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Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here: The Enhanced Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN
Amex just increased the sign-up bonus on the Business Gold Rewards card up to 50,000 points when you spend $5,000 within the first 3 months of cardmembership. The public sign-up bonus for most of this year has been 0, though they have run a couple very limited offers of 75,000 points, but those required $10,000 in spend. The 50,000 point offer only requires $5,000 and is good until November 26, 2012, so I doubt they will run any more 75,000 offers until then, but you never know!
This card is the business version of the popular Premier Rewards Gold card and offer a similar 3/2/1 spend bonus structure. You earn 3x points on airfare, 2x points on purchases in the U.S. for advertising in select media, gasoline at U.S. stand-alone gas stations, and shipping and 1x points on other purchases. Update: Now you will also earn 2x on purchases made with from select computer hardware, software and cloud computing providers. Restrictions: Points are earned only on eligible purchases. Bonus points limitations apply. The $175 annual fee is waived the first year. Note: The card does have 2.7% in foreign transaction fees so I do not recommend using it for travel outside the US or spend with foreign vendors.
This card card also gives you access to American Express’ Open Savings program, which automatically gives you discounts when you use your card at certain vendors: for example 3% at Hyatt, 5% at Courtyard by Marriott, 10% at Hertz, 5% at Office Max and 5% at Fedex.
You don’t need to have a big corporation to get approved for this card- you can apply with your Social Security Number if you have a sole proprietorship and likely get approved if you have good credit. Check out this post for more info on applying for business cards.
Note: “The bonus offer is not available to applicants who have had this product or any other Business Gold, Green or Platinum Card® account within the last 12 months.” I interpret that to mean Business Green/ Business Platinum card and if you’ve closed either 12 months or more prior, you should be good to go.
The points earned on this card are Membership Rewards points and can be transferred to
Star Alliance: Air Canada Aeroplan, Singapore, All Nippon Airlines
Oneworld: British Airways (current 40% bonus), Iberia, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
Skyteam: Delta, Air France/KLM Flying Blue, Alitalia, Aeromexico
Other: Virgin America, Virgin Atlantic, El Al, Frontier, JetBlue, Hawaiian
Hotels: Starwood, Hilton, Best Western, Jumeirah
Points can also be used for giftcards and Pay With Points (purchasing airfare and hotels at 1 cent per point through Amex Travel), though I personally find the most value from airline transfer partners- especially when their are transfer bonuses, like the current British Airways 40%.
Details: Though the Business Gold Rewards card doesn’t have the benefits package of the more premium Business Platinum Card, it also doesn’t have that card’s $450 annual fee. In fact, the $175 annual fee on this one is waived the first year, so getting it is like a risk-free trial of its benefits plus it comes with appealing bonus spending categories like 3x on the category of choice and a range of 2x spending categories as well.
Though the Business Gold Rewards card doesn’t have the benefits package of the more premium Business Platinum Card, it also doesn’t have that card’s $450 annual fee. In fact, the $175 annual fee on this one is waived the first year, so getting it is like a risk-free trial of its benefits plus it comes with appealing bonus spending categories like 3x on the category of choice and a range of 2x spending categories as well.