Home Credit Cards AMEX Told Me How To Hack Its Bonus Offer

AMEX Told Me How To Hack Its Bonus Offer

by joeheg

Several months ago, American Express emailed me an offer on my Platinum Card.

I could earn 20,000 Membership Rewards points by adding an authorized user to my account and their charging $2,000 to that card.

While I’m not a big fan of adding authorized users, 20K bonus points made me reconsider my position. I added Sharon to my account as an authorized user (or an AU).

I’m sure American Express thought people enrolling for the 20K point offer would add another Platinum Card to their account. The main thing to consider is that adding authorized users to your American Express Platinum Card isn’t free. It costs $175 to add up to three authorized users to your account.

It’s arguable that adding authorized users to your AMEX Platinum card can be a good deal. Here’s a breakdown of all the benefits AUs get. If you can add three people to your account, there’s value there.

However, I only needed to add Sharon to get the 20K points and I didn’t want to buy the points for $175.

Fortunately, American Express told me how to hack the offer in the fine print.

The annual fee for up to three Additional Platinum Cards is $175. Each Additional Platinum Card after the first three Cards is $175. You also have the option to add an Additional Gold Card to your account for no annual fee.

An overlooked option of the Platinum Card is the ability to add a Gold Card authorized user to your account for no charge.

The gold card you get as an AU on a Platinum Card is a bit quirky. It’s not the same as the AMEX Gold Card, which is great because of its bonus points for restaurants and supermarkets. Instead, this AU gold card is linked to your Platinum Card account and earns the same 5X points on airfare. However, the card lacks all the perks, like lounge access and rental car and hotel status upgrades.

For us, the price was right since I didn’t have to pay anything to get a gold AU card. You may be wondering if AMEX would honor the offer if you sign up for the free card.

I can report that Sharon spent $2,000 on the gold card for everyday expenses and we earned 20K points. That’s 11X Membership Rewards points per dollar, which is better than you’ll find with almost any other card.

In addition, I don’t think this should anger the RAT team because AMEX was the one to suggest this option in the promotional email for the offer.

Thank you to AMEX for reminding me of an easy way to hack your own offer.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

1 comment

JohnB September 17, 2022 - 12:54 am

Having a spouse as the AU benefits you in another way. You can direct transfer to the AU’s frequent flyer accounts directly from your Membership Rewards. For example you are doing an award trip that neither of you have enough miles to do 2 awards or some combination. But with a little top off from MR, now each of have enough miles to book 1 award each. Key this is the AU has to be on your Amex account for 90 days. Doing that now might be beneficial in the future.

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