AMEX Customer Service: A Very Mixed Bag

AMEX Customer Service: A Very Mixed Bag


With AMEX Offers, it's straightforward to save these to your account, use your enrolled card, and receive your bonus points. Unfortunately, it wasn't so with the 10K AMEX Bonus Points for Extended Payment offer that I recently wrote about. When I clicked on the button to enroll, I instead received the following error message:

“We are unable to process your request at this time due to a system issue. Please call the number on the back of your Card or visit us online after 48 to 72 hours to retry your request.”

Since I didn't feel like waiting 48 hours, I called the number on the back of my card, and got through fairly quickly to a representative, and verified my account number and phone number. Unfortunately, though, she couldn't see the offer on my account, so she transferred me to another representative. She asked to put me on hold, but then, without coming back to me, she transferred me again.

By this time I was a bit irked to be talking and verifying my information with a 3rd representative, but fortunately, even though he still wasn't the correct department (he works in customer service for personal AMEX cards, and this 10K bonus points offer is for my AMEX Business Platinum) he was helpful, and promised to check on this and not transfer me to someone else (thank goodness).

After a few minutes, he returned to the call, apologized for the delay, and said that I've been enrolled, despite the error message I received online. I asked if he could provide written confirmation, but he said that he's not permitted to email out; however, he gave me his first name and AMEX ID, so that if there was any question later, I could have AMEX review our call, which was recorded.

I then went onto AMEX Live Chat to see if I could confirm with the representative. I had to explain everything twice, and even so the response was:

“I have discussed this with my supervisor and with his help. I will go ahead and setup a case in your account so that our Concerned department can investigate it for you and validate it. I will also add the notes to the case so that this can be checked and validated.”

Well, an investigation wasn't what I was looking for–I really wanted confirmation, which the representative was unable to provide.

The Verdict

While I'm certainly appreciative of the one AMEX representative who appeared to really care, and confirmed to me that I was enrolled, I can say I was impressed with the other 3 interactions, two phone reps (including one who didn't even alert me that I was being transferred, then transferred me to the wrong department) or the Chat rep, who took forever to understand and respond, and wasn't able to help beyond “opening an investigation.”

Once upon a time, AMEX was known for having stellar customer service, but I think those days, at least in terms of *consistently* good customer service, are long gone. Then again, the bar is getting lower and lower–earlier today, I had the experience of two different Hyatt reps hanging up on me, presumably because they didn't know the answer to the question I was asking (there was no dispute, I asked a question that they didn't know the answer to, and they put me on hold, only to drop the call).

There's also the matter of the inability to enroll successfully online for the AMEX offer that was sent to me, which triggered the need for customer service in the first place. Overall, not an impressive showing by AMEX.

What's your experience with AMEX customer service?

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