[Expired] Amex SPG launches stinky new signup offer: 2 Free Nights

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Every year around this time Amex launches limited-time better-than-usual signup offers for the consumer and business SPG cards. The usual offer for these cards is 25,000 Starpoints after $3K spend (consumer) or $5K spend (business). I’ve been waiting and expecting to find that the offer has jumped to 30,000 points or even 35,000 points. But no…

Doctor of Credit reported early this morning that the new offers for both cards are not for points, but for 2 free nights. And, these 2 nights are limited to Category 1-5 hotels.

Why this stinks

When using points to book nights, category 5 hotels cost either 12,000 points per night or 16,000 points per night. So, at best, the 2 free nights you get from this offer are worth 32,000 points. But, you’ll only get that much value if you use the 2 nights at a 16,000 point per night property. And, unlike points, you must use the 2 free nights within one year of issue.

SPG’s Starpoints are incredibly valuable in large part because of their flexibility. Here are things that can be done with Starpoints that can’t be done with free night certificates:

Hotel Awards (More Details Found Here)

  • Book Cash & Points award stays
  • Book 5th Night Free stays
  • Book Nights & Flights (Book 5 Nights at Category 3 or 4 properties and get airline miles too)

Other Awards (More Details Found Here)

  • Transfer to airline miles at better than 1 to 1 ratio. 20,000 Starpoints = 25,000 miles
  • Transfer to Amtrak
  • Bid on unique experiences
  • Buy tickets to Broadway plays

The old offer is better

For most people, I believe that the good old 25,000 point offer is considerably better than the new 2 Nights Free offer. Fortunately, at the moment, referrals (which earn the referrer 5000 Starpoints) currently link to the 25,000 point offers. If you’d like to grab one of the 25K offers, here are my referral links:

  • Consumer SPG Offer: 25,000 points after $3K spend in 3 months
  • Business SPG Offer: 25,000 points after $5K spend in 3 months

The above offers have expired.

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