American Express Membership Rewards Program Credit Cards

Use your Amex card to earn Membership Rewards points as you spend and redeem them for flights, cashback and more.


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The American Express Membership Rewards program is designed to reward cardholders for their spending and loyalty. This means that you earn reward points each time you make a purchase on your card. The more you spend, the more points you will accumulate.

You can then use your points to redeem various travel, shopping and entertainment rewards. You can even transfer Membership Rewards points to any of the American Express airline and hotel partner programs, including Velocity Frequent Flyer, Singapore Airlines Krisflyer and Hilton Honors. Read on to find out how the Membership Rewards program works and how it could help you get more value from your American Express card.

Comparison of American Express Membership Rewards Credit Cards

Data indicated here is updated regularly
Name Product Bonus points Rewards program Rewards points per $ spent Purchase rate Annual fee
American Express Business Explorer Credit Card - Exclusive Offer
Membership Rewards Gateway
3.99% p.a. for 6 months, reverts to 19.99% p.a.
Finder Exclusive. Ends 01 February 2021.
ABN holders w/ $75,000 revenue. Get 120,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Plus, 2 airport lounge passes.
American Express Explorer Credit Card
Membership Rewards
20.74% p.a.
Get 120,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Plus, 30,000 points in the second year. Ends 27 Jan 2021.
American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
Membership Rewards Ascent
20.74% p.a.
Receive 50,000 bonus points when you spend at least $1,500 within the first 3 months. Plus, receive $200 travel credit each year. Ends 27 Jan 2021.
American Express Platinum Business Card
Membership Rewards Ascent Premium
ABN holders w/ $75,000 revenue. Get 200,000 bonus points and a $300 statement credit when you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months.
American Express Platinum Card
Membership Rewards Ascent Premium
Earn 150,000 bonus points when you spend $3,000 in the first 3 months. Additional 50,000 points in the second year. Ends 27 Jan 2021.
American Express Gold Business Card
Membership Rewards Ascent
ABN holders w/ $75,000 revenue. Get 100,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points and up to 51 days to pay for purchases.
David Jones American Express Card
Membership Rewards
20.74% p.a.
Not just for David Jones shoppers, receive 15,000 bonus Membership Rewards Points or 7,500 Qantas Points on eligible spend.

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Different Membership Rewards program options

Even within the Membership Rewards program, there are different types of Membership Rewards accounts or streams. Each of these program options feature different terms and conditions and benefits, which you can read more about in the reward section below. This table gives you a run-down of the basics of each Membership Rewards option available.

How to earn Membership Rewards

If you’re enrolled in the Membership Rewards program, you can earn points in a few different ways:

Reward credit cards

Start earning Membership Rewards now with an American Express credit card. While the rate at which you can earn points differs among cards, you can typically earn at least 1 point per $1 spent and up to 3 points per $1 spent with some cards. For instance, the American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card lets you earn 3 points per $1 spent at major supermarkets and petrol retailers, 2 points per $1 spent on international transactions and 1 point per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases.

Many of these cards also come with bonus points on sign up, allowing you to earn tens of thousands of points when you meet the spend requirements on your first purchases with the new card. To further boost your balance, you can also earn bonus points by shopping with certain retailers or by successfully referring friends to the card scheme. Another way to increase your points-earning potential is to obtain additional cards for your family, business partner or employees so that their expenses jointly contribute to your reward points balance.

Local Champion

The “Local Champion” feature within the Amex app earns you points with a game-like interface that encourages you to spend at local retailers. Here’s how to win:

  • Using the free American Express app on an iOS or Android smart device, register your card and choose up to 10 local stores where you want to compete for the title of Local Champion.
  • Score the highest number of transactions at one of your stores within 30 days to win the title and earn an extra 1 point per $1 spent, as long as no one steals the title from you by exceeding your transactions.
  • This means you can earn up to 4 points per $1 spent at a local restaurant if you have an American Express Platinum Card, up to 10,000 bonus points across your 10 chosen retailers.

How to maximise your points with American Express Local Champion

American Express offers

American Express frequently offers extra opportunities to earn bonus points or cashback by shopping with your card at partnered retailers. The simple steps are:

  1. Shop the existing offers online or via the American Express app.
  2. Save the offers that you like to your card.
  3. Spend using your card.
  4. Enjoy the savings that are credited to your account.

Stores that have participated in the past include Woolworths, David Jones, Dan Murphy’s, Harvey Norman, Qantas, THE ICONIC and more.

Refer a friend and earn

You can earn up to 200,000 points per year by successfully referring a friend or family member to the American Express card scheme. All you need to do is:

  • Log into your account and select the card you’d like to refer.
  • Send the link for the chosen card to your invitees, by email or via social media.
  • Wait for the bonus reward points to be credited once they’re approved.

