I’ve now had 2 cases where I didn’t complete a spending requirement on an Amex card until 15-20 days after the official deadline, but the bonus posted automatically anyway. I thought I’d let you guys know.
The first case was for a minimum spend requirement on a Hilton card; I actually did complete MSR on time, but Amex stopped counting the source as eligible spend, and I only found out after bonus didn’t post. The second case was for making a Delta purchase within 3 months on the Delta Platinum card to get $100 credit; I just forgot.
These are the only 2 times I missed spending deadline from Amex; both times the bonus posted automatically after I completed the requirement late. I don’t know what the actual hard-coded deadline is, or how widespread this is (i.e. applies to all Amex cards?). If you have more data points, please share.
Keep in mind some other banks also unofficially extend minimum spend deadline. Chase gives you about 25 days over the official deadline, while Citi gives you about 14 days extra. Since they are unofficial, if I think I need the extra time, I send a secure message to have the deadline confirmed in writing to be on the safe side. The difference here is we don’t know what Amex’s actual deadline is, at least I don’t, and neither do their agents, so they can’t tell you.
In a Nutshell
If you missed an Amex spending requirement – either due to a brain fart or because Amex disqualified the source – don’t panic. If it’s easy to complete, do it ASAP and there’s a decent chance the bonus god will give you a pass. Only call when you don’t see bonus post within the normally expected time frame (I’d give it at least a week from transaction posting time on co-brand cards).