US Centurion qualification jumps to $250,000 on May 1, 2005

Old Apr 18, 05, 6:20 pm
  #1  
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US Centurion qualification jumps to $250,000 on May 1, 2005

As pointed out in some other threads, the US Centurion card will have a new qualification spending/payment minimum of $250K. When I talked to a Centurion rep just earlier today, she said that this was a decision made by management to maintain the "exclusivity" of the card. Fine. Whatever. Does that mean they'll add more hotel/airline priveleges instead of take them away???

Here's what gets my goat - I, like many other non-Centurion holders, have been charging our travel, merchandise and every day purchases to the card and paying them off all year in efforts to reach and/or surpass the $150K spending level. So, as of May 1, it's like a light switch. Either you've made it by then, or you haven't. No grace period for people who have been giving AMEX their business. If you have $140K on May 1, too bad. Work harder next time.

They seem to think that people who charge/spend $250K must net at least $300K+ in annual income, because she even told me it's for "personal purchases". I asked her what about people who use it to charge business travel - she said they don't qualify. How would they know??! I think she thought I was referring to people using a corporate card issued by an employer. But my point is, people with sub $100K incomes, given the right circumstances, can still easily rack up the charges (and pay them off). I guess it depends how bad you want it.

I don't anymore. I've had a series of large purchases over the past year that would have qualified me anyway, but I'll likely never charge $250K to AMEX, no matter what my income is. I may very well cut up my Plat and send it to Ken's office with a summary of my 15 years of purchases, as well as a copy of statements showing me transferring/redeeming 500,000 in MR points.
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Old Apr 18, 05, 7:07 pm
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I'll second that! Why? Because what could happen now will be all the $100-$150K spenders winding up their accounts, leaving the X amount of the $250K spenders and then a massive gap down to the $50K a year spenders. I can't really see this working in favour of Amex to be honest, but we'll see what happens.

What gets to me is this, Iím currently being dealt with retentions at the moment 'cos Iíve swiped £87K ($165K) this year on my card and they basically told me "Eh sorry Mr 'jonnye' but Iím afraid we're not sending out (Centurion) invitations until Q3 2005", I explained to them that their missing the point, I don't want a 'Black Amex Card' I want the Centurion product portfolio, Travel/Insurance/Service etc.

When will Amex realise they are losing customers like me who are willing to patch as many expenses as possible through them in return for some quality service, and they're so hung up on the 'Black Card Syndrome' they can't see past the Loyal Customer who's more interested in Service than the colour of Plastic.

Wake up Amex!

Last edited by jonnye; Apr 18, 05 at 7:09 pm
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Old Apr 18, 05, 7:25 pm
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Thumbs up

I for one LOVE IT!!



I feel bad for the people that can't get it, but I am hopeful this will let AMEX give out better perks for the people that do have it.
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Old Apr 18, 05, 8:23 pm
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This is a bit ridiculous. We got AMEX plat cards back in the fall, when we called to apply we told the CSR that the whole reason we were even going to amex was so we could get centurion. I asked what do I have to do to make it happen, among the standard stuff I was told to spend $150k by the same time next year. Now that's a verbal contact (kind of) and while I'm sure I have no legal standing (nor would I abuse the legal system that way), it's bad business. I too will cut up our platinum cards (after transferring all MR points) if they will not help. This is just underhanded.
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Old Apr 18, 05, 8:30 pm
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Originally Posted by PHL
Here's what gets my goat - I, like many other non-Centurion holders, have been charging our travel, merchandise and every day purchases to the card and paying them off all year in efforts to reach and/or surpass the $150K spending level. So, as of May 1, it's like a light switch. Either you've made it by then, or you haven't. No grace period for people who have been giving AMEX their business. If you have $140K on May 1, too bad. Work harder next time.
You're really missing the point. Their target group is people who don't need to re-think how they are charging expenses to hit that 150k (or 250 for that matter). While I do understand your frustration after having aimed at the 150, the actual target group, as indicated by the soon to be increased spending minimum, is people who spend 250k regardless of whether or not they are trying to get a Black Amex.
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Old Apr 18, 05, 10:17 pm
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For the life of me I can't figure out how the Centurion Card is worth $2500/year. Unless you travel a lot, it's truly quite pointless.

Elite status with CO, DL, & US really isn't that valuable. You could do a Gold or Platinum challenge with AA (I think DL now, too) and could obtain status for well under $1000. I live in Dallas, so their preferred carriers for elite status (and airline lounges) mean nothing to me. Total Value for this Perk: $0

Hotel upgrades? Cruise upgrades? VIP treatment at airports? Platinum status with SPG? Car rental upgrades/status? Centurion Travel Services' greatest competitor in this premium sector is Virtuoso, and their service eclipses anything CTS can do. An educated (and sophisticated) consumer would realize CTS does not have a monopoly in this travel sector and would seek out competitors. When was the last time CTS sped anyone through Customs & Immigration or coordinated a Town Car to meet you at the bottom of a jet bridge of a commercial flight? Total Value for this Perk: $0

My father is a charter member so he only pays $1000/year (otherwise he'd cancel it) and each year I look at the Centurion Kit and am shocked that people think it's worth 1)dying trying to get $150K in spending & 2)paying $2500/year for a piece of plastic that supposedly has "exclusive" perks that can be obtained by almost anyone for not a lot of [extra] money.

