Which Ultra Premium Cards are Keepers? Version 2.0

42

Things have been changing in the ultra-premium card space!  The new Prestige card was just released with it’s new 5X categories and $495 annual fee.  And Amex is expected to unveil more details about their Business Platinum card any second now.  What exactly are we getting now that the annual fee is $145 more than before (it jumped from $450 to $595)?  And, back in October, the Amex Gold and Amex Business Gold cards too got new features and new fees.

So, it was time for me to update the Ultra-Premium Credit Card Value Worksheet.  I updated the sheet with new cards (Amex Gold and Amex Business Gold), new fees and features for the Prestige and Business Platinum cards, and new personal estimates.  My big surprise was that my Prestige card didn’t fare as well as I had expected.

Introducing version 2.0…

a close-up of a credit card

 

Ultra-premium cards typically offer terrific benefits in exchange for terrifically high fees (typically around $450 per year). Often the value of the benefits far outweigh those fees, but not always.

Most ultra-premium cards are worth signing up for because they have good to excellent signup bonuses that are worth more than the first year’s annual fee. That’s not the question. The question is whether the cards are worth keeping past the first year. When the second year annual fee comes due, do you keep or cancel?

Do the card’s benefits outweigh the annual fee? Each person should conservatively estimate the value of each benefit to them to figure this out. In most cases, I recommend trying to estimate how much you’d be willing to pay for this feature if it was available stand-alone as a subscription. For example, if a card offers free checked bags, you could save hundreds of dollars if you use that benefit often enough. But how much would you pay for an annual subscription to get free checked bags? That answer should be substantially lower than the amount that you think you’ll save. Otherwise, why prepay for that benefit?

To help you come up with your own estimates, I created a Google Doc spreadsheet with tabs for each of the common ultra-premium cards. Click here to open the spreadsheet.

a screenshot of a credit card value worksheet

The spreadsheet currently includes general estimates of how much each major card benefit may be worth, along with my own personal valuation to give you an idea of how I think about each.

To use the spreadsheet, create a copy of it and then overwrite the values in columns D and E on each tab with your own value estimates.

a screenshot of a computer
This tab shows how I estimated the value of my CNB Crystal Visa infinite card (read all about it here)

Tips for using the spreadsheet effectively

  • Be conservative with your estimates. Enter values that you would pay for a subscription for that benefit rather than the amount you expect to save.
  • Once you identify cards that you know that you’ll keep year after year (like my CNB card pictured above), make sure to consider that when evaluating overlapping benefits on other cards. For example, I get 12 Gogo internet passes from my CNB card each year (really 48 passes since I get 12 from each CNB card), so I don’t value the same benefit on the Altitude Reserve card.
  • You’re allowed to make irrational decisions if you can afford it. My personal valuation of the Altitude Reserve card comes out higher than the card’s annual fee. But, even if it came out lower, I would consider keeping the card simply because I like it. I love knowing that I get good value from mobile wallet purchases (Samsung Pay, Apple Pay). And I love getting 1.5 cents value per point through Real Time Mobile Rewards (and no, I do not earn an affiliate commission for this card).

The Card Roundup

At the time of this writing, the spreadsheet includes the following cards…

Bank Cards

Card Name w Details & Review (no offer)
FM Mini Review: This card is absolutely loaded with high end perks. Depending upon your situation, those perks may be worth the annual fee or much more. Click here for our complete card review

$695 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 5X flights and prepaid hotels at AmexTravel.com ✦ 1.5X points per dollar on eligible purchases of $5000 or more (on up to $2 million of those purchases per year) ✦ 1.5x on US construction/hardware stores, US electronic goods, and US shipping ✦ 1X elsewhere ✦ Terms apply.
Base: 1X (1.55%)
Travel: 5X (7.75%)
Other: 1.5X (2.33%)
Card Info: Amex Pay Over Time Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: Select one qualifying airline and receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year for qualifying charges ✦ Up to $400 a year in statement credits for Dell purchases ($200, twice-yearly) ✦ Up to $120 in wireless services credits per year ($10 per month) ✦ $100 Global Entry fee reimbursement.✦ Priority Pass membership (Lounges only) with 2 guests and other airport lounge benefits (Centurion and Delta) ✦ Rental car elite status ✦ Marriott Gold status ✦ Hilton Gold status. ✦ $189 CLEAR fee reimbursement annually ✦ 35% Airline Bonus: Get 35% points back after you Pay With Points for flights with your selected airline (or premium cabin with any airline). Enrollment required for select benefits
FM Mini Review: This card is absolutely loaded with high end perks. Depending upon your situation, those perks may be worth the annual fee or much more.

