Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from AmEx: 25,000 Bonus Points

Starwood credit card

If you expect to travel quite a bit throughout the year, a hotel rewards card might make sense for you. The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express as well as its business card counterpart can provide you a lot of benefits if you’re a frequent traveler. These are sought after cards, given that they’ve been granted the 2011 SmarterTravel Award for Best Travel Rewards Card. Just a short while ago, we had an awesome family vacation where we stayed at the Westin. Right there and then, they asked us if we had the Starwood card, which would get us some extra benefits. I’m sure this question is repeated often at many hotels; small wonder this card brand is a favorite among travelers.

A Review of the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from AmEx

With either the business or personal version of this card, you become a member of the Starwood Preferred Guest rewards program. Here are some of the goodies you’ll get from being a cardholder:

  • You can accumulate Starpoints in various ways. To start you off, your first purchase can earn you 10,000 bonus Starpoints, as long as you make that purchase in your first year of membership. Get another 15,000 bonus Starpoints when you spend $15,000 in 6 months. These 25,000 bonus points can net you a nice visit at a selection of hotels for up to six free nights, based on the category of the hotels that interest you (usually category 1 or 2). These points should show up on your statement about two to three months after your initial purchase.
  • You can accumulate up to 5 points at Starwood’s various hotels and resorts (SPG sites). The breakdown here is: 2 points per $1 spent, another 2 points for being a rewards member, and 1 additional point if you’re a special platinum or gold member. If you’re planning a stay at a Starwood property (hotel or resort), check with customer service to see if your visit is eligible for multiple points.
  • Using the card on other types of purchases can bring you 1 Starwood point per $1 you spend.
  • Receive 500 Starpoints if you organize a travel package that includes airfare, car use and local events.

Starwood Preferred Guest Program Details

This card is associated with the Starwood Preferred Guest Program (also known as SPG), whose headlining benefit is cleverly described by the catchy phrase “Get Free Nights or Free Flights” with your rewards. Let’s look at this more closely:

1. Free Night Awards: You can use your Starpoints to earn free nights or upgrades at more than 1,000 Starwood hotels and properties in over ninety countries. When you’re ready to redeem your points, you can opt for hotel visits at these worldwide venues. Starwood properties include Sheraton, Westin, and W hotels around the world, so you’re going to encounter some rather nice hotel rooms on the list. What more, you’ll get a third night free at participating Sheraton properties when you pay for 2 nights in a row. Check out destination favorites like Florida, Hawaii, and New York as well as cities near you. Also, there aren’t any blackout dates for your stays.

2. Free Flights: It’s also possible for you to use your points for flights on more than 350 airlines. If you prefer, you can also transfer your Starpoints to the frequent flyer programs of over thirty major airlines. In fact, you’ll be granted 5K more Starpoints for performing a 20K point transfer. For many of the airlines, the points will transfer on a 1:1 basis. Before you try to book a flight, just be aware that you’ll still have to pay for taxes and fees on your own.

This is just scratching the surface. You should visit or if you want to get a better feel for this program.

The Starwood Preferred Guest credit card (business or personal) has no introductory APR at this time, but it can be used as a balance transfer credit card, so if you’re interested in moving your balance over, you’ll receive the regular APR. To qualify, you’ll have to request the transfer within 30 days of opening your account.

There’s no annual fee for the first year; but after that, you’ll pay $65 per year. You won’t have to pay extra if you need additional cards. And as with any other credit card, if you are able to avoid cash advances, late penalties or return payments, you’ll avoid hefty charges and rate increases.

One more thing — this is NOT considered an American Express charge card, which expects you to pay off your balance completely during each billing cycle. The Starwood card actually allows you some flexibility on how you manage your payments (just like a regular credit card), making it a bit more convenient to own.

Miscellaneous Benefits: From Fraud Protection To Assured Reservations

There’s more you can expect from this card.

