American Express Membership Rewards® has many Membership Rewards credit cards and several travel partners you can transfer your points to. If you are wanting to find ways to maximize your rewards or if you’re thinking about getting a Membership Rewards card, be sure to keep reading for a complete guide to American Express Membership Rewards.
Check out our list of the best credit card bonuses here.
Table of Contents
American Express Membership Rewards Quick Facts
|Personal Credit Cards||The Platinum Card® from American Express
American Express® Gold Card
American Express® Green Card
|Business Credit Cards||The Business Platinum Card® from American Express
American Express® Business Gold Card
|Redemption Options||Travel via Amex Travel or Expedia
Transfer to travel partners
|Average American Express Membership Rewards Value|| $0.005 – $0.01
Up to $0.02
Earning Membership Rewards Points
If you are familiar with rewards cards, Membership Rewards is known for having hard-to-earn points. This is mostly because of American Express’ once-in-a-lifetime welcome bonus policy. So, if you ever had a American Express in the past, you will not be able to get the introductory offer if you applied for the same card again.
Despite this policy, you can earn lots of points from many different Membership Rewards cards with bonus categories, in addition to using Amex Offers.
American Express Personal Credit Cards
The American Express® Business Gold Card offers 70,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $10,000 on eligible purchases with the Business Gold Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
You'll earn more rewards: Get 4X Membership Rewards® points on the 2 select categories where your business spent the most each month** (**4X points apply to the first $150,000 in combined purchases from these 2 categories each calendar year.*). In addition, you'll get an airline bonus; 25% points back after you use points for all or part of an eligible flight booked with Amex Travel, up to 250,000 points back per calendar year.*
This card does carry a $295 annual fee, but no foreign transaction fees. (See Rates & Fees)
The Marriott Bonvoy BusinessTM American Express® Card offers offers 75,000 bonus Marriott Bonvoy points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Plus, earn up to $150 back in statement credits on eligible purchases made on your new Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
You can enjoy a complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Silver Elite status with your Card. Plus, earn Gold Elite status after making $35,000 in eligible purchases on your Card in a calendar year.
You'll earn 6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott BonvoyTM program, 4x points at U.S. restaurants, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping, & 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
For each card account anniversary, you'll receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy points) at hotels participating in the Marriott BonvoyTM program. Certain hotels have resort fees.
This card does carry a $125 annual fee. (See Rates & Fees)
The Hilton Honors American Express Business Card has a welcome offer of up to 180,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points. Earn 130,000 Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors Business Card in the first 3 months of Card Membership. Plus, you can earn an additional 50,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend a total of $10,000 in purchases on the Card in the first 6 months.
You'll earn 12X at hotels and resorts in the Hilton portfolio, 6X on Select Business & Travel Purchases, 3X on all other eligible purchases. Terms & Limitations Apply.
In addition, you can enjoy complimentary Hilton Honors Gold Status with your Hilton Honors Business Card & earn a Weekend Night Reward from Hilton Honors after you spend $15,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year.
This card has a $95 annual fee. (See Rates & Fees)
With the American Express Blue Business CashTM Card, you'll earn a $250 statement credit after you make $3,000 in purchases on your Card in your first 3 months.
Plus, earn 2% cash back on all eligible purchases on up to $50,000 per calendar year, then 1%. Cash back earned is automatically credited to your statement.
From workflow to inventory to floor plans, your business is constantly changing. That’s why you’ve got the power to spend beyond your credit limit with Expanded Buying Power§.Just remember, the amount you can spend above your credit limit is not unlimited. It adjusts with your use of the Card, your payment history, credit record, financial resources known to American Express and other factors.
This card comes with no annual fee (See Rates & Fees).
With the Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express, you'll get rewarded for business as usual. Earn 15,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
Earn 2X Membership Rewards® points on everyday business purchases such as office supplies or client dinners. You'll earn 2X applies to the first $50,000 in purchases per year, 1 point per dollar thereafter. You’ve got the power to use your Card beyond its credit limit* with Expanded Buying Power.
More buying power allows for your business means more opportunities to earn points. That’s everyday business with the Blue Business Plus Card. *The amount you can spend above your credit limit is not unlimited. It adjusts with your use of the Card, your payment history, credit record, financial resources known to American Express, and other factors.
There card comes with no annual fee (See Rates & Fees).
The The Business Platinum Card® from American Express has a welcome offer of 100,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $15,000 on eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
You'll also earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com. In addition, you'll get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's 1.5 points per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. You can get up to 1 million additional points per year.
If you use your Membership Rewards® Pay with Points for all or part of a flight with your selected qualifying airline, you can get 35% of the points back, up to 500,000 bonus points per calendar year.
PAY OVER TIME OPTION: A flexible payment option to help manage cash flow on purchases of $100 or more.
