Chase has now officially closed all credit card accounts in Canada. This is huge news since their cards had no foreign transaction fees. In addition, they were the credit card partner for Marriott Rewards. If you’re loyal to the Marriott brand, you’re likely concerned about your ability to continue earning points, but don’t worry, Amex and SPG have already announced some positive news.
Existing cardholders in Canada will still receive their annual free night certificate, as well as 15 elite night credits which will be deposited into your account after March 14th. You’ll also get your annual fee prorated so expect a partial refund if you’ve already paid yours. In addition, American Express has an exclusive, limited time offer for cardholders affected by this change and want to sign up for the Starwood Preferred Guest credit card.
To qualify for this offer, existing Marriott Rewards Visa Credit cardholders who do not already have the SPG card must opt into Marriott Rewards marketing emails in order to receive their offer.
Exclusive SPG Amex benefits
- 25,000 Starpoints when spending $1,500 in the first three months
- 8.99% balance transfer for 12 months
- Earn 2 Starpoints per $1 spent at Marriott Rewards and SPG participating hotels
- SPG Gold status when you spend $30,000 in one year
- One free weekend night (category 1-4) when you spend $40,000 in one year
To be realistic, there are only two real differences here. 5,000 bonus Starpoints (the equivalent of 15,000 MR points) and the balance transfer rate of 8.99%. If you’re loyal to the Marriott brand, it makes sense to apply for this card since you can continue to earn points by linking your Marriott Rewards and Starwood Preferred Guest accounts.
Once your accounts are linked, you can transfer 3 Marriott Rewards points to 1 Starwood Preferred Guest point or 1 Starwood Preferred Guest point to 3 Marriott Rewards points. It’s also worth noting that once your accounts are linked, your status also gets matched so you don’t have to start from the lower tiers. More importantly, you’ll have hundreds of more properties available to you where you can redeem your points.
**Note another trick to earn Starpoints or Marriott Rewards quickly is to sign up for the American Express Platinum card instead. You get 60,000 points when you sign up with my referral link. You can then convert those points at a 2:1 ratio to SPG, so you would have 30,000 SPG points. Read my full review of the American Express Platinum Canada card now.