Home Credit Cards Amex Amex adds Walmart+ SoulCycle Benefits to the Platinum consumer card

Amex adds Walmart+ SoulCycle Benefits to the Platinum consumer card


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American Express has just announced that the Platinum Card® from American Express now comes with two new added benefits which it says will provide card members more value on their everyday and lifestyle purchases. The new benefits revolve around Walmart+ and SoulCycle and go into effect immediately.

The Platinum Card now rebates Walmart+ membership

Starting from today, 7 October 2021, holders of the Platinum Card® from American Express (review) who use their card to pay for a monthly Walmart+ membership will have the full membership fee refunded ($12.95/month, plus applicable taxes).

To make the most of this benefit, cardholders should follow the following steps:

  1. Go to Walmart.com/Plus/AmexPlatinum
  2. Sign up for a Walmart+ monthly membership or log into your existing Walmart+ membership account and enter your Platinum Card as the payment method. If you currently have an annual Walmart+ membership, you must switch to a Walmart+ monthly membership before your annual membership ends and add your eligible Card to receive the credit – your Walmart+ monthly membership will start when your annual membership ends. Annual Walmart+ memberships do not qualify for the statement credit.

Cardholders will receive a statement credit each month that covers the full cost of the Walmart+ monthly membership.

Full details of the new Walmart+ credit are already available in the benefits section of cardholder online accounts and any cardholders who already have a Walmart+ membership (especially those with an annual membership) should read the terms and conditions very carefully – annual Walmart+ memberships do not qualify for the statement credit.

Platinum Card SoulCycle At-Home Bike credit

One of the more recent benefits added to Platinum Card® from American Express is a $25/month credit towards a membership with Equinox (the high-end gym chain) and as of today, holders of the Platinum Card get another Equinox-related rebate in the form of a $300 rebate on up to 15 (yes, fifteen) individual SoulCycle At-Home Bike purchases per calendar year.

Amex says that a 12-month Equinox+ membership (costing $40/month + tax) is required to purchase a SoulCycle At-Home bike and, at first, I thought that the $300 SoulCycle bike credit was something cardholders could get in place of a full Equinox membership…but that doesn’t seem to be the case. It looks like the two rebates are separate as why else would the terms and conditions say that the credit is available on “on up to 15 individual SoulCycle At-Home Bike purchases per calendar year”?

You’ll find the new SoulCycle at-home bike credit benefit tied in together with the Equinox credit benefit on your card’s benefits page…

…and this is what the full t&c’s for this benefit say:

Basic Card Members and Additional Card Members on U.S. Consumer Platinum Card Accounts are eligible to receive a $300 statement credit when using their Card to make a single purchase of a SoulCycle At-Home Bike online at www.equinoxplus.com/amexbikebenefit. A 12-month Equinox+ membership ($40/month plus applicable tax) is required to purchase a SoulCycle At-Home bike. The SoulCycle At-Home Bike is available to purchase and ship in the 48 contiguous United States and Washington, D.C. Platinum Card Members can receive the $300 statement credit on up to 15 individual SoulCycle At-Home Bike purchases per calendar year. Purchases made in-store or through the Equinox mobile app are not eligible for the statement credit. Not valid on purchases of gift cards or purchases of the SoulCycle At-Home Bike made using a financing option at the time of purchase. Equinox+ memberships and accessories purchased separately from a SoulCycle At-Home Bike are not eligible for the statement credit. See the SoulCycle At-Home Bike website for shipping and return policies and restrictions. Limit of 1 statement credit per purchase of a SoulCycle At-Home Bike. Statement credits typically post to the account within 48 hours but may take up to 6-8 weeks after an eligible purchase is charged to your Card Account. To be eligible for this benefit, the Card Account must not be canceled and not past due at the time of statement credit fulfillment. If American Express, in its sole discretion, determines that you have engaged in or intend to engage in any manner of abuse, misuse, or gaming in connection with this benefit, American Express will not have an obligation to provide statement credits and may reverse any statement credits provided to you. If a charge for an eligible purchase is included in a Pay Over Time balance on your Card Account, the statement credit associated with that charge may not be applied to that Pay Over Time balance. Instead, the statement credit may be applied to your Pay In Full balance.

Note: The terms suggest that this benefit is not available in Alaska or Hawaii.

Thoughts

Considering Amex has long promoted the Platinum Card as a premium lifestyle card it’s a little strange to see it joining forces with a company like Walmart which, in most people’s minds, has no connection with anything that is premium.

Still, I have to confess that I can see a lot more people being able to get good use out of the Walmart+ credit than currently manage to make good use of a number of the other credits that the Platinum Card offers so I’m not about to be disparaging about it. Far from it. As soon as I’ve finished typing this I’m heading over to Walmart/Amex webpage and signing myself up!

The SoulCycle credit puzzles me.

On the one hand, I guess it’s nice to be able to get $300 off a SoulCycle at-home bike if you need one but, on the other hand, I can’t help but wonder how many people actually need a $2,500 bike that doesn’t actually go anywhere?

Moreover, what’s the point of offering the credit on up to 15 individual bikes in a year? Is Amex quietly trying to bankroll a boom in boutique SoulCycle gyms?!

Amusingly, the two new credits added to Platinum Card today do a great job of illustrating what some of us have been saying and thinking for a while – Amex doesn’t really seem to know what the Platinum Card’s purpose is or to whom it’s targeted.

In one announcement Amex tells us that the Platinum Card will offer a statement credit at a store that’s synonymous with bargain-basement shopping as well as telling us that it now offers a credit for an exercise bike that costs $2,500 + taxes and requires an Equinox+ monthly subscription. Who comes up with this stuff?

Ok, sure. I probably shouldn’t be complaining about an announcement that tells us that cardholders now have two more ways to claw back some of the ever-increasing annual fee, but it’s hard not to be frustrated by the fact that the Platinum Card has now turned into a real pain-in-the-you-know-where to maintain.

It was bad enough when cardholders just had to figure out how to use the airline fee credit if they wanted to make sure they got something in return for the annual fee – now you need an excel spreadsheet just to keep track of what credits are available and a spare hour every evening to work out how to use them!

Bottom line

American Express has today announced that it’s adding a new Walmart+ credit and new SoulCycle credit to the list of benefits of the consumer Platinum Card.

Overall, I guess that is nice to have a couple more credits to help cardholders get some value out of the Platinum Card but does anyone else long for the days when the Platinum Card was considerably more basic?

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