Last night, Miles to Memories reported that Amex may no longer be paying out points on Simon Mall purchases. We have since received and reviewed further reports indicating that it looks like Amex is no longer awarding points for Simon Mall purchases. While I initially thought it seemed a little early to call it on this one, there are enough similar data points that I wouldn’t use an Amex for gift card purchases at Simon Mall going forward. It’s not impossible that this is a temporary glitch, but I’d suggest holding off on using an Amex at Simon for at least the next few weeks.
What reports indicate
Reports from early April still indicate that people were receiving points for Simon Mall purchases. However, reports from around mid-April onward are that people are seeing no points for Simon purchases after their statements closed (and notably it is only the points from Simon Mall purchases that are missing). This is true on Membership Rewards, cash back, and co-branded cards.
Comments at both Miles to Memories and Flyertalk indicate that purchases as late as the first few days of April still earned points, but by the second week of April it seems Simon purchases have earned 0 points across the board on various Amex cards.
If you have a contrary data point from April 7th or later, feel free to let us know in the comments of via email, but I haven’t yet seen such a DP.
Weren’t Simon Mall purchases banned all along?
While Amex stopped awarding welcome bonuses or authorized user spending bonuses (or clawed them back) sometime last year for many people who met minimum spending requirements at Simon Malls, purchases outside of spending offers have continued to earn rewards as expected. While I’ve periodically heard reports of such purchases not counting towards other spending-based bonuses (like the free night on the Hilton Ascend card or MQM bonuses on Delta cards), I’ve heard others report success with those things. However, it now looks like Simon Mall gift card purchases are no longer earning any rewards or spending bonuses effective early-mid April.
Is this the end of it?
As noted above, I initially thought it might be too early to be sure that the end was here as Amex sometimes posts points more slowly than expected. However, the consistency of the reports leads me to believe that this likely done. If you’re MSing via Simon Malls, you should keep an eye out for comments indicating any change in the situation, but for the time being I would recommend not using an Amex for any Simon Mall purchases. This will obviously be massively disappointing for anyone who has purchased over the past month, especially since the limit was recently increased to $25K.