If you have an Amex Gold or Platinum card, or either of the two British Airways cards, here’s a trick that could net you some free bonus points.

In late 2014, American Express ran a frankly crazy promotion (by UK standards) for Platinum cardholders. They offered 10,000 bonus Membership Rewards points for each additional cardholder that you added to your account. As you can add up to five additional cards to a Platinum account this offer was worth up to 50,000 Membership Rewards points – at no additional cost!

There was no need to:

  • Keep the Platinum card longer than it took to post the bonus points (inside 3 months)
  • Pay a fee for these additional cards
  • Meet a spending target on the additional cards

I have no idea what sort of numbers this promotion generated in terms of new card sign-ups but I know plenty people applied for the Platinum card when they would never previously have considered doing so. Then again, earning almost 90,000 Membership Rewards points for signing up to a single card was a bit of a no-brainer!

Perhaps unsurprisingly the 50,000 bonus points offer has never reappeared. There has been, however, a different official/unofficial offer that has been available on many Amex cards for some time now.

Free points for adding your first additional cardholder

This offer has been floating around for a while. I haven’t written about it because it was traditionally a far more targeted offer. Some people had a banner appear within their Amex online account offering free points for adding an additional cardholder.

However, many have reported receiving a bonus after adding an additional cardholder, despite not being targeted with the offer directly. As it costs nothing to try and I’ve successfully received this bonus a number of times without actually getting the offer, I figured it was worth a mention.

It seems the following bonuses are available when adding your first additional cardholder:

Possible 5,000 bonus Membership Rewards points with the Platinum Card…

As far as I know, there aren’t any bonus point offers for adding a supplementary card on the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit card, Nectar credit cardAmex Platinum Cashback Everyday credit card or the Amex Platinum Cashback Credit card.

If you have received a bonus for adding a supplementary card on any of these products, please post in the comments section below.

How it works

If this offer is advertised within your Amex account, there’s usually a direct link to apply for a supplementary card.

If you haven’t been targeted, here’s what you should try. When filling out the online application form for any of the cards I’ve highlighted above, leave the ‘supplementary cards section’ blank. Reports suggest the bonus isn’t triggered if you add an additional cardholder on the application itself. Instead, wait until your new card arrives. Then log in and follow the links to ‘Add someone to your account’.

The bonus points are usually added pretty quickly.

Amex bonus for supps

All of mine have arrived within 24-48 hours, but that’s just my personal experience.


I should stress again that these bonus points are not guaranteed if you haven’t received an offer directly. However, this trick has generated a decent haul of free Membership Rewards points/Avios for me and there’s no reason why you shouldn’t take five minutes to give it a go.

Have you received a bonus for adding a supplementary Amex card?

Header image credit: First Class Photography / Shutterstock.com

Disclaimer: The information provided by Tricks of the Trade is intended solely as a helpful guide to relevant travel rewards card products and their various features and offers. You should always conduct your own research as recommendations provided within may not be suitable for your personal financial circumstances. 


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