Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express Review

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Owning a travel rewards credit card can make life a lot easier when it comes to planning a trip, especially if it’s international in nature. When looking for a travel rewards credit card, it’s important to find one with a low APR, a great rewards program and if possible, one with a minimal annual fee.…

Owning a travel rewards credit card can make life a lot easier when it comes to planning a trip, especially if it’s international in nature. When looking for a travel rewards credit card, it’s important to find one with a low APR, a great rewards program and if possible, one with a minimal annual fee. The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express fits nearly every traveler’s needs and now features a Starpoints® bonus: Earn 25,000 Starpoints after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months. That’s enough for a weekend getaway to a Category 4 Hotel.

The Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express has long been a consumer favorite for its generous and flexible rewards program. Cardholders have the ability to redeem their Starpoints for a variety of offers including free nights at participating hotels and free flights. The best part is that you never have to worry about blackout dates when you redeem your Starpoints. Let’s check out some of the benefits of the American Express Starwood Preferred Guest® Card:

Best in Class Hotel Rewards For the Frequent Traveler

A smart credit card carrier knows that signing up for a credit card simply for the intro offer isn’t always the best idea. So let’s run through other benefits Starwood Card holders will have:

Earn Starpoints on Eligible Purchases

Cardholders will earn up to 5 Starpoints for every dollar of eligible purchases at participating Starwood hotels. That breaks down to 2 Starpoints as a Card Member on top of the 2 or 3 you can earn as an SPG member. Cardholders also earn 2 Starpoints for every dollar of eligible purchases on the Card at participating Marriott Rewards® hotels. Earn 1 Starpoint for all other eligible purchases.

Earn Credit Toward Elite Status

Participating in the SPG Starpoints program can open the door to one of two Elite levels, which members can earn by staying in SPG hotels a qualifying number of nights in a year or by spending above a set amount on your card in a calendar year. Cardholders receive credit for 5 nights and two stays toward Gold Preferred Guest or Platinum Preferred Guest status. Cardmembership makes it much easier to qualify for the following membership statuses:

Qualifying for Gold and Platinum Status:

  • Gold Preferred Guest status can be reached with 10 eligible stays or 25 eligible nights in a calendar year. You can also reach automatic Gold status if you spend at least $30,000 in qualifying purchases on your Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express.
  • Platinum Preferred Guest status can be earned with 25 eligible stays or 50 eligible nights in a calendar year.

Benefit of Gold and Platinum Status:

  • Gold Preferred Guest members receive a 50% bonus on Starpoints over Preferred guests. They also receive late checkout, upgrades, and free premium Wi-Fi or Internet access.
  • Platinum Preferred Guest members receive Gold status benefits, plus free health club access, Club Level and Executive Club level access, and better upgrades.

Ability to Earn Free Flights and Hotel Stays

Cardmembers can redeem their Starpoints without having to worry about any blackout dates. Members can redeem Starpoints® for free flights on over 150 airlines with SPG Flights with no blackout dates.

Redeeming Starpoints for hotel nights is also easy, and again, you don’t have to worry about blackout dates. Redeem Starpoints® for free nights at any of Starwood’s 11 distinct brands‡ including St. Regis, The Luxury Collection, W Hotels, Le Méridien, Westin, Sheraton, Aloft, Element Hotels, Four Points by Sheraton, Tribute Portfolio and Design Hotels. You can even redeem your Starpoints for hotel stays at a variety different hotels, in nearly 100 countries. (Note that some hotels may have mandatory service or resort charges).

Transfer your Starpoints to Participating Airline Programs

To top it off, your Starpoints are transferable to other rewards and airline programs. There are over 30 participating programs at the time of this writing. Even better, you can earn 5,000 additional Starpoints for every 20,000 points you transfer to another frequent flier program.

Here are the participating airlines. Points transfer at a 1 to 1 ratio, unless otherwise stated (Starpoints : Transfer Program):

  • Aeromexico Club Premier
  • Aeroplan/Air Canada
  • Air Berlin
  • Air China Companion
  • Air New Zealand Air Points (65 : 1)
  • Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan
  • Alitalia MileMiglia
  • All Nippon Airways (ANA) Mileage Club
  • American Airlines AAdvantage
  • Asia Miles
  • Asiana Airlines
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • China Eastern Airlines
  • China Southern Airlines’ Sky Pearl Club
  • Delta Airlines SkyMiles
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad Airways
  • Flying Blue
  • Gol Smiles (2 : 1)
  • Hainan Airlines
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • Japan Airline (JAL) Mileage Bank
  • Jet Airways
  • LAN Airlines LANPASS Kms (1 : 1.5)
  • Miles and More
  • Qatar Airways
  • Saudi Arabian Airlines Alfursan
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
  • Thai Airways International Royal Orchid Plus
  • United Mileage Plus (2 : 1)
  • Velocity Frequent Flier
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express Details

Here is an overview of the perks offered by the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express:

  • Earn 25,000 Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 Starpoints® for each dollar of eligible purchases spent at participating SPG® & Marriott Rewards® hotels. Earn 1 Starpoint for all other purchases.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on International purchases.
  • Redeem Starpoints® at over 1,300 participating hotels and resorts in over 100 countries and for flights on more than 150 airlines with SPG flights, all with no blackout dates.
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Planning a road trip? Rent your car, fill up your tank, book your hotel, and pay for it with your American Express® Card.
  • Terms Apply.

There is an annual fee of $95, which is waived for the first year. That said, this card can pay for easily itself in benefits each year. Any American Express cardholder will tell you how valuable their customer service and rewards program are and the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express follows suit. To take advantage of this 25,000 bonus Starpoints offer, visit the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card application.

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by American Express. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of American Express, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express. This site may be compensated through American Express Affiliate Program.

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About Michael P

Michael is a blogger and credit card expert. He specializes in reviewing credit cards and sniffing out the best deals in the credit card market, including sign up bonuses, credit card rewards, and more. He enjoys a classic pitcher's duel and all things pop-culture.

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Editorial Disclosure: This content is not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the bank advertiser, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. This site may be compensated through the bank advertiser Affiliate Program.