A concierge service offers cardholders a range of assistance for their special requests including entertainment, travel, shopping and executive services.
Credit card concierge services are fairly standard on most premium and platinum credit cards. These allow the cardholder to access a personalised service in their own language, at any time of the day or night anywhere in the world.
What is a credit card concierge service?
Generally, a concierge service is a complimentary benefit offered by your credit card provider to handle your requests. Usually they are available 24 hours a day, seven days a week and are available by calling a phone number provided by your credit card provider.
What are the types of credit card concierge services
There are a few types of credit card concierge services dedicated to your particular credit card. Depending on what level your credit card is, the number of concierge services available to you could be different. For example, American Express has a rewards concierge available exclusively to eligible American Express credit cards.
- Platinum concierge. This is the standard concierge service to cover all types of personal assistance including flight information, sourcing, purchasing and delivery of tickets for a show, concert or sporting event, providing details of events and shows in your city, hotel and travel information as well as reservations for restaurants. These services are on a referral or arrangement basis and any third party expenses will be the cardholder’s responsibility.
- Rewards concierge. A rewards concierge offers certain cardmembers a personal concierge service using their membership rewards points if applicable. Rewards concierges can organise your requests by spending your rewards points.
How does a credit card concierge service work?
First, you need to ensure that your credit card comes with a concierge service. Upon application, you will know whether you have this feature or not. If you do, your credit card provider would have provided you with a list of phone numbers you can contact in order to make your requests. You will be informed of the costs and options if there are any before booking or making a purchase that you request. The concierge will not incur any costs on your unless you’ve approved. Some high-tier concierge services also come with an app, letting you put your requests in writing as you go. Your concierge will notify you about the details of request, such as the time it will take for your items to be delivered or the details of your restaurant reservation. If your request will take awhile to complete, your concierge will give you date and time as to when it will be finished.
How to compare credit card concierge services
In most cases, the credit card holder will not be able to choose the type of concierge service that comes with their card. Here are some things that your concierge should be providing;
- Lifestyle services. This should cover all types of personal assistance and lifestyle requests not limited to but including; car rental, limousine and car service information, mail and fax packages, holiday house information, shopping location information, floral arrangements, party planning, arrangement for hairstylists, fitness trainers as well as stress relief massages.
- Charges. All concierge services should provide you with detailed information of any costs with your request. You are not charged for the research performed by a Westpac concierge. As the cardholder, you are responsible for the following; cost and delivery of the goods and services purchased, any deposits you’ve put down for the item, costs of cancellation, custom duties and any other costs incurred to fulfil your request.
Pros and cons of credit card concierge services
- They can be used to organise events that you don’t have the time to sort out yourself, or that you are not sure how to sort out yourself. You may need to track down some special item but are not really sure where to start. Alternatively, you may be in unfamiliar territory – on a holiday or a business trip, and not know where to look to find something locally.
- Credit card concierge services can also be used for less obvious purposes. Many cardholders call and ask for gift ideas, to check on a flight, to arrange for new travel documents such as passports and travellers cheques to be replaced if they have been lost or stolen. It may be as simple as getting directions around a strange city.
- If you do fancy a night out at a popular and busy restaurant, you may be better off leaving that to a credit card concierge service because they have good relationships with such establishments. For example, the American Express concierge service has agreements with over 1,200 restaurants around the world.
- Calling a Credit card concierge services allows you to speak to a human straight away, and you can leave your request with them.
- High annual fee. Most credit cards that have a complimentary concierge service usually come with a high annual fee, as this feature is normally available with high end credit cards.
Things to avoid about credit card concierge services
- Ignoring your financial situation. A concierge service shouldn’t be the only factor in deciding which credit card is most suitable for you. While this feature is handy, you pay for it within your high annual fee. Concierge services are designed for those who don’t have enough time to do their requests themselves.
Frequently asked questions about credit card concierge services
What are the fees for using a credit card concierge service?
While there is no fee for using the concierge service, any other fees incurred is payable by you, such as the purchase and delivery of the item you’ve requested.
Where can I find credit cards with a concierge service?
Credit card concierge services are fairly standard on most premium and platinum credit cards. Please use the comparison below to help you in your search.
Rates last updated August 1st, 2014.