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American Express Membership Rewards Gets a Major Upgrade

June 11, 2021
2 mins
A man and a woman lounge on a couch and online shop together

Eligible cards now have the option to use fewer points for purchases. The new redemption rate is 1,000 Membership Rewards® points for a $10 statement credit toward any eligible purchase charged to the card, up from a $7 value prior to May 31, 2021. That is a $3 increase per 1,000 points.

Use points for purchases (statement credits)

Membership Rewards® points

New redemption value (0.1)

Former redemption value (0.07)

1,000

$10

$7

2,000

$20

$14

3,000

$30

$21

4,000

$40

$28

5,000

$50

$35

Typically, rewards programs that offer travel provide the best redemption value for travel-related purchases, as was the case for Membership Rewards. This is still true for programs like Scotia Rewards, BMO Rewards and CIBC Rewards. However, eligible American Express cardholders can get the same redemption rate when redeeming points toward any eligible purchase on the card, travel or otherwise, thanks to this upgrade.

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Changes affect the following American Express cards:

Cardholders can redeem their Membership Rewards® points online or through the American Express® App once they have a minimum of 1,000 points.

Use your points your way

American Express credit cards are already well-equipped with high earn rates for everyday spending and feature top-of-the-line insurance coverage and perks. The American Express CobaltTM Credit Card, for example, provides one of the best first-year values according to the RATESDOTCA Best of Finance methodology, at an estimated $1,560.

First Year Value is the estimated dollar amount of benefits you will accumulate based on your monthly spending and rewards preference
Welcome bonus
$525
Annual rewards
$1155
Annual fee
$120
Total first year value
$1560
American Express CobaltTM Credit Card

card image
Welcome bonus
$525
AMEX Rewards points
Annual rewards
$1155
AMEX Rewards points
Annual fee
$120

Winner – Best Overall Rewards Credit Card, Best Credit Card for Young Professionals, and Best Credit Card for Earning Travel Points.
Particularly great for individuals who live in the city, eat out often or order in.
Details at a glance Collapse details
First Year Value is the estimated dollar amount of benefits you will accumulate based on your monthly spending and rewards preference
Welcome bonus
$525
Annual rewards
$1155
annualFee
$120
Total first year value
$1560
Welcome bonus
$525
Annual rewards
$1155
Winner – Best Overall Rewards Credit Card, Best Credit Card for Young Professionals, and Best Credit Card for Earning Travel Points.
Particularly great for individuals who live in the city, eat out often or order in.
Details at a glance Collapse details

Currently, new card members can earn up to 30,000 Membership Rewards® points in the first year. Earn 2,500 points each monthly billing period in which you spend at least $500 on the card for 12 months. This offer is subject to change at any time without notice.

If a person were to earn the complete welcome offer of 30,000 Membership Rewards® points, they would have a $300 value to spend on travel or statement credits: one of the most flexible and valuable options available today.

Rates, product information and reward estimates are subject to change at any time and do not constitute financial advice. This post was not sponsored. RATESDOTCA may receive a referral fee from our partners or affiliate links featured on the site; however, our editorial choices are objective and free from bias. The opinions expressed in this article are purely those of RATESDOTCA; thus, the credit card issuers and partners are not responsible for any editorials or reviews that may appear. Please visit the associated website for complete and current terms and conditions on any product or service mentioned. The information in this article is accurate as of the date of this posting, June 11, 2021. Read our full disclaimer.

Hayley Vesh

Hayley Vesh is a creative, resourceful, and knowledgeable content producer who is passionate about financial literacy, storytelling, and generating ideas. She writes about credit cards, savings, debt management, and personal finance. In her spare time, Hayley can be found wandering in the woods, hunting for second-hand treasures, or curled up with a steeped tea and a good podcast.

Find Hayley Vesh on LinkedIn.

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