Earn 3 Amex Membership Rewards points per dollar spent at cafes and restaurants

A guide to earning Membership Rewards points at cafes and restaurants across New Zealand

GUIDE: Earning Points
DIFFICULTY: Easy
TIME TO READ: 3 minutes
POSTED: June 13, 2017
UPDATED: June 13, 2017
LOYALTY PROGRAMS: American Express Membership Rewards

The American Express Platinum Edge is in many points-collector’s armoury for maximum Membership Rewards points earn, with a 3 points per dollar earn rate on New Zealand supermarket spend. This is equal to 1.5 points/miles per dollar spent, when transferred to Asia Miles, Qantas Frequent Flyer, KrisFlyer, or Velocity.

You can extend this high earn rate to thousands of restaurants, cafes, bars and eateries across New Zealand by heading to one of the major supermarkets and purchasing either the ‘Restaurant Gift Card’, or the ‘Prezzy Card’.

Many of the outlets accepting these cards don’t accept American Express. Alternatively, some may have surcharges. Therefore, this is a great way of increasing the number of merchants you have access to with your Amex card, and your points earn rate – especially if you were going to eat out anyway. It just requires a bit of forward planning, and a stop by the supermarket before dinner!


Option One: How to earn Amex Membership Rewards points when dining out with the Restaurant Gift Card

The Restaurant Gift Card is a product of the New Zealand Restaurant Association and can be used at over 700 great restaurants, cafes, bars and eateries throughout New Zealand. You should be able to find the card in denominations of $50, $100 or $200. There are no fees for purchasing or loading the card.

Restaurant Gift Card

Before purchasing, you’ll want to make sure that the outlet accepts the card. You can do so by visiting this page to find the range of participating cafes and restaurants in your area. You can search by region, cuisine and suburb. The results will tell you the average dining prices, and when you click ‘Read More’, the linked page will provide contact details, and links to websites where available.

Restaurant Search

Once you’ve decided on where to eat, or confirmed that the café/restaurant you want to visit accepts the Restaurant Gift Card, you can visit one of the following supermarkets to make your gift card purchase:

  • Countdown
  • Farro Fresh
  • FreshChoice
  • New World
  • Nosh
  • PAK’nSAVE
  • SuperValue

Make sure you treat the Restaurant Gift Card as cash – it cannot be replaced if lost or stolen. Once activated, it can be redeemed for purchases at any participating Restaurant Association member outlets. Any balance that remains on the card after your visit can be used in whole or in part against future purchases.

The card will expire 12 months after purchase or last recharge. Any balance that remains on the card after expiry will not be available for use.

Option Two: How to earn Amex Membership Rewards points when dining out with the Prezzy Card

The Prezzy card from Kiwibank gives you access to tens of millions of Visa outlets around the world, including selected online merchants. It is an amazing way of extending the reach of your Amex to all of those outlets that don’t otherwise offer acceptance, or have surcharges.

Prezzy Gift Card

Your Prezzy card can be used at almost any restaurant, cafe, bar or eatery in New Zealand, apart from those outlets that only accept cash or EFTPOS.

Unlike the Restaurant Gift Card, the Prezzy card costs $5.95 to purchase. For this reason, we would recommend that the Restaurant Gift Card be your first choice, if the outlet accepts them, and then the Prezzy card as your second. It will also be better to purchase the card at a higher denomination, to minimise your overall fee outlay, especially if you think you’ll be using them regularly.

You can visit one of these supermarkets to make your Prezzy card purchase:

  • FreshChoice
  • New World
  • PAK’nSAVE
  • SuperValue

For added security, you can register your Prezzy card online as soon as you purchase it – that way they may be able to help you if your card is lost or stolen, or if you want to dispute a transaction made on your card.

Prezzy cards are issued with a minimum use of 12 months. Your card can’t be used after the expiry date printed on the front of the card, and unused value remaining on expiry will automatically be forfeited – so make sure you use it all up beforehand.

More information on the card can be found on their official website.

Conclusion

These gift cards are a relatively easy way of extending the reach of your American Express Platinum Edge, so you can earn 3 Membership Rewards points per dollar spent at almost any restaurant, cafe, bar or eatery in New Zealand.

Just make sure you use them before the expiry date, otherwise the points you earn won’t have been worth it – though if you’re anything like me, you’ll probably burn through the cards pretty quickly!