1. Warranties and Fraud Protection

There are, of course, the standard benefits such as protection from fraudulent or unauthorized charges with a Fraud Protection Guarantee; a one year extended warranty on your purchases for covered products; purchase protection, in case your eligible purchase is stolen or lost; and ninety days of return protection.

2. Access to Special Events

Since this is an AmEx card, you’ll get the advantage of the American Express Selects program. This service gives you access to savings, special offers, events, and more.

You can also opt for additional coverage when you travel. If you want AmEx to help you with your traveling requirements, you can use American Express Online Travel to find good rates for your next trip. This service can help you out with air, hotel and car rentals. Emergency Check-In can allow you to book a hotel room even if you lose your credit card. Thanks to Assured Reservations, you won’t lose your room if you’re running behind schedule. And you’ll be protected by up to $100,000 in travel accident insurance. Travel discounts and promos also abound when you optimize your membership with for instance, you may receive 20% to 40% off when you book by a certain day to specific areas.

Another useful feature is the prospect of Emergency Card Replacement. If you happen to lose your card, you might be able to secure a replacement as soon as the next twenty-four hours. When your travels take you more than 100 miles from home, then you can turn to the Global Assist Hotline if you need emergency assistance. This can really be useful if you’re out of the country and need a doctor or if you lose your luggage.

This is just a glimpse of what this card can do for you. Given that this is an AmEx product, you can expect a lot of fabulous support just for being one of their card users.

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by American Express. Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of AmEx. This site may be compensated through American Express Affiliate Program.

Created February 16, 2010. Updated July 31, 2011. Copyright © 2011 The Digerati Life. All Rights Reserved.

American Express Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card

American Express Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card

American Express and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. launch the Starwood Preferred Guest Business Credit Card for small business owners and the enhanced Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card for consumers.

Cardmembers can take advantage of greater benefits and richer rewards, making it easier than ever for consumers, and now small business owners, to earn free nights at more than 825 Starwood hotels and resorts around the world and award flights with more than 30 airline partners.

Credit Card Features:

10,000 Starpoints bonus with first purchase ? enough for up to three free nights(1)

Double Starpoints on stays at participating Starwood Hotels & Resorts and purchases at select Starwood retail outlets, such as Bliss Spa and more(2)

Automatic upgrade to Gold Preferred Guest membership status by spending $ 30,000 on the Card in each calendar year. Access to private sales with select Starwood retail outlets.

The new Business Card incorporates all of the improved benefits of the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card, as well as programs and services tailored specifically to the needs of small business owners, including the OPEN Savings(SM) program which was designed specifically for small businesses and gives automatic discounts on purchases at OPEN Savings(3) partners, such as Delta, FedEx Kinko’s and JetBlue. In addition, the Business Card provides expense management reporting, an online spend tracking system and spending limits on additional cards that aid in better managing employee spending.

Credit Card Benefits:

One (1) Starpoint for every eligible dollar spent on the Card

Redeem Starpoints at over 825 participating Starwood hotels and resorts in 95 countries with no black out dates? if there’s a standard room it’s yours.

Transfer Starpoints to over 30 frequent flyer programs, most on a one-to-one basis

Receive 5,000 Starpoint bonus when you transfer 20,000 Starpoints to miles(4)

First year fee-free, and $ 30 annual fee thereafter; fee-free additional cards

Automatic enrollment as a Starwood Preferred Plus member

Receive a 50% off certificate, good towards a Starwood hotel stay, upon Card approval and annual renewal

No limit on the amount of Starpoints a Cardmember can earn

Competitive Introductory purchase Annual Percentage Rate (APR) for six (6) months

Retail and travel protections such as Global Assist, Car Rental Loss & Damage Insurance, Purchase Protection Insurance, Travel Accident Insurance, American Express Card Baggage Insurance, Buyers Assurance Plan, Express Cash Emergency Card Replacement, Emergency Check Cashing, and 24-hour customer service.

