Although the flashiest credit card rewards tend to get most of the press, your favorite credit cards may also come with useful secondary benefits. For instance, though you may not realize it, you may have a credit card with concierge service -- a free benefit that could help you plan a trip, find a gift, or even score hard-to-get event tickets.
Concierge service is common with top-end rewards and travel credit cards. But while it's offered by dozens of cards, few cardholders likely take advantage of the perk -- or even fully understand what they can do with it. Here's what you need to know about finding a credit card with concierge service, as well as what to expect from it.
The first thing to note is that credit card concierge services are usually free to use, though you will, of course, pay for any purchases. The exact services offered by a concierge vary based on card network and/or issuer, but your credit card with concierge service likely provides assistance with some of the following:
Of course, if you have a credit card with concierge service but aren't actively traveling, you may not get as much value from the travel-centric offerings. However, several major card concierge offerings have adapted their services to offer more currently useful assistance like information on local delivery services and help finding virtual events.
A credit card with concierge service will either offer the service through the credit card network or the card issuer (or both, in the case of American Express, which processes its own transactions). The Chase Sapphire Reserve® concierge, for example, is actually offered by Visa for cards in the category Visa® Infinite, of which the Chase Sapphire Reserve® is one.
On the other hand, the Citi concierge is a service offered by Citibank for a few of their cards. So if you have a Citi credit card with concierge service, like the Citi Premier® Card or a Citi Prestige® Card, you get that service from Citi directly.
In most cases, if you have a high-end card from any issuer, you likely have access to some type of concierge service. These cards tend to require an excellent credit score and charge a high annual fee, but they also usually have great rewards and a lot of perks in addition to the concierge service.
Among the Mastercard family of cards, the ones designated World Mastercard® or World Elite Mastercard® have access to the Mastercard concierge (sometimes called "Travel & Lifestyle Managers"). Dozens of banks issue cards with Mastercard concierge services -- check your card for the World or World Elite logo to see if yours is a credit card with concierge service.
Unlike with Mastercard, Visa concierge service differs by card type. So if your Visa card is a Signature or Infinite, you have access to concierge service -- but not the same one. Instead, there is a Visa Signature concierge service and Visa Infinite concierge service, and each has its own contact number.
As we mentioned above, American Express is both the issuer and processing network for its cards, so the concierge service is also through Amex. To get concierge service from Amex, you'll need one of their elite cards, such as The Platinum Card® from American Express (or its business counterpart) or the infamous Black Card.
It's worth noting that most concierge services are not handled in-house by the issuers or networks, but are operated by a third party on the credit card company's behalf.
While the offerings vary, there are also things no concierge service does. You can't call your card concierge agent for credit card issues; the concierge can't increase your credit limit or waive the annual fee. For those types of problems, you should contact your issuer's customer service department.
Furthermore, a concierge agent might be able to get you into a booked restaurant or score a ticket to the Super Bowl -- but many times, they can't. It's worth asking, though, because a concierge typically knows things like who to call, when to call, or what websites to use to fulfill a certain wish.
Of course, even if you get results from your concierge request, they may not be exactly what you wanted. For example, if you ask for a list of the best things to do and see at a certain vacation destination, the list will likely focus on the most obvious and popular destinations. For deeper insight into your destination, you'll likely need to do your own research.
Still, if you're busy or aren't sure the best way to get a desired result, it's worth trying a concierge. After all, their service is free if you have a credit card with concierge services.
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