The American Express Membership Rewards program is one of the very best credit card rewards programs out there. It lets members earn points that are transferrable to many different reward programs and get anything from free flights to hotel stays, cruises, gift cards, or cash back. In fact, American Express says they offer over a million different rewards, from over 500 different brands. That’s a lot of different ways to spend loyalty points!
Now business owners have a chance to really rake in the rewards, with a new promotion announced this week for the American Express Business Gold Rewards Card. From now until right after Thanksgiving, new cardmembers will get 50,000 Membership Rewards points for spending just $5,000 in the first three months of having the card.
Previously, there was no sign-on bonus for this card, although from time to time they have offered a 75,000 point sign-on bonus. However, those very-limited-time promotions required spending of $10,000 – double the spending for less than double this bonus amount.
What to do with 50K Points?
Putting aside for just a moment all the other ways this credit card makes it easy for members to earn points, let’s just take a look at what those bonus points could get a business owner who signs up for this credit card.
The value of American Express Membership Rewards points varies depending on how you choose to redeem them, but in general the redemption value hovers around one cent per point. That makes 50,000 points worth at least $500 if you use them wisely.
The smartest thing to do with these points is use them for travel – air travel, specifically. American Express lets you transfer your Membership Rewards points to several different airline loyalty programs – Aeroplan from Air Canada, the Marco Polo Plan from Cathay Pacific, or Delta SkyMiles. Since these three airlines each represent one of the three major air alliances (Star Alliance, oneworld, and SkyTeam, respectively), that means American Express Business Gold Rewards Card users can book travel on over fifty different airlines. Doing this gives the best value for these points.
Some of the ways members can also use points, which don’t give as good of value, are using Amazon’s Pay with Points system, shopping for merchandise in the American Express Membership Rewards Mall, or trading them in for gift cards. These are still okay rewards, but don’t stretch those reward points quite as far.
Earning Points All Year Long
Even after the bonus points, it’s easy to really stack up the points with this American Express card. Cardholders earn triple points on airfare purchases, double points on advertising, gas, and shipping, and one point per dollar on all other purchases. Even for a small business, it’s easy to spend a couple thousand dollars a month on airfare and advertising – and that can add up to between 4,000 and 6,000 Membership Rewards Points each month. That’s between 48,000 and 72,000 points a year, just for airfare and advertising spending.
The $175 annual fee for the American Express Business Gold card is waived for the first year, and this promotion only lasts through November 26, 2012, so if you’re a business owner with great credit and haven’t had an American Express card before (or at least within the last year), you can apply for this excellent promotion today and rake in the rewards.