Spend Your American Express Membership Rewards Points at 1.5 Cents Apiece

I receive compensation for many links on this blog. You don’t have to use these links, but I am grateful to you if you do. American Express, Citibank, Chase, Capital One and other banks are advertising partners of this site. Any opinions expressed in this post are my own, and have not been reviewed, approved, or endorsed by my advertising partners. I do not write about all credit cards that are available -- instead focusing on miles, points, and cash back (and currencies that can be converted into the same).

American Express is offering a 50% bonus on transfers to Plenti through December 31.http://viewfromthewing.boardingarea.com/wp-admin/media-new.php

For a promotional period from now until December 31, 2016 at 11:59PM EST, 500 Membership Rewards points can be redeemed for 750 Plenti points. On January 1, 2017, the promotional rate will end and 500 Membership Rewards points will be redeemable for 500 Plenti points. Membership Rewards points must be transferred in 500 point increments. Membership Rewards point transfers to Plenti cannot be reversed.

American Express Plenti is a ‘coalition rewards program’ that lets you earn points for doing business with a variety of merchants. They’re the rewards program businesses like ExxonMobil, Macy’s and Hulu.

You earn points with Plenti partners. You can also spend your points (at 1 cent apiece in value) on those partners. A 50% bonus means getting 1.5 Plenti points per Membership Rewards points — valuing those Membership Rewards points at 1.5 cents each when redeemed to pay those bills.

I value Membership Rewards points at 1.8 cents apiece, so I won’t be doing this. I save my Membership Rewards points for redemptions like:

What’s truly newsworthy is that this sets a floor for the value of your points. You shouldn’t be redeeming points for less value than 1.5 cents.

(HT: Doctor of Credit)

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 InsideFlyer.com, 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. DON’T Spend Your American Express Membership Rewards Points at 1.5 Cents Apiece

    There, fixed the title for you….. 😉

  2. @ Robert Hanson. Gary pointed out he values MR more. Many people, especially primarily domestic fliers, may find 1.5 cents a MR point a great redemption rate. From this post it seems the caveat is using the points at Plenti member retailers (which probably isn’t that hard between Exxon Mobile, AT&T and Macy’s).

  3. Quick question — for various reasons I’m a bit grounded at the moment but also have 100,000 Membership Rewards points coming from the Platinum Amex deal so Plenti points sound good. Does anyone know whether Amex — or Plenti — will send a 1099 if I cash in more than $600 worth of Membership Rewards points on this deal? Lots of folks online say these points are merely rebates for credit card spending and thus not taxable, but there have also been reports of other banks sending 1099’s. Any wisdom?

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