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For years American Express has had an ‘International Airline Program’ for Platinum and Centurion cardholders which amounted to 2-for-1 business class tickets provided you were buying full fare.
This has had limited usefulness for many cardmembers, often full fare business class is about twice as much as discounted advance purchase business, at most you’d save a few hundred dollars buying business class for two passengers. A limited subset of cardmembers, though, found this very useful.
Last June they revamped the program and made it much more useful. Instead of ‘two for one on full fare’ they offer discounts on premium cabin tickets from one to eight passengers.
- No longer limited to refundable fares, you can get a discount off of lower-priced premium cabin fares now too.
- Applies to first class, business class, and premium economy now
- $39 per ticket service fee (waived for Centurion cardholders)
- “Travel must originate in and return to U.S. gateway (may exclude certain overseas territories) and select Canadian gateways” although one-way travel is permitted on some airline partners.
- You can use Membership Rewards ‘Pay With Points’ to cover ticket cost
Here are the airlines where discounts are available. You may not always save money, but any time you’re going to buy an international premium economy, business, or first class ticket it’s worth checking because reports are of saving hundreds and even $1000 on tickets.
American Express of course awards 5 points per dollar for your airline spending on the The Platinum Card® from American Express and reminds that if you pay with points for an eligible flight using the Business Platinum® Card from American Express you get a 35% rebate on points.
What’s new here is that instead of having to call — frankly the thing that kept me from using this service when helping folks with premium tickets — you can now use online chat to price and book (HT: Doctor of Credit)
I wish their fares were searchable online, but they probably aren’t allowed to make that available since they’re undercutting the prices which are available on the airline’s own website and through online travel agency sites.