So, I’m a little late to this game, but American Express has released a new offer, issuing 75,000 Membership Rewards upon meeting the minimum spend requirement of $10,000 in the first 4 months of account opening. This is a fantastic offer for those who can meet a high minimum spend requirement. This card earns 3X MRs on airfare spending, 2X on advertising, shipping, and gas, and 1X on everything else. This card does come with a $175 annual fee but it is waived for the first year.
I opened the personal version of this card last year when the minimum spend requirement was a lot smaller. I’ve been very happy with the card although it does not beat the Chase Sapphire (which gives Ultimate Rewards), purely because I find the redemption partners of the Sapphire to beat those of the Membership Rewards program. For those of you unaware of who these partners are (airlines are the best value and are the only ones I’m including here although there are a lot of other options), they include British Airways, Air Canada, Delta, Cathay Pacific, Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Jet Blue, Air France, Hawaiian Airlines, ANA, El Al, Iberia, Alitalia, Frontier, Asia Miles, and AeroMexico. With the exception of Jet Blue, your Membership Rewards transfer to these programs 1:1, making this a great offer. To make this even better, some airlines often run promotions resulting in a 30-50% bonus on your transfer, although there aren’t any great offers right now (and most airlines don’t run promotions at all).
Keep in mind that you must have a business to qualify for this offer, but those who sell items on Ebay, own a second home, or even plan to start a business can use their own Social Security number and open the card as a sole proprietorship (let me know if you have additional questions on this). If both spouses open the card, that’s 150,000 Membership Rewards and with the occasional bonuses, you’ll get even more than that!
This offer is good until June 26, 2012 only so if you’re going to apply, do so by next Tuesday. I’m still on the fence on this one. It’s a great offer, but I’m not up for another round of applications until mid-July and I don’t want to cause issues with that schedule… Stay tuned and I’ll let you know what I decide!
As always, let me know if you have any questions!