What I Learned from My Amex FR

This is the post I’ve been dreading writing.

A few weeks ago, I got the call no one in this game wants to get, that Amex was doing a financial review. I won’t bore people with all the details, but in short, all of my accounts were closed. I really don’t think that my situation is applicable to anyone else, so I’ll skip over what triggered it and why all of my accounts were closed despite the fact that I submitted all the documents they requested.

I’m writing this because I learned a couple things after getting shut down by Amex that might be useful to others.

  1. You can transfer out MR up to 90 days after account closure. This is a hard limit I received in writing (by letter) after being shutdown.
  2. You can get points made available that were pending when your account is closed.
  3. You can only transfer MR out to travel partners that you’ve already linked, not to ones that you haven’t yet. This precludes selling points to other people.
  4. Number 3 is wrong. If you push hard enough, you actually can link a new transfer account.
  5. Finally, any current promotions (like an increased ratio in transferring to a particular partner) is applied even though your account is closed.

Points 3-5 are probably the most interesting ones. After getting shutdown, I wanted to transfer out to Krisflyer. According to all the agents I spoke with at first, though, I had never linked a Krisflyer account, and they couldn’t do it now since my account had been “swept”, their term for closed. I made more than a couple calls, but no one could/would help me.

Fast forward to the recent British Airways transfer promo. I realized this was my best bet for value from the MR program, so I called in to transfer since I knew my BA account was linked. To my surprise, when I got a hold of an agent and told her I wanted to transfer out, she asked what my Singapore number was.

Importantly, she asked for it without me mentioning it at all. That means they must have notated my account. I decided to stick with BA because of the promotion, but that means that if you call in enough, it might be possible to actually link a new account. If you wanted, that should include other people’s accounts if you’re selling points.

Hopefully I’ll be a lot more active in posting since the dust has settled from this issue.

2 thoughts on “What I Learned from My Amex FR

    • I mentioned above that I don’t think that my situation applies to pretty much anyone else, so that’s why I left it out.

      I think I could’ve gotten the FR for two reasons. One, I used my OBC at a grocery store for a $2000 purchase instead of my usual drugstore. Two, I was doing a couple of Giftcards.com orders before the rate change a few months ago, and that could’ve tripped it.

      They closed all of my accounts because they said that the documents I submitted were insufficient. This is the thing that’s probably unique to me. I’ve disputed it considering that I literally gave them the only government documents that could be sufficient, and the IRS says that they should be sufficient, but they closed the accounts regardless.

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