American Express Premier Gold Card Re-imbursed $100 Flight-change Fees


We used our United Airlines to redeem a coach-class Eva Airline ticket for Isa to fly back to Taiwan last week.  I tried to convince her to redeem a business-class ticket because miles will depreciate over time.  She opted for coach-class to save our future expenses, I understand though I do not agree...

We had a short getaway vacation in southern California 5 days prior her flight to Taiwan.  On the last day, Isa fell down hard while running to catch a boat, and had her elbows, knees, wrists all scraped, not to mention, bleeding.

I made my best effort to bandage her wounds.  Her smile would fool you and me. She was actually in pain, she later told me. I kept her preoccupied with my jokes and took her this photo to distract her from thinking about her wounds.

Because of this sensitive-skin injury, she let me redeem an Eva Airlines Royal Laurel Business Class (my review) SFO-Taipei.  There is a ticket change fee of $100.  It is still well-worth it, because a Eva Airlines business class ticket is priced closed to $3,000 five days before departure date.  The $100 fee was charged to Isa's American Express Premier Gold card, and she was immediately reimbursed!

I was not sure whether AMEX $100 airline incidence credit would apply to flight-change fee.  This is a new key benefit,

NEW $100 Airline Fee Credit
Receive up to $100 per calendar year in statement credits when incidental fees, such as checked bags, in-flight refreshments, flight-change fees, airport lounge day-passes and more, are charged by the airline you selected to your Premier Rewards Gold Card Account.*

It should also mean on Jan 1, 2016, she would be eligible for a new $100 airline fee credit.  Note: this benefit only applies to fee charged by US airline companies (United Airlines, American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, ...etc) , not Eva Airlines.  However, since we redeemed the Eva Airline ticket via United Airlines website, because UA and Eva are airline partners, the fee is eligible to be reimbursed.

Is American Express Premier Gold card must-have card?

The card may not be a must-have for long-term, but I would say it is at least a must-try credit card.  (Current limit is once per card applicant)
  • Its points-earning power is better than Chase Sapphire Preferred (CSP) and comparable to that of Citi ThankYou Premier Card. 
    • 3X points for flight, 2X at US gas stations and US supermarkets, 2X at US restaurants, versus 2X points for flight, hotel and restaurants, 2X at US gas stations of CSP.
  • First-year annual fee $195 is waived.
  • The new $100 airline fee credit expands coverage. (CSP does not have this benefit)
    • Make sure you register your AMEX card for qualifying airline incidence fee.
  • 50,000 AMEX membership points after only $1,000 spend in the first 3 months.  CSP offers only 45,000 Ultimate Reward points after $3,000 spend
 Note: the bonus point is generally only eligible for those applicants who have never had this card in the past, unless you are referred.

Should I keep this card after the first year and pay the $195 annual fee?

AMEX Premier Gold comes with a variety of discount throughout the year.  If you shop or go to vacation frequently, those special saving offers can easily save more than $195 per year.  Otherwise, I would suggest apply or downgrade after 1 year for no-fee AMEX EveryDay card to keep the AMEX membership points non-expiring.

What's next?

If I can earn 400,000 airline miles per year, Isa should feel comfortable to redeem business class ticket.  I like to look into a sustainable approach ...

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