How Earning AMEX Welcome Bonuses on Different Cards Can Get You Big Travel!

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How Earning AMEX Welcome Bonuses on Different Cards Can Get You Big Travel!

Million Mile SecretsHow Earning AMEX Welcome Bonuses on Different Cards Can Get You Big Travel!Million Mile Secrets Team

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A Million Mile Secrets reader emailed:

Can you clarify the American Express once per lifetime welcome bonus rule?  I currently have the Hilton Honors Card from American Express and Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express.  Does the AMEX rule mean I can NOT earn the welcome bonus on the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express?

The AMEX welcome bonus rules restrict you from earning a welcome bonus on the SAME card more than once.

So in this reader’s case, he or she is eligible to earn the AMEX Starwood welcome bonus.  Because the cards they already have are considered different card products.  This is good news because earning welcome bonuses with multiple cards is the easiest and quickest way to get Big Travel with Small Money!

And remember, if there’s a personal and small business version of an AMEX card, you can earn the welcome bonus on both.

AMEX Sign Up Bonus Rules
You Can Earn Welcome Bonuses With Multiple AMEX Cards. But You Can NOT Earn a Bonus on the Same Card More Than Once!

I’ll remind y’all about the AMEX welcome bonus rules!

What You Should Know About the AMEX Welcome Bonus Rules

Link:   AMEX Restricts Welcome Bonuses to Once Per Lifetime

Link:   Can You Earn More Than One Welcome Bonus With the Same AMEX Business Card?

With AMEX personal and small business cards, you can only earn the welcome bonus once per card per lifetime.  This rule is card specific.  So it’s possible to earn multiple welcome bonuses by applying for different types of AMEX cards.

For example, Million Mile Secrets team member Keith has earned the welcome bonus for all these AMEX cards:

There are benefits to getting multiple cards that earn similar types of points.  For example, Keith used the flexible AMEX Membership Rewards points he earned on the Business Platinum and Premier Rewards Gold to book Business Class award flights for an upcoming trip to New Zealand!

AMEX Sign Up Bonus Rules
You Can Earn Flexible AMEX Membership Rewards Points With Multiple Cards! Then Transfer Points to Airline Partners Like Delta for Business Class Award Tickets

Many other team members have also earned welcome bonuses from a variety of other AMEX cards.

And those of us on the team who qualify for small business cards are eager to take advantage of great AMEX business card offers when they come around.  Because these cards don’t appear on your personal credit report.  This means they don’t count toward Chase card limits!

That’s one of the reasons I got the AMEX Business Platinum and Emily got the AMEX Business Gold Rewards card last year.

AMEX Sign Up Bonus Rules
Emily Got the AMEX Business Gold Rewards Card to Earn Flexible AMEX Membership Rewards Points. And It Doesn’t Appear on Her Personal Credit Report!

Just remember, folks with multiple businesses can NOT earn the welcome bonus on the same card.  Even if you apply using different company information.

Keep in mind, there are lots AMEX cards with similar names.  But it’s possible to earn the welcome bonus on each of them!  Here are some examples.

1.   AMEX Platinum

There are many AMEX Platinum card versions, including:

Technically, it’s possible to earn the welcome bonus on all of them.  But consider these cards come with hefty annual fees!  So run the numbers to see if the rewards and perks makes it worth getting more than one version.

2.   AMEX Starwood

Folks who collect Starwood points are eligible to earn the welcome bonus on each of these cards:

Personal and small business versions of certain AMEX cards are considered different card products.

Are There Exceptions?

There are reports of folks getting a welcome bonus on the same AMEX card more than once.

Keep in mind, the language in the AMEX credit card offers say:

“Welcome bonus offer not available to applicants who have or have had this product.”

Another exception is for folks who receive targeted offers from AMEX to apply or upgrade.  For example, sometimes AMEX gives folks the opportunity to upgrade the Premier Rewards Gold card to the AMEX Platinum.  And you might earn a lump sum of points for doing so, even if you previously had the AMEX Platinum Card.

Bottom Line

With American Express, you can only earn a welcome once per card per lifetime.

Instead of getting a welcome bonus on the same card more than once, you can earn multiple welcome bonuses by applying for different AMEX card products.  

For example, you can boost your Starwood points balance by earning the welcome bonuses on the AMEX Starwood personal AND small business cards.

Remember, if you qualify for AMEX small business cards, they do NOT appear on your personal credit report.  This means they don’t count toward Chase card limits!

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Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express

  • Earn 75,000 Bonus Points after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 6 points for each dollar of eligible purchases at participating SPG® and Marriott Rewards® hotels and 2 points on all other eligible purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on International purchases.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card account anniversary. Award can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 points) at a participating hotel. Select hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy complimentary, unlimited Boingo Wi-Fi on up to four devices at more than 1,000,000 Boingo hotspots worldwide. Enrollment required.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Terms Apply | Rates & Fees

More Info

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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Quick question, I have an Amex Gold Business card. Once I get the bonus, would I be able to cancel and then sign up for an Amex Platinum Business card and receive the bonus for that as well?

If you’ve had the product before, but did not receive the welcome bonus (missed the spend), will you be able to get it the second time around?

Everyone at Amex tells me different story. I have the Amex Blue personal card (no AF). I recently applied and received Amex Blue Business Plus Card. Though the ad says a bonus comes with this Biz Card, I was told that because I received a bonus (100 0r 150) casb back on personal, I’m not eligible for bonus on businesss catd.

Rep said, “A customer gets one bonus per lifetime across ALL CARDS”

Has Amex changed their policy from 1 bonus per lifetime PER PRODUCT to 1 bonus per lifetime PERIOD?”

Waiting patiently for the 100 K bonus on the Platinum cards.

how about getting a no annual fee card first like AMEX Hilton. Canceled it and years later applying for the Surpass AMEX. Am I excluded from the bonus points? Thanks.

Million Mile Secrets

Great question! The 2 cards are considered different card products. So it’s possibly earn the sign-up bonus on both! Here’s a post with more details:

https://millionmilesecrets.com/2014/05/11/whats-considered-a-different-card-product/

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