[EXPIRED] Are you eligible for the Amex SPG 35K bonus?

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I expect that many readers are interested in the Amex SPG lmited time 35K offers for both personal and business cards.  I know that I am.  Unfortunately, the offer terms state “Welcome bonus offer not available to applicants who have or have had this product.”  Amex apparently keeps track of whether or not you’ve had the card in the past 7 years.  If you have had the card, you’re not eligible for the new bonus, even if you never got a signup bonus for the card before.  Of course if you’ve had only the personal SPG card before, you can still get the business SPG card, and vice versa.

I was pretty sure that I had both the personal and business card within the past 7 years, but my credit card tracking spreadsheet only showed the personal card.  Was it possible that I never had the business card?  That would be great!  But I also knew that I wasn’t always good about keeping my credit card application spreadsheet up to date.  It was likely that I had the card before but forgot to record it.

To find out for sure, I logged into my Amex account and initiated a chat…

Amex Chat pill-button

I asked if I had ever had the SPG business card before…

Amex Chat SPG Question

Rats!  I have had the card before and so I’m not eligible for the bonus for the same business.  But, I’ve had luck in the past with other Amex cards when I’ve signed up under a second business, so I’ll try that.

UPDATE: If you’re also interested in applying under a second business (with a different EIN), I highly recommend waiting to see the results of my experiment.  I’m going to rush things forward to try to get results way ahead of this offer’s 4/5 expiration date.

UPDATE 2: My experiment did NOT work.  I applied for the SPG business card under a second business with a different EIN (business tax ID), and I spent $5,000 on the card.  When my statement closed, I had earned just the 5,000 points from spend, but did not earn signup bonus points.  The business card currently offers 25,000 points after $5K spend, then 10K additional points with $2K additional spend, so I would have earned 25,000 points if this experiment had been successful.

No more than 5 credit cards

Another rule to watch out for is that Amex will allow each person to have no more than 5 credit cards.  This count includes both personal and business credit cards.  It’s OK to have more charge cards, but only up to 5 credit cards.

Amex credit cards (which count towards your 5 card max) include:

  • SPG cards
  • Delta cards
  • Hilton cards
  • All “Blue” cards (Blue Cash, Blue Sky, Blue for Business, etc.)
  • EveryDay cards
  • Plenti card
  • The Mercedes-Benz credit card (but not the Mercedes-Benz Platinum charge card)
  • SimplyCash
  • Lowes Business

And, again, charge cards do not count towards your total.  So, if you have any of these, they do not count towards your 5 credit card limit:

  • Platinum cards, including the Business Platinum card
  • Premier Rewards Gold
  • Business Gold Rewards
  • Business Green Rewards
  • Green card
  • Gold card
  • The Plum Card

Employee cards and authorized user cards also do not count towards your total.

I currently have 4 Amex credit cards: 3 Delta cards (but I plan to cancel one of them), and the Old Blue Cash card.

My next steps:

  1. I’ll cancel the Delta card that I no longer want (because why not)
  2. I’ll sign up for the SPG business card under a second business (I legitimately have several separate businesses)
  3. I’ll meet minimum spend without buying gift cards.  See: How to avoid Amex Clawbacks.
  4. I’ll wait and hope that the 2nd business approach works*

* UPDATE: If you’re also interested in applying under a second business (with a different EIN), I highly recommend waiting to see the results of my experiment.  I’m going to rush things forward to try to get results way ahead of this offer’s 4/5 expiration date.

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Data Point: Warning! You can’t rely solely on what AmEx Chat tells you.
Even if customer service tells you you’ve never had this card before, you need to verify with the “New Accounts Team” at 800-952-7560 to see if you’re eligible for the bonus. I just found out I am being denied the bonus for previously having this card even though Chat told me I hadn’t.


Nevermind, possible false alarm. Spoke with the New Accounts Team and another Customer Service rep, who both verified I never had the SPG Biz card before. Still, a bit concerned as to why the first chat rep was so adamant about me being denied the bonus.


ehhh… I was reassured the bonus would post after a few billing cycles, but I followed up with AmEX Chat again today. Now they tell me the system says the account was ineligible for the bonus because of having a previous account of the same product type, even though Customer Service told me the account was eligible. Rep opened up internal investigation with the “Specialist Team” to look at chat & call records. Moral of the story so far: AmEx customer service reps may not always have accurate information at their fingertips.


Welp, it’s official. They denied the bonus after investigation. I


I applied for 2 business cards becuase I have 2 businesses. This was before I saw your experiment. When I called in to ask what my promotions were for each one, they told me I had the 35,000 promotion for each one of them. Do you think this is false? I called separately. I have not met the qualifying spend so I don’t know if it’s valid


Hi Greg, any further update on this?






