These Two AMEX Offers Are Great, But You Can Do Even Better

by joeheg

American Express targets cardholders with numerous AMEX Offers. While you might not see all of the offers in your account, it sure feels great when you do. When I saw that two of the better current AMEX Offers were available in our accounts, I registered our cards.

Here are the two offers I signed up for:

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Spend $90+ on your cable or satellite TV bill, get 500 Membership Rewards Points. Up to 4x

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Spend $100 or more on your cell phone bill, get $5 back. Up to 4 times (total of $20)

Before I switched paying these bills to our AMEX cards, I paused for a second and thought about which cards I am currently using for these expenses.

Cable TV

Our cable/internet bill is one of our larger monthly expenses, as I imagine it is for many families. For example, say that we pay $200 a month to the cable company.

With the AMEX offer, I’ll earn 200 Membership Rewards plus 500 bonus points for each payment, giving me a total of 700 MR points per month.

I currently pay the bill with my Ink Cash card, which earns 5% back on payments for cable expenses. Every month I get back $10 or 1000 Ultimate Rewards points. Because I have another premium Chase card, I can transfer the points from my Ink Cash to my Sapphire Reserve. That way, I can get 1.5 cents per point value booking travel through the Chase portal or transfer the points to any of Chase’s airline or hotel partners.

But I can still work this offer to earn more points. If I pay exactly $90 with my AMEX card, I’ll get 590 Membership Rewards points which work out to 6.55 points per dollar. I’ll pay the remaining $110 of the bill with my Ink Cash card and earn 550 Ultimate Rewards. By following this plan, I’ll bank 1140 points a month between the two programs.

Of course, if I was looking to build balances of either type of point, it would be better just to put the spending either on the Ink Cash or AMEX card.

Cell Phone

The AMEX Offer for cell phone expenses is a bit different as it’s a cash rebate and not Membership Rewards points being offered.

Paying a $100 cell phone bill will pay you $5. I’d earn 100 MR (or maybe 95 Membership Rewards points if the RAT Team has their say.)

While I could use my Ink Cash card for cell phone expenses and earn 5% back, I currently use my Ink Preferred card for these charges. I willingly earn fewer points because the Ink Preferred also provides insurance coverage for cell phones if you pay your monthly bill with the card.

For the $100 bill, I earn 300 Ultimate Rewards plus get insurance coverage. It’s not worth the $20 over four payments to give up insurance coverage on our two iPhones.

Final Thoughts

I’m glad to see American Express is still offering these AMEX Offers for everyday expenses. Since cards from other banks offer better earning opportunities for these bills, this is one way for AMEX to get people to change how they pay these charges for a few months. Even better for AMEX if you forget to switch the card back when the offer is over (please don’t forget to do that.)

If you don’t currently have a card that earns a high multiple for your cell phone or cable/satellite TV charges, be sure to go to your AMEX account and activate these offers ASAP.

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

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