How to earn 20k points in 20 seconds: A guide to Amex Pay Over Time

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With the American Express Pay Over Time program, you’ll get extra flexibility in how you use some of your Amex cards. It’s easy to enroll, and even better, Amex sometimes offers bonus points for enrollment — in fact, I recently received 20,000 points for enrolling my American Express® Gold Card. (Targeted offer and subject to change at anytime).

This may sound too good to be true, but it’s not. In the past, MMS team members who have Amex Membership Rewards points-earning cards have earned tens of thousands of bonus Amex points just for joining the program, which literally takes just a few clicks.

Let’s take a look at how the Amex Pay Over Time program works and how you can earn bonus points for enrolling.

(Photo by Wyatt Smith)

Amex Pay Over Time

Some cards that earn Amex Membership Rewards points are not credit cards but are products that were formerly referred to as charge cards. The difference is that these cards must be paid in full each month. A credit card allows you to carry a balance each month and make minimum monthly payments.

However, Amex has a program called Pay Over Time, which allows you to carry a balance on your eligible cards up to a pre-approved amount with interest. In effect, it allows these special cards to function as a credit card with no preset spending limit (unlike typical credit cards). (Enrollment required).

Should you enroll in Pay Over Time?

It is never a good idea to carry a balance on your travel rewards cards. That’s because any rewards you earn will be negated by the interest you’ll end up paying.

With Pay Over Time, you don’t need to use the feature or carry a balance to earn the bonus points for enrolling. But it’s a good option to have since you never know when an emergency will arise. Pay Over Time won’t cost you anything unless you decide to use it.

How to earn bonus points for enrolling

Normally, Amex sends out targeted offers for those who have eligible cards to enroll in the Pay Over Time program. It appears that many people have been targeted recently to earn 20,000 Membership Rewards points after joining.

I saw the offer upon logging into my American Express account last week.

To earn the bonus points there’s no spending threshold to meet and no credit check required. And it takes about twenty seconds to enroll. It might be the easiest 20,000 points (of any points currency) you’ll ever earn.

After clicking “Activate Now”, it will take you to another page where you’ll click the button that says “Activate Pay Over Time” — all done! The points showed up in my account just a few days later.

Don’t enroll just for the heck of it. Wait to see if you’re targeted to earn bonus Amex Membership Rewards points for enrolling. Typical offers range from 10,000 to 20,000 points, which is an incredible deal. 20,000 Amex points are worth $360 according to our points valuations.

In fact, I recently wrote about how you may be able to get yourself targeted for one of these bonuses here.

So, if you’re ever targeted for the offer, or are able to call Amex and get it, you should definitely take advantage. MMS staffers have been able to register cards like The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express cards in the past.

Bottom line

Amex Pay Over Time allows you to carry a balance, with interest, on your eligible cards up to a pre-approved amount, however the real benefit of this program is when Amex gives you a ton of points just for enrolling.

Make sure to keep an eye on your email and check your Amex account to see if you’ve been targeted. And be sure to sign up for our newsletter here to be notified of any deals in the future.

Featured image by Sean Pavone/Shutterstock.

Meghan Hunter is an editor for Million Mile Secrets. She covers points, miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels and general travel. Her work has also appeared in The Points Guy.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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