$695 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 5X points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel ✦ 5X points for prepaid hotels booked through American Express Travel
Base: 1X (1.55%)
Travel: 5X (7.75%)
Card Info: Amex Pay Over Time Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: Up to $200 a year in statement credits for incidental fees at one qualifying airline per calendar year ✦ $200 prepaid hotel credit per calendar year valid on Fine Hotels & Resorts and The Hotel Collection bookings ✦ Up to $20 per month rebate for Disney+, a Disney Bundle, ESPN+, Hulu, The New York Times, Peacock, SiriusXM, and/or The Wall Street Journal ✦ $15 monthly Uber or Uber Eats credit ($20 in December, use it or lose it each month) ✦ $189 CLEAR fee reimbursement per calendar year ✦ $12.95 (+tax) monthly credit for Walmart+ monthly membership subscription credit when you pay with Platinum card ✦ Up to $100 in credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue (up to $50 in credits semi-annually) ✦ Priority Pass membership (Lounges only) with 2 guests and other airport lounge benefits (Centurion and Delta) ✦ Rental car elite status ✦ Marriott Gold status ✦ Hilton Honors Gold status Enrollement required for some benefits. Terms Apply. (Rates & Fees)
FM Mini Review: This card offers an awesome return on US supermarket and worldwide dining spend, putting it at or near the top-of-class in both categories. Dining credits and Uber / Uber Eats credits go a long way towards reducing the sting of this card's annual fee.

$250 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 3X points for flights booked with airlines or on amextravel.com ✦ 4x points at US Supermarkets (up to $25K in purchases, then 1x) ✦ 4x at restaurants worldwide ✦ 1X points on other purchases. Terms apply. (Rates & Fees)
Base: 1X (1.55%)
Travel: 3X (4.65%)
Dine: 4X (6.2%)
Grocery: 4X (6.2%)
Card Info: Amex Pay Over Time Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: Up to $10 in statement credits monthly with participating dining partners (Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar, Shake Shack, Seamless/Grubhub, Cheesecake Factory) ✦ $10 monthly Uber or Uber Eats credit (use it or lose it each month) ✦ $100 hotel credit on qualifying charges on stays of 2 nights or longer, plus a room upgrade upon arrival, if available with The Hotel Collection at americanexpress.com/hc ✦ Enrollment required for select benefits.
FM Mini Review: This card may be a keeper for those who use the monthly credits, but keep only if you also make good use of one or two 4X categories. Click here for our complete card review

$375 Annual Fee
Earning rate: Earn 4X in combined eligible purchases in the two categories where your business spends the most each billing cycle (capped at $150K spend per calendar year, then 1x): Electronic goods retailers or software and cloud system providers in the U.S. ✦U.S. purchases at restaurants ✦Monthly wireless telephone service charges made directly from a wireless telephone service provider in the U.S. ✦ U.S. purchases for advertising in select media ✦ U.S. purchases at gas stations ✦ Transit purchases including trains, taxicabs, rideshare services, ferries, tolls, parking, buses, and subways. ✦ 3x on eligible purchases through AmexTravel.com ✦ 1x on all other purchases. Terms apply.
Base: 1X (1.55%)
Travel: 3X (4.65%)
Dine: 4X (6.2%)
Gas: 4X (6.2%)
Shop: 4X (6.2%)
Phone: 4X (6.2%)
Biz: 4X (6.2%)
Card Info: Amex Pay Over Time Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: Earn up to $20 in statement credits each month for eligible purchases at FedEx, Grubhub, and office supply stores. Enrollment required. ✦ Monthly Walmart+ Membership credit when you use the card to pay for monthly Walmart+ membership ✦ Terms Apply. (Rates & Fees)
FM Mini Review: Excellent all-around card for frequent traveler. Best when paired with no-fee Chase Freedom Flex, no-fee Freedom Unlimited & no-fee Chase Ink Cash Click here for our complete card review

