Make the most of Amex's October refer-a-friend offer with these credit cards
Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here.
American Express is currently running a limited-time, refer-a-friend offer through Oct. 28, 2020, that potentially provides outsized value for eligible cardholders. If you refer a friend for an American Express credit card, you could get an elevated referral bonus and a heightened rewards rate in the first three months.
However, which card you refer from makes a difference in the value of the offer, so you want to make sure you're sending out your referral links from the right card(s).
Want more TPG credit card news and advice? Sign up for the TPG newsletter.
How the Amex refer-a-friend offer works
When you refer a friend through this link, you will have access to a special referral bonus specific to each card you have. Once approved, your friend will get their own increased welcome bonus through the referral. Plus, you'll get increased multipliers for three months on whichever Amex card you referred from.
For example, an American Express® Gold Card holder could refer someone to any Amex credit card and if they apply before Oct. 28, 2020, that referrer would get a 25,000-point bonus after the person is approved. Plus, the referrer will earn 7x on U.S. supermarkets and worldwide dining, 6x on eligible flights and 3x on non-bonus purchases for three months.
The offer is available with these Amex cards:
- Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express
- Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express
- Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
- Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
- American Express Cash Magnet® Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
- The Platinum Card® from American Express
- American Express® Gold Card
- American Express® Green Card
- Hilton Honors American Express Card
- Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card
- Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card
You can only earn the 3x multiplier once per card, although you can refer from the same card to get the maximum annual referral bonus.
The information for the Amex Cash Magnet, Amex EveryDay, Amex EveryDay Preferred and Amex Green Card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.
Best Amex cards for refer-a-friend
If you have multiple American Express credit cards, you'll want to strategize which you use for your referrals in October. Today, I'm outlining the top three cards to consider using with this refer-a-friend program.
American Express Gold Card
Standard rewards rate: 4x on U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x) and worldwide dining, 3x on flights booked directly or through Amex Travel, 1x on everything else.
Refer-a-friend rewards rate: 7x on U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x) and worldwide dining, 6x on flights booked directly or through Amex Travel, 3x on everything else.
Why it's a top choice: The Amex Gold is a stellar card with or without this refer-a-friend bonus, but the rewards rate goes from great to exquisite very quickly once you factor in the 3x additional points on all purchases for three months. Because the card earns Membership Rewards points, which TPG values at 2 cents each, you're getting a 14% return on dining and supermarkets, a 12% return on eligible flights and a 6% return on non-bonus spending for three months. Imagine getting a 14% return on all the holiday grocery and food spending you're likely about to have, and it's easy to see why this card is an excellent first choice for referring friends. The card has a $250 annual fee (see rates and fees).
Blue Cash Preferred Card
Standard rewards rate: 6% on U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 per calendar year; then 1%) and on select U.S. streaming services, 3% on transit and U.S. gas stations, 1% on everything else.
Refer-a-friend rewards rate: 9% on U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 per calendar year; then 1%) and on select U.S. streaming services, 6% on transit and U.S. gas stations, 3% on everything else.
Why it's a top choice: Cash back remains the most popular rewards currency, even if TPGers tend to gravitate toward points and miles, and the Blue Cash Preferred has one of the best cash-back rewards rates out there. With the 3% bonus added to your spending, you're getting a 9% return on U.S. supermarket and streaming service spending, a 6% return on gas and transit and a 3% return on all non-bonus spending. Earning 9% while binging Queen of the South (my latest Netflix obsession)? Yes, please. For a limited time, the card has a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year; then $95 (see rates and fees). Offer ends 12/10/2020.
Amex Green Card
Standard rewards rate: 3x on restaurants, transit and travel, 1x on everything else.
Refer-a-friend rewards rate: 6x on restaurants, transit and travel, 3x on everything else.
Why it's a top choice: The Amex Green card is a solid option for beginners year-round with a standard return that matches the Chase Sapphire Reserve (but without the $550 annual fee). But with this refer-a-friend bonus, you're getting a 12% return across three broad spending categories — restaurants, transit and travel. Just for comparison, that's double the return you get across those categories with the Chase Sapphire Reserve. The card has a $150 annual fee (see rates and fees).
This refer-a-friend bonus offer is a great way to boost your own rewards account while helping friends earn higher bonuses on the Amex cards they have their eye on. Remember that just because you refer from a specific card, your friend will still have the option to actually apply for any of the available Amex credit cards, not just the one you referred them from.
And don't forget that you'll also get to earn an elevated referral bonus when you take advantage of this offer. Just make sure that you refer your friend and that they apply before Oct. 28, 2020, to qualify for this offer.
For rates and fees of the Amex Gold card, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex Green card, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred card, please click here.