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Getting Started With the AmEx Business Platinum

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Running a business comes with a lot of headaches, but deciding which credit card to use shouldn’t be one of them. Once you’ve made the decision to apply for The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, you need to take a few key steps to get enough value to offset the $595 annual fee. Terms apply.

Earn your welcome bonus

Perhaps the best perk of this card is the welcome bonus for new members. But it’s not easy to get: Earn 85,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply.

So the first thing to do when you receive your new card is make sure you’re set to hit the minimum spend required to earn the welcome bonus — without incurring any interest or fees by carrying a balance. Switch your existing expenses to this card if possible. Make any major planned purchases that you can pay off in full when your statement comes due, especially airfare and hotels booked through amextravel.com, where you’ll earn 5 points per dollar, and big-ticket items of $5,000 or more, which earn 1.5 points per dollar. All other purchases earn 1 point per dollar. Plan to make The Business Platinum Card® from American Express your default payment method for business purchases. Terms apply.

If your first three months of card membership are coming to an end and you haven’t hit your minimum spend, see if you can pay some of your bills a month in advance.

Choose your airline for the $200 fee credit

This card comes with $200 in airline fee credits every calendar year to cover baggage fees, seat selection and other incidentals. But it’s good for only one airline of your choice. To start enjoying this benefit, select the airline you’d like to leverage this benefit for. You can change your selection once a year in January. Terms apply.

Check out some airport lounges

First activate your Priority Pass Select membership, which comes with your card. Then spend some time researching lounges in terminals you’re likely to fly out of so you’ll know where to go for a drink, a meal or some extra space before departure. Terms apply.

Apply for Global Entry or TSA Precheck

No one likes standing in line to go through airport security or passport control, then enduring hassles like removing shoes and taking electronics out of carry-on bags. TSA Precheck and Global Entry get you through security faster and, as a cardholder, you can get reimbursed for the application fee for either program.

Once every four years, you can get a credit for the full $100 application fee for Global Entry when you use this card to pay the fee. Or you can apply for TSA Precheck instead. The full $85 application fee will be credited to your account when you use this card to pay that fee, and the benefit renews every 4 1/2 years. Terms apply.

You should strongly consider the Global Entry membership option as it includes access to TSA Precheck at no additional charge, letting you enjoy the benefits of both programs at the same time.

Get Gold elite status in Marriott and Hilton loyalty programs

Gold-level membership in the Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors programs comes with a range of perks like accelerated points earning and a chance for room upgrades. Normally, you have to stay a certain number of nights to attain this status in either program, but The Business Platinum Card® from American Express allows you to automatically qualify. When you get your card, upgrade your Marriott Bonvoy and Hilton Honors elite status to Gold by associating your account via the AmEx website, so you can start to enjoy hotel status right away. Terms apply.

Save $200 annually at Dell

Your new card comes with $200 in credits for you to spend at Dell every year. This benefit comes in the form of two $100 statement credits, one between January and June, the second from July to December. Any purchases you make with your enrolled card at Dell Technologies would be credited for a total of up to $200 annually. Terms apply.

Dell sells not only computers but also electronics like noise-canceling wireless headphones, which are great for travel.

The bottom line

With its hefty $595 annual fee, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express is only for business people who can earn back that much or more in benefits.

As soon as your new card arrives, the clock is already ticking on earning the welcome bonus, so start by making a plan for how to earn it. Then take your next steps to get reimbursed for airline incidentals and Global Entry or TSA Precheck, sign up for Gold membership in Marriott and Hilton loyalty programs, register for your Priority Pass Select membership and browse some Dell electronics. Terms apply.

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