Credit Cards

AMEX reduces sign up bonuses on KrisFlyer credit cards

The latest sign up offers for the AMEX KrisFlyer cobrand cards cut the 4-6th month bonus, meaning you might want to hold your fire for now.

The AMEX KrisFlyer cobrand credit cards don’t have the highest miles earning rates on the market, but they’ve historically made up for it through solid sign up bonuses.

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The last sign up bonus lapsed on 30 June, and a new one has taken place effective 1 July for applications approved by 30 September 2019. Here’s what has changed:

Old Bonus (till 30 June)New Bonus (from 1 July)
AMEX KrisFlyer Ascend5K miles for first spend

Spend $10K in first 3 months to get 15K miles, spend a further $10K in months 4-6 to get a further 15K miles

5K miles for first spend

Spend $10K in first 3 months to get 15K miles

AMEX KrisFlyer Credit Card

5K miles for first spend

Spend $5K in first 3 months to get 7.5K miles, spend a further $5K in months 4-6 to get a further 7.5K miles

5K miles for first spend

Spend $5K in first 3 months to get 7.5K miles

The main change is that AMEX has removed the additional bonus for spending in months 4-6. This means the total miles you’ll receive for hitting the sign up bonus now looks like this:


AMEX KrisFlyer Ascend

AMEX KrisFlyer Credit Card

First Spend Bonus5,0005,000
Base miles for hitting $10K (Ascend)/ $5K (Blue)12,0005,500
Bonus miles for hitting $10K (Ascend)/ $5K (Blue)15,0007,500
Additional miles for signing up through MGM 7,5005,000
Total miles39,50023,000
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The AMEX KrisFlyer Ascend has a non-waivable first year fee of $337.05, while the AMEX KrisFlyer Credit Card waives the first year’s annual fee.

How does this offer compare to historical offers?

Any reduction in sign up bonuses is a bad thing, but if your card was approved on or before 30 June 2019, you’ll still be locked into the previous sign up bonus.

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Otherwise, based on past data, you may be better off waiting for a better offer to come around. Here’s what I managed to put together on past sign up offers.

AMEX KrisFlyer Ascend

The green bar refers to the spending requirement, the blue bar refers to the sign up bonus (excluding the first spend bonus), and the black line is the effective mpd- the blue bar divided by the green bar

AMEX KrisFlyer Credit Card

The green bar refers to the spending requirement, the blue bar refers to the sign up bonus (excluding the first spend bonus), and the black line is the effective mpd- the blue bar divided by the green bar
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The charts suggest that historical offers were more generous, although they probably oversimplify the situation, given that they say nothing about the cadence of the spending (i.e. over three months versus six), nor the size of the first spend bonus (which hasn’t always been 5K miles).

For the benefit of those who really want to dive into that level of detail, here’s additional information.

AMEX KrisFlyer AscendAMEX KrisFlyer Credit Card
1 Apr- 30 June 20185K first spend bonus

Spend $5K in first 3 months to get 13K miles, spend further $5K in first 3 months to get 6K miles

5K first spend bonus

Spend $2K in first 3 months to get 6K miles

1 Jul- 30 Sept 2018

7K first spend bonus

Spend $5K in first 3 months to get 13K miles, spend further $5K in first 3 months to get 13K miles 

7K first spend bonus

Spend $2K in first 3 months to get 6K miles, spend further $3K in first 3 months to get 9K miles 

1 Oct -30 Nov 20185K first spend bonus

Spend $10K in first 3 months to get 26K miles

5K first spend bonus

Spend $3K in first 3 months to get 7.5K miles

1 Dec 2018- 31 Mar 20195K first spend bonus

Spend $6K in first 3 months to get 15K miles, spend $6K in months 4-6 to get further 15K miles

5K first spend bonus

Spend $3K in first 3 months to get 7.5K miles, spend $3K in months 4-6 to get further 7.5K miles

1 April- 30 June 20195K first spend bonus

Spend $10K in first 3 months to get 15K miles, spend $10K in months 4-6 to get further 15K miles

5K first spend bonus

Spend $5K in first 3 months to get 7.5K miles, spend $5K in months 4-6 to get further 7.5K miles

Conclusion

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Given that the DBS Altitude and Citi PremierMiles Visa recently extended their sign up bonuses, you have a few options to choose from when picking a new card. I’d personally wait for a better offer to come along for the AMEX KrisFlyer cards, although as always, it really depends on how much you plan to spend over the next three months, and whether you’re alright with paying an annual fee.

For those who applied for an AMEX KrisFlyer card during April’s Milelion Million Mile giveaway, we’ll be conducting the draw for the 10 winners of 100,000 miles each this Wednesday, and winners will be announced later this month. Be on the lookout for that!

Be sure to check out all the latest credit card sign up bonuses here.


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Nobody
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Nobody

How about the spend 10k and upgrade from kfb to ascend? Has the benefits deteriorated?

JT
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JT

… and meanwhile, AMEX is plying Platinum Charge Card customers with increased benefits.

This sure adds to the trend of the Rich getting richer …

Karl Fortune
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Karl Fortune

Yeah…probably cos KrisFlyer is more competitive and the economical no longer add up… so you go back to the roots of the top-tier premium products which is really what Amex is all about to start with…

JA
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JA

is the upgrade from KFB to ascend an ongoing promo? If I spend $10k within 6 months, will i still get the link to upgrade? Or do I need to wait for the minimum tenure of 9 months. If so, what if there’s no upgrade promo after spending the $10k?

Bob Jones
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Bob Jones

Is this still the crappiest card in the market, as per your article when it was first rebranded…or have you changed your heart? Haha