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**The limited time 30,000 sign-up bonus for the Starwood Preferred Guest American Express cards is now over.**
The links are now live for the 30,000 point Starwood Amex offers: Personal and Business. American Express currently has this promo scheduled to end September 4, 2012, so get in while it’s good- this is as good as it gets and they generally only run this promotion once a year. (Note: If you are logged into your Americanexpress.com account the offer may not populate, so log out or open the links in a different browser and the 30,000 offer should load).
Update: Both links are now working.
- 30,000 points – 10,000 after your first purchase, and an additional 20,000 when you spend $5,000 within 6 months.
- Receive up to 5 Starpoints for every dollar of eligible spend charged directly with Starwood hotels & resorts – that’s 2 Starpoints per dollar spent on the Card in addition to the Starpoints you get as a Starwood Preferred Guest member.
- Get 1 Starpoint® for every dollar of eligible purchases.
- $65 annual fee, waived for the first year.
- Full review here.
I’ve actually been waiting for this bonus to come back to get the card myself since I think it is one of the best travel credit cards on the market and has been for some time.
Starpoints can be very valuable thanks to great redemption options including Cash & Points at the over 1,000 Starwood properties all over the world. Members can also transfer points into miles on over 30 different airlines, including Aeroplan, American, Alaska, ANA, American, Asia Miles, British Airways, Delta, Flying Blue, Emirates, Hawaiian, Singapore, US Airways and Virgin Atlantic among others, along with a 5,000-mile bonus for every 20,000 points you transfer, essentially a 25% bonus if you plan your transfers correctly.
Just having this card gets you credit for 2 stays/5 nights towards elite status (which is especially good news since Starwood launched new perks for elite members who stay 50/75/100 nights that I’ll go into in a future post), and you earn at least 2 points per dollar on spend at Starwood. Regular Starwood Preferred Guest members get 2 points per dollar spent at Starwood hotels. If you have the Starwood card, that increases to 4 points per dollar, and if you have elite status it’s 5 points per dollar spent, so this card is a great tool for maximizing your point-earning potential. Plus, Starwood Platinums get space-available suite upgrades (international properties are generally great with this benefit – US is hit-or-miss), free internet, a 500 bonus point amenity per stay, guaranteed room availability at the rack rate, a 50% bonus on Starpoints earned and special customer service/gifts throughout the year. Gold status is earned at $30,000 in spend on the card or 8 stays/20 nights.
The $65 annual fee is waived the first year, though there are foreign transaction fees.
Don’t forget the business card. Amex offers a business card option, which is a nice tag team to a personal card, so if you already have the personal Amex, you can consider getting the business one, or if you want both, you can apply for both at the same time- read about my experience getting both cards here. Plus, you can combine the elite qualification benefits – slicing 4 stays or 10 nights off elite qualification, thus making it only 21 stays or 40 nights to Platinum.