$550 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 10X hotels & car rentals booked through Chase Travel℠ ✦ 10X Chase Dining ✦ 5X flights booked through Chase ✦ 3X Travel and Dining ✦ 10X Lyft (through March 2025)
Base: 1X (1.5%)
Travel: 10X (15%)
Dine: 3X (4.5%)
Other: 10X (15%)
Card Info: Visa Infinite issued by Chase. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: $300 Annual Travel Credit ✦ Points worth 1.5 cents each towards travel when booked through the Chase Travel(SM) Portal✦ Transfer points to airline & hotel partners ✦ Primary auto rental collision damage waiver ✦ Priority Pass Select lounge access ✦ Up to $100 Global Entry fee credit ✦ $5 monthly DoorDash in-app credit through December 2024 ✦ Free DashPass through 2025 ✦ Earn 10X on Lyft spend✦ Free Lyft Pink All Access Memberhsip through December 2024 ✦ $15 monthly Instacart credit ✦ 12 months free Instacart+
FM Mini Review: The Prestige card's best in class 5X rewards for dining, airfare, and travel agencies is hard to beat. Sadly, this travel card doesn't provide any travel protections.

$495 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 5X airfare, dining, and travel agencies ✦ 3X hotels and cruise line ✦ 1X everywhere else
Base: 1X (1.45%)
Travel: 5X (7.25%)
Dine: 5X (7.25%)
Card Info: Mastercard World Elite issued by Citi. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: $250 travel rebate per calendar year ✦ Free lounge access: Citi Properietary Lounges; and Priority Pass Select with free guests ✦ $100 Global Entry application fee credit ✦ 4th night free hotel benefit
FM Mini Review: This card's value is hobbled by an inferior Priority Pass membership (as of 1/1/20).

$400 Annual Fee
Earning rate: ✦ 3X airline, hotel, taxi, limousine, rental car, train bus, restaurant, fast food and takeout food and dining purchases ✦ 1X everywhere else
Base: 1X (1.11%)
Travel: 3X (3.33%)
Dine: 3X (3.33%)
Card Info: Visa Infinite issued by CNB. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Big spend bonus: Get reimbursed up to $550 for airline lounge club membership after $50K calendar year spend.
Noteworthy perks: Up to $350 a year in statement credits for airline incidental fees (as of 1/1/20) ✦ 12 Gogo In-Flight Wifi passes per card ✦ $100 Global Entry fee reimbursement ✦ Priority Pass lounge membership for 2 cardholders (guests are not free as of 1/1/20)
FM Mini Review: With points worth 1.5 cents each towards travel, this card offers an excellent signup bonus. For ongoing use, this card is a winner for those who spend a lot on mobile payments (at 3X, rewards are worth 4.5%) Click here for our complete card review

$400 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 5x prepaid hotel & car rental through Altitude Rewards Center ✦ 3X travel and mobile wallet payments
Base: 1X (1.5%)
Travel: 3X (4.5%)
Shop: 3X (4.5%)
Other: 5X (7.5%)
Card Info: Visa Infinite issued by USB. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: $325 in travel/dining credits per membership year ✦ Points worth 1.5 cents each towards travel ✦ Real Time Mobile Rewards (redeem points at full value at time of purchase) ✦ Priority Pass Select airport lounge access (8 per year) ✦ Primary car rental coverage ✦ No foreign transaction fees ✦ Free authorized user cards

Airline Cards

Card Name w Details & Review (no offer)
FM Mini Review: Excellent choice for frequent Delta flyers who can make use of SkyClub access and companion certificate. Also a good choice for big spenders seeking Delta elite status.

$650 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 3X Delta ✦ 1.5X on eligible transit, U.S. shipping & office supply store purchases
Base: 1X (1.3%)
Office: 1.5X (1.95%)
Brand: 3X (3.9%)
Other: 1.5X (1.95%)
Card Info: Amex Credit Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Big spend bonus: Earn 1 Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MQD) per $10 spent
Noteworthy perks: 15% off when using miles to book an award flight (Delta metal only) ✦ Domestic, Caribbean, or Central American economy or first class companion certificate (subject to taxes & fees) after card renewal ✦ SkyClub access (starting 2/1/25, 15 visits per year (after 15 visits have been used, additional visits can be purchased for $50 each) or earn unlimited visits after spending $75K/calendar year on the card ✦ 4 Delta SkyClub one-time guest passes ✦ Centurion Lounge access when you book your Delta flight with your Reserve card ✦ Earn up to $250 as a statement credit each year after booking prepaid hotels or vacation rentals with your Card through Delta Stays on delta.com/stays ✦ Up to $20 per month in statement credits on eligible purchases with U.S. Resy restaurants ✦ Up to $10 per month in statement credits for purchases with select rideshare service providers [enrollment required] ✦ Complimentary upgrades ✦ $100 Global Entry fee credit every 4 years (or 4.5 years for TSA Precheck) ✦ Priority boarding ✦ First checked bag free on Delta flights. ✦ Hertz President's Circle Status ✦ Terms and limitations apply. (Rates & Fees)
FM Mini Review: Excellent choice for frequent Delta flyers who can make use of SkyClub access and companion certificate. Also a good choice for big spenders seeking Delta elite status.

