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Shop Small™ with American Express will be returning in June

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This article has been sponsored by American Express Merchant Services

American Express has confirmed that it is bringing back its ‘Shop Small’ campaign. The campaign will run in late June, with exact dates to be confirmed soon.

‘Shop Small’ is an offer which incentivises you to shop at small independent retailers. In turn, of course, it encourages small independent retailers to accept American Express in order to participate.

The ‘Shop Small’ campaign usually runs twice a year – in December and in June. The upcoming offer will offer you £5 cashback when you spend £15.

American Express Shop Small June 2022

Should your business take part in Shop Small?

We usually focus our ‘Shop Small’ coverage on the consumer cashback benefits of shopping at participating retailers. However, we thought we would briefly cover the benefits of taking part in Shop Small as a merchant for anybody reading who may have their own retail business or knows someone who does.

Any eligible business who signs up to accept American Express payments and takes part in ‘Shop Small’ will benefit from:

  • An attractive cashback offer that is fully funded by Amex at no cost to you
  • Access to Amex’s high-spending Cardmembers (they spend 3x more)
  • Transparent and competitive pricing where you only pay when you receive a transaction.
  • No setup costs or monthly fees
  • Promotion via the Amex Map and Amex App
American Express Shop Small June 2022

Is your business eligible to take part in Shop Small?

To take part in Shop Small as a merchant, American Express has a defined criteria. One of the key requirements in this is that your business must be a traditional “street-side” business that deals with its customers face to face in premises that the business owns or rents. This means that the small business must have at least one physical business location (up to a maximum of 30 locations) within the UK.

Understandably, another requirement is that the business must have signed up to accept American Express and the terminal must have been set up to accept American Express® Cards to be included in Shop Small.  For the full set of requirements, please click this link here.

To take part in Shop Small, business owners need to apply to accept American Express before 25th May using this link here.

How will Shop Small work for consumers?

  • The campaign is now confirmed to run in late June
  • You must register in advance via the ‘Offers’ section of the American Express® app or website. Each Card / Supplementary Card, must be registered separately. Registration is not yet open.
  • You will be restricted to £25 cashback per American Express Card you register
  • The standard rule of one payment per retailer per Card will remain


If you, or someone you know runs an independent shop, it is worth considering signing up to take Amex payments in time for Shop Small. As a reminder, the last day you can apply to be an Amex merchant in time for Shop Small is 25th May. You can sign up here.

If you are not a shop-owner and simply have an American Express Card, Shop Small is a rewarding time to shop with local and independent retailers. American Express funds 100% of the cashback so your local independent shops are not paying to participate.

We will remind you when registration opens for Shop Small Summer 2022 – it is likely to be soon.

Comments (70)

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

  • John says:

    lol one week only? Probably won’t be in the UK then anyway, not that I made any use of the previous 2 iterations

  • Andrew J says:

    Yet more credits to chase when they don’t pay out, merchants listed which don’t exist/take Amex/use an aggregator. No thanks, I’ll pass.

    • M says:

      I laughed when had a transaction from a closing Sunday didn’t track and the agent refused to issue credit: “Since the transaction posted on Monday, I can’t process a credit for you” 🤷‍♂️

      • Cheshire Pete says:

        I’ve also noticed a big deterioration in their CS experience. I used to measure other CS against Amex being a Gold standard. When I wanted to downgrade my BAPP to the Free BA card last month the agent told me I could only do it via my online account. He then went on to tell me, when I proved to him this was nonsense, that I couldn’t downgrade, I’d have to close the account and reapply. He also tried to persuade me to stay as he told me the Fee has been reduced back to £195. Anyhow to cut a long story short I asked him to get a Manager to call me. When they did within half an hour, I did get 5000 Avios for my troubles, but clearly said to them when your customers are more knowledgeable than your CS agents, that makes for a bad experience when you know everything I was told was basically wrong on that call.

        • M says:

          Definitely feels that way! You’ve also reminded me to chase a case where someone meant to call me two weeks ago!