The new Starwood Preferred Guest Business Card and enhancement to the Consumer Card are an expansion of the existing relationship between Starwood and American Express. The new Cards make it easier than ever for consumers and small business owners to quickly earn exceptional travel rewards through spending on their cards. Starwood and American Express have enjoyed a strong cobranded card partnership since 1996, when American Express first launched the ITT Sheraton ClubMiles Card.

Credit Card Benefits Eligibility Requirements:

(1) To be eligible to receive 10,000 bonus Starpoints, you must make your first purchase with the Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card within one year of Card approval. Bonus Points will appear on your Starwood Preferred Guest statement 8-12 weeks after your first purchase. Bonus Starpoints are for first-time Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Cardmembers only. You may have more than one Starwood Preferred Guest account, however, if you have or had any such account you are not eligible to receive bonus Starpoints you may be offered for any other such account.

(2) You will receive one additional Starpoint for each U.S. dollar of Eligible Spending charged on your Card Account at Starwood branded hotels and resorts then participating in the Starwood Preferred Guest loyalty program, and at stand-along retail establishments and on-line stores that, in each case, are wholly-owned by Starwood Hotels and resorts Worldwide, Inc.

(3) OPEN Savings(SM): Payment must be made with an American Express Business Card. Savings will be credited to your American Express Business Card billing statement. All savings referenced are in addition to any offers made by participating companies. Participation and offers are subject to change without notice. Terms and conditions apply.

(4) A 5,000 Starpoint bonus is based on airlines with a 1 Starpoint to 1 mile conversion rate; equivalent bonus will be awarded in accordance with other airline conversion rates.

All rights reserved. Article may be reprinted as long as the content remains intact and unchanged and all links remain active.

Review: Starwood Preferred Guest American Express Credit Card

In my review of the UK Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG) American Express credit card I explain why I choose this card as my preferred Amex.

I now use 5 credit cards:

A Starwood Preferred Guest American Express Credit Card which is my Amex choice for spend in the UK. If you want to apply for this card and drop me an email and I can supply you with a referral to get you 11,000 Starpoints if you spend £1,000 in the first 3 months of membership (I receive 5,000 Starpoints for each referral).

A BA Premium Plus American Express Card which I also in the UK. I spend exactly £10,000 on this card to spark a 2-4-1 voucher plus I get 1.5 Avios per £1 spent. If you drop me an email I can supply you with a referral to get an additional 1,000 Avios when you apply (which is currently 26,000 for the Premium Plus card including the 1,000 bonus and 6,000 for the standard free card).

My Curve Card which I use for non-amex purchases in the UK and at specific retailers (largely the M&S food hall where I get 3% cashback). Apply on the link and you get £5 free money for applying. I also use my Curve Card for cash machine withdrawals outside the UK. Curve cash withdrawals are subject to a £2 fee plus 1% FX fee which is a great deal. This compares to the Lloyds Avios which charges 3% (min £3) cash withdrawal fee but no FX fee.

My Lloyds Avios Amex which I use for purchases made outside the UK as they do NOT charge foreign transaction fees (instead of the standard 2.95%), which saves me almost £3 for every £100 spent, plus I collect Avios at a rate of 1.25 for every £1 spent.

My Lloyds Avios MasterCard (partnering with the Lloyds Avios Amex above). I also use my Lloyds Avios Mastercard to purchase Bitcoin on coinbase and any other MasterCard purchases where I can’t use my Amex.

Starwood Preferred Guest American Express Credit Card Overview

Earn 1 SPG point per £1 spent. I value 1 SPG at $0.04 or £0.03 (see details below).

APR is high and varies month by month so you should pay this card off every month.You can apply directly on Amex and you get 10,000 point bonus when you hit £1,000 spend. My referral link will get you 11,000 Starpoints if you spend £2,000 in the first 3 months of membership (I receive 5,000 Starpoints for each referral).

