Top-of-the-line American Express credit cards from the Platinum Card® from American Express to the American Express® Gold Card and even co-branded offerings like the Hilton Aspire Card come with annual airline fee credits that can help take the sting out of paying big annual fees. But one of these cards is losing those credits.
Come January 2022, the American Express Gold Card will lose its annual $100 airline fee credits, The Points Guy reports. But it may be that something else replaces those credits, as American Express says:
Current Gold Card Members will be able to continue to use the Airline Fee Credit through December 31, 2021. We will continue to evolve and enhance our Card benefits and services to provide relevant and rich value to our Card Members in the areas they care about most, so stay tuned!
Amex makes it clear that current Gold cardholders will get a new $100 to kick off 2021, as well as use up any unused credits from 2020. Exactly what may take its place remains to be seen. A new addition may be critical to helping some cardholders justify the Gold Card's $250 annual fee (see rates & fees).
The Gold Card is currently offering a 60,000-point welcome bonus after spending $4,000 within the first six months. That's an amazing offer for one of the best all-around credit cards, period – considering it earns 4x points on U.S. supermarkets and restaurants. But check to see if you're targeted for a 75,000-point bonus via CardMatch!
All About the Airline Credits
These airline credits are a use-it-or-lose-it benefit, re-upping each year on Jan. 1. Amex Gold cardholders get $100 each year, while Platinum cardholders get $200 and Hilton Aspire cards come with a $250 credit.
And while there's certainly some value, there's no denying these credits have gotten harder and harder to use over the years. For starters, you have to pick just one of the major U.S. airlines to use your credits on each year. But not just any purchase with your chosen airline will trigger the credit.
Airfare generally doesn't work, nor do cabin upgrades, Wi-Fi purchases, or buying miles. A longtime loophole to buy gift cards with Delta and Southwest using these credits has been closed.
In short, these credits are mainly used to cover incidental fees like seat assignment, baggage fees, in-flight food or drink purchases, lounge passes, and more. But there are still a few workarounds you can employ to use these credits to cover airfare…
Read our guide to maximizing your Amex airline credits to get ahead for 2020 and 2021!
Got an Amex Gold Card? You've got one full year left of using those $100 annual airline fee credits – plus the remainder of 2020, of course.
Stay tuned to see what, if anything, may take its place come 2022.