American Express has been retooling its credit card sign-up offers in light COVID-19’s new normal. For example, the AMEX KrisFlyer cobrand cards now offer a mix of miles and electronics gifts instead of pure miles, and the spending requirement has also been reduced significantly.
Now it’s the AMEX Platinum Credit Card’s turn. From 1 October to 30 November 2020, approved cardholders who spend at least S$5,000 in the first 3 months will receive a “work-from-home” electronics bundle, instead of the previous gift of Membership Rewards points.
AMEX Platinum Credit Card’s “Work-from-Home” sign-up offer
(until 30 Sep)
(1 Oct- 30 Nov)
|Welcome Gift||S$150 Lazada Voucher||S$150 Lazada Voucher|
|Months 1-3||S$5K||25K||S$5K||Monitor + Webcam|
|Total Points||43.25K||Monitor + Webcam|
AMEX Platinum Credit Card members will receive S$150 in Lazada Vouchers (in the form of 3 x S$50 vouchers) upon approval and paying the first year’s S$321 annual fee.
If they spend at least S$2,000 in the first 3 months, they’ll receive 12,000 bonus Membership Rewards points courtesy of the MGM program (applications through any of the links in this post will be eligible for this bonus). These are equivalent to 6,667 miles with any of AMEX’s nine transfer partners– assuming you opt for KrisFlyer, that’s roughly S$120 (taking a value of 1.8 cents per mile).
If they spend a further S$3,000 in the first 3 months (i.e S$5,000 total), they’ll receive a Samsung 24″ FHD monitor + j5create USB HD Webcam, perfect for
setting up your OnlyFans page working from home.
Under the previous offer, cardholders who spent S$5,000 in the first 3 months received 25,000 bonus Membership Rewards points, worth ~S$250 in airline miles. Which offer you find more useful depends on your personal circumstances of course, but the face value of the current gift is slightly higher.
To summarise, your total haul for spending S$5,000 and paying the S$321 annual fee will be:
- S$150 Lazada vouchers
- S$120 in Membership Rewards points
- S$287 from the “work-from-home” sign-up bundle
That’s over S$550 in value (before taking into account Love Dining benefits, see below), and especially useful for those who have been thinking of furnishing their home office.
To receive the “”work-from-home” bundle, you must not have cancelled an AMEX Platinum Credit Card in the past 12 months. There’s no restriction if you currently hold other American Express cards. The complete T&C for this offer can be found here.
Which transactions are eligible?
American Express has a fairly liberal exclusions list, certainly more so than other card issuers. With the exception of the following, all other transactions will count towards the sign-up bonus spending:
| a) Charges processed and billed prior to the Enrolment Date or charges prepaid on any Card Account prior to the first billing statement for that Card Account following the Enrolment Date;|
b) Cash Advances and other cash services;
c) Express Cash;
d) American Express Travellers Cheque purchases;
e) Charges for dishonoured cheques;
f) Finance charges – including Line of Credit Charges and Credit Card interest charges;
g) Late payment and collection charges;
h) Tax refunds from overseas purchases;
i) Balance transfer;
j) Instalment plans;
k) Annual Card fees and Membership Rewards fees;
l) Pay portion billed for a “Pay + Points” rewards, where the Card Member uses points along with paying a specific amount to redeem the reward;
m) Amount billed for purchase of Membership Rewards points to top-up your points balance;
n) Purchase and top-up charges for EZ-Link Cards using American Express Cards;
o) Bill payments and all transactions via SingPost SAM kiosks and mobile app (with effect from 1 March 2020);
p) Payments to insurance companies (except payments made for insurance products
purchased through American Express authorized channels) (with effect from 1 March 2020);
q) Payments to Singapore Petroleum Company Limited (SPC) service stations (with effect from 1 March 2020);
r) Payments for the purpose of GrabPay top-ups (with effect from 1 March 2020);
s) Charges at merchants or establishments that are excluded by American Express at its sole discretion and notified by American Express to you from time to time.
The only ones you really need to take note of here are insurance, SPC and GrabPay transactions, which took effect from 1 March 2020. However, charity, hospital, education and utilities payments continue to earn points, assuming AMEX cards are accepted.
Love Dining benefits
The Love Dining program is one of the biggest draws of the AMEX Platinum Credit Card, allowing members to save up to 50% at more than 30 restaurants and hotels, including Si Chuan Dou Hua, Wooloomooloo, The Capitol Kempinski and the St Regis.
The full list of restaurants can be found below:
What I particularly like about Love Dining is that it’s not 1-for-1, it’s 50% off. With 1-for-1, you only get the cheaper item free, and everything else you buy is at the regular price.
With 50% off, you save on everything (except drinks)- appetizers, mains, desserts. No more feeling compelled to order a more expensive item because your partner did, and at more expensive restaurants, the savings can easily add up to S$100+ per visit.
AMEX Platinum cardholders also enjoy 1-for-1 drinks and special offers with Chillax.
While the AMEX Platinum Credit Card isn’t a card you’ll be using for everyday spend (after the sign-up bonus is achieved), the value of the benefits in the first year can easily cover the S$321 annual fee.
Love Dining continues to be the big draw here, and can be a great way of saving on dining out expenses.