Strategy to obtain UK Amex

Why would you want a UK Amex card? The Australian/US cards are superior in pretty much every way.

The sign-up bonuses for the Plat and BA Premium Plus are woeful. The Premium Plus has a companion ticket after you spend £10K, but it has a 3% FTF charge, meaning it will cost Australians approx $AUD600.
 
There are far better ways to earn Avios in Australia. Remember all UK Amex cards have foreign transaction fees and low sign-up bonuses, so you're paying through the nose for points.
Agreed. If you wanted an Avios card then Chase has BA which also allows you to earn a companion voucher. 0% fx fees. Amex BA UK has a 3% fx fee and 1gbp = 1 avios with no bonus categories. Looking at it from non category spend, dollar for dollar you would earn more avios from Amex Plat in Australia than a UK Plat or BA card.

$5,000 AUD = 5,625 Avios (QR -> BA)

$5,000 AUD = 2,614 GBP -> 2614 Avios (without considering the fx fees).

$5,000 AUD = 3,155 USD -> 3155 Avios (0 fx fees) (general 1:1 transfer non category spend chase/amex etc)


Not mention the difficulty in acquiring an UK Amex. plenty of stories on reddit and flyertalk on US expats in the UK trying to get a card but being denied.
 
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We have a thread on how to obtain a US card. Now let’s see if it’s possible to obtain a UK card

I tend to agree with the general tenor of the thread responses but without the venom 😉

Actually I would rate UK Amex as equivalent to Australian ones (the Platinum is cheaper, for example) …. if you lived in the UK. But obviously they take a value-hit if you live outside the UK.

They can be worthwhile if you travel to the UK regularly or spend online in £. I do both. Whilst the American cards don’t have a foreign transaction fee, they have ‘fees’ in their conversion rates. Whilst they are far superior to Australian (and UK) cards in that regard, nothing beats a local currency card

I used to have a UK Platinum which I got through a Private Banking arrangement with Barclays whilst living in Australia. I closed the account during the pandemic but retained the card. Had a few issues insofar as there was something in the system that prevented getting additional cards beyond my wife.

I closed the account and now have the BA Premium card. I have hit the required spend for the companion voucher each year and find that valuable, as is the 3pts per £ on BA spend. Using vouchers next year to travel to Europe.

The process is essentially the same as the US process but in my experience the UK is much more rigorous in it’s banking, ID & address checks

As for getting Chase cards etc, it’s a great idea and I’d really like the Chase Sapphire Reserve (stillstruggle with the notion that no Australian bank offers an equivalent; something to go up against the Amex Platinum - had the Citi card but it was a bit half-coughd and I dumped it when NAB bought Citi) card but I just can’t be bothered doing the ITIN process

Good luck with the application.
 
Agreed. If you wanted an Avios card then Chase has BA which also allows you to earn a companion voucher. 0% fx fees. Amex BA UK has a 3% fx fee and 1gbp = 1 avios with no bonus categories. Looking at it from non category spend, dollar for dollar you would earn more avios from Amex Plat in Australia than a UK Plat or BA card.

$5,000 AUD = 5,625 Avios (QR -> BA)

$5,000 AUD = 2,614 GBP -> 2614 Avios (without considering the fx fees).

$5,000 AUD = 3,155 USD -> 3155 Avios (0 fx fees) (general 1:1 transfer non category spend chase/amex etc)


Not mention the difficulty in acquiring an UK Amex. plenty of stories on reddit and flyertalk on US expats in the UK trying to get a card but being denied.
Actually, the BA Premium is 1.5 Avios on spend and 3 Avios on BA spend per £ spent
 
Agreed. If you wanted an Avios card then Chase has BA which also allows you to earn a companion voucher. 0% fx fees. Amex BA UK has a 3% fx fee and 1gbp = 1 avios with no bonus categories. Looking at it from non category spend, dollar for dollar you would earn more avios from Amex Plat in Australia than a UK Plat or BA card.

$5,000 AUD = 5,625 Avios (QR -> BA)

$5,000 AUD = 2,614 GBP -> 2614 Avios (without considering the fx fees).

$5,000 AUD = 3,155 USD -> 3155 Avios (0 fx fees) (general 1:1 transfer non category spend chase/amex etc)


Not mention the difficulty in acquiring an UK Amex. plenty of stories on reddit and flyertalk on US expats in the UK trying to get a card but being denied.

Is the Chase card an Amex?
I'm spending about $25,000 a month and I have 3 million QFF so looking for options for best card options with flights I can actually book
 
Is the Chase card an Amex?
I'm spending about $25,000 a month and I have 3 million QFF so looking for options for best card options with flights I can actually book
Lucky you. So many options with that level of spend.

Chase's BA card is Visa. Only Amex is Amex.
 
UK Amex cards are the worst. The only Amex card that has fascinated me, besides the US Amex, is the Singapore Amex card.
“ …… the worst”. A bit extreme isn’t it?

The US cards offer, by a country mile, the best value especially for those of us that don’t live in the US. Let’s face it, the US market is very competitive, the Americans - bless ‘em - will not tolerate ‘expensive‘ and they have a much more ‘mature’ appreciation of the power they wield as consumers; are happy to use it and vote with their feet. The value seeking demonstrated on this forum is a tiny fraction of the Australian market.

