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Scotiabank Platinum versus Gold American Express Card

As suggested by one of our readers, I will be comparing the Scotiabank American Express Platinum Card versus the Scotiabank Gold American Express Card. Before we get into the specific factors to consider, let’s take a look at the highlights of each card.

Scotiabank Gold American Express Card

  • $99 annual fee
  • $29 annual fee for a supplementary cardholder
  • Annual Income Requirement: $12,000
  • Earn 20,000 sign up bonus after the first purchase
  • Earn 4 points for every $1 you spent on gas, grocery, dining and entertainment purchases (on the first $50,000 in purchases)
  • Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Discount on Priority Pass Membership

Scotiabank Platinum American Express Card

  • $399 annual fee
  • $99 for supplementary cardholders
  • Annual Income Requirement: $12,000
  • Earn 30,000 bonus points after the first purchase
  • Earn 4 points for every $1 you spent at gas stations, grocery stores, on dining and entertainment (on the first $100,000 in purchases)
  • Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Receive a complementary membership to Priority Pass Airport Lounges
  • Receive 14 complimentary lounge passes per year (10 for primary cardholder and 4 supplementary cardholder)
  • Receive a complimentary Hertz #1 Club Gold Membership

Annual Fees

The Gold card generally has first year fee waived promotions and offering a much lower annual fee makes it an easy winner. That being said, the question you need to ask is whether the higher $399 is actually worth the additional features and benefits, which I will cover later on in this post.

Winner: Gold

Annual Income Requirement

Surprisingly, both credit cards have the same income requirement. However, due to the Platinum being the more premium card, they get the edge here.

Winner: Platinum

Sign Up Bonuses

There is only a 10,000 sign up bonus difference between the two cards. I would have like to see a better sign up bonus with the Platinum card relative to its annual fee. So relatively speaking, the Gold card has a better sign up bonus; however, the deal breaker will still be more black and white.

Winner: Platinum

Churn-ability

Scotiabank is relatively generous with the sign up bonuses, as there are no specific rules. That being said, the deal breaker will go to the Gold card, because if you’re going to churn, the sign up bonus of the Gold card relative the annual fee is way more worthwhile.

Winner: Gold

Earning Ratios

Both credit cards offer the exact same earning ratios, you probably notice the trend already, the deal breaker goes to the card charging a lower annual fee. The idea is that you are getting more bang for your buck.

Winner: Gold

Lounge Access

The Platinum card offers a free annual Priority Pass membership (value $99 USD), along with 10 complimentary lounge passes per year for primary cardholder and 4 complimentary lounge passes per year for supplementary cardholder.

The Gold card gives you a 35% discount for the Standard Priority Pass Membership, so you are paying $65 instead of $99 USD.

For both cards, if you are not using a free pass, you need to pay $27 USD for each visit.

Winner: Platinum

Other Benefits

The only other significant benefit to consider is the Complimentary Hertz #1 Club Gold Membership offered by the Platinum card. Personally, I prefer banking my car rental points towards a frequently flyer or hotel loyalty program instead. However, this Gold Membership can be valuable to some if they frequently use Hertz.

Winner: Platinum

Retention Bonuses

Based on my research, Scotiabank has been generous towards Gold cardholders if they are an existing Scotiabank client. You may have a high chance of waiving the annual fee. The Platinum card may be more difficult to asking for a retention bonus, though you may get some rebate. Either way, if you are not a Scotiabank cardholder, it will be difficult to receive much retention bonus.

Winner: Gold

Conclusion

As you can see, both cards are almost virtually identical. The key difference is the additional $300 in annual fee with the Platinum card. The main value comes from free (versus needing to pay $65) Priority Pass Membership, the complimentary lounge passes and the Hertz #1 Club Gold Membership. Let’s just look at the value of the lounge passes only. One pass is worth $27 USD and you are essentially receiving 14 passes, that means 14 x $27 = $378 USD in value. So mathematically, you are getting more than $300 overall.

The question you have the decide is whether you will be able to take advantage of all the additional benefits associated with the Platinum card. If I had to choose one card, I would go with the Scotiabank Gold American Express Card.

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Pointshogger aims to provide analysis and updates on earning loyalty reward points and maximizing the value of your points. We hope to inspire our readers to experience the joy of travel and make the most out of what they've already got!

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