It generally is a consensus that we have it better in the United States when it comes to credit card rewards. I won’t pretend to be an expert on the law, but many other countries severely restrict how banks earn their money from credit cards thus making them “less rewarding”. Still, there are some places out there where big bonuses can be had.
About a month ago we learned that American Express wasn’t going to be offering a monetary bonus for shopping on Small Business Saturday. Instead, they are giving 2X rewards for shopping at small businesses through the end of the year. Well, at least they are doing that here in the US. The other day reader WJ sent me a screenshot of what he saw on pop up when he visited the Amex Australian website.
Indeed it does look like Amex is cheating on us with the Aussies. They are giving them $10 back on $20 purchases up to 10 times between 10/31 and 11/30/16. Worse yet I even found an offer from back in September where they got up to 3 credits per card for the same.
I remember the days of multiple credits on each card for supporting my local small businesses. Oh how I remember those days. Do the Aussies even realize how good they have it? Maybe you are thinking that it isn’t a big deal that they get credits. Well, what if I was to tell you they have some awesome sign-up bonuses too.
Amex Explorer Card Australia
Just look at this beautiful card I found. Think of this as a step down from the Platinum card. It costs $395 AUD per year (about $290 USD) and comes with a 100K bonus. Now, they do have less transfer partners than the U.S. Membership Rewards program and this card only comes with two entries to their Sydney lounge, but it also has a $400 AUD per year travel credit. What?!?
Amex Platinum Australia
Want more lounge access? How about the Amex Platinum then? It does comes with a $1,200 AUD annual fee, but the sign-up bonus is also 100K and it comes with a $300 AUD per year travel credit. You also get Priority Pass Membership and more transfer options including SPG Starpoints at a 2:1 ratio. Not bad!
Amex Business Platinum Australia
The grand daddy of the bonuses though is for the Business Platinum card. Did you think our current 100K bonus was good? Well, it is but down under they get 150K and they only need to spend the equivalent of less than $4K USD to meet the minimum. They also get Virgin Lounge access as part of the deal, although I’m not sure if a travel credit is thrown in.
Just like the regular Platinum, this version has a hefty annual fee. ($1,500 AUD). That equates to about $1,100 USD which means that you are paying for the prestige of carrying the card and for that generous bonus. Maybe we don’t have it so bad after all.
In the end I am sad that we aren’t receiving any credits for Small Business Saturday, but with the recent generosity of Amex Offers, our ability to get them on multiple cards and the relatively low annual fees we enjoy compared to Australia I think we are doing fine. I thought it was fun to look at how their products are similar, but different. If you’re ever bored take a look at Amex Australia, Canada, India or many other countries. It is fun.