Bilt Targets 5x Earning To Lock In Customer Spend With Amazon, Food Delivery, And Cell Phone/Internet

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I received a targeted promotion to earn 5 points per dollar for 60 days with my Bilt Mastercard for spending at Amazon, on food delivery (Uber Eats, DoorDash, Grub Hub, Seamless, Caviar), and on phone and internet bills. And the card offers cell phone protection, so it’s good for phone bills as it is.

This is highly valuable to me personally. It makes the Bilt Mastercard the most lucrative card for Amazon spend (more valuable than the 5% back Amazon Visa because I value Bilt points at a minimum of 1.7 cents apiece) and the most lucrative for food delivery as well.

But I’m most interested in the strategy because of what these spending categories have in common.

  • They are ‘set it and forget it categories’.
  • You want your purchase experience to be seamless, and it’s a pain to change payment cards.
  • That creates a lock-in effect.

Sixty days of higher earning should be enough to get (many) people to switch their payment methods. And once they’ve done so they aren’t likely to change it back. So Bilt is investing in higher rewards up front to capture more spend on an ongoing basis. And it also creates a broader lock-in effect for the card, who wants to cancel the card they’re using at Amazon, Uber Eats, and to pay their utilities?

Not that you’d cancel anyway – it’s a lucrative card and has no annual fee, so there’s no reason to let it go once you have it.

They’re capping the number of bonus points earned on top of usual spend at 5000 points per category, so 15,000 points per cardmember. There’s a cap on the cost to Bilt. Nonetheless, I really look forward to dining on the first of the month where the card’s usual 3 points per dollar is doubled to 6 points and delivery food orders are earning an extra two points under this offer as well. Under the terms of this offer there doesn’t appear to be anything that limits stacking, so my Uber Eats or Door Dash spend would earn 8 points per dollar that day with Bilt.

Each Bilt point can be spent at 1.25 cents apiece towards travel through their portal or transferred 1:1 into:

  • Star Alliance: Air Canada Aeroplan, Turkish Miles & Smiles, United Airlines MileagePlus
  • oneworld: American AAdvantage, Cathay Pacific Asia Miles, British Airways Executive Club, Iberia Plus
  • SkyTeam: Air France KLM Flying Blue
  • Non-alliance: Emirates Skywards, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club, Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles, Aer Lingus Aer Club
  • Hotels: Hyatt, IHG One Rewards

The Bilt Mastercard is the no annual fee card that lets you earn points paying rent at no cost (up to $100,000 per year) and (outside of Rent Day on the first of the month!) earns double points on travel and triple points on dining.

Eventually some bank will work out a deal with streaming services, cell phone providers, and other ‘set it and forget it’ services to auto-populate their cards as preferred payment mechanisms, perhaps during the online card approval or onboarding process. And that will have a huge lock-in benefit as well.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. @Gary-

    Thanks. I just signed up for the card and when the card got delivered, I received an email with a 5X offer on any spend with a max of 50,000 points but valid for only 5 days of spend. I think that is pretty much like a SUB

  2. The Bilt Mastercard is legit even without a sub. I also like their attention and focus on customer engagement by way of these interesting promo’s and double points on the 1st of every month.

    If not having a sub keeps the churners away from signing up and ruining the program and promos, I’m okay with that. Let those folks play endlessly in the Amex realm and the NLL game.

  3. I’m so annoyed – I actually use my Bilt card on dining since I don’t have Amex Gold, want to diversify my points beyond UR (since I’d ordinarily use my Sapphire for dining), actually value Bilt transfer partners, and need to use the card 5x/month. As a result, I use my Bilt card quite frequently, and I wasn’t targeted for this promo. Similarly, I already have elite status with Hyatt, and I wasn’t targeted for a massive points-earning promo despite having stays booked. It feels like I should not engage with these companies’ products in order to get targeted for nice bonuses!

  4. I get 5X on all my Amazon spend by buying Amazon gift cards at Office Depot with my Ink Plus card.

  5. Big drawback with this card is that you have to make a minimum of five transactions/month or your points for the month are expunged!

  6. @L3, if you hate the card or the folks behind it, just say it. But the argument of making 5 transactions a month is weak in my opinion. You probably spent more time typing your comment or arguing with someone on this site about another issue than it takes to do 5 Amazon reloads a month.

  7. @PETER KUEHNE, does that strategy yield more than the 5% CASH back the Chase Amazon card gives you? Can you turn 5 UR points into more than that (excluding travel?). Thanks

  8. @joshua katt – YMMV, but I value UR points (as does The Points Guy and others) at or around 2¢ apiece for use with transfer partners for travel. So, yeah, it yields double the 5% cash back. If you only want cash, and not flights or hotels, you can always cash out UR points for a penny apiece through various Chase cards, in which case they’d be worth exactly 5%, or the same as the Amazon card.

  9. BILT platinum user here. I didn’t get this offer. I did get some really stupid book for being a platinum member that BILT really hyped up as being a cool benefit.

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