Skip to comments.TITANIUM: THE NEW BLACK (A new, yet now defunct, American Express Card)
Posted on 07/26/2005 4:49:28 AM PDT by Vision Thing
"Oh my God, is that a Black Card?' I turned around and replied, why yes but I prefer the term African American Express" Kanye West, "Last Call"
By now, youve probably heard of and seen several of your favorite hip-hop artists toting the "Black Card." Well, as of the past couple of weeks, that is so yesterday.
It seems American Express has ditched the Black Card, officially called the "Centurion," for the new Titanium card. Similar to how the black card was handled, membership is invitation-only. Past Black Card holders included Sean "P-Diddy" Combs, Jay-Z, and Naomi Campbell. Though the company never publicly announced how many Black Cards were in circulation, it was estimated that only roughly 5,000 people in the U.S. had them.
The Titanium cards have already been in circulation in some European countries and have become essential tools among Robb Report type high-rollers.
The card carries a hefty $2,500 annual fee and requires the card holders to charge more than $250,000 a year. Word is that since they are so new, many Titanium cards are being refused by some merchants who think they are not real, and some customers have had problems with airport metal detectors.
Airports aside, the card comes dripping with perks like a personal concierge and travel agent - a service that will get you a table with 24 hour notice at any of the hottest (and priciest) restaurants. Want that hard-to-get shoe? They'll track a pair down and ship it to your suite at the Four Seasons (room upgrade courtesy of the Black Card). First-class seats on some airlines are also part of the deal. If the flight is to Europe, they'll even throw in a loaner cell phone.
Despite the royal treatment, there are some reported drawbacks. A chief executive of a privately held software development firm, in Manchester, England, told Forbes magazine that the Black Card had failed to live up to its hype.
"The Centurion card is for people with more money than sense. Centurion claims to be the best in the world for what they do - but could not find me a proper place to eat when I was on business in Ottawa. Plus, every time I call, I get diverted to a call center. I'm looking around for another concierge company, and the only reason I keep the card in the meantime is because I can put it on the table at a business dinner--and it makes the point. Unfortunately, the card is still a status symbol."
So far, American Express has been mum on whether the Titanium version will upgrade its concierge services. "We don't talk about products before they've been introduced here. But our European customers are happy "
While most of us may never feel a Titanium card between our fingers, it's always nice to know what's going on in someone else's world.
I have a black Master Card. What!?
The Black American Express card was one of those urban legends that became real:
I thought they were toting the "Race Card".
I don't have any credit cards anymore. Hubbie paid them and helped me cut them up....... I have a debit card and no debt. Debt makes you a slave to whomever you owe.
They only ever offer me the platinum card. I'm really going to have to step it up.
(Apparently, I had better start working on a hip-hop album in my garage.)
I have 6 credit cards that I use rarely just to keep open lines of credit. It helped me qualify for my 4.5% 100K loan. (:
Based on this article, AMEX didn't 'keep it real' for too long. As others on this board would say: "He's dead, Jim."
However, you have to hand it to AMEX. As the Snopes article mentions, they tried to capitalize on an urban legend instead of being the victim of it.
If you want to see a "real" Titanium credit card, google "Nemisis Knives Titanium".
That's why I said "was" and "became" ;-)
They should have kept it going the faster these hip-hop morons blowing all their money on "Bling" is good for the economy
I think you're mistaking the Amex card with this one:
Okay, we are slaves to our mortgage company too. But other than that, we are free.
I use two credit cards to pay for everything, including rent. However, I pay them off completely on the due date. It's a good cash-flow tactic.
I'm very happy with my Amex Platinum Cash Rebate card. Yeah, it says "Cash Rebate" on the card, but so what. It has no annual fee, and pays back 1.50% in cash each February. I got something like $1,800 last year. Yeah, I charge a lot. But I pay the bill each month in full. Last year, I had some special charges: I charged a big home remodeling project and the down payment on my wife's SUV. And we had a baby. But everything goes on that card: groceries, prescriptions, diapers, furniture, etc. And I'm self employed, and frequently charge things on behalf of clients and get reimbursed (travel to sites, database subscriptions, etc). So all the charges aren't really mine... But the 1.5% is really quite nice.
It's the same old story with most people who are'blessed' with a large cash windfall. Most people don't know how to handle it, much less milk it for all it's worth. And you're right: P Diddy is an exception. Another exception is Usher. He was all the rage last year, but he knows his fame won't last, so he's taking steps now to diversify his income and preserve his current wealth.
Doesn't American Express require full payments at the end of each month?
Sweet! Sounds like you're making money on the card, despite the high yearly fee on it.
Hell, I could charge $250,000.00 a year.
Didn't say I could pay it back...
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