Booking my First 5x Membership Reward Points Flight on AMEXTravel.com Using American Express Business Platinum Charge Card

Good morning everyone, I hope you all had a great weekend.  I spent the weekend up in Rohnert Park (in Sonoma Wine Country) with my girlfriend. I started this post a few weeks ago after I booked my first flight using my American Express Business Platinum Charge Card on amextravel.com to earn 5x Membership Reward Points on paid flights.  I was waiting for my credit card statement to close and for the bonus points to post to my Membership Rewards account, but I forgot that there is a 1 month delay between when points are earned and when points post to my Membership Rewards account. Instead of waiting another month for the bonus points to post, I decided to publish this post now.

If you are not working on the $300 travel credit from the Chase Sapphire Reserve or $250 travel credit from the Citi Prestige, earning 5x Membership Reward Points on paid flights beats earning 3x Ultimate Reward Points with the Chase Sapphire Reserve, 3x Citi Thank You Points with a Citi Prestige / Premier, and 2x Arrival Points with the Barclays Arrival+.

Anyway, I received a Google Flights alert for a flight I was tracking from New York to Iceland.  The price had fallen and I wanted to book the flight before the prices rebounded.

Google Flights JFK-KEF Icelandair

To earn 5x Membership Reward Points for booking paid flights, you need to log into your American Express account, navigate to your American Express Business Platinum Charge Card, and click the Benefits tab at the top.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 1

Find the 5x Membership Reward Points section and click the Learn More link.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 2

Click the Explore Now button to go to amextravel.com and book your flight.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 3

Here are the complete terms and conditions of the 5x Membership Reward Points offer as of April 24, 2017:

5X Membership Rewards® Points
You will get one point for each dollar charged for an eligible purchase on your Business Platinum Card® from American Express. You will get 4 additional points (for a total of 5 points) for each dollar spent on eligible travel purchases made on amextravel.com. Eligible travel purchases include the following purchases made on amextravel.com: scheduled flights, prepaid hotel purchases (including The Hotel Collection), travel packages (flight + hotel packages), minus returns and other credits. Flights and eligible hotel reservations must be made on or after 3/30/2017 for additional points. Eligible travel purchases do NOT include FINE HOTELS & RESORTS bookings, car or cruise purchases, hotel group reservations or events, ticketing service, cancellation or other fees, interest charges, purchases of travelers checks, purchases or reloading of prepaid cards, or purchases of other cash equivalents. To be eligible for the 5x Membership Rewards® points, you must both reserve and charge the travel purchase with the same eligible Business Platinum Card®. To modify a reservation you must cancel and rebook your reservation. You can cancel and rebook your reservation on amextravel.com or by calling a representative of amextravel.com at 1-800-297-2977. Cancellations are subject to hotel cancellation penalty policies. If hotel reservations are made or modified directly with the hotel provider, the reservation will not be eligible for this 5X Membership Rewards® point benefit. Extra points for air, prepaid hotel, and travel packages will be credited to the Membership Rewards account 10-12 weeks after final payment is made. Bonuses you may receive with your Card on other purchase categories or in connection with promotions or offers from American Express may not be combined with this benefit. Merchants are assigned codes based on what they primarily sell. A purchase will not qualify for additional points if the merchant’s code is not eligible. The benefits associated with the Additional Card(s) you choose may be different than the benefits associated with your basic Card.

See membershiprewards.com/terms for the Membership Rewards program terms and conditions or to learn the benefits associated with the Additional Card(s) you choose, please call the number on the back of your Card. American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc., when acting solely as a sales agent for travel suppliers, is not responsible for the actions or inactions or such suppliers.

Membership Rewards® Program
Terms and Conditions for the Membership Rewards® program apply. Visit membershiprewards.com/terms or call 1-800-AXP-EARN (297-3276) for more information. Participating partners and available rewards are subject to change without notice.

The value of Membership Rewards points varies according to how you choose to use them. To learn more, go to www.membershiprewards.com/pointsinfo.

Here is the landing page for AMEX Travel.  Click the Flights tab to get started.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 4

I plugged in my flight details and clicked the Search Flights button.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 5

The search results are really clean and the filters are very helpful.  I narrowed down the list of results to show only nonstop Icelandair flights.  I then selected the flights I wanted to fly.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 6

Like most airlines, you have the ability to make changes or cancel your reservation for free if you act within 24 hours of booking.  You can see the total price in cash or with Membership Reward Points (you only get 1 cent per point if you redeem Membership Reward Points for travel booked on amextravel.com).

