My Starwood Biz Amex Retention Offer

When I’m not working on fulfilling minimum spends to earn bonuses on new credit cards, I tend to have a couple of (not so surprising) go- to cards. I try use a mixture of my SPG Amex’s and my Chase Ink cards as much as possible.

I currently have both the American Express personal and business SPG cards. When the annual fee recently came up for my business card, I had a big decision to make, keep it or close it?

Since I also have the personal card, keeping my business account open wasn’t so important.

I decided in advance that I was not going to pay any fee for my business card. Since Amex changed the rules and does not allow multiple sign-up bonuses anymore, (for the same product) I’d definitely want to keep my personal SPG open when the fee came up so I could still earn those valuable points.

I called the phone # on the back of my card and explained that I’d like to close my card. When asked why, I said it was a very simple reason- I do not like to pay fees!

The friendly American Express rep understood my reasoning and said that she would be able to help me in closing out my account. I then asked if there was any promotions or offers to help with the annual fee. She looked into my account and told me that she saw nothing for me… Bummer, I guess.

I decided to ask her about a retention department and soon got transferred there.

The retention specialist went over the usual pleasantries before getting down to business. I again explained the situation before being told how great SPG is. She went on to tell me how SPG has the best and most valuable points and that they are worth 3x the amount of Membership Rewards (or something to that extent).

I was then placed on a brief hold so she could check what options were available for me.

I was offered a $50 credit to help offset the fee. This would make my out-of-pocket cost for the card $15 for the year. This sounded reasonable but since I also have the personal card, I knew that I would turn it down.

I then asked if there was any other offers for me. I was then told that this was it. She said that Amex is not allowed to give out SPG points due to their terms with Starwood.

Now I don’t know if this is really true or not but either way, I told her to just go ahead and close my account.

She then started to read me the terms related to closing the account but then cut herself off and said “I’m not supposed to do this…”

She went on to explain  how important I was to American Express, however I haven’t really put a ton of spend on this card. She then asked if I thought I could start putting more spend on it. I said sure not knowing if I really would or would not.

I was then offered a $100 loyalty statement credit to keep my account open! She said that $65 would cover this years fee and the extra $35 could go towards the following year.

With this new, generous offer on the table, I didn’t hesitate to say yes. I have nothing to lose and at worse just earned $35!

Have you ever been offered a retention bonus for a SPG Amex card? If so what were you offered?

7 thoughts on “My Starwood Biz Amex Retention Offer

  1. One item you did not mention that should be a factor os the AMEX offers where you get rebates on the card. Although the Starwood has the least of these AMEX offers it can still mean the difference between paying a fee and getting an overall annual rebate. That concept has changed my entire perspective especially since I learned how to capture the same offer on multiple cards with the multiple browsers open trick.

  2. Would be better to just close it anyway so you can get the 25k point signup bonus again 12 months later. The new rules limiting people to one signup bonus per lifetime does not apply to business cards.

  3. What’s the benifit of having two of the same card? Both have the same attributes right? Is it about keeping your personal credit limit higher?

  4. I got a $200 retention a few months ago. Apparently they wanted me to continue buying lots of AMEX GCs for another year.

  5. You’re too passive. Front line CSR are a waste of time. Immediately ask for retention, and then specifically ask for their best offer to cut thru the baloney.

  6. JustSaying- You bring up a very good point. Offers such as Amex Sync & Small Business Saturday do bring some added value!

    Diamond Vargas- I believe you are right in regards to earning the bonus again with biz accounts. Thanks for reminding me!

    Ray- That stinks!

    Mike- I’ve had both the personal and business card 2x each for the signup bonuses. I want to keep my biz card open since I don’t know what will be offered when my personal comes up for the fee. I don’t want to be without a SPG card.

    HikerT- Wow! That is a great offer. Congrats!

    Paul- I like the baloney and hearing what each rep has to say in regards to the rules and what they can do. Might not be your way, but it is interesting to me.

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