Are you looking for a travel rewards/airline miles card but hate the idea of all those blackout dates and weird restrictions?
The Blue Sky from American Express® credit card just may be the answer… and they’re currently offering a decent welcome bonus of 7,500 points (redeemable for up to a $100 statement credit). Charge $1,000 on the card in the first three months of card membership and the points are yours.
Join us as we review the Blue Sky by American Express®.
Flexible to fit your lifestyle
You earn one point per dollar for every purchase you make on the card. When you make a travel purchase and charge it to the card, you will receive $100 statement credit for every 7,500 points you have.
The great thing is, the phrase “travel purchase” means basically ANY kind of travel purchase – any room in any hotel, any flight on any airline, any cruise, any travel package…even tickets purchased for your commute on railways and trains.
And now comes the best part (in my opinion).
There are absolutely NO blackout dates or any other kinds of restrictions on that travel. That’s a real plus while also being pretty rare in the travel rewards credit card world.
You do need to redeem for your travel in 7,500-point increments, and the welcome bonus of 7,500 points will take care of that first one right away. (The statement credit for your Travel Rewards shows up about 6-8 weeks after your request is processed.)
NOTE: Make sure you act relatively fast after you charge your travel: redemption requests must be made within 60 days from the closing date shown on the billing statement that shows your travel purchase or you don’t get to use them!
As I stated above, when it comes to point redemption on travel, it works in increments of 7,500:
7,500 points get you $100
15,000 points get you $200
22,500 points gets you $300
And so on.
That’s ultimately a third more than 1% back on travel, making this a pretty generous travel rewards card.
Blue Sky in more than just travel rewards
Your points can also be traded in for gift cards – either American Express gift cards or others in the Blue Sky Rewards catalog. For those you only need 3,250 points to start redeeming.
Finally, there is also a cash back option – you’ll get your cash in the form of a statement credit. However, with that you can only redeem in increments starting at 6,500 points and that 6,500 will only get you up to $50, capped at the amount of the outstanding balance on your statement. (This statement credit also takes about 6-8 weeks to show up.)
No annual fee on this card means all these savings are yours.
That is, as long as you don’t carry a balance. This card is a credit card so you don’t have to pay in full but, as you know, these rewards amount to zilch if you’re paying interest. There’s no interest for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers with a 0% intro APR. After that there is a variable rate of 17.24% to 22.24%.
Unique Benefits with Amex
As usual with American Express cards, you get a host of useful benefits that come with the card. For instance, when you’re traveling, you have access to:
-Global Assist Hotline (offers help planning your trip or with lost passports and other emergencies when you’re traveling more than 100 miles from home)
-Car Rental “Loss and Damage” Insurance (just waive this coverage when you rent)
-Travel accident insurance
Finally, this card offers a perk that will give you some peace of mind when you arrive at a hotel as an exhausted and weary traveler :
–Guaranteed Room Reservations– Even if you’re late to check in, the hotel must guarantee you have a room like one you’ve reserved, even if they’ve overbooked– along with free transportation to a comparable room in a different hotel if need be.
American Express cards also offer protection on purchases made with the card:
-Theft and accidental damage coverage up to $50,000 per year
-Return protection up to 90 days if a store won’t accept your return, up to $300 per item
-Extended warranty – one additional year past what the warranty that came with the item
Worried about becoming a victim of identity theft? Amex offers identity theft assistance – they’ll help you identify if it’s happened, recommend steps for recovery and how to prevent it in future.
It’s easy to pay on line, or you can download the Amex iPhone app – so you can easily and remotely pay your bill, check your balance, recent purchases and more.
You can also text MYAMEX a short message to get any information you need like your balance or payment info and they’ll text you right back (standard text rates apply).
No annual fee and a nice welcome bonus….generous and completely unrestricted travel rewards….plus all the perks that go along with having an American Express card.
I’d say this one is definitely worth a try if you’re looking for rewards on travel. It’s really so flexible that it could easily work for any kind of traveler.
*As you always should, make sure you read through the card details to make sure this card fits your needs and you understand the terms and conditions. Be aware that the terms may change after this article’s publication.
“Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by American Express. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of American Express, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express. This site may be compensated through American Express Affiliate Program.”