But even those cards have their limits and I’d be reluctant to, for example, shell out on a Platinum Card if I wasn’t a US resident because many of the peripheral offers are unavailable to us.

The UK cards are as good there as the Australian ones are here, and likewise the Singaporean Amex if you lived there.

The exception, of course, is if you travel to a destination regularly or spend in that currency - as I said, I have the BA Premium card and it works for me. If there were no international transaction fees I could make the UK Platinum work given my £GBP spend and my travel to the UK.

So much of the value is perceived and depends on personal circumstances
 
My own experience, getting a UK Amex was easy, you really just need a UK address and to actually be in the UK for a while in case they call you (they called me about 3 days after I applied).

The BA card is fine, it's free, you get the usual Amex offers (and there are heaps more of them in the UK than in AU) and the occasional bonus (4000 avios for adding a partner card, etc).

Since coming back to AU I changed my Amex address to UK Postbox and have received replacement cards via mail redirection with no problem.
 
My own experience, getting a UK Amex was easy, you really just need a UK address and to actually be in the UK for a while in case they call you (they called me about 3 days after I applied).

The BA card is fine, it's free, you get the usual Amex offers (and there are heaps more of them in the UK than in AU) and the occasional bonus (4000 avios for adding a partner card, etc).

Since coming back to AU I changed my Amex address to UK Postbox and have received replacement cards via mail redirection with no problem.
Just curious ….

When you say
and to actually be in the UK for a while in case they call you (they called me about 3 days after I applied).

I assume that you were - actually - in the UK for a while.

Were you there on leave and applied for a UK card using the Global Transfer method? If so, what did you use for a bank account? Did they seek income verification? What did you use for an address given that you have moved to a UK Postbox address only since coming back to Australia

Or were you there for a period with work and had your own local address & bank account?

Certainly from a bank account perspective the KYC laws can make life quite tricky if living abroad - curious as to how that translates to a credit card application
 
It was a new application - I kept my Australian amex cards. At the time I applied I was living in the UK so I had a permanent address, and was able to provide a bill (council tax) with my name and address on it. I have a UK offshore bank account which I can pay the Amex from but Amex themselves didn't ask for details about it. There was also no income verification (in fact, no real verification of any kind I could see - since I had no credit history in the UK at that point). I am a UK citizen but not sure if that made a difference or not.
 
If you need an "easy" path to a UK Bank account, look at HSBC Premier - once you're Premier in AU, can apply for a HSBC UK cheque account. If you do HSBC Expat, you can also apply for a HSBC UK Premier MasterCard (can't as a foreigner and a HSBC UK Customer - it's weird but that's the way around it. Havent gone the Amex UK Route myself.
 
I tend to agree with the general tenor of the thread responses but without the venom 😉

Actually I would rate UK Amex as equivalent to Australian ones (the Platinum is cheaper, for example) …. if you lived in the UK. But obviously they take a value-hit if you live outside the UK.

They can be worthwhile if you travel to the UK regularly or spend online in £. I do both. Whilst the American cards don’t have a foreign transaction fee, they have ‘fees’ in their conversion rates. Whilst they are far superior to Australian (and UK) cards in that regard, nothing beats a local currency card

I used to have a UK Platinum which I got through a Private Banking arrangement with Barclays whilst living in Australia. I closed the account during the pandemic but retained the card. Had a few issues insofar as there was something in the system that prevented getting additional cards beyond my wife.

I closed the account and now have the BA Premium card. I have hit the required spend for the companion voucher each year and find that valuable, as is the 3pts per £ on BA spend. Using vouchers next year to travel to Europe.

The process is essentially the same as the US process but in my experience the UK is much more rigorous in it’s banking, ID & address checks

As for getting Chase cards etc, it’s a great idea and I’d really like the Chase Sapphire Reserve (stillstruggle with the notion that no Australian bank offers an equivalent; something to go up against the Amex Platinum - had the Citi card but it was a bit half-coughd and I dumped it when NAB bought Citi) card but I just can’t be bothered doing the ITIN process

Good luck with the application.
Re using the vouchers...bear in mind that to use the UK BAPP Amex vouchers you have to originate in the UK. Same with the Barclays Avios vouchers. Lloyds Bank's vouchers used to be able to start outside of the UK, but they don't exist any more.

I've also read that for the BA Amex cards to transfer to BAEC, your BAEC account needs to have a UK address? My UK Amex portfolio and BAEC account are domiciled in the UK, at an address where someone can send me the details of anything that turns up, so I don't know if this is true.

I do keep cycling the UK cards, including the Business cards, as a source of Avios. The bonuses aren't as big as the US (I do those too...) but every little helps. The Gold cards are pretty good as they have no annual fee in year one, and referring between a player 2, or anyone else who wants to apply, can yield pretty decent results.

The UK Platinum card currently has a 100k MR SUB, Barclays offered 150,000 Avios late last year (via a combo of the Premier bank account, Avios Plus card and switching bonus) and BAPP offered 60k Avios recently, so there's value to be had. A big thing with UK credit history/CRA files is electoral roll registration, CRAs use that as ID verification a lot of the time.
 
We have a thread on how to obtain a US card. Now let’s see if it’s possible to obtain a UK card

I applied for a Uk Amex using global transfer and a friends address . They also need a Uk bank account which I had through hsbc premier !
 

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