This card does come with a $595 annual fee. Now, you can earn up to $200 in statement credits annually by getting up to $100 semi-annually for U.S. purchases with Dell.
The Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card offers 50,000 bonus miles and a $50 statement credit after spending $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
You'll earn 2X miles on every dollar spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta, on every dollar spent on eligible U.S. purchases for advertising in select media, on every dollar spent on eligible U.S. shipping purchases, on every eligible dollar spent at restaurants. Earn 1 Mile on every eligible dollar spent on purchases.
This card carries a $99 annual fee ($0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $99) (See Rates & Fees). However, there are no foreign transaction fees and you can take $100 off your next Delta flight - after you spend $10,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you will earn a $100 Delta Flight Credit to use toward future travel.
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card 60,000 bonus miles, 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs), and a $100 statement credit after spending $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
You'll earn 3X miles on every dollar spend on eligible purchases made directly with Delta and on every eligible dollar spent on purchases made directly with hotels; 1.5X miles per dollar on single eligible purchases of $5,000 or more (that's an extra half mile per dollar), up to 50,000 additional miles per year; & 1X mile on every eligible dollar spent on other purchases.
This card does carry a $250 (See Rates & Fees).
The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card offers 60,000 bonus miles, 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs), and a $100 statement credit after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
You'll earn 3X miles on every dollar spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta.; 1X mile on every eligible dollar spent on purchases.
This card does carry an annual fee of $550 (See Rates & Fees). However, there are no foreign transaction fees.
Enroll in Amex Offers to earn extra, limited-time Membership Rewards points at participating retailers. Opt in via your online account or the American Express mobile app.
Redeeming Membership Rewards Points
Similar to other points-based programs, how you use your rewards will determine the value of them. Using Membership Rewards points for a fixed value within the Membership Rewards program will be the easiest way to redeem them, however this won’t give you the best value.
In order to maximize your rewards, you should transfer your points to a partner program.
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.
The best part about American Express Membership Rewards is that it has more transfer partners than any other credit card loyalty program in the United States. Redeem American Express Membership points with the following travel partners.
- Aer Lingus
- Air Canada
- Air France/KLM
- All Nippon Airways
- British Airways
- Cathay Pacific
- Delta Air Lines
- El Al Israel Airlines
- Etihad Airways
- Hawaiian Airlines
- JetBlue Airways
- Singapore Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic
- Choice Privileges
- Hilton Honors
- Marriott Bonvoy
Using your Membership Rewards earned, you can bid for a seat upgrade on multiple participating airlines. This method can net you almost $0.01 per point. However, if the bidding starts to escalate, you will start to lose value. The participating airlines include:
- Aerolineas Argentinas
- Air Canada
- Air China
- Air Mauritius
- Caribbean Airlines
- Etihad Airways
- Fiji Airways
- Gulf Air
- Kenya Airways
- Malaysia Airlines
- Silk Air
- Singapore Airlines
- TAP Portugal
|Redemption||Value Per Point|
|Gift cards||$0.007 – $0.01|
|Shop with points
(Amazon, Walmart, etc.)
Membership Rewards Top Travel Partners
Trying to find the best travel partners and deals is a strenuous task, so be sure to take a look at the best Membership Rewards travel partners to transfer to:
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. Additionally, you will be able to use Choice points to book Preferred Hotel properties, which is 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|
Because of its vast number of transfer partners, American Express Membership Rewards is a very flexible points program. However, unlike Chase Ultimate Rewards, it might be harder to earn points unless you have a premium Amex card like the Platinum card. In order to get the best value, you should transfer your Membership Rewards points to a partner loyalty program.
For more credit cards, see our latest list of the best credit card bonuses!
|Chase Business Complete BankingSM||$300 Cash||Review|
|Citi Priority Account||Up to $1,500 Cash Bonus|
with required activities.
|HSBC Premier Checking Member FDIC||$450 Cash||Review|
|HSBC Premier Checking Member FDIC||Up To $600||Review|
|Chase Total Checking®||$225 Cash||Review|
|Chase Secure BankingSM||$100 Cash||Review|
|Huntington 25 Checking||$300 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Unlimited Plus Business Checking||$750 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Unlimited Business Checking||$400 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Business Checking 100||$200 Cash||Review|
|TD Bank Beyond CheckingSM||$300 Cash||Review|
|TD Bank Convenience CheckingSM||$150 Cash||Review|
|SoFi Money||$100 Cash||Review|
|Discover Bank Cashback Debit||$360 Debit Cashback||Review|
|BMO Harris Smart Advantage Account||$300 Cash||Review|
|Citigold Account||Up To $1500 Cash Bonus|
with required activities.
|Axos Bank Basic Business Checking||$100 Cash||Review|
|Axos Business Savings||$100 Cash||Review|
|Aspiration Spend & Save||$150 Cash||Review|