Amtrak Mastercards – Increased Bonuses

Recently, the Amtrak credit cards temporarily increased their sign-up bonuses. As someone who loves Amtrak, this is great news, and it can be great news for you too!

Amtrak currently has two credit cards, both issued by Bank of America:  the Platinum and the World. Normally, the bonuses are 12,000 points for the Platinum and 20,000 for the World after spending $1,000 in 90 days. The increased bonuses bring those points up to 15,000 and 30,000, respectively. Here’s what else you need to know about these cards:

 Name Platinum World
Image  ragm_nrwcm_mc_250x158  imgres
Annual Fee $0 $79
Bonus Points 15,000 (usually 12,000) after spending $1,000 in 90 days 30,000 (usually 20,000) after spending $1,000 in 90 days
Point Earning Structure 2 points per dollar on Amtrak

1 point per dollar on everything else

3 points per dollar on Amtrak

2 points per dollar on other qualifying travel

1 point per dollar on everything else

Redemption Bonus? Yes, 5% back Yes, 5% back
Elite Status Bonus? No Yes, earn up to 4,000 TQPS a year (1,000 TQPs for every $5,000 in credit card spend)
Companion Pass? No Yes
Upgrade Coupon? No Yes
Club Acela Pass? No Yes
Foreign Transaction Fees? No No

 

screen-shot-2016-10-26-at-2-56-07-pmNOTE:  make sure to apply before 12/31, as that’s when these increased bonuses expire!

These cards are great if you live in the Northeast, and travel along the Northeast Corridor with any frequency. Per my own experience, a round trip between NYC and Boston is ~5,000 points, so this sign-up bonus could get you six trips between the two cities for FREE if you go with the World card! I usually go home to visit my family three times a year, so that’s like free travel to see them for two years!

As you also saw from Tuesday’s post, you can get back and forth to Montréal for roughly the same price (5,000 points), which is another great use of the points.

One last example:  NYC to Philadelphia can be had for less than 4,000 points roundtrip, which is almost eight (8!!) free roundtrips with the World card or five with the Platinum card. That’s an insane savings, and really makes traveling much more cost efficient!

I’m going to try and convince Nick to apply for the World card–would be great to have an extra 30,000 points!

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