Looking forward to hearing your updates!


While I understand the experiment and discussion is related to the SPG business card, my experience from last month using a new EIN (on a second legitimate business) for an AmEx Platinum account did not yield me a second bonus. I filed a complaint but customer service manager was unmoved. Just adding a data point.


Greg & others,

What about other banks (Chase, Citi, etc), do you have any data points as far as applying for business credit cards with business1 + SSN as well as business2 + EIN? Are the banks treating them as separate business entities period, or is the business under SSN seen differently? What about bonuses for checking accounts?


[…] American Express only count cards within a specific time frame. We believe that time frame is seven years, the issue with that of course is that some people don’t keep very good records (shame on you – use this to make it easier). A solution I’ve seen mentioned recently is that you can ask American Express via chat what cards you have/haven’t had before (Frequent Miler goes into some more detail about this here, rather than asking about one card I&#8217…). […]

Dave D



Subscribing. Have both personal card under my SSN and business card under EIN1. Would like to get another biz card under EIN2. Have seen reports of it going either way from multiple sources so, as Raj found out, it might still be YMMV. I guess I might as well wait for Greg’s results.


FOLLOWING! I tried this yesterday and pulled the plug on the 2nd card when they wanted my SSN and I couldn’t get definitive answers on whether I’d ever get it. Thank you!


Definitely interested to hear given my experience!

Levy Flight

Thanks for confirming the second business option and the 7 yesr rule. Very helpful.


I can transfer my MRs earned on Platinum to SPG correct? I need to get my airline credits for this year and close that Platinum so as not to pay the annual fee again. I have only old Blue cash and Delta. I loved that Platinum…


So I will get both the SPG and another card like the Amex everyday because they combine pulls right? Thanks very much.

Frank River

This offer is okay but in reference to a previous posting; the City National Bank Crystal Card is back with a 70k point offer. Went into the branch in San Francisco on Fremont St and they approved me without a bank account.


Can you tell us about that card?
Never heard of it…


Greg, when u say different business, do u mean a different TIN? I’ve only used my SSN on all of my biz cards.


So you’re specifically saying we can try for a biz card bonus again but don’t use our SSN again, we should use a true EIN, correct?

Also – is it a bad idea to apply for a new biz card with an ein If I have a different biz with my SSN biz attached to it?


I’m curious. Do the Amex CHARGE cards count toward Chase’s 5/24 rule, since they are not CREDIT cards?


Yes, they count. They are personal accounts. The business accounts do not count.


Thanks, gentlemen!

Christine B

I’m a big fan and have benefited greatly from this blog.

I’m wondering your source for Amex only keeping records for 7 years.

I chatted with AMEX, who has no record of my SPG biz which I product changed to a Simply Cash Biz in ’08 or ’09. Not worried about a credit pull, but would really hate to redirect all that spend for the next 6 months for nothing.


Christine B

I signed up for SPG biz through your link. Instantly approved. Fortunately(?) I have enough legitimate spend to knock out the first $5K spend in short order. If the first 25K points post, I’ll do the additional spend for the remaining 10K points. Fingers crossed!

With no annual fee the first year and the opportunity for AMEX sync offers open only to Biz cards (and authorized users), I’m thinking this is a good option regardless.

And it won’t count toward 5/24 anyway, so no loss there.

Christine B

Just completed $7K spend in the past 2 months on my SPG biz card. Had SPG biz in the distant past, but apparently not in the past 7 years. Bonus 25K points just posted! Will finish off the remaining spend for the additional 10K points.

I now have 2 personal AMEX (Everyday and SPG) and 2 biz (Cash Back and SPG). I’ve had a personal SPG forever but now plan to cancel it when the annual fee is due unless they offer a nice retention bonus, since the biz version give me all the benefits I need.

I’m not even a SPG girl, but I love the Marriott Los Suenos Costa Rica and have my eyes on a few other family-friendly resort properties.


Please keep us updated on the multiple business approach to the SPG card. I also have multiple businesses and would like to have multiple SPG cards. I have different Amex cards for two of them (Blue for Biz & existing SPG Biz). However, they appear under my same Amex login. That leaves me 2 questions:

1. Will they approve a 2nd SPG Biz card for a different business?
2. Will the 2nd SPG Biz card earn the sign-up bonus?


5K in organic spend is lot to blow through if they disallow the rewards for a 2nd business. Thanks for taking one for the team! 🙂


I tried this after reading about FM’s success last year with a different biz card. I never got the bonus 🙁


Greg – I applied for the SPG biz. After reading your success story, I applied using a separate EIN (I have a couple of legit businesses also). Bonus never posted so I’m curious to see if you get the bonus.


I’m curious about this as well.


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