September 2, 2017 at 12:03 pm NZST #3372
I signed up with both the charge and edge cards for a year to get the sign up bonus and see if they were useful. This is better than signing up one by one as there’s generally a stand down period ~ 18 months before you’re eligible for the next card’s sign up bonus. And if you sign up with AMEX, it’s really about the points, because it’s not known for it’s flexible use everywhere. I still think it’s worthwhile having a Mastercard or Visa for back up.
The real gem with AMEX is the 7 airline transfer partners being NZ, EK, QF, VA, MH, and SQ. I aim to transfer to SQ for future flights. Would like to try their First class just once, then back to business thereafter. SQ’s search engine is pretty easy to use and availability for awards seems ok actually. There’s been some changes to VA so apparently it might be better booking through them, if you have enough points. EK had some promo’s on where it was 5,000 points to upgrade on the TT flights with a flexible ticket (EK stock not QF) so, worth transferring there also. Not sure if that’s still on offer. Departures from NZ are in the evening meaning you’re more likely to use the bar down the back of business. Hard pressed to be ordering a mojito on the morning return flights departing Oz plus that’s the shorter flight times. I tend to use the Air NZ bank cards for APD. MH I’m unfamiliar with but read they’re going to some weird dynamic pricing for using miles. I can’t deal with that much uncertainty!
The edge card annual fee is $149 but I figured I could use a direct domestic (seat + bag) return flight that would cost more than the annual fee. Turns out using the flight wasn’t as easy as I thought. Tried booking 9 months out and no flights to Queenstown fit into their booking classes which are at least X, G and K. So changed the destination to somewhere else I fly and managed to book. I think the value per flight may have been around the $69-79 so still getting your moneys worth for the annual fee. And you still earn Air NZ SP and APD on the flight. I figured if dates were challenging what I could do in future is just book one way down and have the return flight at a much later date and just buy the needed fares in between. I don’t fancy changing holiday plans around available dates that AMEX have, not for domestic at least. I have read of people combining the following years flight with the current year so they can get 2 flights each way included. Sounds like a challenge to get the correct fare class but obviously doable. There is actually some flexibility in making changes with these flights if needed.
The edge card does come with domestic and international insurance.
Points earn, it’s really the 3 reward points / 1 NZD at the supermarket and 2 at the gas pump that are the major draw. 1 reward point for everything else. However transfer to airline partners is generally 2 AMEX points : 1 airline point except Air NZ.
The bonus sign up was 20,000 points. I think sometimes it may go up to 30,000. You can have a supplementary card holder for free.
Because we now order bargain box our shopping list is really small as groceries etc are delivered to your door, the charge card gets you 2 reward points / $ and I was keen to reduce the # of cards in the wallet, I called to cancel the edge card. I was offered ~ 46,000 points which is ridiculous….. so I accepted. There is actually a thread on this in the AFF forum. Some people have called up for each card they have annually and are offered points for each card. Crazy. We hadn’t spent much on this card either. I’ll still be calling up next year to cancel the card, until one day they hopefully just say ‘yes’. The points offer I think was based on our charge card spend which is more of a joint card.
There aren’t really any cards to ‘churn’ in NZ, except AMEX, at least that’s the conclusion I’ve drawn. I had planned on doing that but it’s not really possible. However if there’s some amazing deal that comes along then I’ll get my partner to sign up. Despite being a supplementary card holder I don’t think this excludes him from the future sign up bonus.
I did make him sign up for the previous 800 APD NZ AMEX bonus and free flight for $395 annual fee but the math was easy, we came out ahead by ~ $600. They’ve since changed the offer on that card though and AMEX had no issues cancelling his card after a call.
If you’re using the NZ cards for SP then you’ll need to make sure you spread your spend appropriately.
Nuts and bolts of it from the AMEX site https://www.americanexpress.com/nz/content/platinum-edge-credit-card/
Point hacks article on how to make the most of it. The gift card purchases might be useful! https://www.pointhacks.co.nz/credit-cards/american-express-nz-platinum-edge-ultimate-guide/September 4, 2017 at 1:56 pm NZST #3411
I miss out on the sign up bonuses because I have a work issued AMEX and they counts as being an existing member for sign up bonuses 🙁September 4, 2017 at 8:26 pm NZST #3416I miss out on the sign up bonuses because I have a work issued AMEX and they counts as being an existing member for sign up bonuses
If you have a partner and they enjoy the perks of travel then a little coercion goes a long way 😉 i.e. sign them up!
I think my partner has another 10 months or so to go before he can sign up for another card – but I’ll only ask him to do it if there’s a reasonable deal.
I would feel sorry for you however I’m aware of the credit card sign up bonuses in Oz that with the stroke of a pen will get you 10’s of thousands of QF points that take me a year or more of flying to earn :p
The flexibility of AMEX points and flight rewards available are worthwhile. I know there are some kiwi’s benefiting but very few I think. Not sure if that’s due to AMEX’s reputation as ‘not being accepted’ or the lack of education of kiwi’s and possibly putting it in the ‘too hard basket’. Combined with buying SPG points on promo it’s a very powerful rewards system.
September 4, 2017 at 8:30 pm NZST #3417
- This reply was modified 9 months ago by Adam Jobbins. Reason: Fix emoji size
Ha! I am so sorry I really don’t know why the emoji faces for the 2nd time have turned up so HUGE! It was Adam’s post so I’ll blame him?September 10, 2017 at 12:23 am NZST #3508
Bug with the rich text editor I think….I fixed it manually
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