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Note: I appreciate that this news is approximately a week old but, as always seems to happen when I choose to take a break, this news came out while I was on a mini-staycation and I’m reasonably sure Joanna would have killed me had I tried to do any work while we were meant to be enjoying our first break together this year 🙂
Back towards the beginning of July, Chase announced that its Marriott Bonvoy co-branded cards (including those that are no longer open to new applicants) would earn bonus points for spending made at gas stations and on dining. Now, later than I was expecting, American Express has followed suit and announced its own bonuses for spending on Marriott Bonvoy credit cards.
New Spending Bonuses On Amex Bonvoy Cards
Through 31 October 2020, holders of the Marriott Bonvoy credit card from American Express (formerly the SPG credit card and no longer open to new applicants), the Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant Card, and the Marriott Bonvoy Business Card from American Express will all offer bonus points for spending at U.S. gas stations and at U.S restaurants as well as offering additional bonus points for spending at Marriott properties worldwide.
- Earn 10 Marriott Bonvoy points/dollar at U.S. Gas Stations (up to $7,500 on eligible purchases)
- Earn 10 Marriott Bonvoy points/dollar at U.S. Restaurants (up to $7,500 on eligible purchases)
- Earn 10 Marriott Bonvoy points/dollar on eligible purchases at participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels (up to $7,500 on eligible purchases)
Registration (of sorts) is required as all three of these bonuses are to be found under the Amex offers section of cardholder accounts. Make sure you add these offers to your card(s) before you start spending,
Importantly, the $7,500 spending limit doesn’t appear to be cumulative so these bonus points should be available on up to $22,500 of spending.
With the Chase Bonvoy cards already offering 10 Bonvoy Points/dollar at gas stations worldwide and on dining worldwide, it’s disappointing (but not unexpected) to see Amex continuing to limit its bonus points to spending made at US establishments only. For those of us with Chase and Amex Bonvoy cards, this Amex offer won’t really be of any great additional benefit until the Chase offer expires on 15 September or when we hit the $3,500 spending limit that the Chase promotion sets.
The standout positive difference between Amex’s promotion and the promotion launched by Chase is that the Amex promotion offers bonus points on Marriott Bonvoy stays while Chase’s promotion does not – if you plan to stay with Marriott before 31 October 2020 this promotion will see you earn almost 67% more on that stay. That’s pretty good going!
I value Marriott Bonvoy points at 0.6 cents each which means that, based on this valuation, these increased bonuses see the Amex Bonvoy cards now offering effective rebates of 6% at US restaurants, at US gas stations, and at Marriott properties worldwide (up to $7,500 of spending in each category). For Marriott spending, I can’t think of a better deal anywhere and if you’re solely interested in accumulating Bonvoy points, the gas and restaurant deals are excellent too. If, however, you’re looking to earn the best overall rebate, there are other cards whose earnings at gas stations and on dining outshine this deal.
Notably, the Chase Sapphire Reserve card currently offers 5 points/dollar at gas stations (up to $1,500 in spending) which, by my valuations, is equivalent to a 7.5% rebate and the Citi Premier card offers 5 points/dollar on all dining (no cap) which I also equate to a rebate of 7.5%.
The Marriott Bonvoy cards issued by American Express are now all offering bonus points for spending at US gas stations, for spending at US restaurants and for spending at Marriott properties worldwide (be aware of the spending caps). Make sure you add these promotions to your card(s) before you go out spending and make sure you consider all your credit card options before deciding which cards offer you the best return on your money.