Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Now Amex Business cardholders can sell their Membership Rewards points for 0.9p!

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American Express has launched a very interesting offer for holders of American Express Business Gold and American Express Business Platinum.

This is the same offer which was made available to holders of the personal Platinum card earlier in the year.  A similar, poorer, version is now running for Preferred Rewards Gold cardholders who are offered a 50% bonus, or 0.675p per point – our article is here.

If you use your points for statement credit (ie reducing what you owe next month by redeeming points) you would usually receive a pitiful £4.50 per 1,000 points.

This new offer is worth £9 per 1,000 Membership Rewards pointsThis is surprisingly good.

The offer runs until 18th November so you have plenty of time to take part.

Pay with Points offer on Amex Business Gold

What are Membership Rewards points worth?

Here is my core article on the best uses of American Express Membership Rewards points.

Here is a summary of my valuations:

0.75p – 1.5p per point (estimate, 1:1 ratio) – airline miles

1p per point (estimate, 1:3 ratio) – Radisson Rewards hotel transfers

0.75p per point (estimate, 2:3 ratio) – Marriott Bonvoy hotel transfers

0.66p per point (estimate, 1:2 ratio) – Hilton Honors hotel transfers

0.66p per point (estimate, 15:1 ratio) – Club Eurostar points transfers

0.5p per point (guaranteed, pseudo-cash) – retailer gift cards

0.5p per point (guaranteed, pseudo-cash with potential for upside) – Nectar points

0.45p per point (guaranteed, pseudo-cash) – taking Amazon credit

Read my article on the best Membership Rewards transfers to see how I justify these numbers.

Is Amex really offering 0.9p per point for statement credit?

Yes it is.  Go to your American Express account and select ‘Use Points for Purchases’ on your Business Gold or Business Platium card home page.

You are taken to a page like this, from my Business Platinum card.  Select an individual transaction (click to enlarge):

American Express Business pay with points offer

As you can see, I am offered a rate of £9 per 1,000 points.

Pay with Points offer on Amex Business Platinum

Should I redeem my Membership Rewards points for 0.9p each?

That’s not for me to say, of course.

However, as you can see from my numbers above, the bulk of transfers are worth LESS than 0.9p per point.

I would definitely take 0.9p in cash instead of turning my American Express points into Eurostar, Marriott Bonvoy, Radisson Rewards or Hilton Honors points.

This is NOT because these schemes are bad, but because the transfer rate is not generous enough.

The decision is more marginal for airline miles.  Here are the American Express airline transfer partners, all of which are 1:1.  If used sensibly, you should get more than 0.9p per airline mile.  However, you won’t get SUBSTANTIALLY more than 0.9p per mile and cash in the bank may be more useful to you at the moment.

You should also remember that there are many opportunities throughout the year to buy Avios at around 1p to 1.1p per point.  Transferring from Amex at 1:1 into Avios is still a better deal than cashing out for 0.9p, but it is clearly more marginal at this level and the benefit of getting cash in your hand may be high.

When does this offer end?

The offer runs until 18th November.

You can only redeem credit against actual purchases, so your maximum redemption is limited to the value of purchases you make before the closing date.

If you want to find out more about Amex Business Gold and Amex Business Platinum, links to our reviews are below.  You qualify for a sign-up bonus if you haven’t had a Membership Rewards points card in the past SIX MONTHS.  (Yes, the rule is six months and not 24 months for the Business cards.)

American Express Business Gold card

American Express Business Gold

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

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

Comments (20)

  • Mr(s) Entitled says:

    Surely there should be a reference to tax somewhere in the analysis? You are paying to drive down a expense compared to transfering the points to a non-taxable source.

    • Doogly says:

      Only if you make it one

    • Ziggy says:

      I would suggest that an expense has been incurred (charged to the card) so, assuming its a valid business expense, it remains tax deductible. I don’t believe that the way in which an expense is paid for affects the validity of that expense (for tax purposes).

      • Genghis says:

        Points are outside the scope of tax. But if you use the MRs for an effective rebate against business purchases, the net cost has decreased and therefore if you’re doing things correctly, you’re getting the after tax value from your miles.

    • memesweeper says:

      MR(S) ENTITLED, correct, but it’s a complex analysis given the variety of small/medium businesses that might have a card account.

  • Freddy says:

    I’ve always steered away from cash on cards related to my business for tax reasons and opted for points – does this still stand?

  • qrfan says:

    What do you consider “substantially” more than 0.9p? Last major redemption: 2-4-1 to Japan in F and that’s worth at least £2k each. Minus £1k in fees / 200k avios = 1.5p. That’s 66% more than 0.9p, which I would argue is substantial. And yes, i would pay £2k each for F in the unlikely event that fare was available (it’s was probably more like £4k at the time). Friend on the same trip paid over £2k for Finnair in J to Sapporo. Selling at 0.9p lacks imagination.

    • Rob says:

      I haven’t taken the deal, but to be fair you are comparing it with one of the best value Avios redemptions available. Even then, if you had a sproglet with you, the maths suddenly looks shakey at 400,000 Avios for 3.

    • Doogly says:

      Well if you already have enough air miles and have been sitting on the MR points for a while it does make a lot of sense

    • Char Char says:

      Selling at 0.9p makes a lot of sense if someone has been looking to get rid of them, if you can’t get air miles for less than 0.9p then you probably lack imagination!

  • IO says:

    Hi, O/T what the best card for points that is not an AMEX? Looking to pay the school fees and they don’t take AMEX!

  • David says:

    How about Billhop to pay School Fees etc…

  • David says:

    Err sorry, so as to be able to use Amex and receive the MRs doh….

  • Owen Rudge says:

    If you’ve received a statement credit for a transaction (Shop Small, Curry’s offer etc), I assume choosing to pay it with points wouldn’t reverse that credit? I am seeing the full transaction amount in the “select & redeem” page here, so was wondering if anybody had already done this?

    • Peter K says:

      I decided not to risk it. There were enough other transactions to use my points on not to poke that potential bear.

    • mark2 says:

      ShopSmall seems to be a late edition e.g. the statement credit does not result in loss of points. So you can probably pay the original charge with points. Why not try one and see?

    • Char Char says:

      Completely separate thing and have used it on the currys offer.

  • Char Char says:

    I will be clearing out 90% of my MR now, already have millions or air/hotel points so it was becoming a problem using them up