This week was the third time I ever used the Purchase Protection coverage from my American Express Platinum Card (issued in the U.S.) that covers certain purchases made with the card.
Purchases can be covered when they’re accidentally damaged, stolen, or lost for up to 90 days from the purchase date with an eligible American Express card.
In order to be covered the purchase has to be made with the card (online or at a brick and mortar retail store) and the benefit is available with many Amex cards, it’s not an exclusive Platinum feature. Although I found that claims under the Platinum card are managed and approved in a more liberal fashion than other cards.
You can find the Purchase Protection benefit for the entire Amex USA product line here.
This particular claim came about after I purchased some swim trunks at Macy’s in Las Vegas late July and then took them on my current trip.
I then continued my trip to Europe and stayed at a resort hotel three weeks ago. One day when I used the pool I changed out of my swimwear and left it at the chair to dry off while going to the bar. 20-30 minutes later the trunks were gone and so was my book. Other stuff was still left at the chair… go figure.
I remembered I paid this with my Amex since it had a Macy’s bonus offer on the card so I looked up the claim process again and just filed it online.
What You Need
- Your personal information, including your email-address
- Purchase information, including receipt, date, amount and place of purchase
- Item information, including manufacturer name and model number (if applicable). If you have more than 25 items contact the Claims Service Centers.
- Any supporting documentation, including police report if item is stolen, that will help you explain your claim
- Online claims are available for customers with addresses within the 50 United States, is a US territory, or is a military APO/DPO FPO address state AA, AE, or AP. Contact our Claims Service Center if your address does not meet this criteria.
Obviously I didn’t file a police report for a pair of stolen swim trunks that would be ridiculous. However if you claim expensive, valuable items under this coverage be prepared that a police report is needed.
You can claim items for four reasons:
Each category has certain conditions attached to it. Here are the full conditions for the purchase protection:
The item covered under this claim was very cheap, $42.27 for the swimwear but as long as it’s covered there is no reason not to file a claim for this item.
Due to the nature of the low value claim Amex did not request additional documentation. As mentioned this most likely changes when higher prices items disappear.
A few years ago my beach bag got stolen in Bali and I provided a Loss Form filed with the hotel which was accepted as well. No doubt at some level a police report will be mandatory. Amex won’t pay out thousands of dollars based on someones word without documentation.
That being said we’re lucky that these small claims are handled in such easy fashion so people should be honest with their claims and not file for things they actually never lost. Same with the Return Protection, Amex usually doesn’t ask for lower priced items (sub $50) back and just credits the amount.
I filed a purchase protection claim with American Express for some clothing I earlier purchased with the card and that got stolen from my pool chair (why would anyone steal swim trunks is beyond me but we live in strange times).
Amex credited the amount to my my card account. So far I haven’t even received the official correspondence yet, the transaction just showed up.