Video Sunday Reader Question: Replacing Business Gold Rewards With Another Point Earning Amex Card

by on April 21, 2013 · 12 comments

in American Express, Sunday Reader Questions, Video Blog Post

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TPG reader Rachel has had the Business Gold Rewards card for a while, but is looking to open a new point earning American Express card:

“I have a Business Gold American Express card that I signed up for some time ago in order to get the points – I really don’t need it though as I don’t run a business or travel much. I do have Membership Rewards points and would like to keep them. 

I just signed up for a Delta American Express card as we’re flying Delta this summer and I wanted the free baggage allowance

I was told that I can transfer my points to the Business Green at $75 per year or the Business Green Rewards card at $95 per year. I can’t seem to get the info on the American Express site to come up on these cards comparing them to each other but it seems they both offer points. Which American Express card would you recommend?”

Let me start off by saying, if you cancel a Membership Rewards-earning card and don’t have any other Membership Rewards eligible cards open, you will lose all points that you have in your account.

I noticed from some of the responses in our TPG Spring Cleaning Contest that many people were unaware of this and ended up losing thousands of hard-earned points that they couldn’t get back. So make sure before you close your Business Gold Rewards card that you either transfer the points out of your account or get approved for another American Express card that will earn you points.

What are the best Membership Rewards eligible cards out there?

Unfortunately, you will not be able to get in on the most recent offer for the Business Gold Rewards card that earns you 50,000 Membership Rewards points when you spend $5,000 in the first three months (and the annual fee of $175 is waived for the first year) since you already have it, and you missed out on a recent offer on the personal version of this card, the Premier Rewards Gold card for 50,000 points when you spent $1,000 in the first 3 months. The offer is now just 25,000 points when you spend $2,000 in 3 months. But you still have some options.

The Mercedes Benz card comes with all the same benefits of the Platinum card but also has a few extra perks.

The Mercedes-Benz Platinum card comes with all the same benefits of the Platinum card but also has a few extra perks.

The next best choice, which I recently got approved for, is the Mercedes-Benz Platinum card where you earn 50,000 points after spending only $3,000 in the first 3 months of card membership. Although there is a hefty $475 fee per year, you receive several benefits that make up for it like a $200 airline fee credit, Global Entry reimbursement, airport lounge access, automatic Starwood Gold status, great purchase protection, and a $100 certificate good towards Mercedes-Benz accessories,.

Back in late February there was a 50,000 points sign up bonus for the Premier Rewards Gold so hold off on applying for this card in case it comes back soon.

Back in late February there was a 50,000 points sign up bonus for the Premier Rewards Gold so hold off on applying for this card in case it comes back soon.

My favorite American Express card is still the Premier Rewards Gold. Right now the sign up bonus is only 25,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months which isn’t great compared to the recent offer I mentioned above and which we might see again, so I would hold off on applying in case the bonus goes up in the near future. Similar to the Business Gold Rewards, this card has some bonus spending categories and earns 3x on airfare, 2x on gas and groceries, 1x on everything else but only has a $175 annual fee that is waived the first year. Another perk is that you’ll earn an extra 15,000 points if you hit $30,000 in spend in a calendar year.

Keep in mind that although you do have the American Express Delta SkyMiles Gold, it does not earn Membership Rewards points so you must transfer your points to a partner or get approved for one of the above cards first.  I hope this will be some useful advice for you and let me know what card you decide to go with!

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • roburg

    A better option than all of these is to get a BLUE card. No annual fee and you still get to keep your points. Sure, you lose the ability to transfer to partners, but the AMEX partners really aren’t that good anyway. Plus, if you ever need to transfer, just reapply for the GOLD card and then your points are transferable again.

  • Kim

    I second the endorsement of the blue card; get the no annual fee card and you never have to worry about the issue again. Points Guy-you ae doing a disservice to your readers by not mentioning this option.

  • jmw2323

    i didn’t think that Blue earns MR

  • thepointsguy

    The reader wanted to keep MR points- not MR Express. I’ve mentioned this option in the past, but I didn’t think it was a good option in this scenario

  • thepointsguy

    It earns MR Express which means you can redeem for 1 cent per point max- no transfers to MR partners unless you have a full fledged MR card like Platinum, Gold, Green, etc

  • thepointsguy

    Disagree that Amex transfer partners are not valuable- I get way way more than 1 cent per Amex point. You can get Blue then another card but that’s a lot of hassle and not exactly what this person was looking for

  • Fanfoot


    Look I like your blog. I like the cards you recommended. But the person was trying to avoid a relatively cheap annual fee and you recommended the MB Platinum with a $475 annual fee? Doesn’t seem like a fit to me.

    And she didn’t mention, at least in the section you quoted that she needed to use her points right away. If she just wants to keep them so they don’t disappear, the Blue card seems like a fine choice. I agree with others that you should have mentioned it.

    I understand that you’re answering more than just this readers question, but I think the trick of downgrading an existing card to a Blue to keep your points while still allowing you to re-apply is a good one. This isn’t just a blog for newbies.

  • MileHunter

    I agree with most comments here that if the goal is to preserve MR points with no immediate use in a short while, might as well go for the no fee blue card that comes with 10K bonus points and wait for a premium card like personal MR
    Gold to be offered with 50K signing bonus with the first year free and those parked points from blue in the Express account can become transferable points again with the premium card.

  • Carol Breece

    I am new to the points game and I do not know what Blue card is?? What is it?

  • Julie

    This may not help the reader who originally asked the question, but my husband just closed his BRG. Because he is an authorized user on my PRG and because he has no other amex cards with MR, they allowed us to transfer his points to my MR account. This doesn’t seem to be a published benefit but apparently spouses can consolidate MR accounts in our specific circumstance.

  • Federico

    I canceled all my Gold cards 2 months ago and I still have the old Blue Amex. I don’t know what changes but I’m still have access to transfer my points. Even my wife have that option and she only have the Blue (the original) since 2001.

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