        • Gordon says:

          My downgrade from BAPP to free card and then upgrade back to BAPP a few months later was seamless. The CS agent was very helpful. But I guess it’s luck of the draw who you get….

  • mark2 says:

    Great. If only for a week planning is even more important!
    It helps to be retired.

    • Mayfair Mike says:

      You can’t be a very wealthy retiree then! Work all your life and then have to nickel and dime 5 quid here and there 🤷‍♂️

      • ChrisC says:

        This whole site is dedicated to nickeling and diming to get cash or points!

        • JDB says:

          I think they are just the people that make the most noise. Unfortunately, they are so busy nickel and diming, they miss the big issues like moving their utility accounts so as to be able to pay by Amex thus not fixing, buying cheap but bad value investments funds etc.

          • rob keane says:

            some move their utility bill to save a few quid and get a few amex bennies, others make £10K+ a year MSing, who is nickel and diming again ?


      • Mike says:

        Mayfair Mike – oooh being a retiree in your mid 50’s on a comfortable index linked public sector salary means it’s even more fun seeking out bargains

        • Rob says:

          Everyone draws the line somewhere. Clearly it made sense to spend £300 buying Hyatt points rather than paying $1,995 + tax for the hotel room I am currently sitting in. On the other hand, despite visiting Caffe Nero three times per week on average, I refuse to download their app to get a free coffee once a month.

          Shop Small, as other have said, is something where I’m happy to take the cash if it turns up, and if I’m in a small shop I’m more likely than usual to pull out an Amex to see if they take it. I might pick up a £15 bottle of wine in the local wine shop if I’m passing. Last June I was in Gibraltar and was pleasantly surprised to see that it triggered at a lot of places, including on the cable car.

          • AirMax says:

            Rob, get an O2 sim and you’ll get a free coffee every week. Thank me at the next HfP event 🙂

          • Alex Sm says:

            Oh! My partner and I will be in Gibraltar this week – can you pay with UK Amex there without “roaming” fees? I have a Blue BA card, my partner has a basic Rewards one

          • Rob says:


          • Rich says:

            Of all the coffee shop loyalty apps, Nero is probably the easiest and most generous.

            Single barcode to scan, which does payment and loyalty. Regular promotions. Even the free O2 coffee gets you a stamp.

      • patrick says:

        He might well be a decent person though which is priceless.

  • Paul says:

    I only made use of December’s offer 4 times and had to chase 3 of them so not holding my breath it will work at all this time.

  • Cheshire Pete says:

    Related. None of my £30+ cash back at Morrisons have posted, even though I got the email when used for the first time. As someone posted earlier these Amex offers are increasingly tracking very poorly lately. Perhaps they’ve borrowed some IT from BA……

    • Paul says:

      I’m still waiting for some of mine. Amex have really gone down the toilet!

    • DonLee says:

      According Chat, you would have to wait for 90 days after offer end date before you can question it. That’s Oct for a April spending

    • xcalx says:

      Same for me plus LNER not paid out too.

      • Rob says:

        The LNER ones seem to come in chunks every month or so – I waited ages and then, ironically for a train company, a load arrived at once.

        What LNER is doing letting you book train tickets for any TOC and then giving you 10% back from their 2% or whatever commission is a different question ….

        • blue_wolf says:

          I’ve been wondering this… why are they throwing money away on me booking tickets for, say, the Stansted Express…?

    • John says:

      Same. Contacted Amex chat with details of three qualifying Morrisons transactions (a 4 for 3 offer on Sancerre, to be stacked with Amex offer…) but they only processed one of them. Shouldn’t it be automatic?!

  • JandeW says:

    I like this promotion as smaller retailers inevitably seem to be the ones that do not accept Amex, and I like the concept of supporting smaller enterprises. But to do it for just one week seems ridiculous and not worth the set-up admin time, especially at peak holiday times.

  • JohnTh says:

    I queried a missing Shop Small in December and got the payout in March!

    Does it really cost retailers no more to process Amex – especially co-branded ones?

  • Paul says:

    Bring back the £5 off £5 or £5 off £10. Hardly much of a promo £5 off £15 when the £15 full price is quite often a rip-off in these small shops.

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