Disclaimer: Dante, and I are cardholders and I have a relationship with SPG that I will be talking about more in 2015 and 2016. This post was sponsored by the Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG®) Credit Card from American Express. However, all opinions about AMEX and Starwood are my own, as they always are when I refer to a brand or a partnership of any kind. UPDATE: August 10, 2015. New artwork for the card.
I’ve been a fan of Starwood for a long time, and you may remember if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, that I did a project with them in the Fall highlighting their Member Favorites properties in Italy. So when Starwood asked if I would participate in a program to promote their AMEX card, I didn’t have to think too long before I said yes. It’s a natural extension of true brand loyalty or a good decision to make if you’re a points chaser — as I tend to be. Loyalty, I have found, does in fact pay off when you’re a frequent traveler. But I digress…
Starwood seems to, in an industry that often doesn’t, genuinely care about their customers. Certainly, my personal experience has been that they’ve always cared about my business and my well being. (What has your experience been like? I’d genuinely like to know!)
So it is that I am looking forward to what happens as the Starwood and AMEX card benefits continue to stack up for current customers of both brands.
These are the most recent changes which are just being announced today:
Whether traveling for business or pleasure, the purchases made on a trip can turn into extra rewards when traveling with the Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG®) Credit Card from American Express, which is now packed with even greater value. Today, American Express (NYSE: AXP) and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: HOT) announced new benefits to the SPG Credit Card that will deliver more ease and convenience to Card Members.
“The SPG Credit Card by American Express connects our members to a world of rich rewards, allowing Card Members to accelerate their earnings and achieve elite privileges faster,” said Mark Vondrasek, Senior Vice President, Distribution, Loyalty and Partnership Marketing for Starwood Hotels & Resorts. “We always want to give our members more for their loyalty, and with these extended benefits, we’re making it even easier for our most valued guests to enjoy their travels in style with a polished new card design and greater convenience whether at home or abroad.”
In addition to the robust suite of existing benefits, effective August 11, 2015, SPG Card Members will enjoy the following:
- No Foreign Transaction Fees: SPG Card Members can now enjoy international travel without foreign transaction fees from American Express when using their Card on purchases abroad.
- Complimentary, Unlimited Boingo Wi-Fi: SPG Card members will enjoy complimentary, unlimited Wi-Fi access when they enroll in the Boingo American Express Preferred Plan. Receive Wi-Fi access on up to four devices to more than 1,000,000 hotspots worldwide and pay no Wi-Fi roaming fees.
- Complimentary Premium In-Room Internet Access: SPG Card Members won’t miss a beat while away from family, friends, or the office with complimentary premium in-room internet access at SPG® Participating Hotels.
American Express and Starwood Hotels & Resorts created the SPG Credit Card to enhance the domestic and international luxury travel experience, for business and pleasure. Existing card benefits include:
- Earn up to 5 Starpoints for each dollar of eligible purchases at SPG® Participating Hotels (5) – that’s 2 Starpoints for which Card Members may be eligible in addition to the 2 or 3 Starpoints for which they may be eligible as an SPG member. (6) Earn 1 Starpoint for all other purchases. (7)
- Receive credit for 5 nights and 2 stays toward SPG elite status each year. (8)
- Upgrade to SPG Gold status after spending $30,000 in eligible purchases on the Card in a calendar year.(9)
With the enhanced product benefits, the new annual fee will increase from $65 to $95 effective August 11, 2015. The first year of Card Membership is free and $95 annually thereafter
For more information on the Starwood Preferred Guest® (SPG®) Credit Card from American Express, please visit americanexpress.com/starwood.
Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG®) is an innovative, award-winning frequent traveler program that unites each of Starwood’s 9 distinctive hotel brands and includes more luxury hotels in more destinations around the world. SPG reinvented the hospitality loyalty landscape when it launched in 1999 with its breakthrough policy of no blackout dates, and over the years has continued its tradition of innovation with enhancements such as Cash + Points, SPG MomentsSM, and most recently Your24™ and SPG Lifetime™. In addition to Free Night Awards at more than 1,200 hotels and resorts and Award Flights on over 350 major airlines without blackout dates, the Starpoints® that members earn through SPG can be redeemed for access like no other to experiences in music, sports and the arts through SPG Moments. SPG offers the opportunity for meeting and travel professionals to earn rich rewards including Starpoints and elite status through SPG Pro. SPG also has an ongoing commitment to digital innovation to meet the needs of today’s connected global traveler – from the SPG app for iPhone that utilizes state-aware technology to create a more personalized hotel stay to Starwood’s Best Rate Guarantee on SPG.com, to SPG’s integration within various social media platforms. Offerings such as these have helped SPG build a passionate member base among the world’s most frequent travelers. Learn more at spg.com, spg.com/pro and spg.com/moments and connect with us on facebook.com/spg, twitter.com/spg, foursquare.com/spg, pinterest.com/spglife, and youtube.com/spg.