Your friend will also stand to receive bonus sign-up points and perks, such as annual fee waivers. Certain terms and conditions may apply and will vary with each card. How to earn the most Membership Rewards points with your American Express credit card

How can I redeem my Membership Rewards?

Now that you know how you can pick up points, check out some of the following ways you can put them to good use:

Pay with points

The Membership Rewards program lets you use your points to pay for purchases or cover the cost of your annual fee. You can select “Pay with Points” by logging into your account online or via the American Express app. Once logged in, select the eligible transaction from your online account and you’ll receive a credit within 72 hours. A minimum of 1,000 points must be redeemed at any one time and credits cannot exceed the relevant charges or your current outstanding balance. You may also redeem points for a credit to your card, to be used in any way you like. As of 15 April 2019, 13,500 points is required to redeem $67.50 via “Points for Credit”. Alternatively, you can pay for annual card fees or membership fees via “Points for Fees”. Required points vary with different credit cards.

Shop with points

  • David Jones online. Pay for your online purchases at David Jones with Membership Rewards points. Simply shop the online range at the David Jones online store, add your chosen items to the Shopping Bag and head to the checkout once you’re ready to pay. Select “Membership Rewards points” as your payment method, enter your American Express card details and pay for your entire purchase or part of it with points. 13,500 Membership Rewards points are worth $67.50 and a minimum of 3,000 points must be used for any redemption.
  • Ticketmaster. You may also use Membership Rewards points to pay for concerts, the theatre, sports events and more at Ticketmaster. Simply select your tickets and head to the checkout as usual, but opt to use Membership Rewards points when choosing your payment method. You can make a full or partial payment with your points. 13,500 Membership Rewards points are worth $67.50 at Ticketmaster.

Travel with points: Flights with frequent flyer partners

If you belong to any of the partnered airline loyalty programs, you can exchange your Membership Rewards points for frequent flyer points or miles with any of the following:

  • Air New Zealand Airpoints
  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad Guest
  • Malaysia Airlines Enrich
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
  • Thai Airways Royal Orchid Plus
  • Virgin Australia Velocity Frequent Flyer
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Transfer rates, minimum transfer amounts and eligible transfer partners may vary depending on your credit card, but you can view your applicable rates and partners by logging into your account online or via the app. For instance, you may transfer your Membership Rewards points to the Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer program as long as the frequent flyer account is in your name.

How to transfer credit card reward points to your frequent flyer program

Book a holiday through American Express Travel

  • Flights. Visit the American Express Travel website, search for your roundtrip, one-way or multi-stop flight and pay for it for using your Membership Rewards points. The program has more than 40 partner airlines, covering a wide network of routes that can carry you anywhere in the world.
  • Car hire. Your Membership Rewards points can be used to book a rental car to be picked up at your travel destination.
  • Hotel. Search for hotel options on the website and enjoy periodic promotions such as a complimentary night’s stay.
  • Hotel packages. Access more attractive prices when you purchase “Flight & Hotel” or “Flight, Hotel & Car” packages with your Membership Rewards points.
  • Experiences. Search for “experiences” on the website and be surprised by exciting tailored activities such as hot air balloon rides, exclusive shopping tours, cooking classes, cultural performances, walking tours and much more.
  • Cruises. Book a cruise via the American Express Travel website and use your Membership Rewards points to pay for all or part of your trip.

Gift cards

Your Membership Rewards points can also be converted into gift cards to be spent on retail, entertainment, online specialty stores or travel. Gift cards for amounts between $10 and $10,000 are perfect for gifting or using yourself either in-store or online. Retail stores include Coles, Myer, Bunnings, Country Road, iTunes and more, with $10 gift cards starting from 2,000 points.

Points plus pay

You can generally use a combination of Membership Rewards points and cash to redeem rewards. You may also choose to top up your balance and buy points when redeeming merchandise or gift cards, or when transferring points to partner programs.

