The American Express Black Card, or The Centurion, is an ultra sexy credit card for an exclusive club of big spenders.
The American Express Black Card: The Centurion
My first encounter with the American Express black card was at a Christmas Party last year. Another guest used the box the American Express black card comes in (a bulk wooden thing with velvet trim inside) to store a present for the gift exchange. It would have been nice if the card WAS the gift.
After the gift exchange was finished, not enough people recognized what the wooden box represented, so the gifter whipped out his American Express black card and passed it around.
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I had no idea what the card represented (or should I say what the cardholder wanted it to represent), but the overwhelming awkwardness of flashing your credit card around a party made me go home and google it. Here’s the lowdown:
The card requires a one-time fee of $5,000 followed by an annual fee of $2,500
The income requirement is not publicly disclosed, but it seems to be around $100,000/yr (personally I felt this was a little low for such an “exclusive” card)
The net worth requirement is not publicly disclosed, but is rumored to be around $250,000
The spending requirement is also not publicly disclosed, but looks like you need to blow $250,000 on your American Express Platinum card the year prior (baffling if you’re only brining in $100K/yr)
On average, Centurion card holders are 49-yro males with net worth over $1 million dollars and perfect credit scores who love to use their American Express Black Card to buy clothes for women.
So why would you even want any of that?
Well, the first perk of the American Express black card that caught my eye was complimentary companion airline ticket on international flights with the purchase of one full-fare ticket. Wow! Assuming you buy first class (and why wouldn’t you? You have a black card!), the complimentary plane ticket for your travel buddy would justify the annual fee and then some! I’ve checked: first class fights to Europe from Canada run in the neighbourhood of $5,000 — that’s twice the annual fee. Imagine being able to get that for FREE for a friend or spouse? I feel like it would be a lot easier to convince people to travel with me if I could offer them a free first class ticket ;)
Upon your arrival at your international destination, why not check in to a Mandarin Hotel? You get one complimentary night as a black card holder. You’re also enrolled in Hertz and Avis rental car programs.
Furthermore, you can whip your titanium credit card out of your wallet at parties to let everyone know how rich you are. Who can put a price tag on that? The American Express black card is out of my budget, but it might not be out of yours. Anyone have one?