AMEX has launched a new travel credit card that could take on the big four banks, offering up to one-and-a-half airline frequent flyer points for every dollar spent.
The new American Express Explorer credit card adds another option to the black-tier level offerings of ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac, with points free to use across a choice of eight airlines, including Singapore Airlines and Virgin Australia.
Travel insurance and refund and purchase protection are also included, as well as smartphone screen insurance if you use the AMEX Explorer card to buy your phone or pay your monthly contract. Cardholders will also receive two annual visits to the American Express Lounge at Sydney Airport.
The card’s annual fee of $395 is instantly offset by a $400 travel credit each year that can be used for purchases such as flights and hotels.
Furthermore, if you apply before 30 November 2016, and spend at least $1500 on the card in the first two months, you’ll also receive 100,000 Membership Rewards Gateway points.
To qualify, you need to earn more than $65,000 per annum before tax, achieve a minimum credit limit of $3000 and agree to receive electronic statements.
It is also worth noting that Membership Rewards Gateway points are converted to frequent flyer points at the rate of four to three (75 per cent). This differs from the Ascent and Ascent Premium programs found on cards such as the AMEX Platinum Edge and Platinum, where points are converted on a one-for-one basis.
Points transfers to Qantas Frequent Flyer aren’t possible on the AMEX Explorer credit card and, similarly, if you are affiliated with Virgin Atlantic’s Flying Club, Hilton HHonors or are a Starwood Preferred Guest this may not be your best AMEX option.
Read more at Australian Business Traveller.
Which credit card or travel programs do you use?