If you have an American Express credit card that no longer meets your spending needs, you might be asking if you can switch your Amex card through an upgrade or downgrade. The short answer is yes. This request is called a product change, and there are specific situations when it is allowed.
On this page:
- Are you eligible for an American Express product change?
- How to improve your chances of an Amex upgrade or downgrade
- How to request an upgrade or downgrade to a new Amex card
- What to do if you are denied a product change?
Are you eligible for an American Express product change?
When looking to switch from one Amex card to another, you must first take stock of the type of card you have. Amex charge cards, for example, can’t be switched to a revolving credit card, or vice versa; they’re two different account types.
In addition, if you have a card that’s attached to a loyalty program, such as one of the Delta SkyMiles credit cards, you cannot switch products to a different rewards program.
Four Amex product change rules govern switches:
- You cannot change from a charge card to a credit card, but you can downgrade a credit card to a charge card—if you can pay off the balance the next month
- You cannot change from a cash-back card to a membership rewards card. If you have a co-branded card, you can switch to another card under that co-brand
- You cannot change a business card to a personal card, or vice versa
- Your account should be in good standing
How to improve your chances of an Amex upgrade or downgrade
Timing is critical when it comes to requesting an upgrade or downgrade to a new card. That is why it is recommended that you wait at least 13 months after account opening before making such a request. Part of the reason for this is that American Express takes suspicions of welcome offer abuse seriously.
The terms and conditions of cards with welcome offers state:
“If we in our sole discretion determine that you have engaged in abuse, misuse, or gaming in connection with the welcome offer in any way or that you intend to do so (for example, … if you cancel or downgrade your account within 12 months after acquiring it; …), we may not credit the Statement Credit to, we may freeze the Statement Credit credited to, or we may take away Statement Credit from your account. We may also cancel this Card account and other Card accounts you may have with us.”
Ensure that you are not trying to take advantage of a welcome offer and prove that the product change request is due to spending habit changes. By doing this, you can improve your chances of approval.
How to request an upgrade or downgrade to a new Amex card
When you decide on the product change you’d like to pursue, call Amex customer service using the number on the back of your card and ask the customer service representative if you’re eligible to switch to a new card.
Here is an example of where to look for the phone number if you have the Platinum Card:
If you follow the rules outlined above regarding which Amex card types can be switched with each other, then the customer service representative is more likely to grant the product change.
Whatever you do, keep all of your accounts in good standing. If you’re behind on your payments or have a poor payment history, Amex will likely deny you any product changes.
What to do if you are denied a product change?
If your request for a product change is denied, ask the customer service representative if there is anything you can do to have your request approved later. If the representative says your request isn’t possible, you’ll need to submit a new application to receive the new card. If you want to compare your options, check out our picks for the best American Express credit cards.