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American Express is promoting a draw for 3 prizes each of 1 Million Membership Rewards points. Even valuing an MR point at just 1p, that puts a £10,000 value on each of the prizes, which should be enough to get anyone interested. Notionally, one entry into the draw is given for each points redemption, up to a maximum of 3 entries per person. However, as is always the case, the devil is in the detail, and in this instance, the details say that a transfer of points to a travel partner does NOT get you a draw entry.
American Express lists the following as redemptions options that are eligible for the draw:-
- Redeem points for any merchandise item
- Redeem points for any gift cards, gift vouchers and e-codes
- Shop with Points at Amazon.co.uk
- Use points towards purchases redemptions
- Use points with SafeKey redemptions
- Redeem points for travel booked through American Express Travel Online
- Redeem points with Ticketmaster
- Redeem points with any charity partner
- Redeem points for credit.
All of the above are poor use of MR points, with the best of them giving between 0.45p-0.5p per MR. I’d never normally consider any of them, so I’d like to identify the one that gets me an entry into the draw using as few MRs as possible. It also needs to be straightforward and not require me to purchase something.
With the above criteria, I feel the best one is “use points towards purchases”, which is a redemption option I explained in a previous article. The minimum redemption is 200 MRs. which provides a 90p credit against any current transaction. Assuming 200 MR points are “worth” £2, an entry into the draw is effectively costing £1.10, which isn’t exactly free.
If you have more altruistic tendencies, then the next best option is to donate to charity. The minimum donation is 500 points, and I’m sure NSPCC or Save The Children to name but two, would be grateful for the donation. Again, the nice thing is that it’s an immediate redemption. 500 points has £5 of value.
If you’re not in….
The draw runs from now until 31st of December, with the winners being drawn 10 days later. Full T&C are here. I have no data to indicate how many people would routinely use the eligible redemption options, but I imagine many people might see 0.45p as a good way of spending their points. Given the draw is running for quite a while, it’s possible the odds of winning could be very poor. If that’s the case, then on balance it’s probably not worth spending £1.10 on an entry, but you never know….