The AMEX Refer a Friend Program Offers Referral Bonuses for referring friends to an AMEX card you have. But TravelSort reader Jon asks: “If I refer a friend to an AMEX card, which the friend applies for, do I still earn the referral bonus if s/he is approved without a signup bonus?”
I wasn't sure about the answer to this until recently, and thought the answer might be no. But recently, I had occasion to test this, since I wanted to get an AMEX Blue Business Plus card, which earns 2X Membership Rewards points per dollar spent. Because I'd previously had the predecessor version of the card, I wasn't eligible for a signup bonus. I still wanted the card, however, since it would enable me to keep my AMEX Membership Rewards points alive (see When Is It Worth Getting a Credit Card With No Signup Bonus) after closing my AMEX Business Platinum, due to the annual fee increase to $595.
As my husband has the AMEX Blue Business Plus card, I had him refer me to his card. I was approved instantly through his referral link (after proceeding past the warning that based on my history with American Express welcome offers, I wasn't eligible to receive the bonus).
Just a few days later, we noticed that his Membership Rewards account balance included additional points: 10,000 bonus points as a Refer a Friend bonus:
So, the good news is that yes: if someone you refer using AMEX's Refer a Friend program successfully applies for the AMEX card through your referral link, even if she or he doesn't qualify for the signup bonus, you'll still earn your referral bonus.
Become a TravelSort Client and Book 5-Star Hotels with Virtuoso or Four Seasons Preferred Partner Benefits