AMEX Westpac Altitude programme ends 24 Feb 2021

boomy

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American Express and Westpac will no longer be offering the American Express® Westpac Altitude Card. As a valued Card Member, we're committed to providing you with a Card that continues to deliver the benefits you enjoy now.

On 24 February 2021, your Account will be automatically transferred to the new American Express® Elevate Credit Card.


The American Express Elevate Credit Card
– same great earn rate and benefits​
Your new Card will have all the benefits of your current Altitude Platinum Card. You'll continue to earn Qantas Points at the same rate you do now, and points will be credited directly into your Qantas Frequent Flyer account each month. Naturally, you will continue to enjoy all the same reward options you do now with the Qantas Frequent Flyer program.​
 

MikeG

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I just penned a similar thread but it took me a while to get all the info together, so I'll paste it here:

Just got a letter from Amex saying they are dissolving their relationship with Westpac, and that my Westpac Amex will be replaced with a direct Amex product.

What are peoples opinions? I'm not quite at the point where I'm ready to churn to Amex for a joining bonus, so should I just say no?


Amex Westpac Altitude Black card ($199pa):
  • 5 Altitude Points (~1.7 ff points) per $1 spent in foreign currency
  • 3 Altitude Points (~1 ff point) per $1 spent on purchases in Australia except for the below
  • 1 Altitude Point (~0.3 ff point) per $1 spent at government bodies in Australia2, including Australia Post and the Australian Tax Office (though I think that reduced to 0.5 recently)
Amex Elevate Premium card ($199pa):
  • 2 Membership reward points (~1 ff point) per $1 spent everywhere (except government bodies where it is 1 point (~0.5 ff point) / $1)
So I feel that I'm being short-changed.
 

Doctore1003

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I assume by switching to Elevate you'd be ineligible for an Amex sign up bonus? Seems better to cancel the Westpac product and then separately apply for an Amex card and pocket a nice bonus.
 

sudoer

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I assume by switching to Elevate you'd be ineligible for an Amex sign up bonus? Seems better to cancel the Westpac product and then separately apply for an Amex card and pocket a nice bonus.

This is what I want to negotiate with them. I'm not eligible for an Amex bonus until August 2021, so would they either

a) let me hold the Elevate Premium and not count that towards the 18 month exclusion or
b) let me open a Plat Charge in advance and be eligible for the sign-up bonus

If they won't do either I will just cancel the card and not hold any Amex until August...
 

MikeG

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I've already had the conversation with my Amex Business Manager - any direct card will reset the clock for welcome bonuses.

I'll be giving Amex the flick until August which is when I'm eligible for the welcome bonus again..
 

sudoer

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I just had a very different conversation.

I was told I could either take the $199 Elevate Premium as the default option, or the $450 Qantas Ultimate with 40k signup bonus for $3k spend in 3 months without a separate application process.

I made my situation clear - I'm also excluded from bonuses until Aug and I was planning to apply for the Plat Charge in August so not interested in either of those options and would be cancelling. They said applying for the Plat Charge early and being eligible for the bonus could be arranged but needed a separate application (with no guarantee of approval) and the bonus points would need to be manually credited.

This was just from calling the number on the back of the Westpac Amex, not a dedicated manager.
 

Ric

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50,000 Membership Rewards points​
when you spend $1,500 in the first three months after the transfer date.*​


Continue to enjoy all your existing Card benefits


Complimentary insurances8 when you pay for your return domestic or international travel with your American Express Card – covering lost
baggage, emergency overseas medical expenses and more. Limits and exclusions apply. Please click here to read important information and details about changes to your insurance cover
Two complimentary entries per year to the American Express
Lounge9
at Sydney or Melbourne International Airports
Access to Amex Offers and American Express Experiences®


Further below the letter states that you get 50,000 rewards points if you spend $1500 in 3 mths. Did you get that in your letters?​
 

sudoer

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50,000 Membership Rewards points​
when you spend $1,500 in the first three months after the transfer date.*​



Continue to enjoy all your existing Card benefits



Complimentary insurances8 when you pay for your return domestic or international travel with your American Express Card – covering lost
baggage, emergency overseas medical expenses and more. Limits and exclusions apply. Please click here to read important information and details about changes to your insurance cover
Two complimentary entries per year to the American Express
Lounge9
at Sydney or Melbourne International Airports
Access to Amex Offers and American Express Experiences®



Further below the letter states that you get 50,000 rewards points if you spend $1500 in 3 mths. Did you get that in your letters?​

I didn't in writing, but that's a similar offer to what I received over the phone. I assume you have the non-Qantas Altitude card?
 

