Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card
You don’t have to be a frequent customer at Starwood’s hotel properties to get a lot out of the Starwood Preferred Guest Business credit card from American Express. That’s because the Starpoints you’ll earn with the card transfer to a huge number of airline partners at a 1:1 ratio.
What makes the SPG program even more valuable is that you get a 5,000 miles bonus whenever you transfer 20,000 points to a frequent flyer program. This bonus essentially gives you 1.25 miles for every point you transfer. SPG points also transfer to Marriott at a ratio of 1:3.
In addition to great transfer options, SPG Business cardholders are also eligible to register for complimentary Boingo Wi-Fi, which offers over 1,000,000 hotspots around the world. Since this card doesn’t charge foreign transaction fees, it is a great option for international purchases, too.
As a cardholder, you will get credit for two stays and five nights that count toward elite status each year. All of these benefits are available on a card with only a $95 annual fee. Better than that, the annual fee is waived for the first year! The 25,000 points sign-up bonus is the icing on the cake.
Bonuses and Benefits
Knowing what benefits come with a credit card can help you decide if it’s a good fit for you. Here we cover the bonuses and perks that the Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card offers and the value of the AMEX Starwood Preferred Guest® Starpoints® you earn.
The sign-up bonus for the Starwood Preferred Guest Business credit card is 25,000 points after spending $5,000 within the first three months of being a card member. SPG points can be used for hotel stays, but they can also be transferred to airline frequent flyer programs. If you convert your points into airline miles, your 25,000 Starpoints will be turned into 30,000 miles because of the 5,000 miles bonus for transferring 20,000 SPG points.
As a cardholder, you can also enjoy complimentary, unlimited Boingo Wi-Fi on up to four devices at more than 1,000,000 hotpots worldwide. Each year you are a card member, you will receive credit for five nights and two stays toward SPG elite status, including your first year.
What You Get
- Earn 25,000 Starpoints® after you spend $5,000 within the first 3 months
- Get a 5,000 Starpoints® bonus for every 20,000 Starpoints® transferred to a frequent flyer program
- Credit for 5 nights and 2 stays toward elite status every year
- Free Boingo Wi-Fi
- 2 Starpoints® per dollar with Starwood and Marriott
You need to have activity on your account at least once every 12 months in order to keep your SPG points from expiring. Hotel stays, even if it’s a free award night, count as activity. Additionally, if you earn miles from your SPG Business credit card, it also counts as qualifying activity.
What is the value of the Starwood Preferred Guest® Starpoints®?
SPG points are some of the most valuable loyalty program points out there. They can be redeemed for hotel stays at Starwood hotels or transferred to Marriott and a huge number of airline partners. The minimum edemption value that you should get is around 1.92 cents per point, but it’s possible to get values well over six cents per point.
What is CPM and How Is It Calculated?
Cents Per Mile (CPM) is a way to measure the value of miles. It tells you how many cents you get for each mile you redeem by dividing the cash price of the airline ticket (minus taxes and fees charged for an award ticket) by the number of miles the award flight costs. This is a somewhat subjective calculation because the price of the flight in both cash and miles fluctuates by season and availability.
How we calculate CPM:
The Best Ways to Redeem Starwood Starpoints®
As a general rule, the best use for Starpoints is transferring them to airline partners and redeeming for international premium cabin flights. However, you can get good value for redeeming for stays at Starwood and Marriott properties as well.
SPG points transfer to Marriott at a 1:3 ratio, so it is always worth comparing the cost of Starwood and Marriott hotels in the same city to see if one offers a better deal than the other. When transferring to airline miles, you should always try to transfer in increments of 20,000 points because you will be rewarded with a 5,000 miles bonus in the airline program you are transferring to.
Oakland–PortlandEconomy classMiles price25,000points+$11.2 feeDollars price$451
Orlando–WashingtonEconomy classMiles price15,000points+$11.2 feeDollars price$287
Austin–MiamiEconomy classMiles price25,000points+$11.2 feeDollars price$589
Daytona Beach–New YorkEconomy classMiles price55,000points+$11.2 feeDollars price$928
Atlanta–Fort LauderdaleEconomy classMiles price45,000points+$86.6 feeDollars price$1,440
Minneapolis–HonoluluEconomy classMiles price169,120points+$86.6 feeDollars price$2,114
Los Angeles–TorontoBusiness classMiles price40,000points+$72.5 feeDollars price$1,145
Washington–DublinBusiness classMiles price85,000points+$99.51 feeDollars price$1,601
Boston–LondonBusiness classMiles price105,000points+$94 feeDollars price$1,713
Las Vegas–OttawaBusiness classMiles price95,000points+$177.8 feeDollars price$1,473
New York–IstanbulBusiness classMiles price455,000points+$86.6 feeDollars price$4,892
San Francisco–Hong KongBusiness classMiles price315,000points+$122.06 feeDollars price$4,213
Other ways you can redeem Starpoints®
Hotel Stays11 partners11 part.