$650 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 3X Delta
Base: 1X (1.3%)
Brand: 3X (3.9%)
Card Info: Amex Credit Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Big spend bonus: Earn 1 Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MQD) per $10 spent
Noteworthy perks: 15% off when using miles to book an award flight (Delta metal only) ✦ Annual $2,500 MQD Headstart ✦ Domestic, Caribbean, or Central American economy or first class companion certificate (subject to taxes & fees) after card renewal ✦ SkyClub access (starting 2/1/25, 15 visits per year (after 15 visits have been used, additional visits can be purchased for $50 each) or to earn an unlimited number of visits each year starting on 2/1/25, spend $75K or more on eligible purchases between 1/1/24 and 12/31/24, and each calendar year thereafter. ✦ 4 Delta SkyClub one-time guest passes ✦ Centurion Lounge access when flying Delta ✦ Earn up to $200 as a statement credit each year after booking prepaid hotels or vacation rentals with your Card through Delta Stays on delta.com/stays ✦ Up to $20 per month in statement credits on eligible purchases with U.S. Resy restaurants [enrollment required] ✦ Up to $10 per month in statement credits for purchases with select rideshare service providers [enrollment required] ✦ Complimentary upgrades ✦ One statement credit every 4 years for the $100 Global Entry application fee or one statement credit every 4.5 years for the $85 TSA Precheck application fee ✦ Priority boarding ✦ First checked bag free on Delta flights. ✦ Hertz President's Circle Status ✦ Terms and limitations apply. (Rates & Fees)
FM Mini Review: Good choice for those who need Admirals Club® access and those who value the Loyalty Points boosts at 50K and 90K Loyalty Points earned. Plus, it offers the usual collection of perks for flying AA (free checked bag, priority boarding, etc.) and some handy credits for Avis or Budget rentals and GrubHub.

$595 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 4X AA ✦ 10X hotels booked through AA.com/Hotels ✦ 10X car rentals booked through AA.com/Cars ✦ 1X everywhere else
Base: 1X (1.3%)
Brand: 4X (5.2%)
Other: 10X (13%)
Card Info: Mastercard World Elite issued by Citi. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Noteworthy perks: ✦ First Checked Bag Free ✦ Admirals Club® access for both primary and authorized users ✦ Up to $120 in statement credits per calendar year for car rentals booked directly with Avis or Budget ✦ Up to $120 per 12 monthly billing cycles for GrubHub purchases (up to $10 per monthly billing cycle) ✦ $10 monthly Lyft credit after you take 3 Lyft rides that calendar month ✦ 10K bonus Loyaty Points after earning 50K Loyalty points through all channels and another 10K bonus Loyalty Points after earning 90K Loyalty Points through all channels ✦ 25% savings on eligible in-flight purchases on American Airlines flights ✦ Up to $100 Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit

Hotel Cards

Card Name w Details & Review (no offer)
FM Mini Review: This card is loaded with valuable perks that are more than worth the card's annual fee if you stay in Hilton resorts at least twice per year.

$550 Annual Fee
Earning rate: ✦ 14X Hilton spend ✦ 7X US restaurants, flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com, select car rental companies ✦ 3X on all other eligible purchases ✦ Terms & Limitations Apply.
Base: 3X (1.44%)
Travel: 7X (3.36%)
Dine: 7X (3.36%)
Brand: 14X (6.72%)
Card Info: Amex Credit Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Big spend bonus: Additional free night awards after $30K and $60K spend in calendar year
Noteworthy perks: ✦Annual Free Night Reward every year upon renewal ✦ Free Diamond Status ✦ Up to $400 Hilton Resort Credit per membership year ($200 semi-annually) ✦ $200 Flight Credit ($50 per quarter for purchases directly with airlines or via Amex Travel) ✦ $100 on-property credit w/ Aspire Card package ✦ Terms Apply. See Rates & Fees
FM Mini Review: Decent ultra-premium option for Marriott fans, especially those aiming for lifetime status tiers

