Back in December I wrote about how American Express has taken up the practice of freezing Membership Rewards accounts in an effort to review that the initial spend on the card -often resulting in the sought after sign-up bonus- complies with the corresponding credit card’s terms and conditions. I wrote about how my wife’s account was frozen when she applied through an open, however, unpublished link that circulated via Reddit. This was in November. Fast forward to January, and my wife’s MR account was still frozen. about a week ago, however, I tried a small points transfer to Air Canada’s Aeroplan and low and behold the transfer went through.
This means that it took two full months for the account review to be completed. I called on several occasions to see if the process could be expedited, with no success. However, the agents were consistent in providing me with a timeline of when the review was expected to be completed, and so it happened.
So after going through the review, do I like this review process? Of course not, but only because I have to wait to use my earned points. As I mentioned in the referenced post above, I believe that AMEX has the right to review MR accounts if it so pleases to. In any case, if you make your initial spend on the card in accordance to their terms, you’ll have no issues with your points being clawed back, as it happened to some.
This particular offer was special to me because it came as a response to Chase Sapphire Reserve‘s 100k sign-up bonus. Given that we decided not to apply for it, this AMEX sign-up bonus made it easier to deal with missing out on the CSR. This also was the time either my wife or I applied for an AMEX card after the new review process, so out of caution, I decided to move her MR points out of the account prior to applying. In the end, given that the agents provided me with the correct expectations, I have no complaints. We have the 100k points to use, alongside all the other benefits that come with the Platinum card. What else can I ask for?