As Businessman so aptly stated, it's targeted for those who, well, don't care whether they have it or not. I have a feeling those types don't frequent this website (excluding UK citizens), nor call AX to find out what the requirements are, nor whine when requirements are raised. There's really no reason to become upset if you aren't within the target market parameters. Afterall, that is something American Express defines, not you (even if you are the customer).
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Old Apr 18, 05, 11:13 pm
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Originally Posted by JAGMAP
For the life of me I can't figure out how the Centurion Card is worth $2500/year. Unless you travel a lot, it's truly quite pointless.

Elite status with CO, DL, & US really isn't that valuable. You could do a Gold or Platinum challenge with AA (I think DL now, too) and could obtain status for well under $1000. I live in Dallas, so their preferred carriers for elite status (and airline lounges) mean nothing to me. Total Value for this Perk: $0

...deleting blather...
.
1. If you value your time at 0/hour, then you could obtain status on one airline for $1000 (I am assuming you know). If you value your time at at even $100/hour it is not so cheap. Remember that is only ONE airline. Seems like a deal to me $2500 for gold status on three airlines. One or two upgrades and you make your money back.

2. Starwood Platinum worth $2500 alone.

3. Pulling out a black card at a party that matches my black stripped thomas pink shirt...Priceless.

Hehe j/k with #3. I will likely save close to somewhere around 2-3K on one trip alone with confirmed upgrades. You can check other peoples posts. I think one guy in this forum saved 10K+ on one trip to Europe.

But who really cares about what you save? I mean it accessorizes so many outfits *grin*. Put it in the same costs as fashion. Is purple label really worth more? Dunno, but I am sold....

Hmm...someone should make a Black Card line of clothing. I would go for some cuff links with little back cards on 'em

Hey where is that Centurion forum?

Collars Up!

Last edited by Supreme Leader of the Free World; Apr 18, 05 at 11:22 pm
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Old Apr 18, 05, 11:14 pm
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centurion

hi,

i have a centurioncard, but i just got a new green card in asia. why? it is earning me 2x MR points over the first 12 month.

why green? (i think the green is the only real amex)

i dont understand why you all whining, of course you want the card. but if you have to pay everything with the card , than pay it off over one year, than sorry but you are not the person which amex wants to reach. ( a platinum should be ok for you)

the centurioncard was introduced to get the best customers, to offer the best service etc. of course after a couple of years, service etc. got watered, but amex realized or (may be a marketing trick) that they have to do something so that they are not giving out a centurion to everyone.


150K is not that much, in US one could easily spent that.
and well if you have a problem hitting 250K and paying 2500 USD , well thats your problem. the question is, for what do you need your card? is it for "prestige" or is it for the perks?

if it is for prestige and you cant pay/ spent the money, than you should not get it.

amex is the one who is defining how much you need to spent to get it, and thats fact.

accept it !

trust me , once you got it, u dont care after it. the whoaaa effect is only there for 1-2 month.

after that it is just a creditcard , same as all your other cards.

dp
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Old Apr 18, 05, 11:54 pm
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Originally Posted by JAGMAP
For the life of me I can't figure out how the Centurion Card is worth $2500/year. Unless you travel a lot, it's truly quite pointless.
Seeing as how this is a frequent traveler bulletin board, it should be obvious why so many of us are interested in it. We do travel a lot.

I'm with SLFW and selfishly glad they are raising the bar. It certainly sucks for those of you who were working towards it though. Yet I really don't think there are too many people in the US who are in your boat. And I don't think Amex will shed too many tears if you or I or any of us here jump to another card. They just want to manage the number of clients in their top program.
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Old Apr 19, 05, 12:44 am
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Originally Posted by stimpy
Seeing as how this is a frequent traveler bulletin board, it should be obvious why so many of us are interested in it. We do travel a lot.

I'm with SLFW and selfishly glad they are raising the bar. It certainly sucks for those of you who were working towards it though. Yet I really don't think there are too many people in the US who are in your boat. And I don't think Amex will shed too many tears if you or I or any of us here jump to another card. They just want to manage the number of clients in their top program.
To all those who wanted to apply for the Centurion Card, apparently the $250,000 marker started on April 15, not May 1 as previously mentioned.
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Old Apr 19, 05, 2:19 am
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about 250k

i dont think amex will be that strict on the beginning of that rule.

if you hit 150k and was told last year you will get centurion, call them and try to get one.

dp
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Old Apr 19, 05, 4:19 am
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I can't for the life of me see why someone earning less than $100,000 a year would want to spend 2.5% of their income on a credit card fee. Isn't there something else you'd rather spend your money on ?
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Old Apr 19, 05, 6:41 am
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250k...

Hi,

Is it 250k worldwide? I've always heard that AMEX has the most number of centurion card holders (by area density) in hkg. I wonder if it's easier to get one here because not many establishments take AMEX. I wonder.

In any case, I think I may get a Green one myself. Sort of nostalgic.

Cheers,
ktp
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Old Apr 19, 05, 6:57 am
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Although I do see the value in paying annual credit card fees if you are going to take advantage of the benefits (airline clubs, etc.), I'd have a tought time justifying $2,500 a year. This can buy several airport club memberships--plus if you travel as much as is warranted to spend over $250K, you probably already have elite membership on airlines and at hotels.
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Old Apr 19, 05, 8:04 am
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If they don't start replacing the benefits they've been dropping left and right, the only black card holders remaining will be Paris and Britney. They can raise the "requirements" to all they want, if the product starts sucking, it's a lost cause.

BTW -- The rep who said business purchases don't qualify is on crack.
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