Zanzara

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The Amex included insurance cover included with the new Elevate card is underwritten by Chubb. Unfortunately, the travel insurance component on the current Westpac Altitude card was rated quite highly by Choice & the Elevate cover is a poor substitute IMHO.
 

Ric

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I didn't in writing, but that's a similar offer to what I received over the phone. I assume you have the non-Qantas Altitude card?
Yup. the non Qantas Attitude Black Card. Find that it is better to have the reward in Attitude which I can transfer to other frequent flyer programs. Asia Miles being a good one.
 

AdMEL

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I currently have the Amex Velocity Altitude Platinum, which I downgraded from the Amex Altitude Velocity Black a couple of months ago, just before they were withdrawn. In light of ANZ withdrawing their included flight, I was hoping I might be able swap the Amex Altitude to a Velocity Platinum, since this appears to be the only remaining card that includes a flight, however on checking, it appears the included flight options are much more limited and don’t allow MEL-CNS, which is what I would use it for. Given this, I think I might have to see about possibly swapping to a Velocity Escape.
 

micky_b

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Got the thanks, bye, hello letter in the mail during the week. Didn't get much of a chance to read it. Can't say I'm surprised. Although, not overly happy to be honest.

I'll give Amex a call on Monday too and see what they can offer. All the CC reg changes and resigning/cancelling over the past few years is a bit of a joke (IMO).

What are those of us here planning to do as a result?

The new offer doesn't seem all that enticing to be honest. But then again, as its 'no different' according to the letter, I'm thinking of ditching it completely.
 

MikeG

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I just had a very different conversation.

I was told I could either take the $199 Elevate Premium as the default option, or the $450 Qantas Ultimate with 40k signup bonus for $3k spend in 3 months without a separate application process.

I made my situation clear - I'm also excluded from bonuses until Aug and I was planning to apply for the Plat Charge in August so not interested in either of those options and would be cancelling. They said applying for the Plat Charge early and being eligible for the bonus could be arranged but needed a separate application (with no guarantee of approval) and the bonus points would need to be manually credited.

This was just from calling the number on the back of the Westpac Amex, not a dedicated manager.
Qantas Ultimate has a 55,000 points bonus afaik. I’d be interested to look into one of the bigger bonus cards such as the explorer with 120,000 points in the first year.
 

sudoer

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Qantas Ultimate has a 55,000 points bonus afaik.

For new applications yes, this promo was offered to me as a card transfer i.e. no formal application/credit check/approval process required.

I’d be interested to look into one of the bigger bonus cards such as the explorer with 120,000 points in the first year.

I would expect you can negotiate this as a new application, and they will need to manually credit the points once you have met the requirements. Get everything in writing of course.
 

coolstepslg

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disappointed in the downgrade in insurance. would someone with the platinum card be given option to do card transfers? i.e product transfer to ultimate card and get 40k points.
 

MikeG

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Well, I spoke to Amex yesterday (number on the back of the card) and given I'm excluded from welcome offers until August 2021, and spend between $10k-$20k per month on my Amex, the best they could do was the Edge Platinum for 30,000 Member reward points (~15,000 QFF points). They flat refused to negotiate. I guess I'm cancelling my Amex and either relying on my Mastercard or getting a Diners card if a decent welcome bonus exists.
 

MikeG

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Today I cancelled my Amex Altitude Black card and will make do with my Altitude Mastercard until August when I'll be eligible for an Amex Welcome Bonus.
 

jastel

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Better look into this myself...not like I am using any flying benefits at this point anyway.
 

AdMEL

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I currently have the Amex Velocity Altitude Platinum, which I downgraded from the Amex Altitude Velocity Black a couple of months ago, just before they were withdrawn. In light of ANZ withdrawing their included flight, I was hoping I might be able swap the Amex Altitude to a Velocity Platinum, since this appears to be the only remaining card that includes a flight, however on checking, it appears the included flight options are much more limited and don’t allow MEL-CNS, which is what I would use it for. Given this, I think I might have to see about possibly swapping to a Velocity Escape.
After posting this, I called Amex and was told I could swap to a number of the $0 annual fee cards including the Velocity Escape and Essential (this was tempting for the phone screen insurance) but could not upgrade to Velocity Platinum without doing a full application. I thought I’d decide closer to the time. Today, I received an email offering an upgrade to a Velocity Platinum with 60,000 bonus points and $200 credit for $3,000 spend in 3 months. Seems like a great deal.
 
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