Starwood Preferred Guest is the loyalty scheme for Sheraton, Westin, W, aloft, Luxury Collection but crucially, you can also convert SPG or Starpoints to Marriott Reqards at a rate of 1 SPG to 3 Marriott rewards making this card an excellent way to collect Marriott Rewards too.

What is the sign-up bonus? 10,000 SPG points, when you spend £1,000 within 3 months or 11,000 (or 33,000 Marriott Rewards) on a £2,000 spend via my referral link.

Spend £15,000 per year on the card and you will receive Gold status in Starwood Preferred Guest.

Spend £25,000 per year and you receive a voucher for a free weekend night. However, this can only be used at Category 1-4 properties.

The card also includes travel inconvenience insurance covering flight cancellations, and delayed baggage when flights are purchased on your card.

Why I Choose The SPG or Starwood Preferred Guest Card?

Why Do I Choose The SPG or Starwood Preferred Guest American Express Credit Card? I love the JW Marriott in Venice. This is a Marriott category 8 property which means I can stay here for a week on the Marriott Reward Plus Hotel & Air Package for 290,000 Marriott rewards or 96,000 spg points (as you can transfer them over at a rate of 1=3) PLUS I get 55,000 Air Miles (in my case I collect Avios which I value at around £0.01 per point making 55,000 worth £550 to me). With the Marriott Reward Plus Hotel & Air Package, 96,000 spg points will get me a stay worth 2597€ ($2792)+ £550 ($682) of Avios. This values my SPG points at $3,474/290,000 = just under $0.04.

Alternatively, if I book 5 nights (which is probably long enough at this property) I can book 4 nights and get the 5th free which costs 160,000 Marriott points (53,333 SPG) in mid August. I could book this for cash and it would cost me 1,855€ (371€ per night). This values my Marriott points at $1,855/160,000 = 0.0116€ or $0.01 and my SPG points at $0.04.

If you want to book the Reward Plus Hotel & Air Package you can collect other airline miles. Participating Airlines also include Aeromexico, Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, British Airways, Copa Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Airlines, GOL/Varig, Hawaiian Airlines, Iberia Airlines, Virgin Atlantic.

You can also collect airline miles on different valuation on the reward schemes of Aeroflot, airberlin, Air China, Air France/KLM, Alitalia, ANA, Asia Miles, Asiana Airlines, Avianca-TACA LifeMiles, China Eastern, China Southern, Emirates, Etihad Airways, Japan Airlines, Jet Airways, Korean Air SKYPASS, LAN, Lufthansa Miles & More, Multiplus, Qantas, Qatar Airways, Saudia Airlines, Singapore Airlines, South African Airways Voyager, TAP Air Portugal, Turkish Airlines, SouthWest, JetBlue Airways and Virgin America. See the Marriott Reward Plus Hotel & Air Package chart for more details.

(FYI I spend my Avios on travelling in Club Europe on outbound flights from London, largely to make use of the excellent British Airways Galleries Lounges at Heathrow and Gatwick)

What Is A SPG Starpoint (& Marriott Point) Worth?

As I outlined above, one of my preferred hotels is the JW Marriott Venice and at this property, my Marriott Rewards are valued around $0.013 and my SPG are valued at around $0.04.

Now, lets compare this to The Gritti Palace, a Luxury Collection Hotel, Venice, which is a SPG redemption of 35,000. This is a great hotel and for the nights in July that I selected the rate at this hotel was £1,178€ per night. This would value SPG at $0.04 once again.

starwood credit card

Starwood credit card

How to Apply for the Starwood Preferred Amex Credit Card

Amex has partnered with Starwood hotels to offer the Starwood Preferred Amex Credit Card, a middling credit card with a hefty annual fee and low rewards potential. The most you can earn on a dollar, unless you are spending it within a Starwood Hotel, is 1 starpoint (?). Unlike cash-back cards, too, there is no way to valuate starpoints as they represent a currency operating within a closed economy, namely the Starwood Hotel chain. We do not personally recommend this card, even for frequent Starwood guests, however if you find yourself drawn to it for some reason you will find a useful application guide just below to aid you in the application process.

