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One of the most compelling benefits of American Express small business credit cards is the Amex OPEN Savings program, which is a program available to everyone with an American Express small business credit card.
This includes the following cards:
- The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN
- The Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN
- Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express
- The Plum Card®
- SimplyCash® Business Credit Card
- Blue for Business® Credit Card
- Gold Delta SkyMiles®Business Credit Card
- Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card
- Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card
Through this program, cardmembers can receive discounts or additional points when making purchases at select retailers (generally speaking the discount is more valuable than the additional points).
5% discount at Hyatts
For most of us, the single most lucrative savings available through the card has been with Hyatt. Specifically, you receive a 5% discount on your American Express statement for each eligible dollar spent at participating Hyatt Hotels & Resorts in the US, up to $10,000 per card per calendar year.
As someone who lives in hotels, that has saved me ~$500 per year, which more than justifies the annual fee on any Amex small business credit card.
It’s a bit ironic, because I’ve been paying for my domestic Hyatt stays with the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card from American Express. That way I’ve earned one Starpoint plus 5% cash back per dollar spent. I value Starpoints at ~2.2 cents each, so to me that’s like a return of ~7.2%.
That’s even better than earning triple points on The Hyatt Credit Card, Citi ThankYou® Premier Card, or Citi Prestige® Card. And for that matter, sometimes the looks you get when checking out of a Hyatt with a Starwood credit card can be quite funny.
5% discount at Hyatts being discontinued in 2016
Unfortunately there’s some bad news when it comes to this benefit. The Amex OPEN Savings program 5% savings at Hyatt will be discontinued as of January 1, 2016:
Effective January 1, 2016, Hyatt Hotels & Resorts®, including Park Hyatt®, Andaz®, Grand Hyatt®, and Hyatt Regency® hotels, will no longer be part of the OPEN Savings program. Any amounts that are charged to your Card account by this merchant on or after this date will not be eligible for the OPEN Savings benefit.
That’s a shame, given that I know many people saved quite a bit every year thanks to this benefit.
It might make sense to buy Hyatt gift cards
If you still want to take advantage of this benefit before January 1, 2016, you can of course use it at Hyatt properties in the US. That being said if you can’t maximize it before then, keep in mind that Hyatt sells gift cards, and historically gift card purchases are eligible for the 5% savings. Furthermore, Hyatt often offers discounts on the purchase of gift cards towards the end of the year, which can be a great way to combine the 5% savings with a further discount.
So it might be worth waiting for that and hoping a similar promotion returns, so you can potentially save ~15% on your Hyatt stay.
It’s of course disappointing that the partnership between Hyatt and Amex OPEN Savings is being discontinued. That being said, I’ve certainly had a good run with it, so can’t complain too much. Nothing sticks around forever in this hobby.
I would be curious who picked up the cost for this benefit. Was Amex paying the 5% “out of pocket,” or did they have some arrangement with Hyatt?
Save 5% at the Park Hyatt Washington DC with the Amex OPEN Savings program
Are you sad to see this Amex OPEN Savings benefit go? Were you ever able to take advantage of it?
(Tip of the hat to View from the Wing)