Starwood has 11 different hotel brands. You can also transfer points to Marriott at a 1:3 ratio.
Car Rental2 partners2 part.
SPG offers two car rental partners, Avis and Sixt.
Gift Cards13 partners13 part.
It’s possible to redeem SPG points for a number of different gift cards.
Redeeming SPG points directly for cash back is not an option.
Starpoints transfer to most of SPG’s over 30 airline partners at a 1:1 ratio.
Everyday Earnings with Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card
The SPG Business credit card earns two points for each dollar of eligible purchases at participating SPG and Marriott Rewards hotels. You’ll earn one point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- Starwood and Marriott purchases
- All Other Purchases
Enjoy complimentary access to the Sheraton Club lounge. Booking requirements apply.
Free, unlimited Wi-Fi on up to four devices at more than 1,000,000 hotspots worldwide with the Boingo American Express Preferred Plan. Boingo enrollment required.
No Foreign Transaction Fee
No transaction fees on purchases made abroad.
Earn Elite Status Fast
Holding the SPG Business credit card will automatically give the cardholder two stay credits and five night credits toward elite status with Starwood Preferred Guest. If you also have the personal version of the card, this will be on top of the stay and night credit provided from that card.
- Get 2 stays and 5 nights credits toward elite SPG status annually
Fees: the cost of Having Starwood Preferred Guest® Business Credit Card
The SPG Business credit card has a $95 annual fee that is waived the first year you are a cardholder. If you make $4,948 in purchases a year, you’ll cover the cost of the card. That’s because you’ll earn at least 4,948 Starpoints, and they’re worth at least 1.92 cents each. If you spend about $2,000 a month, you’ll pay off the card in 3 months.
Since the sign-up bonus is 25,000 SPG points, you are automatically getting $480 in value from the bonus, assuming SPG points are worth a minimum value of 1.92 cents each.
- Annual Fee
- $0 first year,then $95
- Foreign Transaction Fee
- Late Payment Fee
- Up to $38
See What It Takes to Cover an Annual Fee:
We strongly recommend to spend not less than $1,650 per months to cover the annual fee in three months.
We’ve broken out our estimates for the first- and second-year net earnings you’ll get with the Starwood Preferred Guest Business credit card. Is the card worth getting, and should you keep it after you get the sign-up bonus? Let’s find out.
These estimates are based on an annual monthly spend of $2,000
Foreign Transaction Fees-$0
Top 5 Benefits of the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card
Despite being a hotel loyalty program, SPG has positioned itself as a major player in the world of award flights. That’s because it’s extremely flexible points can easily be transferred to over 30 airline partners.
- Valuable and Flexible Redemptions: SPG points are one of the most valuable rewards currencies available. They can be used for stays at Starwood and Marriott properties, or for flights with a large number of airline partners.
- 5,000 Points Transfer Bonus: Every time you transfer 20,000 SPG points to a frequent flyer program, you’ll get an easy 5,000 miles bonus.
- Elite Credit with Starwood: Each year, you’ll get five night credits and two stay credits to help you earn elite status.
- Good Sign-Up Bonus: This card comes with a solid sign-up bonus of 25,000 points. That’s worth at least $480 in travel with the right redemptions.
- Free Boingo Wi-Fi: You can get free Boingo Wi-Fi at 1,000,000 access points worldwide for up to four devices.
Should You Get the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card?
The SPG Business card makes sense for small business owners who frequently stay at Starwood and Marriott hotels. You’ll earn two points per dollar spent on your purchases at these hotels, plus you’ll get credit for two stays and five nights toward status with Starwood. This could help push you over the edge to the next status level each year!
You don’t even have to stay at SPG properties for this card to be worthwhile. That’s because the card is also a good option for everyday spending.
While it only earns one point per dollar spent on most purchases, you’ll receive a 5,000 miles bonus when you transfer to airlines in increments of 20,000 SPG points. That means that you’re essentially earning 1.25 airline miles per dollar spent. Additionally, SPG partners with nearly every airline that offers a decent rewards program, so these miles can go anywhere you want them to!
Need more info? Check out our frequently asked questions. If you have other questions, please click on “Ask Now” below.
- As a general rule, you will need good to excellent credit in order to get the SPG Business card. Most applicants who are approved indicate that they have a score of 720 or higher. Keep in mind that American Express will evaluate your full application before deciding whether to approve or deny you for the card.
In short, yes. But you might be surprised to find out that you probably already have a business! Do you sell things on eBay on occasion? Do you have a yearly garage sale? Do you have an Etsy store? All of these things count as a business. Just be honest on your application. Even if your business doesn’t yet make money, you still might be able to get a business credit card.
- No, the SPG Business card doesn’t offer an annual free night certificate as a benefit of having the card. You do get two reoccurring bonuses, though. First, you’ll get credit for five nights and two stays that count toward elite status. If you frequent SPG properties, that can be just enough to get you status.Second, every time you transfer 20,000 Starpoints to an airline frequent flyer partners, you’ll get a 5,000 miles bonus. So every 20,000 points converts to 25,000 miles with one of 30 airline partners.
