Reduced Spending Requirement for Starwood Amex Bonuses!

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Instead of requiring $5000 spend within 6 months to earn the full 25,000 point signup bonus on the Starwood American Express cards, there’s a limited-time offer that requires $3000 within 3 months instead.

Travel With Grant has the links for both the personal and business cards.

This card has been in my wallet since 2001, I signed up with no bonus at all, and there has never been an offer of more points than this with a $3000 spend level (the 30,000 point offers require the usual spend). (In 2006 at the same time they brought out their small business card they bumped the signup bonus offer to 10,000 points. The standard bonus had been 4000 points, but there were also 6000 point offers.)

Starwood points are the single most valuable currency there is. When transferring points into 20,000 miles you get 5000 bonus miles.

They’re flexible with more airline mileage transfer options than anyone else and with ways to stretch points on hotel stays with cash and points awards.

    (Westin Diplomat, Hollywood Florida)

Way back in May 2002 when I first started this blog I wrote, “the credit card I recommend most often for earning miles is the Starwood American Express, because points transfer 1:1 into most airline programs and you get a 5k mile bonus for transferring 20k points — equivalent to earning 1.25 miles per dollar on all purchases.”

My Starwood Amex has gotten me an overwater bungalow on Bora Bora and an ocean pool villa in Phuket. It’s gotten me stays at the W hotels in Hong Kong, Seoul, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, and Seattle. And free stays at the Le Meridien in Chiang Rai, the Sheraton on the river in Bangkok, the Parker Meridien in New York. Not to mention the St. Regis in DC, the Diplomat in Hollywood, Florida, the Westin Beijing, and the Le Meridien Barcelona. And many, many more stays over the years.

    (View from my deck, points redemption in Bora Bora… at a property that’s now a Hilton, hah!)

The bonus isn’t huge. Spend on the card is the best way to earn Starpoints.

I hate how it can take quite awhile for points transfers to airlines, but they do offer airlines that are hard to get points with otherwise (like Japan Airlines, which is great for redemptions on Emirates).

Editorial note: any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Comments made in response to this post are not provided or commissioned nor have they been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any bank. It is not the responsibility of any advertiser to ensure that questions are answered, either.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. You say “there has never been an offer of more points than this”, but what about the yearly 30,000 points offers?

  2. Gary, it might be worthwhile to post the annual fee information (waived first year, then $65). Reading through your post I didn’t see any mention of it, so I got the impression this was a no-fee card. Although obviously one should read up about the card when signing up, some people might accuse you of being misleading (especially when you use a referral link) although personally, it’s more of a convenience issue, having to look it up to satisfy my own curiosity.

  3. Interesting: The T&C for the personal card say “This offer is also not available to applicants who have or have had this product”, but the T&C for the business card say “Welcome bonus offer not available to applicants who have or have had this product within the last 12 months.”

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