AMEX has Changed their Refer a Friend Program :(

American Express offers a very generous referral program that gives you up to 15,000 Membership Rewards points for referring friends and family to the AMEX Gold, Platinum, and Business cards. This program was never capped, and you could theoretically earn millions of points by referring others.

I just noticed today that American Express has capped their refer a friend promotion. If the base card is an AMEX Platinum, you’re allowed up to 225,000 referral points per calendar year, and if you have an AMEX Gold, you’re allowed up to 150,00 referral points per calendar year.

Now, this won’t affect most people, but many people, myself included, make substantially more referrals a year than the cap allows. Although this is relatively easy to bypass, especially if you have another person in your household who churns, it is irritating and a devaluation of the program.

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  1. Hi, I for one am glad they made the cap. I have done a few referral myself and gotten 100,000 aeroplan miles which is where the cap should be. I think the excessive referrals devalue the program not the other way around. Sorry about this post but do not be so greedy.

  2. I agree that the cap is bad news. If the credit card company values a new account at 15,000 MR points, what do they care that a blogger sends them 100 new customers, while a “civilian” sends them 2? This is not bloggers being greedy, this is Amex being petty. It will not pay off for them.

    In a minute, one card issuer (dunno which one) will figure out that bloggers are a source of signups and they will create a proper program that rewards bloggers, seduces consumers, brings the whole thing together. The big companies are asleep at the switch.

    Trying to fight the blogosphere, fight Awardwallet, fight card churning, is silly. All are legitimate, legal activities that encourage credit card use and market enthusiasm. Remember, the seats we get with the points are the seats the airlines could not sell for money. We’re paying a fraction of retail for unsaleable seats. The airline’s alternative is to fly with the seat empty. Points are the currency for the market for those leftover seats. Let’s stop imagining we’re sneakily “taking” something from the card issuers and airlines.

    I agree with our wise sage on this one. Amex is missing the big picture.

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