Last week I wrote about how I’m missing SPG points from American Express referrals in Canada. The story goes that I have two SPG credit cards – the personal and the business versions. In late August I was owed slightly less than 20,000 SPG points (I had a return), and a much larger amount was owed to me on a late-September statement. Normally SPG points are transferred 2-3 days after the statement closes, but for both of my credit cards, the SPG points were not posting.
After numerous calls with AMEX, a supervisor told me that there was a known issue where if you hold both credit cards, the SPG numbers cannot match or points will go missing. I thought that explanation was strange, as I’ve held both credit cards before without issue, but I changed my SPG number on one credit card and waited for the points.
As a blogger, I benefit from having businesses reach out to me to fix problems. It’s an unfair advantage for sure, but it helps me find fixes for problems and alert my readers to them.
Someone from a PR firm representing American Express emailed me explaining that having two SPG credit cards (business and personal) tied to the same SPG account shouldn’t be a problem. She offered to investigate.
I noticed the missing ~ 20,000 were deposited yesterday into my account (almost a month after statement closing). Today, I received this email from the AMEX contact:
Starpoints are sent to SPG at the CM’s cycle cut each month. Base spend (ie the 1 Starpoint for every $1 in purchases) and bonuses are sent to Starwood using different codes. So if I spent $500 and had an MGM referral, amex would send two items to SPG for my account – 500 under the base code and 10,000 under the bonus code. If we’re sending SPG only a bonus, with no base points, we need to do a manual pull to add the bonuses. We’re still trying to see if they can implement a long term fix so we do not need to do a manual pull to add bonuses where there is no base spend.
In this case, I do see this CM’s SPG # and the 19,435 Starpoints on our August manual bonus file. Starwood should be processing the file in the next couple of days. I can see that these Starpoints are from MGM referrals. He/she must have had a return because we’re sending over an odd amount instead of the full referral bonus amount. The September transfer file won’t be posted until Oct 1st so I can’t validate the September bonuses quite yet, but if the expectation is [omitted] Starpoints, I suspect those are more MGM referrals given it’s a round number. This bonus should be added to the account by mid-October.
I understand the situation as follows: where there’s a statement closing where there’s no purchases on a card, just referrals, the system does not automatically send over the points to SPG – it has to be done manually. This is done on a monthly basis, which means there’s a significant delay for processing points to SPG.
My advice? If you’re expecting SPG points from referrals, make sure you have spent something in that statement period so the points transfer is done automatically and not during the monthly manual reconciliation.