Applicants are encouraged to review the Amex Online Privacy Policy to ensure that their information is being handled in a responsible and secure way once submitted to Amex.

Amex has set forth the following requirements applicants must meet in order to be considered eligible for the card:

  • Be a US resident (have a valid US street address)
  • Have a valid US SSN
  • Be at least 18 years of age

The card summary page (shown below) houses the link to the secure application page. In order to access the application, simply select the blue apply now link and wait to be redirected.

Step 1- Personal Information

To begin, submit the following personal information into the provided fields:

Additional cardholders may be added at this point, should you desire to have any.

Step 2- Financial Information

Enter the following financial data into the form to complete the second page:

  • Employer name
  • Employer city/state
  • Employer phone number
  • Income source
  • Total annual income
  • Bank accounts held
  • Housing status

Before continuing you may perform up to 4 balance transfers from other major credit cards.

Step 3- Terms and Conditions

Please review the terms and conditions, available here, before submitting the application. Once you’ve read through them, if you agree, submit and await your approval!

starwood credit card

i used to be worried until i met marion linch contact Whitehat on trojanlord100atgmaildotcom he has helped me about 3times and was very efficient and money saving..i recommend her services..whatsapp,facebook,snap,credit score,grade changes,and so much more**

he is a professional

American Express' FICO Score Requirements, Starwood Preferred Guest's Amex and Inside Industry Scoop on Credit Scores.

My friend, Mike Arrington, had a credit card issue. He helps a lot of people. He helps me a lot. He invites me and my friends to tech conferences so when he tweeted-blogged-Quora'd:

"Damnit Amex, Give Me A Credit Card"

-- Mike Arrington, TechCrunch

I was inclined to spend 70 minutes answering this question (see below). You see, I am a thankful person. Mr Mike has let me walk in dozens upon dozens of tech founders. If you help me, help the startup community, I am all in for helping you with your effort to get an SPG Amex, mentor you on FICO credit score + debunk the urban myths about credit scores, credit rules and credit underwriting policy.

Mr Arrington now has an Amex earning him massive SPG points!*. Yup, he probably put down as his job title when he first got rejected.

photo credit Mark Chua.

hiLarryAss, hilarious because this title, "blogger9quot; doesn't make the risk dept at Amex jump for joy.

*:-) After texting Amex executives, Mike Arrington got one at 11:45 am Oct 26, 2010.

Who am I to give advice to a Stanford University, Law graduate, (Mike).

I read the FCRA (Fair Credit Reporting Act), my company lobbies Congress, my company promotes FICO preparation, my company is #1 in doing lead generation for credit card account, my company never sells private information. I also helped another friend IRL, "Valerie9quot; and her two college age daughters. Valerie's an anchor on a network called "CNN9quot;

My &;advice' is FCRA based. There are very few people with the patience to toil on the front lines of financial literacy. It does not help that FCRA does not make common sense.

This Quora answer to "What FICO score is needed?" took me 70 minutes. It explains an American system that is set up to befuddle consumers. To make matters worse, American credit has a business model that, in short, sells derogatory credit information.


Mike Arrington's WordPress article addressed a specific cry for help along with a tweet request for assistance (Yes, during the golden age of twitter, people would read and respond 😉

"Damnit Amex, Give Me A Credit Card"

-- Mike Arrington, TechCrunch

The one key to these castles are yours. They access free SXSW hotel rooms, free airfare to Austin. And for me and my tech founders: Free access to $15,000,000 credit lines. I hate, love/ hate all the urban myths about credit (sorry if I scream but its frustrating when I know Fair Credit Reporting Act laws but people, fight, me, all, the, time.

I am not sorry the laws are old. I am sorry we have not passed LCECSPA. Here are the Urban myths because you do not know FCRA:

URBAN MYTH #1: Asking what credit score you need implies everyone at score level 748.6 gets in. It simply does not work like that. American Express (company) uses FICO Credit Score as one metric among many for the credit accept/reject decision.

