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Amex Business Cards: Staggering All-Time-High Signup Bonuses (100,000 MR Points!) Ricky April 21, 2021

Amex Business Cards: Staggering All-Time-High Signup Bonuses (100,000 MR Points!)

Let it be known: Canadian credit card welcome bonuses are back.

American Express has rolled out a series of new offers on their trio of small business cards, all of which reach all-time-highs that we’ve never seen before in Canada. Most excitingly, we’re getting the first-ever “true” offer of 100,000 points on the much-acclaimed American Express Business Platinum Card.

Amex Business Platinum: 100,000 MR Points!

As of today, the American Express Business Platinum Card will offer 100,000 MR points upon spending $10,000 in the first three months when applying via a refer-a-friend link.

That’s the highest bonus we’ve ever seen on this card, and indeed any American Express credit card issued by Canada. In fact, it’s arguably the single most valuable credit card welcome bonus we’ve ever seen in the history of welcome bonuses across this land. 

100,000 MR points is worth $2,100 based on our Points Valuations. Upon spending $10,000 in the first three months, you’d emerge with at least 112,500 MR points, worth $2,363; subtract the $499 annual fee, and the overall offer is worth $1,864 in travel value – all from a single signup bonus.

You could transfer the 112,500 MR points to Aeroplan and have enough points for a round-trip business class flight from Vancouver or Calgary to Tokyo, with a few points left over!

The $10,000 in minimum spending is certainly a bigger hurdle than the $7,000 minimum spend we had seen previously, aligning with the increase to the welcome bonus. Nevertheless, 100,000 MR points is certainly worth shifting some spending around for! 

(Compared to the referral offer, the public offer is only 75,000 MR points upon spending $7,000 in the first three months. The incremental $3,000 in spending is certainly worth the extra 25,000 MR points if you can swing it, so I’d definitely recommend applying via the refer-a-friend channel.)

Don’t forget that if you’re in two-player mode or more, then your partner, family member, or friend would earn 20,000 MR points as a referral bonus if you applied via their referral link, which would bring the total household gain to a downright unreal 120,000 MR points.

(There have even been some reports of a targeted referral bonus of 30,000 MR points on the Business Platinum. If you’re seeing that offer on your card, even more reason to refer a friend or family member to 100,000 points of their own!)

The $499 annual fee on the Business Platinum may appear intimidating at first glance, but the benefits of getting the card go a long way towards offsetting the impact of the annual fee.

The Business Platinum Card offers a flat 1.25 MR points per dollar spent on all purchases, making it an ideal card for business owners whose large volumes of spending may not fall into traditional credit card bonus categories.

In my view, the Business Platinum Card’s premium travel benefits is what really moves the needle, although the value may debatable in these times of a pandemic.

You’ll get an unlimited Priority Pass Select membership, which grants complimentary access for yourself and one guest to 1,300+ Priority Pass lounges around the world, in addition to several other lounge networks like Plaza Premium Lounges, Centurion Lounges, and the international Amex-branded lounges.

Get access to American Express Centurion Lounges with the Business Platinum Card

Furthermore, the Business Platinum Card confers instant Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite status, which can help you unlock room upgrades and better treatment at your Marriott hotel stays.

Throw in the competitive travel insurance, the Platinum Concierge access, the access to Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts, and the satisfying feeling of whipping out a metal card and tossing it on the table, and you can see why the Business Platinum Card is a favourite product among high-flying points collectors and business owners across all the land.

Amex Business Gold: 60,000 MR Points

The American Express Business Gold Card offers 60,000 MR points upon spending $5,000 in the first three months.

This is a strictly positive increase from the 40,000 MR points we witnessed previously, with no change to the minimum spending requirement.

Upon completing your minimum spending, you’d emerge with at least 65,000 MR points on this card, worth $1,365. Subtract the $250 annual fee, and this offer is worth $1,145 in travel value.

Indeed, transferring these 65,000 MR points to Aeroplan would already earn you enough for a one-way flight in business class to Japan (from the West Coast) or to Europe (from the East Coast).

(On the Business Gold, the public offer is only 50,000 MR points, with the same minimum spend of $5,000 in the first three months. Needless to say, it’s strictly optimal to apply via a refer-a-friend link for the extra 10,000 MR points on the table.)

In two-player mode, since the three business cards are all part of the same “family” of cards in terms of referrals, it’d be optimal to apply for the Business Gold via the referral link generated by a Business Platinum Card, so that the referrer can earn that card’s referral bonus of 20,000 MR points. 

While the Business Gold Card doesn’t offer nearly as many travel perks as its higher-tier counterpart, it does have the benefit of earning 2 MR points per dollar spent on three merchants of your choice, including Plastiq. All other purchases earn 1 MR point per dollar spent.

Amex Business Edge: Up to 67,000 MR Select Points

The American Express Business Edge Card has bumped up its welcome bonus to an all-time-high level of up to 67,000 MR Select points:

  • 55,000 MR Select points upon spending $5,000 in the first three months
  • 1,000 MR Select points for each of the first 12 months in which you spend $3,000, for a total of 12,000 MR Select points

In general, I’d recommend that you pursue the first portion of the signup bonus to earn at least 55,000 MR Select points, but spending $3,000 per month for an incremental 1,000 MR Select points isn’t necessarily a good idea. I’d only recommend going for the second portion of the bonus if you’re organically spending that much every month anyway.

Upon completing your minimum spending, you’d emerge with at least 60,000 MR Select points on this card, worth $900 by our Points Valuations. Subtract the $99 annual fee, and this offer is worth $801 in travel value.

You could convert the 60,000 MR Select points into 72,000 Marriott Bonvoy points, which would be enough for a one-night stay at a Category 8 hotel at off-peak rate. You could also transfer 60,000 Bonvoy points into 25,000 airline miles in the program of your choosing.

(On the Business Edge, the public offer only gives you 45,000 MR Select points as the first portion of the bonus, with the same minimum spend of $5,000 in the first three months. Again, it’s strictly optimal to apply via a refer-a-friend link for the extra 10,000 MR Select points on the table.)

As before, in two-player mode, the best strategy is to apply for the Business Edge through the referral link generated by a Business Platinum Card, so that the referrer can earn the best-available referral bonus of 20,000 MR points. 

Besides the points, the standout benefit on the Business Edge is the ability to earn 3x MR Select points on business essentials, including food and drinks, ridesharing, gas, office supplies, and electronics. 

Conclusion

After a slow year in 2020, American Express is finally bringing its A-game back to the table with some truly groundbreaking welcome bonuses on its business credit cards.

The American Express Business Platinum Card has put out a stunning offer of 100,000 MR points, leaving its name in the history books as the first-ever credit card in the all-powerful American Express and Aeroplan ecosystem here in Canada to surpass the 100,000-point threshold. 

Simultaneously, the American Express Business Gold Card and American Express Business Edge Card have bumped their welcome bonuses higher to 60,000 MR points and 55,000 MR Select points, respectively, with no corresponding increase to the minimum spending amount. 

We’ve gone ahead and updated our Amex Flowchart to reflect the new offers, and needless to say, now would be the ideal time to sign up for these cards (on behalf of yourself and everyone in your entourage) if you haven’t already. 

Top Offers

American Express Business Platinum Card

100,000 Membership Rewards points
upon spending $10,000 in the first three months

  • Points transfer 1:1 to Aeroplan & British Airways Avios
  • Unlimited Priority Pass lounge access
  • $499 annual fee
Signup bonus
100,000 MR points
Annual fee
$499