$650 Annual Fee
Earning rate: 3X airfare -on flights booked directly with airlines; 3X restaurants worldwide, 6X Marriott; 2X on all other eligible purchases
Base: 2X (1.6%)
Travel: 3X (2.4%)
Dine: 3X (2.4%)
Brand: 6X (4.8%)
Card Info: Amex Credit Card issued by Amex. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Big spend bonus: Annual Choice Award with $60K calendar year spend
Noteworthy perks: ✦ 85K Free Night Award each year upon renewal ✦ $300 dining credit per membership year ($25/mo) ✦ Platinum Elite status ✦ 25 elite nights credit ✦ Priority Pass membership (Lounges only) with 2 guests ✦ Global Entry fee credit ✦ Free premium internet at Marriott properties Note: Enrollment required for some benefits.
FM Mini Review: While the card is pricey, the annual free night, plus $300 in ariline fee credits, plus other perks make this card a keeper.

$450 Annual Fee
Earning rate: ✦ 6X Ritz & Marriott.✦ 3X airline tickets purchased directly with the airline, at car rental agencies and at restaurants ✦ 2X everywhere else
Base: 2X (1.6%)
Travel: 3X (2.4%)
Dine: 3X (2.4%)
Brand: 6X (4.8%)
Card Info: Visa Infinite issued by Chase. This card has no foreign currency conversion fees.
Big spend bonus: $75K spend per calendar year for Platinum elite status
Noteworthy perks: ✦ Annual 85K hotel certificate upon renewal ✦ 3 club level upgrades. $100 hotel credit for each 2 night or longer stay ✦ Priority Pass Select with unlimited guests ✦ $300 annual credit for airline incidentals ✦ Automatic Gold Status

My Personal Keepers

Here’s where I landed after analyzing each card:

a screenshot of a card

To understand the above results, keep in mind the following dependencies:

  • The CNB card is an obvious no-brainer since it offers up to $1,000 per year in airline fee credits for $400. As a result, other cards that offering duplicative benefits were not valued as highly. For example, I don’t value getting Priority Pass from any of the other cards since this one gives me Priority Pass with unlimited guests.
  • After analyzing both the consumer and business versions of the Amex Platinum card, I realized that the business card was closer to a keeper, so I zeroed out the duplicate benefits on the consumer spreadsheet. For example, there’s no advantage to having two cards that offer Emergency medical evacuation.
  • Similarly, the values I assigned to the Delta Reserve business card assume one already has the consumer card, so some of the card’s benefits were zeroed out.

Also keep in mind:

  • I live near a Delta hub (Detroit) and like to use Delta credit cards to manufacture high level elite status for both me and my wife.
  • I rarely fly AA or United
  • I’ve gotten very good at getting full value from credit card travel credits, so my net cost on many of these cards is far less than it appears.

Based on the analysis, I should do the following:

  • Cancel my Schwab Platinum card when the next annual fee comes due
  • My wife should cancel her Business Platinum card when she gets charged the new $595 annual fee.
  • I should consider getting the Hilton Aspire if I can ever free up credit card slots in my Amex portfolio.
  • I should re-evaluate the Prestige card when the next annual fee comes due.

The big surprise for me was that the Prestige card didn’t do better in my estimates. My valuation barely edged out the card’s new $495 annual fee.  If I really get charged that much next October, I might drop the card then.  We’ll see.

Want to learn more about miles and points? Subscribe to email updates or check out our podcast on your favorite podcast platform.
Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

42 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
MSer

Where can I get the SPG Luxury Card?

[…] I last published version 2.0 of the ultra-premium card analysis spreadsheet in February, but things have already changed enough to warrant an update.  One critical change was Citi dropping their purchase and travel protections.  If you thought the Citi Prestige was worth keeping before, you might want to take a second look.  Personally, I’ve retreated back to my Sapphire Reserve card for most travel purchases. […]

Greg

Spreadsheet is missing earning rates for Hilton Aspire! 14x, 7x, 3x! This is a big changer in the math!

Jared

Can you remind me the rules on Thank You Points? If you cancel the prestige, you lose the points earned on that card, right? Even if you have other Thank You Point earning cards? If that’s the case, and you plan on cancelling, what do you think is the best/easiest way to liquidate the value of your unused Thank You Points? FWIW, I have like 30,000 earned from Prestige right now.

