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Picking up the phone was never fun, and this isn’t a 80’s movie with Gordon Gecko anymore. Placing a call is an almost alien task these days, thanks to messaging apps and the joys of email chains. Plus, who has the time to wait on hold?

There’s just not much you can’t get done with a few taps, and when Amex introduced email support for Platinum Card holders, it transformed convenience to entirely new levels, allowing customers to communicate on their terms.

Unfortunately, Amex seems to be retreating from the future. The card giant is said to be cutting off concierge email support, even as they raise annual fees to $695 per year. Will there be a great replacement, like WhatsApp chat, or is this the beginning of cost cutting, in an unfortunate way?

Amex Ending Platinum Concierge Email

Any allure to someone securing an “impossible” dining reservation, or fulfilling last minute gift requests on your behalf goes downhill quite a bit, when you hear the jazz music.

There’s nothing luxurious about waiting on hold for an hour, or having to manually confirm your card details every time you need help. Email and chat however, are easy.

With email, even if requests take a bit longer, there’s something magical about firing something off, carrying on with your life and receiving a prompt reply at your leisure. So why is Amex cutting down on contact options for its famed concierge service?

Amex Ending Email Concierge On August 18th, 2021

According to TPG, Amex is ending email support for Platinum Card concierge requests in August, and contact will only be available by phone from that date to cut down on the large number of requests.

Recent wait times to reach the Platinum Concierge team were taking up to 9 days for simple email responses, which often did not fully address the request, and subsequent follow ups were taking even longer.

Most people want reservation help for meals in hours, not days, so it’s hard to see any value in this sort of system as it presently exists, but it wasn’t always that way.

I benefited greatly through the years, during the glory days of instant phone pick ups and swift email replies from Platinum Concierge, all with empowered concierge agents who could and would get things done. Are those days over?

If recent email support waits sound dreadful, phone support for the beloved Platinum Concierge support hasn’t been much better in recent times either, with hold times up to an hour or more. What Platinum Card user has the time?

Platinum Losing Premium Edge, Already?

It’s unfortunate that Amex appears to be reducing contact points to cut staffing costs, in a time when customer focused companies and other banks are expanding customer contact points to online messaging platforms and even social media, to better serve all customers on their own terms.

As a heavy WhatsApp user, I’ve loved seeing brands engage and offer support via my preferred contact method, rather than having to pick up the phone. For a card which is largely justified by personalized support, the move to reduce usability is nothing short of bizarre.

Amex is attempting to brand their Platinum Card as more premium than ever, with a new $695 fee to match, while making a key benefit, which many users have enjoyed for decades, harder to use. That doesn’t square, so maybe it’s only temporary?

Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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4 Comments

  1. Interesting changes.
    With pandemic restrictions continuing to wax and wane, and the return of CS workers only really just beginning, these changes don’t seem startling.

    It will be interesting to hear other readers’ assessment of their perceived value of the AmEx Concierge service benefits.

    As to WhatsApp: Despite it’s widespread global popularity, it’s not secure. It suffered a catastrophic data breach. Facebook owns it and analyzes metadata for their commercial gains.

    Who would sensibly cede AmEx Platinum-level transactions to the ilk of Zuckerberg?

  2. I much prefer a live person over email and have used them many times with great results. Much more efficient and faster so I am fine if they drop email.

  3. I confess I haven’t had an Amex Platinum Card for a long while. When I did I was offered a Centurion card at one point but couldn’t justify the cost. It seems now a Platinum card is nearly as expensive as a Centurion was. What would anyone pay that premium for very little service. Think Amex have really misread the market here!

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