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Old Nov 5, 08, 7:08 am   #1
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Programs: CO Gold; SPG Gold***; AvisFirst;
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Thumbs down plat changes; increase fees; int rates; shortened payment schedule

Guess I won't be using Amex abroad.
In today's statement:

Quote:
Transactions Made in Foreign Currencies
Effective January 11, 2009, the bolded clause in the Transactions Made in Foreign Currencies section of your Agreement is replaced with the
following:
"in each instance increased by 2.7%."
Quote:
Late Fees
We are changing the day upon which late fees may first be assessed as a result of late payment. If you have not paid the Amount Due on this
statement before the 20th day after the Closing Date of your next statement, you will be assessed a $35 late fee (Iowa $15). For billing
periods that begin on or after December 2, 2008, we are replacing the Late Fees section of your Agreement with the following:
"If any portion of the Amount Due on a billing statement is not credited to your Account before the 20th day after the next Closing Date, we
may assess a fee of $35 (Iowa $15). In addition, if any portion of that Amount Due is not credited by the following Closing Date, we may
assess an additional fee in that same billing period of the greater of $35 or 2.99% of any amount past due (Iowa $15). If any amount past
due is not credited to your Account by successive Closing Dates, we may assess a fee equal to the greater of $35 or 2.99% of any amount
past due (Iowa $15)."
Quote:
APR for Flexible Payment Features
For billing periods that begin on or after December 2, 2008, we are replacing the third sentence of subsection B of the Finance Charges section
of your Agreement with the following:
"Except as provided below, the APR is the Prime Rate plus 11.99%."
This is a variable rate. As of October 13, 2008, the Prime Rate plus 11.99% is an APR of 16.49% and a DPR of 0.0452%.
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Old Nov 5, 08, 7:16 am   #2
 
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ouch what was the fee before? im going abroad next year for school......was thinking i might just use my US amex...
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Old Nov 5, 08, 7:30 am   #3
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xolinlevh View Post
ouch what was the fee before? im going abroad next year for school......was thinking i might just use my US amex...
Was 1% - this is a US amex. The notice was for my Platinum card, but it's likely to be for all Amex cards.
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Old Nov 5, 08, 7:46 am   #4
 
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I only use my Amex abroad if I have to pay for a Centurion Hotel. Otherwise, I use my PenFed Visa. PenFed doesn't charge a fee for those transaction, so there's only the 1% fee charged by Visa. PenFed also gives you 1.25% cash back on ALL transactions, which means you end up getting .25% back on all foreign transactions.

PenFed also has great customer service and will actually give you a servicable credit line ($50K in my experience).
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Old Nov 5, 08, 9:04 am   #5
dw
 
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Wasn't the FOREX charge previously 2% for AMEX? This is an unfortunate change. I try to use my Capital One card (no FOREX charge) when I travel abroad, but unfortunately FHR hotel stays need to be paid for using an AMEX.
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Old Nov 5, 08, 1:37 pm   #6
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dw View Post
Wasn't the FOREX charge previously 2% for AMEX? This is an unfortunate change. I try to use my Capital One card (no FOREX charge) when I travel abroad, but unfortunately FHR hotel stays need to be paid for using an AMEX.
Mine was/is 2%

Maybe now is a good time to get the IDC
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Old Nov 5, 08, 8:27 pm   #7
 
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Does this mean we can't wait until the next closing date to pay our bills anymore?
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Old Nov 5, 08, 11:12 pm   #8
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lmz00 View Post
Does this mean we can't wait until the next closing date to pay our bills anymore?
That would appear to be the case.
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Old Nov 6, 08, 6:02 am   #9
 
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Boy, the foreign currency/conversion fee really is just gouging. Other than canceling the card, or not using it abroad, does the card holder have any other option if they want still to use the card? I imagine none of this is negotiable with AMEX?

And, they are doing this to their so called "best customers?" Plat card holders?

AMEX just layed off 7,000 employees. Now these additional charges. The company must be doing really well . . .
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Old Nov 6, 08, 6:11 am   #10
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lmz00 View Post
Does this mean we can't wait until the next closing date to pay our bills anymore?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve M View Post
That would appear to be the case.
Y'all sure? It's hard to tell but I think they're talking about paying after the current statement is 30 days closed, right?

Quote:
before the 20th day after the Closing Date of your next statement
But yeah, if y'all are right on this, it does suck. I'm never over, but there's days when I'm within a couple of days.
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Old Nov 6, 08, 6:38 am   #11
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Here's my read on this line:
Quote:
If any portion of the Amount Due on a billing statement is not credited to your Account before the 20th day after the next Closing Date, we may assess a fee
I have roughly 50 days from the closing date of any one statement to when I have to pay. That would be 20 days + the 30 days to get to the next closing date.

I don't think that is the part that is really changing.

The part that is changing seems to be that they are now going to charge a "fee" of $35 or 2.99% in addition to the interest due each month that you pay late, and there is a double hit of the fee at next close + 20 and 2nd next close dates, so if you pay your bill 65 days late you'll be destroyed with fees.
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Old Nov 6, 08, 2:05 pm   #12
 
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The FOREX change is redonkulous, I mean it was bad enough that there are some cards that only charge 1% and AMEX did 2% but to jack it to just about 3% is wrong.

FWIW the other cards that charge 2% its my understanding its 1%->Issuer and 1%->Visa/MC, which is why some cards only do 1% which is just paying the Visa/MC fee so with this change since Amex is the issuer and the processor if you will they are grabbing 2.7% vs 1% on Visa/MC. Thats over the top.
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Old Nov 7, 08, 3:44 am   #13
gum
 
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Location: Southern Bavaria, Germany
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Most VISA and Mastercards of Germany charge between 1,75 and 2%

commision for any use in other than the own currency !!

Will look on my next statement if they change the commission in Europe too, I Think it's now 2 % . Was increased some years ago.

As a great fan of Amex I will just look how this will develop.

One hint for all GERMAN cardholders which want to get foreign exchange commission free:
One bank, the Deutsche Postbank, offers a new kind of savings books. This savings book is a savings account not with the old traditional book ("Sparbuch") but in the new type of a Sparcard !
This Sparcard works anytime free of charge for wirthdrawal on "own" cash machines in the inland/domestic and TEN TIMES FOR WITHDRAWALS IN FOREIGN CURRENCY PER YEAR !!

Due to the fact that I don't want to get commissions for any recommendations, you can just search this by yourself in the internet offers of the Deutsche Postbank (postbank.de) or any German post office.

So this may be an alternative for any german based cardholder, especially to get smaller amounts of money for purchases.

Hope this helps.
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Old Nov 7, 08, 5:51 am   #14
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
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Stopped using AMEX abroad this year. My Credit Union charges no FOREX fees for ATM withdrawals and I use Capital One also with no FOREX fees for charges.

Cheers
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Old Nov 7, 08, 2:30 pm   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by X3Skier View Post
Stopped using AMEX abroad this year. My Credit Union charges no FOREX fees for ATM withdrawals and I use Capital One also with no FOREX fees for charges.

Cheers
My previous credit union -- this is why I dropped them -- won't even let me use my card outside the US unless I call them before each and every trip. Given that I am out of the US for work a bunch of times a year, I just couldn't handle that annoyance. Is that restriction unique to the credit union I had been using?
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