CaveDweller

Jared
I’m sure Greg will answer this BUT I combined them and got Rid of them (Singapore AL) .So there would be no playing Games by Citi.. I always error on the side of caution I Flip not Spend .
CHEERs

CaveDweller

It took 10hrs to transfer my Thank You points to Singapore Airlines now I can cancel my Citi Primer card and Keep the Prestige card .
Game On !!
CHEERs

WR2

Now that my Prestige 4NF and $350 AF are going away, that’s an easy cancel. I also wouldn’t consider the Amex Golds as ultra premium, based on your own criteria of $450+ AF, but still not a keeper. No Amex plat is a keeper because you’re always better off recycling the Ameriprise. That leaves for me the only keeper: Hilton Aspire. $250 resort credit + $250 airline credit + free night + Diamond status is a clear win, and allows you to stop wasting time and money chasing status.

MoMo

UBS Visa Infinite for all the perks: Mandarin Oriental, the Peninsula, Park Hyatt, Waldorf Astoria, Conrad, St Regis, W Hotels. VIP Treatment, free breakfast, upgrades, credits, etc without bothering with gaining elite status with individual hotel chains.

William

That benefit sounds very similar to the Amex FHR one, or Visa Infinite hotels, though I think the latter has fewer properties. It’s probably nice on the high end, but not super useful when you aren’t at a place with luxury hotels. The airport lounge membership thing is kind of interesting, but not much better than Skyguide Executive Club. If you really like that hotel benefit, maybe it’s better than the Crystal Infinite Visa, but otherwise not all that interesting.

JustSaying

I’m taking a trip to France and Italy this spring and I will save $991.10 with the Citi 4th night free. I expect to save that much next year also as I plan to book some stays before the phase out this fall.
The Ritz Carlton card has to be the biggest sham in the history of cards……….you won’t be able to use the Club certificates or $100 credit UNLESS you are bilking your company at a standard rate way above any rate you find online………
The AMEX Platinum actually does rebate you without calling or jumping thru your ass…………
But I spend a LOT of money at restaurants and that makes the Citi card the hands down winner AND I spend a LOT of money on wine and believe it or not there are quite a few Napa wineries that code as entertainment! Until later this year those dollars are also 2X……….and sporting event tickets 2X…………I’ll be happy to revisit the argument this fall but right now Citi is the beast in the wallet!

Yuri

Prestige is a keeper only if my AF stays at $350, I’m still CitiGold.
Amex Platinum (Personal/Business)both going down the toilet
Altitude Reserve, CSR, Hilton Aspire and CNB Crystal are keepers.
I don’t have any other premium cards so far.

Debit

Yuri, I would love to see the numbers you use to justify how all those cards are keepers. Only one among them is a keeper. Rest aren’t. So would to see your justification.

Tung

Just want to point out that your valuations make sense separately (i.e. if you only had one premium card), but the marginal value of these cards gets lower the more cards you have. For example, Delta Reserve gives you skyclub access but so does Amex Platinum. Similarly, Prestige’s 5x on dining is great, but if the alternative is 3x from Sapphire Reserve, then the additional benefit is so much smaller.

Paul

Deleted – wrong message

Paul

Don’t forget the 12 Gogo passes per year on the CNB is per AU so you actually get 48 per year!

Vince

Great information! I’m new in the game of collecting travel awards with credit cards, so I read this comprehensive review with great interest. It’s all a little overwhelming, but seeing all this information in one place makes it a bit easier to do the comparisons I’ve been looking for. Thank you.

Adam

You forgot to put best in class travel insurance on the Ritz page. The Ritz is a keeper for me so that zero’s out the value of that on the CSR. Although if the CSR was also a keeper I would put the spend on that card for 3x UR vs 2x Marriot obviously.

Adam

To add to this as well, all premium Amex cards come with the same medical and roadside assistance benefits. Since SPG Lux and Hilton Aspire both have out sized value, that diminishes the personal and biz platinum’s in everything except the credits and Centurion/SkyClub/Escape lounge access for me.

Dr. McFrugal

Hi Greg. I am Citi Gold and have had the Prestige card for 3+ years. Do you know if Citi Gold clients are grandfathered into the $350 annual fee? If so, I think that it’s definitely a keeper for me.

CaveDweller

Dr.McFrugal
I looked @ ur hoard of points on another post worth $28,000 unreal !!!
CHEERs

Blue

If I keep only one it’s the CSR–3x travel, best in class travel insurance, and 1.5x on portal buys (MUCH better now that Expedia is the vendor; even got a national park lodge!) for a total of $150/year is killer value.

Amex Gold for restaurants/groceries and my old Biz Gold Rewards for gas and that’s most of my cats covered.