On 2 March, American Express announced that the company would be responding to stiff competition in the market with a new and improved Amex Platinum Card program, but at a slightly higher cost. Soon after the announcement, the stock market reacted positively when the company's shares (AXP) went up by 0.37%.

So what's new in the card?

Customers will retain all of the AmEx Platinum Card benefits they have enjoyed thus far, but here are the enticing new perks. First of all, Uber users who also have the exclusive cards will be happy to know that the AmEx service now comes pre-loaded with up to $200 worth of yearly credit to use when traveling anywhere within the United States, as well as Uber VIP status.

AmEx recently added another perk that offers their clients five times their normal membership rewards on flights booked. The lucky elites that carry the iconic card will now also earn 5 points per dollar spent at any eligible hotels, as long as they book through AmEx travel services.

AmEx Platinum Card holders can now add AmEx Gold Cards to their service at no extra cost and will be able to gain worldwide access to one of the largest selections of swanky airport lounges currently offered by any U.S. credit card.

It seems executives at American Express have decided that plastic is no longer fit for the elite, and have opted instead for a new metal card. The upgraded design is fortified from stainless steel and now competes with top of the range products from rivals in the luxury credit card business, as well as AmEx's own invite-only Centurion Card.

Furthermore, a member's account information will now appear on the back of the card.

Benefits offered by the card

The Sapphire Reserve card made quite an entrance last year when it was launched by JPMorgan Chase. The card proved to be very popular, with an annual membership fee of $450 which includes a range of benefits and up to $1500 in traveling credits.

Doug Buckminster, AmEx global consumer services group head, said that the company had certainly seen a sharp rise in card cancellations after the Sapphire Reserve card entered the market.

Another competitor comes in the form of Citigroup's revamped Citi Prestige Card. Costco, the country's largest wholesale membership club, caused AmEx to suffer a financial blow when the corporation moved its credit card provider to Citigroup's Visa division.

Consumers will be able to get their hands on the new AmEx Platinum Card from the 30th of March when the annual membership fee will also increase from $450 to $500. This 22% fee hike will be effected automatically for existing customers when their membership comes up for annual renewal.

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