1) On Wednesday I published a post on the upcoming changes in Marriott/SPG program.
In it I’ve mentioned that there was a rumor on DoC blog that the sign-up bonus on personal Amex SPG card may change in a near future. Well, it looks like the prophecy was fulfilled. But wait, there is more! The sign-up bonus on business version was reduced as well. Behold the “weak sauce” of the miles and points world:
This is much worse than the previous bonus of 25k points. Here are my two cents. I really think there is a good chance that Amex will bring the old offer back. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if they increase the sign-up bonus to 30k or even 35k SPG points by summer.
My advice (for now) is to wait and see how things will play out. Obviously, I can’t guarantee anything. But I definitely wouldn’t go out of my way for this version of the offer. The renewal certificate each year (after paying $95 fee) is potentially valuable, but not that valuable.
Also, DansDeals blog is now saying that according to Amex rep, both personal and business versions will be staying despite reports to the contrary. I actually just got an email from Amex rep indicating the same thing. So I don’t think there is any hurry to get the card anymore.
2) On a related note, you can get 35% off on purchase of SPG currency through May 31st, as long as you buy at least 5,000 points.
I don’t like to make predictions, but there is a good chance that this is the last time we will see this bonus before SPG program ceases to exist on August 1st. If you love SPG points, it could make sense to load up on them before the earning rate is cut by 33%. I wrote a post not too long ago where I argued that for some, buying SPG points at a discount makes more sense than accumulating them via everyday spending.
You can reduce the price further by going through Giving Assistant shopping portal (my referral link) and looking for Points.com store.
You will get $5 bonus if it’s a new account, and earn 1% cash back on purchase of SPG points. Every little bit helps.
For the record, I’m sitting this one out. I’m a middle-class person, and speculative price of 2.28 cents per SPG point is too rich for my blood. I need 1,000 SPG points to top off my Marriott account for a specific redemption, so there is no discount for me. (hat tip Dansdeals)
3) Get 25% conversion bonus on transfers to AAdvantage from several hotel programs.
Details on LoyaltyLobby The terms specifically exclude Marriott travel packages, so the only option that makes sense is SPG program. You already get 5,000 miles bonus on each transfer of 20,000 SPG points, and this promo will be in addition to that amount.
Whether it makes sense for your specific situation is something only you can decide. I recommend that those who live near an AAdvantage hub of fly there frequently should at least consider it.
Saver availability on AA.com has dried up in the last few years, but with some flexibility, you can still find seats. Read this post on PointsAdventure for more on this topic. AAdvantage program is very much a mixed bag, but there is value to be had, especially if you focus on partners.
4) Here is what the next week of Daily Getaways promo will look like:
Alamo $50 certificate for $25 will be worth it for some, but make sure to read the fine print. I don’t like seeing this in “T and C”:
- Offer valid for rentals at participating locations in the United States.
- Certificate not valid with any other discount, offer, or promotional rate, except you may combine up to three (3) separate certificates per single rental.
How would you know in advance if your desired location will be participating? I recommend purchasing this deal only if you rent cars on a regular basis.
Best Western points may come in handy if you need to top off your account. Otherwise, pass. “Universal” deals could make sense for some folks, but the discount off the regular price is marginal. All hotel deals are way too expensive for my taste. I mean, $1,000 for 2 nights in a suite in NYC. To quote Shania Twain: you must be joking, right?
Have a good weekend!
Leana is the founder of Miles For Family. She enjoys beach vacations and visiting her family in Europe. Originally from Belarus, Leana resides in central Florida with her husband and two children.