about this, except hope that won’t be the case when you pay.
When will you get the credit?
In my experience, the credit for similar offers is usually applied to your American Express account within a few days.
But it can take longer. And the terms and conditions for the offer say it’ll be within 30 days in most cases but could take up to 150 days.
This means that you might not get the money taken off the credit card bill before you need to pay it – so make sure you have enough cash available to cover it.
Also, I’d make a note in your diary to check the credit does come through. Sometimes something goes wrong and you’ll need to chase it.
What restaurants are included in the offer?
There’s a big list of participating restaurants on the Amex website. The UK list seems quite good. Though it’s London centric, there are multiple options in big cities and The Ivy Cafes and Brasseries popping up in regional towns. Hopefully you’ll come across at least one location you regularly attend.
The overseas one is more limited. For example if you’re on holiday in Paris, then there are plenty to choose from – but nothing else in the rest of France. Likewise New York is really well covered, but there’s only one place in San Francisco and nothing in Boston, Denver or Oregon.
Just be aware that this list can change, and probably will. When a similar offer ran in 2021 some of the original locations had gone by the time we planned to use it. So always check. It might be worth taking a quick screenshot before spending too, in case you need to claim at a later date.
Double check too for specific locations that are part of a chain. In the previous offer, only one Hawksmoor location was included, which nearly caught us out, and that’s repeated at launch with only Canary Wharf, Manchester and Edinburgh included.
Is the offer any good?
This is a great extra for anyone who has the Platinum card. But don’t think of this as free credit. You’re still paying £575 a year to access this credit. That’s massive.
In fact I think the only way this works is if you think you’d spend £150 at those UK restaurants each year and £150 at the listed overseas restaurants anyway. If so, you could view this as £300 off the Amex fee.
If you can apply the same logic to other benefits so you ultimately wipe out the full £575, then great. You’re not spending just to save.
The exception is for anyone eligible for a first or second welcome bonus. The 30,000 points on offer as standard don’t go far enough (it’s worth £240 if converted to Nectar via Avios), but the occassional boosted promotion doubles this to 60,000.
Combined with the other offers, and then cancelling the card once the bonus is activated mean you can make a decent profit. Better still, if you can time this to cover two calendar years you’ll be able to claim the credit twice.