Abstract Oxygen adsorption on the Pt(100) and Pt(111) surfaces was investigated using X-ray photo-emission and thermal desorption spectroscopies. Low pressure (ca. 10 −5 Pa) oxygen dosing at near ambient crystal temperature resulted in the formation of dissociated adsorbed species at saturation coverages of nominally 0.2–0.25 monolayer on both surfaces. The combination of higher pressure (ca. 10 −3 Pa) and higher surface temperature (570 K) dosing produced a three to five times higher saturation coverage than the low pressure dosing. The effect of dosing condition on the saturation coverage appears to reconcile apparent discrepancies for the Pt(100) surface in the literature. Characterization by XPS of the higher coverage state for oxygen showed that it is in the same chemical state as the oxygen adsorbed at very low coverage. Angle-resolved XPS has shown that in all cases the oxygen appears to reside on the surface with no significant penetration of oxygen into the bulk, as would be characteristic of oxidation. However, some penetration on the surface by oxygen, such as by a place-exchange type restructuring of the first two atomic layers, cannot be entirely ruled out.