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American Express Membership Rewards® features several Membership Rewards credit cards and many travel partners you can transfer your points to. Whether you’re thinking about getting a Membership Rewards card, or you’re looking for ways to maximize your stockpile of Membership Rewards points, you’ve come to the right place.
Here’s everything you need to know about American Express’s rewards program.
Personal Credit Cards
Business Credit Cards
|Redemption Options||Travel via Amex Travel or Expedia|
Transfer to travel partners
|Value Per Point||$0.005 – $0.01|
Up to $0.02
Earning Membership Rewards Points
In the rewards card world, Membership Rewards has a reputation for its hard-to-earn points. That’s largely due to Amex’s once-in-a-lifetime welcome bonus policy. If you’ve had an Amex credit card in the past, you won’t be eligible for the introductory offer should you apply for the same card again.
Redeeming Membership Rewards Points
As with other points-based programs, the value of your rewards depends on how you use them The easiest way to redeem Membership Rewards points is to use them for a fixed value within the Membership Rewards program. But that won’t give you the best value for your points.
If you’re looking to maximize your rewards, you’ll want to transfer your points to a partner program.
Membership Rewards points do not expire.
Take your time stockpiling your points for bigger, better rewards.
This is where American Express Membership Rewards really shines. It has more transfer partners than any other credit card loyalty program in the United States. With dozens of airline and hotel partners, you’ll be able to book award travel with just about every major route, in classes on airlines which might otherwise be out of your budget.
PRO TIP: Link your loyalty accounts to your Membership Rewards account right now, if you haven’t already. This enables quick transfers when the time comes to turn your Membership Rewards points into miles.
Airline transfer partners include:
The best way to maximize your Membership Rewards points is to transfer them to a partner program. If you do your research, you’ll be able to get values over $0.01 (up to $0.02) per point.
Use your Membership Rewards points to book travel via the American Express Travel site or on Expedia. In either case, your Membership Rewards points will likely be worth between $0.007 and $0.01 when redeemed for travel, based on information we’ve gathered at the time of publishing.
In comparison, Chase Ultimate Rewards points are worth up to $0.015 when members book through the Ultimate Rewards travel portal.
You can bid on seat upgrades on multiple participating airlines using your Membership Rewards. This will get you at least $0.01 per point. But as the bidding escalates, your points can lose value. So make sure to keep that in mind.
Participating airlines include:
*The information presented has been collected independently by MoneysMyLife. It is current at the time of publishing and will be updated from time-to-time but for the most up-to-date information, please click here to find our source.
|REDEMPTION||VALUE PER POINT|
|Gift cards||$0.007 – $0.01|
|Shop with points |
(Amazon, Walmart, etc.)
|Amex shopping portal||$0.005|
*The information presented has been collected independently by MoneysMyLife and is for illustrative purposes only. It is current at the time of publishing and will be updated from time-to-time but value per point may change significantly. For the most up-to-date information, log on to your Membership Rewards accounts or click here for more information.
Membership Rewards Top Travel Partners
Researching so many travel partners and trying to find the best deals is a migraine-inducing task. Before going through all that trouble, check out our favorite Membership Rewards travel partners to transfer to and their sweet spots based on the information we gathered at the time of publishing:
Choice Hotels has several properties in typically expensive European cities. These hotels range from 8,000 to 25,000 points, so there’s a good chance you’ll be able to find some sweet deals.
You can also use Choice points to book Preferred Hotel properties, a group of luxury hotels.
|One-way||Business||New York||Casablanca||44,000||Royal Air Maroc|
Not many other rewards programs transfer to Hilton Honors, so take advantage of the great value you can get by booking award stays at expensive or luxury Hilton properties.
If you’re an elite member, you also get one free night when you book four nights using points.
|One-way||Business||Auckland||U.S.||62,500||Air New Zealand|
American Express Membership Rewards is an extremely flexible points program, thanks to its large number of transfer partners. But unless you have a premium Amex card it’s not easy to earn points, especially when you compare Membership Rewards to other card programs like Chase Ultimate Rewards.
For the best value, transfer your Membership Rewards points to a partner loyalty program. Otherwise redeeming for rewards within the Membership Rewards program at fixed values will only get you up to $0.01 per point. That’s much less than what you would get with Chase Ultimate Rewards, where you can exchange your points at a fixed price of up to $0.015 per point.
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