EXPIRED! Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) Sign Up Bonus Increased to 30k

Posted By Trav
With the increased bonus, you'd get FOUR free nights at a category 3 hotel!

With the increased bonus, you’d get FOUR free nights at a category 3 hotel!

This offer has now expired!

One of the best all around travel credit cards out there, the Starwood Preferred Guest, has bumped it’s sign up bonus up for both the personal and the business card up to 30k.

The regular offer is 25k, so an extra 5k for each card is nothing to sneeze at.

The Terms

Here are the terms of the deal:

  • Limited Time Offer: earn up to 30K bonus Starpoints®:10K after your first purchase and 20K after you spend $5K in purchases on the card within the first 6 mo. Offer expires 9/3/2013
  • That’s enough for a weekend getaway to a Category 4 Hotel like the Westin Savannah Harbor Golf Resort & Spa, or six free nights at a Category 2 Hotel.
  • Free Hotel Nights: redeem Starpoints at over 1,100 hotels in nearly 100 countries worldwide – with no blackout dates
  • Free Flights: redeem Starpoints on over 350 airlines with SPG Flights – with no blackout dates
  • Get 5,000 bonus Starpoints after you transfer 20,000 Starpoints to a frequent flyer program with more than 30 airlines
  • No limits on the number of Starpoints you can earn
  • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $65
  • Terms and Restrictions apply.

Why I Love These Cards

While a 30k sign up bonus may not seem that great, all the extra perks this card offers, in addition to the 30k sign up bonus, makes it a must have for most frequent flyers.

Here are a few of the best perks:

25% Transfer Bonus

Usually, the best transfer partner for SPG points is AA, and they sweeten the deal by giving you a 25% bonus on every 20k SPG points you transfer.

So 20k SPG points = 25K AA miles.

If you get both a personal and a business card, those 60k SPG points could be transferred to 75k AA miles.

That’s a pretty nice chunk of miles!

Cash + Points for Hotel Stays

If you decide to use your SPG points to stay at one of their hotels, you can stretch them extra far by paying a combination of cash + points.

You can routinely grab $400 hotel rooms for $100 and a small amount of points, meaning you can feel like a king or queen more often than not!

Annual Fee Waived

For the first year, the $65 annual fee is waived.  Can’t argue with that!

Answers to the Most Commonly Asked SPG Questions

1.  Can I get both a personal and a business version of this card?

Yes, you can get both versions of this card.  I got both cards at the same time last August without a problem.

If you’re interested in how to get a business card, check out this post where I break down exactly how to do it.

2.  Can I get the sign up bonus if I’ve had this card before?

According to American Express, you can get the sign up bonus if you haven’t had this card in the last 12 months.  That means that if you had this card and closed it longer than 12 months ago, you can get the sign up bonus.

If you have had this exact same card in the last 12 months, you won’t get the bonus (sad face for me!).

3.  How do I meet the minimum spend?

The minimum spend requirement is $5,000 in 6 months for each card, meaning that if you get both, you’ll be looking at $10,000 in 6 months.

For some people, this may be tough “naturally”.  That’s why I’d recommend using Amazon Payments to knock of $1,000 a month, and also buying Vanilla Reload gift cards.

By using these two methods, you should easily be able to hit it.

4.  Why is this such a good everyday spend card?

Because you get a 25% bonus when transferring SPG points to airlines, like American Airlines, you are getting 1.25x points per every $1 you spend.

This is one of the best values out there, since most cards only earn you 1x point per $1 spent.

Also, AA miles can be very valuable, since they allow stopovers, open jaws, and free one-ways.

5.  Are there any downsides?

The only real downside is that the SPG card has a 2.7% foreign transaction fee.

You should still open this card and get the sign up bonus, but I’d stash it away when you travel abroad and take the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Ink Plus instead.

Final Word(s)

This is an absolutely awesome card, and I’d highly recommend signing up for it while the bonus is at 30k.

I’d also tell you to consider doubling your pleasure and going for both the personal and the business, which would net you a cool 60k SPG points!

So, are you going for this card now that the bonus has jumped up?  Do you have any questions about it?  If so, let me know in the comments below!

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuer. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuer, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through the credit card issuer Affiliate Program.




  1. bp says:

    Thanks Trav!
    How easy is it to switch from one Chase CC to another? Can I hold multiple Chase CCs simultaneously?

    1. Trav says:

      @bp- It’s pretty easy to switch between them. What you will really do is transfer credit lines. Keep the Chase card open that you eventually want to close, apply for another Chase card, and if that second card doesn’t get approved, call them up. When they say you have enough credit with Chase already, simply ask to transfer the credit from the first card to the new card, and have them close the first card.

      The # you can have depends on your situation and credit score. I personally have 4-6 open at all times, but some are a business cards and some are personal. Everyone will get cut off after a certain limit, but there is no knowing what that limit is. That’s why transferring credit lines becomes important.

  2. Ken says:

    You can’t apply for both cards and get aproved on the same day anymore. Amex system gets confused so you need to wait 5 days between apps. It’s too bad since both hard pulls used to get combined by agencies.

    1. Trav says:

      @Ken- That’s true. It will automatically deny you. However, I called in and was approved no problem once I told them why I applied for both. So I guess if you are chasing instant approval for both, wait 5 days in between. If you don’t care about calling in, you can do both at the same time.

      Thanks for the heads up!

      1. Ken says:

        That’s interesting. All the reports I’ve read the past few days were that the system locked the 2nd app for 5 business days before it could be processed. Did you do the personal or Biz card first?

        1. Trav says:

          @Ken- I can’t remember which card I did first, but I think the biz. And that was a year ago, so things may have changed by then.

  3. Wayne S says:

    I was in between app-o-ramas so I just recently hit another 5k spend on this card so I could have 40k points. That way I have two 20k transfers with a 5k transfer bonus each.

    1. Trav says:

      @Wayne S.- Yeah, that’s perfect. I always make sure to transfer in bunches of 20k in order to maximize. How long ago did you get approved for these cards? If it was less than 90 days ago, try to get your bonus bumped.

      1. Wayne S says:

        I got it last year. In fact, anniversary is coming around. Need to figure that out as well.

  4. ron says:

    trav, you mentioned the amazon payments to meet the required minimum I signed up for my self but when I signed up for my wife, they wanted her business name, annual gross and a web site, I could not go on any further with out the web address, do you know what they mean and a way around this and BTW what do you mean by a website below


  5. ron says:

    trav, ron again, I forgot to click notify me via email,

    my bad

    1. Trav says:

      @ron- They wanted your wife’s business name, annual gross, and website to sign up for Amazon Payments? You should be able to sign up for Amazon Payments as an individual, not as a business. If you already have an Amazon account, you can just make that your Amazon Payments account. I believe you may have tried to sign up for a business account for Amazon Payments, and that may be the issue.

  6. Shawn says:

    I’m thinking about getting the card due to the 30K bonus, but I also considering the Marriott Rewards Premier Card with the 70K bonus. Any suggestions for which to pull the trigger on?

    1. Trav says:

      @Shawn- Depends what your plans are. If you are looking for an everyday card, then the SPG is much better. The points are more valuable (a top end SPG hotel will cost you 25k, whereas a top end Marriott will cost you 50k).

      Also, if you are looking to earn some airline miles, or at least have the flexibility to do it if you want, then the SPG is much, much better because it transfers to AA and other airlines.

      The only reason I’d recommend that Marriott is if you just really like staying at Marriotts in particular. But overall, I think the hotel points for an SPG are a little more valuable, and the SPG points are much more flexible should you choose to maybe transfer them to airlines.

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