Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

3,000 bonus Avios via Melia Gold for American Express Platinum upgraders

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

Melia Rewards Gold status is one of the new benefits of the American Express Platinum charge card which were introduced in 2015.

One of the benefits of the American Express Platinum charge card is the hotel statuses which come with it.  

You can receive status in five hotel chains for free:

Hilton Honors (Gold status)

Club Carlson – Radisson, Park Inn, Park Plaza (Gold status)

MeliaRewards (Gold status)

Starwood Preferred Guest (Gold status)

Shangri-La Golden Circle (Jade status)

In December, this list grew to include:

Marriott Rewards (Gold status)

because, with the acquisition of Starwood by Marriott, you can instantly match your Starwood status to the equivalent Marriott status via the respective websites.

And, in March, the list grew again to include a new status:

Taj Hotels InnerCircle (Gold status)

…. because, due to a new partnership, you can now match your Shangri-La status to Taj Hotels status.

To be honest, I haven’t bothered setting up all of these.  It is highly unlikely that I will be staying in most of these chains in the medium term and, if I did have a booking, I know that I could get the relevant status activated in time.


I did recently activate my MeliaRewards Gold status.  It wasn’t as fast as Hilton – who recently processed my wife’s upgrade in 3 days – but my existing Melia Rewards account was upgraded within a week.

You can find out more about the MeliaRewards programme here on the Melia website.

As usual, I recommend you open an account yourself (the sign-up page is here) instead of asking Amex to open one for you.  This way, you have details of the account number and password.

What are the benefits of MeliaRewards Gold status?

You can see the full list of MeliaRewards Platinum, Gold and Silver benefits here.

MeliaRewards Gold does not offer a huge amount, to be honest, but it is certainly better than nothing if you have a Melia, INNSIDE, Tryp, ME etc stay coming up:

13 points per € or $ spent, compared to the standard 10 points per € or $

‘Buy 1, get 1 free’ on hotel breakfast

Free wi-fi

3 x 20% discount vouchers

Late check-out until 2pm (resort hotels) or 4pm (city hotels) unless the hotel is 100% full

And an interesting welcome offer worth 3,000 Avios …..

When I received my ‘welcome to Gold’ email from MeliaRewards, there was an interesting offer in it.

If I made a booking within 30 days, I would receive 10,000 bonus MeliaRewards points.

This is an attractive offer.  10,000 MeliaRewards points converts into 3,000 Avios points which would be an excellent return on a cheap one-night stay.

Note that British Airways is not a MeliaRewards partner, only Iberia Plus.  This means that your 3,000 Avios would be sent over to an Iberia Plus account and you can then move them via ‘Combine My Avios’ to BA or

MeliaRewards is also a partner with various other airlines, but the transfer rates are a lot poorer.  The main ones that would interest HfP readers are Miles & More, American AAdvantage and Flying Club.  10,000 MeliaRewards points only gets you 1,666 miles in those programmes – although that is still a decent reward for one stay.

You could also use your 10,000 MeliaRewards points for a €50 ‘in hotel’ food and drink credit on a future stay.  This is a better deal than taking the 3,000 Avios points, to be honest.  10,000 points isn’t enough for a free room – INNSIDE and 4-star Melia hotels start at 17,000 points, 5-star Melia hotels start at 22,000 points and ME hotels start at 28,000 points.

You should time your MeliaRewards Gold upgrade properly

This is a very good offer from Melia Rewards.  If you have an American Express Platinum card, I would delay claiming your MeliaRewards Gold status until you think you can fit in a Melia / INNSIDE night.

There is obviously no guarantee that Melia will continue to offer 10,000 bonus MeliaRewards points for your first booking in 30 days after becoming Gold.  On the other hand, there is no point blowing your chance of getting it by upgrading your account when you have no intention of staying in the short term.

If you are looking for a few ideas for Melia stays, we recently reviewed the impressive new Gran Melia in Madrid (review), the ME in Milan (review), the INNSIDE in New York (review) and the INNSIDE in Manchester (review).  And, if you came to our Christmas party last year, you would have been able to take a look at the Melia White House in Regents Park.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – August 2022 update

If you are looking to apply for a new credit card, here are our top recommendations based on the current sign-up bonuses.

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Amex Gold

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & two airport lounge passes Read our full review

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

15,000 points bonus and 1.5 points for every £1 you spend Read our full review

Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

Barclaycard Select Cashback credit card

1% cashback (3% on business travel for four months) and no annual fee Read our full review

Comments (24)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Jose says:

    Sorry for going slightly off topic here, but related to the Amex platinum and its hotel statuses: If I signup today for the Amex platinum, would I benefit from gold status at any bookings I have already paid for? I’m thinking of two Hilton bookings I have made for late 2017 specifically.

    Thanks, would appreciate any info.

    • Liz says:

      Yes you would as long as your status is upgraded in time.

    • Rob says:

      Yes you would get the benefits. You might need to nudge the hotel at check-in, though, as they may not see you are Gold if they have not refreshed your details from the date you booked.

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.