Product Idea: AMEX Concierge by Text

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american expressI have been a big fan of American Express for years, both in the UK and USA — without singing their praises too much, I love the customer service they provide and I love the facilities that they offer if you are an Amex Platinum cardholder.

I love all the customer rewards points (yup, you can redeem these into things like airmiles, or SPG points or simply vouchers at some high-end shops!), access to things like airport lounges and all sorts of other travel-related facilities an Amex Platinum card offers. I love that they cover all of my health insurance when I travel abroad. I love the car rental insurance they offer too — that in itself makes it so much easier and cheaper to rent a car when traveling!

And more than anything else I love their 24/7 concierge service! Maybe I am just a sucker for good service, but as I find myself most of the times making plans late at night. And it’s so good being able to call someone late at night to confirm services or make reservations and plans!

“-Amex, I want two tickets to Iron Maiden next month!”

“-Amex, can you sort out my flight to London in 2 weeks time?”

The list can go on for ages — I’m sure if you are a Platinum cardholder yourself you would know all about it. However, here’s one tiny thing that I wish they could change: when you have to ask a question you find yourself occasionally on the phone for 5-10 minutes while they dig in their databases to find the answer for you. They never failed me on that and I always got the answer to my questions. The only issue here is that I have to hold on and wait on the phone while the concierge employees go and find the information for me. This is dead time for me — I could do a few other (small) things in that time… but I can’t, because I’m waiting on the phone for an answer.

I would so much more prefer to be able to send a text: “-Amex, can I add an additional driver when I rent a car using your card and your car rental insurance?”, click on “SEND” then go about my business. Half an hour later or so (I don’t need an immediate answer to questions like these — I just need to know the answer in a few hours when I get to actually rent the car), I go and look back at my phone and by that point the answer was already text-ed back to my phone. No waiting, no pressure on their agents who have to keep apologizing to me for having me wait for 10 minutes.

There are multiple ways of going about this asynchronous question/answer situation. One of them could be via their app — after all the app knows my Amex login and details of my card, so they could pull my entire account based on that. Or they could do it via text — after all Amex has my cell number so any text arriving from that number, again, they could pull my account details and find out whatever they need about me. Granted, there are certain things touching on personal details for which they would need me to call, and I understand that, but for general questions I feel it would make my life (and quite likely other cardholders!) soooo much easier! Please, Amex, can I text you when I have a question rather than wait on the line? 🙂