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 7

Enter the traveler’s personal information, then click the Save & Continue button.  In this case, I do not have an Icelandair Saga Club frequent flyer number, so I left that section blank.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 8

Next, decide if you want to pay for travel insurance, then click Save & Continue.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 9

Next, select your seats (if your seatmap is available).  In my case, the seats I booked through amextravel.com were not saved and I had to pick new seats on Icelandair’s website.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 10

Here are the flight details and seatmap for the outbound flight.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 11

If you are booking a roundtrip flight, here are the flight details and seatmap for your inbound flight.  Select your seats then click Save & Continue.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 12

Next, decide if you want to pay with Membership Reward Points or with your American Express Business Platinum Charge Card.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 13

If you want to pay with your American Express Business Platinum Charge Card, select that card from the dropdown menu and enter the 4 digit security code on the front of the card. Then click Save & Continue.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 14

Review your flight information and cost of the ticket.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 15

Agree to the terms and check the box at the bottom of the page, then click Book Flight.

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 16

Congratulations, the flight is booked and you are off to Iceland (or wherever you decided to book)!

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 17

Even though you booked through amextravel.com, the charge is processed directly by the airline (Icelandair in my case).

AMEX Biz Platinum 5x Flights 18

A few days later, the charge will post to your American Express Business Platinum Charge Card.

IcelandAir Charge Posts to AMEX Business Platinum Charge Card

I will say it again, if you are not working on the $300 travel credit from the Chase Sapphire Reserve or $250 travel credit from the Citi Prestige, earning 5x Membership Reward Points on paid flights beats earning 3x Ultimate Reward Points with the Chase Sapphire Reserve, 3x Citi Thank You Points with a Citi Prestige / Premier, and 2x Arrival Points with the Barclays Arrival+.

Have you booked any flights using your American Express Business Platinum Charge Card on the amextravel.com website?  What was your experience like?  What you purchase tickets from amextravel.com again in the future?  If you have an y questions, please leave a comment below.  Have a great day everyone!

17 thoughts on “Booking my First 5x Membership Reward Points Flight on AMEXTravel.com Using American Express Business Platinum Charge Card

  1. LF

    I hear that can’t earn PRemier Qualifying Dollars for UA flights if booked via Amex. Do you know if this is the case?

    Reply
  2. bluecat

    “I will say it again, if you are not working on the $300 travel credit from the Chase Sapphire Reserve or $250 travel credit from the Citi Prestige, earning 5x Membership Reward Points on paid flights beats earning 3x Ultimate Reward Points with the Chase Sapphire Reserve, 3x Citi Thank You Points with a Citi Prestige / Premier, and 2x Arrival Points with the Barclays Arrival+.”

    Doesn’t the trip delay insurance (kicks in at 4 hours, IIRC) from Citi Prestige beat all others? For some people, depending on the airline you fly, it could be worth it to go that route?

    Reply
    1. Hari

      Citi Prestige does have the best delay insurance, yep. I usually book flights through it for that reason, alone, even if I find MR to be a more rewarding program.

      Reply
    2. Grant Post author

      That is a good point, I have never had to use the trip delay insurance on my Citi Prestige CC and I no longer have that CC either.

      Reply
  3. bluecat

    Also, just to satisfy my own curiosity, I thought you were based in SF. Wouldn’t the carriers that go out of OAK do you better? (Of course, if you will be in NYC already, then that explains it….)

    Reply
    1. Grant Post author

      Yes, I am in SF. I’m flying WOW Air back home (KEF-SFO), but on the way to Iceland, I am stopping in NYC to meet my friend who lives there :)

      Reply
  4. Spenser

    I’ve used the Amex Travel booking a number of times now and I have two chief complaints: 1) As a Delta gold or above you are entitled to same change flight changes with no charge from the airline, Amex does not honor this and instead charges a $29 change fee; 2) You are not able to purchase a Comfort Plus seat on Delta flights at the time of booking.

    I’ll continue to use this service because of the points and redemption values but am looking forward to changes to these policies (in addition to earing 5x the points on flights booked directly with the airline).

    Reply
  5. choi lu

    I haven’t seen anyone wrote about it yet but a comparison of rates between google flight or any other sites Vs Amex 5x booking. which is better at the lower price, I would forgo the 5x if other sites offer a lower price than Amex. however, if it is the same, then awesome it is.

    Reply
    1. bluecat

      A very good point that you raise. IME, the ThankYou portal (Citi) does not always “find” the same low price as Google Flights. For some reason, they don’t always get all the same fares loaded.

      Reply
      1. Grant Post author

        Yes, they only display a subset of all possible routes. If you change the search to be more specific (airlines, nonstop, etc.) it should narrow down the results to show you the exact flight you want.

        Reply
    2. Grant Post author

      I compared the prices for this specific flight on Google Flights and the price was the same as AMEX Travel. I’m sure there are times when one price is higher than the other, but I have not seen it in my few purchases.

      Reply
  6. Christian

    I’ve been building up my points for something like this, and appreciate the details. Don’t forget to credit the flight to a ff program. I think Alaska is a partner.

    Reply
    1. Grant Post author

      Yes, you are right. I went to Icelandair’s website, plugged in my booking reference number, and added my Alaska Airlines frequent flyer number to the reservation. Since I am Alaska Airlines MVP Gold, they have some reciprocal benefits including lounge access at KEF :)

      Reply
  7. Pingback: What is "5 X TLS" & Why Did I Earn Bonus American Express Membership Reward Points?

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