Here’s why I love the Amex Explorer Credit Card
Receive 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points when you apply, are approved and spend $4,000 on your new Card within the first 3 months. T&Cs apply. New Card Members only. This translates into 35,000 frequent flyer points when you transfer to the most important programs such as KrisFlyer, Asia Miles, Etihad Guest or Emirates Skywards.
Second up is the generous earn rate, 2 points on (almost) everything including utility bills, telco bills etc. And last but not least is the $400 travel credit you get every year, basically it wipes out the $395 card fee so in any case, you’re always $5 up. Travel credit can be spent on flights, hotels, car rentals etc. If you can’t use it…give it to a friend!
Airline Transfer Rates
American Express Explorer transfers to a range of airline frequent flyer programs, which is a very valuable feature as it gives more flexibility when it comes to redeeming your points.
Hotel Transfer Rates
American Express Explorer members can also transfer their points to the following hotel loyalty programs:Read More
2 Marriott Bonvoy points
Amex Explorer Offer Details
Receive 50,000 Bonus Membership Rewards Points when you apply online, are approved, and spend $4,000 on eligible purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months. T&Cs apply. New Card Members only.
3% of the converted amount
Airport lounge access
If you’re in Sydney or travel through Sydney airport, this one can come in handy. The Amex Explorer gives you 2 access passes per year to The Centurion Lounge in SYD airport and the new Melbourne lounge. Passes are valued at $55 so it’s a pretty sweet deal if you end up using them.
The Hotel Collection
The Amex Explorer now has access to The Hotel Collection, it’s similar to Amex Fine Hotels & Resorts where you get extra perks by booking through the site. For most properties participating this is a US$100 hotel credit which you can then use on food, drinks or even a spa treatment. In addition, some properties also offer upgrades as part of the deal.
Explorer Card Members can get extra perks at participating Hotels Collection properties every time they book two consecutive nights stay using their American Express Explorer Card. To see all the participating hotels, you can check out the official directory here: https://hcdigitaldirectory.com To book your hotel through The Hotel Collection website click here. Or simply log-in to your Amex account and book through American Express Online Travel.
You may be able to use Membership Rewards points and/or the Travel Credit on the American Express Travel website as payment towards The Hotel Collection, if the selected hotel and room type provides you the option to prepay in advance. Via this method, you can also use your annual travel credit to book and pay for The Hotel Collection participating hotels online.
Smartphone Screen Cover
Now, this is a killer perk! Who hasn’t dropped their phone and accidentally cracked the screen? With the Amex Explorer, even if you’re super careful, you can smash your screen twice per year! The best thing is, excess is limited to 10% of the repair cost so in most cases $20-30 will be all you end up paying.
I’m always super careful with my phone but… the inevitable happened. Luckily I had been paying my phone plan with my Explorer so if you’ve been doing this for at least 30 days (that’s the waiting period) you can make a claim!
The insurance claims underwriter is Chubb on behalf of American Express. I’ve written about my Amex Explorer screen insurance claim in a seperate post (hint: it was very easy, painless and straightforward. Some words we generally don’t associate with insurance companies) Read all about it here: learn more about my successful insurance claim
The Smartphone Screen Cover is activated as soon as you start paying your phone plan with the Explorer or if you purchase the phone outright with the card. Card Members can still access the cover if they switch their monthly payment method to their Amex Explorer Card, however there is a 30 day waiting period which commences after the date of the first monthly payment made by the Amex Explorer.
Like most premium credit cards Amex Explorer comes with travel insurance, it’s pretty comprehensive and just like the expensive Platinum Charge it includes rental car “loss damage waiver” capped at 100k car value.
$400 Travel Credit
A great benefit of the Explorer it the $400 travel credit (which completely offsets the annual fee). It’s available in your account and can be used for all travel-related services offered via the Amex Travel Portal within your online account. Best of all, when booking flights through Amex Travel, you won’t be paying any card surcharges typically added on by the majority of airlines when booking direct.
It’s worth noting that you need to use it all in one go. For example, you can’t split it up for multiple transactions and most importantly if the total falls under $400 you are forfeiting the difference.
The best use for the credit, in my opinion, is flights and hotels. Both these categories are usually more than $400 so it’s easy to find a great use for your credit. The travel credit resets yearly so this card is definitely worthwhile to keep around. You can find the portal to book your travel here: http://americanexpress.com.au/travel
How The Travel Credit Works
If your card has a Travel Credit benefit, the Primary Card Member is eligible for an annual Travel Credit. The Travel Credit can be redeemed through American Express Travel Online on a single eligible travel booking by selecting the Travel Credit when you checkout.
To redeem the Travel Credit, the full value of the Travel Credit (or more) must be charged to the eligible Primary Card. Eligible travel includes flights, hotels and car hire when you prepay in advance. The Travel Credit can be used for 365 days from the benefit anniversary date and cannot be used past the expiration date.
To check the expiration date of your Travel Credit if you have not already redeemed it, please visit americanexpress.com.au/travel; log in and click ‘Travel Credit’.
If your booking is cancelled, and your Travel Credit has already been used and associated statement credit applied to your account, you will forfeit your annual Travel Credit benefit and American Express may reverse the statement credits issued.
You need to be able to spend on the Card to access the Travel Credit benefit and it should be credited to your Card Account within 3 business days but may take up to 30 days. Your account must be in good standing and you must have paid the annual fee and minimum payment by the due date.
If you cancel your Card, change your rewards program or Card type, you will no longer be eligible for the Travel Credit.
Buyer’s Advantage Cover
Extends your manufacturer’s warranty by up to 12 months on eligible items purchased with your American Express Explorer Credit Card
Card Purchase Cover
Stay protected with Card Purchase Cover providing cover should your new items be stolen or damaged. Refund Protection is also available should a store refuse to accept the return of a recent, unused purchase.
Online Fraud Protection Guarantee means you won’t be held responsible for any unauthorised charges made without your knowledge
Am I eligible for the 50,00 points sign up bonus?
If you were holding a bank-issued Amex such as Westpac, Commbank, ANZ or NAB in the past, you are eligible to get the bonus points on cards issued by American Express themself.
Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any Card product issued by American Express in the preceding 18 month period are ineligible for this offer.
Amex Explorer In Conclusion
Is this the best American Express card? Yes! In my humble opinion, this is the best all-round credit card and it does deserve a prime position in your wallet. Sure it’s expensive but never forget what perks you’re getting in return and the yearly travel credit makes it totally worth it.