The American Express Centurion Card – Enjoy luxury with a high flyer, prestige credit card

Information verified correct on December 11th, 2016

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The American Express Centurion Card takes the meaning of prestige to a different level.

In the world of cards, American Express Centurion Card has its own aura. Introduced in 1999, it is a charge card with no set spending limit. An exclusive card, cardholders must be invited by American Express to use the card. Here we’ll unpack some of the benefits, benefits, features, limits and fees for this card and how to improve your chances of getting invited to use this card in Australia.

Who is eligible for the American Express Centurion Card and how does it work?

As an invitation-only card, American Express hasn’t made the eligibility criteria available to the public. An ideal way to start would be to develop a history with American Express by using other premium products and demonstrating your frequent spending and ability to repay. It has also been said that cardholders required a five-figure monthly spending bill per month. While the eligibility criteria is quite ambiguous, it's useful to note that the average household income for cardholders was $1.3 million with assets of $16.3 million in 2011. The card is tailored according to the financial resources of the customers and comes with a set spending limit.

As a charge card, American Express Centurion Card cardholders must repay their balance amount by a due date, usually by the end of the month. It does not provide a revolving credit system like a credit card but has a high spending limit or no spending limit depending on the cardholder and what they've been approved for.

Comparison of other credit cards available from American Express

Rates last updated December 11th, 2016
Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee
American Express Essential Credit Card
Receive a $50 credit on eligible spend and get Smartphone screen insurance combined with a no annual fee for life card. Also enjoy a 0% p.a. balance transfer rate for 12 months.
14.99% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $0 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Explorer Credit Card
Receive 100,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points on eligible spend within the first 2 months of Card Membership. Also enjoy a $400 travel voucher and two complimentary airline passes per year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $395 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
Receive 10,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement. Enjoy a $200 travel credit every year and get 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $195 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Ultimate Card
Enjoy up to 100,000 bonus Qantas Points on eligible spend, earn up to 3 Qantas Points for every $1 spent and get a free domestic return flight every year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $450 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Velocity Platinum Card
Enjoy up to 50,000 bonus Velocity Points when you meet the minimum required spend and earn up to 3 rewards points per dollar spent. Also receive a complimentary return flight every year.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $349 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Velocity Escape Card
Enjoy 7,500 bonus Velocity Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement and earn up to 2 points for every $1 you spend, together with a $0 annual fee.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $0 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Premium Card
Earn as much as 30,000 bonus Qantas Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement. Enjoy frequent flyer benefits including uncapped Qantas Points per $1 spent, complimentary travel insurance and Qantas Club lounge invitations.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $249 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Discovery Card
Enjoy up to 7,500 bonus Qantas Frequent Flyer Points and 1 point per $1 spent, plus 0% p.a. on balance transfers for 12 months, all for a $0 annual fee.
20.74% p.a. 0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee $0 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Platinum Card
Receive 100,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you meet the minimum spend requirement and earn up to 3 points per dollar spent. Gain access to travel insurance, $300 Platinum Travel Credit every year and access to 900 VIP airport lounges.
$1,200 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Gold Business Card
Keep track of your business expenses with a dedicated business credit card. Your account details can be uploaded in to MYOB, Excel or Quicken to help with BAS reporting.
$169 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Velocity Business Card
A truly dedicated business rewards credit card. Download all your card expenses in a format readable by Quicken, MYOB, Microsoft Excel and more, helping you simplify your quarterly BAS reporting.
$249 p.a. Go to site More info
David Jones American Express
Receive 30,000 Membership Rewards points and earn up to 3 Rewards points for every dollar spent on everyday item and access exclusive in-store benefits to David Jones cardholders.
20.74% p.a. $99 p.a. Go to site More info
David Jones American Express Platinum Card
Receive 40,000 Membership Rewards points or 30,000 Qantas Points. Plus earn up to 4 rewards point per $1 spend.
20.74% p.a. $295 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Business Card
Earn up to 1 Membership Rewards point per dollar spent on eligible purchases.
$109 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Platinum Business Card
Provides easy tracking and management of business expenses - reporting meets ATO requirements. Dedicated Platinum Business Concierge to assist you day-to-day.
$1,500 p.a. Go to site More info
American Express Qantas Business Card
Earn 1 Qantas Point per dollar spent on eligible purchases.
$299 p.a. More info
American Express Business Accelerator Credit Card
This credit card gives you up to 55 days of interest-free purchases
20.74% p.a. $160 p.a. More info
American Express Qantas Corporate Green Card
Earn up to 1 Membership Rewards point per dollar charged on your business spending and enjoy a complimentary business travel insurance of up to 150,000.
$70 p.a. More info

What are the features and benefits of using an American Express Centurion card?

An exclusive card only currently in use by an estimated 10,000 cardholders in Australia, some of the benefits you could look forward to include:

  • Flexibility. The card can be used for personal as well as business use.
  • Design. Since 2006 the card is made of anodized titanium with the information and number etched into the metal through laser. In some countries the plastic version is still in use.
  • Travel benefits. The customers can access premium airport lounges and clubs. Complimentary companion airline tickets are also available on select airlines.
  • Hotel benefits. Exclusive privileges are available at hotel chains like Ritz-Carlton, AmanResorts and more.
  • Insurance. Complimentary travel insurance is available if the card is used to cover travel costs.
  • Mobile contactless payments. Whether you have an Android, Apple or Samsung device, you can save time at the cash register and pay with the convenience of your smartphone with Android Pay, Apple Pay or Samsung Pay.

What are the fees and limits of the card?

Within Australia, the annual fee for the card is $5,000 with an additional one-time fee of $5,000. The credit limit on the card varies between customers and is based on factors such as credit history and income.

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I haven't been invited to own the American Express Centurion Card, what else can I consider?

American Express Platinum

One of the ways to build a good history with American Express is start with American Express Platinum card which can be applied directly and does not need any personal invitation. The minimum income requirement for the platinum card is $100,000 and the annual fee is $1,200. You can see our review of the American Express Platinum Charge Card for more details about the fees and features of the card.

American Express Centurion card was designed as a status symbol and has been limited to the elite. Informally called the “black card”, this card has held a high position among ultra-premium cards since its inception. It can have no spending limits and offers a host of premium benefits including complimentary insurance, travel benefits, exclusive perks and much more.

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Frequently asked questions

How long would I need to use American Express Platinum card to be invited for this card?

There is no set time, nor is there any guarantee that all the platinum cardholders will be invited. However, if you can keep a monthly spend limit of over $10,000 per month and regularly pay the balance, the chances of invitations will increase.

What is the one-time fee?

This fee is charged at the time of processing for the card. In Australia, this fee is $5,000 which was increased from $4,300 on July 11, 2012. Besides this fee the cardholders will also be charged an annual fee of $5,000.

How many people are offered this card every year?

Being an exclusive card, there is very little information available. However, according to estimates there are less than 10,000 cardholders in Australia.

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Adrian Barclay

Adrian spends most of his working hours writing about home loans and everything property, as well as interviewing finance experts.

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