Earn American Express Membership Rewards® Points with Rakuten

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Do you have an American Express card that earns American Express Membership Rewards® Points?
Did you know you can choose American Express Membership Rewards® Points as your “pay out” on Rakuten and earn 10 points per dollar?

Why this makes sense if nearly free travel is your goal

Let’s say you were shopping at a store earning 10x cash back and spend $1300.
With a cash payout, you’ll get $130.
With points payout, you’ll get 13,000 American Express Membership Rewards® Points

With 13,000 American Express Membership Rewards® Points, you can transfer them to British Airways and fly to Kauai from LA for as low as 13,000 Avios (what British Airways calls their points) + $5.60. This ticket would cost you $259 if you were paying in cash.

Or, let’s say you want to go from Denver to NYC. Transfer your American Express Membership Rewards® Points to Delta. Instead of paying $289 for this Delta ticket, you will use 11,500 points +$6 for a main cabin seat, which costs $289 with cash.

Okay, I’m convinced, but how do I connect the accounts?

  • First, you’ll need a Rakuten account. If you don’t have one yet, you can use my link and we’ll both get $30 (or 3000 American Express Membership Rewards® Points) after you spend $30 within 90 days via the Rakuten shopping portal.
  • In the top right, hover over your name. Click on “My Account”.
  • Go to “How would you like to get paid”
  • Select “Switch to AAmerican Express Membership Rewards® Points” – fill in the details of your American Express account
  • Do this “switch” on a desktop/laptop, as many people report it not working on a phone app

Then from there, you can expect payouts quarterly.

Tips & Thoughts

If I see Rakuten is having a 12x or 15x back day on a bunch of stores, I’ll load up on stuff I know I’ll need for the month. It’s my favorite way to earn American Express Membership Rewards® Points without opening a new card. And it’s amazing how quickly it adds up!

Remember, just like all shopping portals, you should complete your transaction in one sitting. If you are opening/closing windows, clicking through to a store but completing the order hours later, Rakuten may not track your order.

Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

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