Amex Platinum Credits Can Be Used For Google Fi, But Maybe In An Unexpected Way

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American Express recently added a couple of new credits on Platinum cards – $20 per month for wireless credits and $20 per month for streaming services.

When these were first introduced, there was speculation that it wouldn’t work for Google Fi service due to the way that codes with Amex. We now have some data points that the statement credits are triggered when paying for Google Fi, but it doesn’t necessarily work in the way that you might expect.

My wife and I have an Unlimited plan with Google Fi and I figured it was worth changing our payment method to my Amex Schwab Platinum card just in case we did end up getting the $20 statement credit each month for the rest of the year.

When checking my account, I did indeed get $20 back from Amex, but it wasn’t for the reason I expected.

Google Fi Amex Platinum statement credit - streaming

As you can see, rather than getting $20 back from the wireless credit, Amex used the streaming credit instead.

What’s even more strange is that this isn’t happening across the board. Tom shared in the Frequent Miler Insiders group that he’d received a $20 credit for his Google Fi payment, except for him Amex assigned it as a wireless credit rather than streaming.

Google Fi Amex Platinum statement credit - wireless

It’s not clear why the credits are being processed differently, although there are a few possible reasons.

The most likely reason is that Google Fi processes payments in different ways for (seemingly) no discernible reason. For example, I used to pay with my Chase Ink Plus card to try and earn 5x. That sometimes worked and sometimes didn’t. When looking at the activity on my account, it sometimes coded as ‘Bills & Utilities’ and other times as ‘Entertainment’.

Google Fi Chase Ink Plus

An alternative reason might be the type of Google Fi plan you’re on. I’m not sure what kind of plan Tom is on, but I’m on an Unlimited plan. If he’s on a Flexible plan, maybe that affects how it codes.

Another potential reason is that Tom has an Amex Business Platinum account and I have a personal Schwab Platinum card, so perhaps the difference between business and personal cards accounts for the difference.

Out of those three possible options, I think the most likely reason is the first one. If Tom’s payment coded as the equivalent of ‘Bills & Utilities’ with Amex, that would explain why he received the $20 as a wireless credit. If my payment coded as the equivalent of ‘Entertainment’, that would explain why my streaming credit was used. Having said that, the transaction on my account shows up as ‘Business Services – Internet Services’, so who knows.

The fact that they’ve used my $20 streaming credit is disappointing though because I’d moved our Spotify and Netflix payments to the same card so that the $20 streaming credit could be assigned to payment for those services. I’ll keep things as they are for now just in case Amex suddenly decides to use my wireless credits on future payments. If not, we’ll go back to my wife’s Ink Business Preferred card for 3x along with the cell phone insurance that comes on that card.

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jamesb2147
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jamesb2147

Are either of you paying through Google pay vs directly for Fi?

mojo
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mojo

Yes, this is the likely the missing piece of the puzzle.

Would like to know also as I have Fi and no longer receive 5x via my Ink+ card. Also, since I do not pay for any streaming, I’m otherwise going to not be able to utilise the streaming credits.

WR2
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WR2

This is why I switched to Xfinity mobile. Fi was great for traveling internationally, but I won’t be doing much of that anytime soon.

Stefan Krasowski (@rapidtravelchai)
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Stefan Krasowski (@rapidtravelchai)

After seeing some of these data points a week ago, I pushed a manual $20 payment through for my FI and nothing has credited. Charge made on 5/16. Charles Schwab Platinum. Took a while to figure out how to make a manual payment and looks to no avail.

Liz
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Liz

My autopaid Google Fi on my personal platinum was credited as wireless phone. Locast, which is my only streaming service, wasn’t credited at all.

Just a Note
Guest
Just a Note

The list of subscribers that Amex provides has text that says “the purchase must be made from a provider that is included on our list of Select U.S. Streaming Subscriptions”. I don’t have a version of what they originally provided, but I could have sworn it used to say something like “this list is not inclusive of all providers” or something along those lines.

And in case anyone asks, Google Fi is not on the list of Streaming Providers. Go figure.

Just a Note
Guest
Just a Note

Stephen, do you only have a single Platinum? Between myself and P2, we have four and I’d have thought you would have had more of them!

Mike
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Mike

My google fi is set to auto bill on the 1st of each month. In May it triggered the wireless credit on May 22, in June it triggered the streaming credit on June 4th.

Vanilla platinum card. Google Fi flexible plan

Ryan
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Ryan

Are you paying the annual $550 fees or are you getting it waived by having a Morgan stanley cashplus account with 25k and monthly 5k deposit?
I was thinking about going that route since that card has a tremendous perks like adding authorized users and they get most benefits-priority pass, hotel gold status, etc.
Do you know if the streaming credits and phone bill continue next year?
Thx