- Yes, the sign-up bonus has been higher. It has been known to reach 35,000 and is usually increased for a promotional period once per year. It may make sense to wait for a higher sign-up bonus to get the card because American Express allows you to earn only one bonus per lifetime for each card.
- No, the stay and night credits from the SPG Business card only count towards status with Starwood. However, if you earn status with Starwood, that status will be matched to the equivalent status with Marriott.
Compare Starwood Preferred Guest Cards
Before you get set on the business version of the SPG credit card, let’s take a minute to compare it to the personal version.
|Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express|
|Sign-up bonus||25,000 Starpoints®||25,000 Starpoints®|
|Annual Fee||$0 first year, $95 after that||$0 first year,then $95|
|APR On Purchases||16.49% to 20.49% Variable±||16.49% to 20.49% Variable±|
|Second Year Value||$461||$461|
There are many similarities between the personal and business versions of the SPG Amex card. First off, you’ll earn the same points based on spending, and they have the same annual fee. You also get the same stay and night credit toward elite status, though if you have both cards, you will get credits from each card for a total of four stay credits and 10 night credits.
The SPG Business card has a few advantages over the personal version of the card, including access to Sheraton Club Lounges on eligible stays, Boingo Wi-Fi access and American Express OPEN discounts for small businesses.
Compare the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card to Other Cards
In addition to looking at the personal version of the SPG credit card, it also makes sense to compare the SPG Business card to other rewards credit cards, including the Chase Sapphire Preferred, Citi ThankYou Premier and Venture Rewards cards. Both the Sapphire Preferred and ThankYou Premier cards offer transferrable points, while the Venture card offers points that can be redeemed like cash toward travel.
As far as annual fees go, the Sapphire Preferred and ThankYou Premier both have a $95 annual fee, while the Venture card has only a $95 annual fee. The Venture card is likely the best option for some with travel plans that are not flexible because of its easy redemptions. The Venture card also comes with a 50,000 points sign-up bonus that is worth $400 toward travel purchases.
The Sapphire Preferred and ThankYou Premier both offer quite a few transfer partners, but not as many as SPG. However, the earning potential is higher with these cards.
The Sapphire Preferred offers two Points per dollar spent on travel and dining and one point per dollar for all other purchases. It also has a 50,000 points sign-up bonus.
The Citi Premier offers three points per dollar spent on travel, including gas stations, two points per dollar spent on dining out and entertainment, and one point per dollar spent on other purchases. I has a 30,000 points sign-up bonus.
Whenever you apply for a credit card make sure you read the terms and conditions of the card and the rewards program to find out about minimum spend requirements and any restrictions to ensure you can successfully obtain the card and earn the rewards it offers.
Card Terms and Conditions
While it's easy to focus on the rewards offered by the Starwood Preferred Guest Business card, it's worth taking a closer look at the terms and conditions. There's a lot to consider as you think about how you're going to use the card. Will you carry a balance, get a cash advance or maybe make a big purchase? Below is a rundown of the various interest rates, purchase protections, security features and mobile banking options that come with this Amex card.
- Intro APR:
- See Terms and Conditions
- Intro APR for balance transfers:
- See Terms and Conditions
- Ongoing APR:
- 16.49% to 20.49% Variable±
- Minimum Grace Period:
- 25 days
- Extended Warranty Protection:
- Adds up to one extra year to the original U.S. manufacturer's warranty. Applies to warranties of 5 years or less. Coverage is up to a maximum of $10,000 per item and will not to exceed $50,000 per account per calendar year.
- Purchase Protection:
- Protects purchases for up to 90 days if it is stolen or accidentally damaged.
Cash Advance Features
- Ongoing APR:
- 26.49% Variable±
- Cash Advance Fee:
- Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
Security and Protections
The SPG Business card offers standard security protections, including:
- Account alerts:
- Set up alerts to be notified when large transactions occur, if there’s an unauthorized withdrawal and when your bill’s due.
- Mobile App:
- Track your account while you’re on the go with the Amex mobile app.
- EMV Chip + Signature Technology:
- Get global acceptance and enhanced security at merchants that use chip enabled terminals.
American Express offers a mobile banking app that you can use to monitor your spending on your Amex card. The SPG Business card is also compatible with Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Android Pay.
Additional Cardholder Benefits
In addition to the great benefits listed above, the SPG Business card has a few more perks to offer:
American Express Travel Benefits
- Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver:
- Coverage for theft and collision for most rentals in the U.S. and abroad. Coverage is secondary to your personal insurance.
- Lost Luggage Reimbursement:
- Get reimbursed for damaged or lost bags. Coverage includes cardholder and immediate family members on the same travel itinerary.
- Travel Accident Insurance:
- Receive accidental death or dismemberment coverage for any air, bus, train or cruise ship transportation paid for with your card.