American Express, Starwood

If you don’t have the SPG Amex yet, (Personal + Business), I’d get them now. Here’s why:

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Right now, the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card from American Express is offering a highest-ever bonus of 35,000 points.

Why do I think you should jump on this now?

a) the bonus has never been higher

b) the cards are likely to go away in the near term due to the merger with Marriott.

Now, you can only apply if you’ve never gotten the signup bonus for the latest “flavor” of this card that has been around a few years. But keep in mind that if you’ve had the personal card, you can still get the business card – and vice versa.

What is 35,000 Starpoints worth? Well, that’s just about 3 nights at a Category 5 property (12,000-16,000 points per night) or enough for 6 free nights in a Category 3 hotel (7,000 points a night and 5th night free).  Transferring to Marriott (which is at a 3:1 ratio) means that one signup bonus is worth 105,000 Marriott points. For context, I’m using 140,000 Marriott points in Austin for 5 nights during SXSW. Cash rates would be over $4,000 for the hotel for those nights.

And given that it may well be the last time you can apply for these cards (no known end date of the product has been given), it makes sense to earn the bonuses before they are gone.  This offer expires the start of April, although nobody knows what will happen then. The card could have an even better bonus (doubtful) or it could go away altogether.

You can apply here:

SPG Amex – Personal

SPG Amex – Business

(I do NOT receive a commission for these links. If you apply for the Business version, however, I’ll receive 5,000 bonus Starpoints as a referral)