The Most Rewarding Card For Unbonused Spend Now Has An Up Front Bonus

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The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express now has an initial bonus offer. Most of the time it hasn’t. Frankly, the card is too good, and extra points should get you to pay attention.

The up front offer is to earn 15,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership. And it’s a no annual fee card (see rates and fees).

What makes the card special though is that it earns two membership rewards points on all of your purchases (up to $50,000 in purchases per year). That makes this the best and most rewarding card for otherwise-unbonused spend. These are transferable points you can move to:

  • Star Alliance: Air Canada, ANA, Avianca, Singapore
  • oneworld: British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Iberia, Qantas, Qatar
  • SkyTeam: Aeromexico, Air France KLM, Delta, Virgin Atlantic
  • Non-alliance: Aer Lingus, Emirates, Etihad, Hawaiian, JetBlue
  • Hotels: Choice, Hilton, Marriott

I always say you should never earn just one mile per dollar. Here you can spend up to $50,000 on the card and earn 2 points per dollar on all of it, without having to be in special categories like travel or dining. So it’s where you should consider putting your spend that doesn’t earn bonuses on other cards.

(For rates and fees of the The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express, click here)

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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Editorial note: any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer. Comments made in response to this post are not provided or commissioned nor have they been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any bank. It is not the responsibility of advertisers Citibank, Chase, American Express, Barclays, Capital One or any other advertiser to ensure that questions are answered, either. Terms and limitations apply to all offers.


  1. Good timing for someone like me who plans to bail on the Amex Plat and needs a place to move my current Amex Rewards points balance.

  2. BoA Platinum with Investment account for bonus. 2.62% on all spend 3.5% on travel. In cash, no limit. Free with annual travel credit. The points game ain’t what it used to be.

  3. @Peter, one can get outsized value booking premium travel. Far more than the BofA product you shill.

  4. @Brodie – availability for such not what it used to be. For folks whose schedules are not too flexible, 2.62-3.5% cash back comes out ahead.

  5. It’s had a 10K opening bonus off and on for years. Maybe fatty couldn’t make any money off that sign up.

  6. Except don’t the Venture cards mostly earn 2x points that are also transferreable?

    What gives this card the edge over those?

  7. Gary: this blog post doesn’t quite make sense. You know that the Capital One Venture X and the Venture X Business both give 2 miles per dollar on all purchases, and there’s also no cap on how much you can earn (unlike the AMEX’s $50,000 spend). Furthermore, I actually like Capital One points more than AMEX MR points because of the ability to transfer to TK. And of course the Capital One cards’ account opening bonuses blow this tiny AMEX 15,000 point bonus out of the water. Plus they have other perks too long to list.

  8. Blue Business Plus vs Venture X cards is apples and oranges.

    $0 AF vs $395 AF

    You’re literally comparing entry level against premium cards! Choose the card you want, of course, and Gary should have mentioned this. However, it’s a strong offer for some.

    Oh, I also signed up several months ago with a targeted 50k points offer after 15k spend. Not the greatest offer ever, but much better than the public ones with no hit to 5/24. YMMV!

  9. I think comparing to Venture X is fair. $300 travel booking credit + yearly bonus points for keeping the card are easy/auto and more than negates the fee.

  10. @jamesb2147
    It is not comparing apples to oranges.
    Gary literally wrote “That makes this the best and most rewarding card for otherwise-unbonused spend.” He did not qualify his statement with any reference to annual fees. However, that statement in combination with praising the card for having a 15,000 point offer that is 1/10 the 150,000 point offer for the Business Venture X is very suspicious, because Gary knows the credit card landscape really well – I hope this isn’t a case of prioritizing credit card referrals over the best interests of consumers.

  11. Amex is the only program that allows you to transfer to ANA. You can find some real outsized value there, but domestically you can’t beat TK until they devalue soon.

  12. The Blue Business Plus card from Amex charges a foreign transaction fee. Something to keep in mind when deciding which card to use or even get.

  13. I post the same question every time Gary reposts these adverts for Amex Blue Business Plus:

    Where is the Citi Doublecash? No cap on earning rates. Earns two points per dollar. Only the transfer partners MIGHT favor Amex, but not since adding Qatar as an Avios partner.

    It’s shameful to tout yourself as a leading expert and NEVER tout the Doublecash over other cards.

  14. The most rewarding card for unbonused spend categories is always the card you are working on the spend requirement for a sign up bonus. Most people’s spend is not so high that with a little planning they can always be working on a SUB.

  15. Since I always need more hotel points bs airline points; I prefer one of the Chase products that give 1.5 UR points. I always transfer to Hyatt.


    So I need a juicy bonus to bite.

  16. This is the best card for a small business for general spend. I have looked and looked and this is it.

  17. No love for Citi DoubleCash? AMEX transfer partners are superior, but not by much (especially Delta).

  18. The Citi Double Cash Card is better. It is accepted everywhere. AMEX cards are not. I have the Premier card and I also have the no annual fee Citi Rewards + card which gives me a 10% rebate when transferring points. Therefore, the effective return on the Double Cash card is actually 2.22%.

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