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You're likely already familiar with some of the great benefits credit cards offer, from cash rewards to increased fraud protection. But some credit cards add a personal touch to their benefits in the form of concierge service. If you carry one of these cards, you basically have an army of personal assistants at your disposal day and night.
Credit card concierge services can take care of the details for you by reserving tables at popular restaurants, securing tickets to sold-out events, advising you on travel plans or even helping with personal shopping. To use a credit card's concierge service, first make sure your card extends such a benefit, and then call your issuer to see what types of help they can offer. Here's what you need to know about making the most of your credit card's concierge service.
What Is a Credit Card Concierge?
Credit card concierges are customer service representatives who can step in to handle cardholders' day-to-day needs and demands. While they may not be able to do anything you can't do for yourself, they can still save you a lot of time by taking some busy work off your hands.
Credit card concierges are on call to take care of things a personal assistant would, like helping you book flights, finding that perfect gift for a professional engagement or tracking down items you might have lost while traveling.
Most concierge services are provided by specific families of cards within larger networks, such as Visa Signature or Visa Infinite products or certain World Mastercard and World Elite Mastercard products. Some are provided directly by credit card issuers, such as American Express or Citi.
If your card features concierge service, you should receive information about it with the initial benefits package when you apply. However, you can always just ring up customer service and ask what services are available with your specific cards. The concierge service itself is free (or included in your credit card's annual fee), but you still have to pay for anything you purchase through them.
How to Get the Most out of Your Card's Concierge Service
Credit card concierge services available through your card issuer, payment network or bank can be accessible via phone, email, a specific webpage or an app. You can ask your credit card concierge to do any number of tasks, including ones you might not have thought of. Here are the main types of requests they cover:
- Travel plans: Credit card concierges are usually able to search for and reserve flights, hotels, other types of transit and even book activities and excursions. They're basically like a travel agent in your back pocket.
- Restaurant reservations: Heading to a new city and don't know where to eat? Your credit card concierge can pull up recommendations and make reservations for you. They might even be able to score a table at an eatery that appears booked up to the general public.
- Event tickets: Some credit card issuers have deals with agencies that sell tickets to major events like concerts and sporting events, so they may be able to get you preferred seating or spots in an arena that is otherwise sold out.
- Personal shopping: They won't send a personal assistant to follow you around a department store—but if you need to locate a hard-to-find item for yourself, or a gift for someone else, your credit card concierge can do the legwork tracking it down. What's more, they can probably arrange to purchase it and have it shipped or delivered wherever you like.
- Lost and found: Ever left something behind in a hotel room? Your credit card concierge can contact the property for you and make sure they look high and low for your lost item and then return it to you.
- Search for services: Need to find a store selling Danish antiques? Looking for the best pet spa in your area? Your credit card concierge can comb through listings for you and find the best-rated businesses in your area.
- What they can't do: Credit card concierges are veritable superstars, but don't ask them for services like booking medical assistance, tracking down classified information or running errands in person.
Should You Get a Credit Card With a Concierge?
Having a personal assistant at your fingertips sounds great, but the credit cards that include this type of benefit tend to be ultra-premium and carry high annual fees. Before opening one of them, think about whether you'll derive enough value from its other benefits to justify paying for it. Not only that, these cards also usually require you to have a good credit score, so make sure your score is good enough to qualify. Before applying for a new credit card, check your credit score for free.
Calling on a credit card concierge can be a tremendous benefit when you need help either at home or on the road and don't have time to do your own research or make your own bookings. If your card includes such a benefit, call your issuer to ask what kinds of services they provide and then take them out for a test drive the next time you have a request they may be able to assist with. For personalized credit card suggestions, including those with concierge services, try Experian CreditMatch™.