Finally, a long-awaited feature that makes American Express Membership Rewards points more valuable is back. Through January 31, 2015 there is a 40% transfer bonus to British Airways, so for every 1,000 points transferred, you’ll get 1,400 BA Avios! If you have a U.S. AMEX card that earns Membership Rewards points, you can log into americanexpress.com and then view transfer partners here and see the bonus:
I suppose there have been other targeted transfer bonuses and one to Virgin America recently, but this one is far more useful to most of us.
This is excellent timing for anyone on the fence about the 75K Business Gold and 100K Business Platinum offers as you have time (with some MS) to meet the fairly high spending requirements for these offers and earn your points before the end of January when the bonus is advertized to expire. Please don’t waste a credit card application on a much smaller offer!
If you recently applied for one of these cards, or if you apply for one now, your points earned on purchases will likely not post in time unless you contact AMEX and have them expedited. This is easily done either by calling the number on the back of your card or initiating a chat session at americanexpress.com. Generally AMEX will require that your statement has closed AND that you have paid any balance on your statement. If you do not get the points expedited they post a month later, after the following statement.
I have put together maps of many the various sweet spots using British Airways Avios from the West Coast, the Midwest, the East Coast and Florida – check out yours (as well as the others for ideas on how to put all of these sweet spots to work for you) if you haven’t already!
AMEX seems to be working to get back some of the value that their points and cards have lost through devaluations and changes to benefits – they also announced yesterday that Platinum cardholders will soon get free in-flight wi-fi, 10 per calendar year. Since most of the other benefits of the AMEX Platinum card hold little appeal to me I’ll probably cancel the one I recently got after a year. The $450 fee is just too steep, and that way I’ll be in line to get another one a year after cancelling.
Disclosure: The cards linked to in this post are charge cards, which must be paid off every month. The same as you should be doing with all the rest of any cards you have. If you’re not able to do so, please do not apply for any more cards, and focus on getting rid of any balances!