How to pool your Membership Rewards

If you have more than one American Express credit card eligible for earning Membership Rewards, you can pool your points together by linking your cards. You can call the number on the back of your card to arrange this.

amex membership rewards

Different types of Membership Rewards programs

Even within the Membership Rewards program, there are different types of Membership Rewards accounts to suit different cardholders. Each type differs slightly in its features and benefits:

  • Membership Rewards Gateway. This basic membership type allows you to earn and redeem points at David Jones online and can also be used for gift cards, points for credit, “Pay with Points” and American Express Travel Online. You can also transfer your points to eight leading airline reward programs (with the exception of Qantas Frequent Flyer and Virgin Atlantic Flying Club) and two hotel loyalty programs.
  • Membership Rewards Ascent. Membership Rewards Ascent is a higher tier membership type that is free for platinum credit cardholders and that corporate cardholders can subscribe to for $89 a year. Personal and charge cardholders, as well as blue and gold credit and business cardholders, can also subscribe to the program for $80 a year. It offers access to the same benefits as Membership Rewards Gateway, except you can transfer points to the Virgin Atlantic Flying Club.
  • Membership Rewards Ascent Premium. Membership Rewards Ascent Premium is the top tier membership type that is available to American Express Platinum Charge and Platinum Business Charge cardholders. In addition to all the membership perks accessible by Membership Rewards Ascent cardholders, the Ascent Premium program lets you transfer points to the Qantas Frequent Flyer program.

How do I enrol in the Membership Rewards program?

Existing cardholders can log in or register online to enrol in the program. Alternatively you can also call 1300 363 276 Monday-Friday, between 8am and 6pm. Corporate cardholders can enrol only if your company has chosen to participate in the program. Please consult your Program Administrator to discuss your options. If you’re a new Amex customer and you apply for a reward card, you’ll automatically be enrolled into the Membership Rewards program.

How to manage your Membership Rewards account

Checking your points balance.

Once enrolled, you can log into your account online or via the smartphone app to check your points balance anytime.

How to reinstate forfeited points

Membership Rewards points are forfeited when an account payment becomes more than 40 days overdue. To reinstate them, you’ll first need to pay the overdue bills. Next, reinstate your points online by logging into your account or by calling 1300 363 276 Monday-Friday, between 8am and 6pm. A fee will apply and you must reinstate forfeited points within 90 days of your statement due date or those points will permanently expire.

How to buy points

You will be given the option of buying points at a rate of 1,000 points for $25 while making a redemption or points transfer.

How to transfer points

First, you will need to register your frequent flyer or hotel loyalty program membership number by logging into your account online. After you’ve linked your membership number to your Membership Rewards account, you can then a request a points transfer online. Most transfers are processed within one to three days, but can sometimes take up to five business days.

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10 Responses

    Default Gravatar
    KellyApril 1, 2019

    Does using a Amex card to pay using Bpay earn Qantas frequent flyer points?

      Default Gravatar
      NikkiApril 2, 2019

      Hi Kelly,

      Thanks for getting in touch! Generally, BPAY is not eligible for earning frequent flyer points however it is best to check the terms and conditions of your Amex credit card to see if BPAY payments earn Qantas Frequent Flyer points.

      Hope this clarifies!


    Default Gravatar
    DennisDecember 10, 2017

    I have American Express Rewards Advantage card with annual fees $250 plus $65 supplementary. In looking for card international travel insurance cover I am unable to identify this card in the options presented on the website. What is the equivalent card?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RenchDecember 12, 2017Staff

      Hi Dennis,

      Thanks for your inquiry. Please note that we are not affiliated with any company we feature on our site and so we can only offer you general advice.

      Most rewards credit cards also have high annual fees that offset the value of these benefits. But there are a handful of cards available that have no annual fee and offer rewards. You can find out more about no annual fee rewards cards, compare your options and find out what else you should consider when choosing a card by clicking here.


    Default Gravatar
    AniMay 29, 2017

    Is Bob Jane TMart a company where I’ll earn bonus points if I use my Amex card and if so what are the perks?

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      RenchJune 1, 2017Staff

      Hi Ani,

      Thanks for your inquiry.

      For using American Express card at Bob Jane T-Marts, they will match you will one bonus point. Not only do you earn extra points when you purchase products but you can also earn extra points when you purchase services.

      You will need to register your AMEX card to the rewards program first to earn points. All you need to do is go online at the membership rewards site and search for the reward you are interested in and then click on redeem. You will need to sign in and go through and fill in all of the necessary information to complete the redemption process.

      Please view the list of eligible cards for this program above this page. There are multiple rewards that you can redeem with your points that you can view in their site.

      Hope this information helped.


    Default Gravatar
    JeanetteApril 18, 2015

    What gift am I entitled to with 5677 points

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      JonathanApril 20, 2015Staff

      Hi Jeanette, thanks for getting in touch with us!

      Please refer to the link I have sent to your email for a full list/ catalogue of rewards available with American Express.



    Default Gravatar
    ChrisAugust 17, 2014

    Can Family Members transfer MR points between accounts

      Avatarfinder Customer Care
      ShirleyAugust 18, 2014Staff

      Hi Chris,

      Thanks for your question.

      You can gift your points to another Membership Rewards account. I’ve emailed you a link to the form for this.


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