I bet they turn down applicants as high as FICO 770.

URBAN MYTH #2: Asking what score gets approved implies that you as a person have one score. This is not true.

Fair Isaac has been on record saying 15 banks that use their scoring system can give you 15 different scores.

Yes, urban myths one and two are the same, but I wanted to re-iterate that since it's such a big myth - I won't repeat myself anymore 🙂

URBAN MYTH #3: Entrepreneurs get turned down.

This is true. If you're the business owner, you're gonna have bad credit sometimes and a founder's FICO cut-off will treat you, the tech CEO, harshly. Plus, lol, analyst say, "Cool, lets give him $75,000 in credit line, un collateralized"

I repeat: all people with a FICO of 745 are not treated equally . FICO is just one metric.

For example, Michael Arrington (investor, journalist) the blogger might get turned down because his credit application form signals &;entrepreneur'. Entrepreneurs are treated a certain way by a bank.

Myth 3 is compounded in FORBES. Read about founder, Mike Arrington's credit rejection in Forbes

and the Amex rebuttal

Amex's Ad Agency Asks Us To Remove Post, Threatens Future Business | TechCrunch

based on the original blogger complaint

Myth 3 might never go away because myth three goes against common sense. On my credit application, I am still "National Account Manager at United College Marketing Services". Also, the channel that the credit application came from matters. When I say channel, I mean location American Express received the credit application.

URBAN MYTH #4: A lot of people think a credit app is a credit app.

Where and how you apply matters!

  • I'd fill it out with a black roller ball, 1mm pen and use a fine tip sharpie on a PAPER APPLICATION.
  • I'd photocopy my drivers license and staple it to the paper credit app (* Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA))
  • I'd have the Starwood Preferred Guest (loyalty program) line's front desk manager do it for me and I'd include my starwood preferred number bold in sharpie

Imagine you are the CEO of Amex. I hand you a piece of paper. Or I hand you an electronic credit application

URBAN MYTH #5: Internet is best for service.

You have ZERO rights via email / phone / electronic fax / web browser / text message / smoke signals via twitter / blog via techcrunch

The Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) only reserves your rights via paper snail mail licked with a piece of US Postage stamp.

Mike Arrington's blog post is the exception that augments, propagates, promotes and accelerates this urban myth. Do not use the web. Do not use email. And for goodness sakes, do not call. Do not use the Internet.

Use a postage stamp.

The &;forever' stamp is truly the only method seen as legal according to FCRA. Guess how many consumers such as Mike Arrington interact using United States postage stamps?

THE SYSTEM IS SET UP FOR YOU TO FAIL. The system is set up knowing super majority of consumers will not mail a letter to a PO box. True story, I see non Stanford Law School (educated) consumers failing at credit, daily.

I am going to make the bold statement: give me 10 stamps and I will raise the average VC's FICO score 80 points. Give me 31 stamps and I will raise more money that a Y-combinator startup company.

  • Google "9 VCs and their Secret FICO score"
  • Or '9 Supermodels and their Secret FICO Score'
  • http://whattheydontteachyouatsta.
  • I speak at NFL Rookie Camp on credit and credit scores as a millionaire. I should know because I am one.


URBAN MYTH #6: Your credit score is dynamic.

It is not as dynamic as you would think.

Credit scores are incredibly static.

As a rule of thumb: once you have good credit you keep good credit.

Once you have bad credit you might as well click on the butt (at duck9 cuz you're gonna take it in the buttocks):

  • see stanford grad startup SwishMark - #3 largest payday lender in America
  • see

URBAN MYTH #7: A college student is more likely to get a Starwood Hotels & Resorts (company) credit card than Mike Arrington.

🙂 update Mike got one at 11:45 am (Oct 26, 2010). I tweeted Oct 25 2010 back when people read their at replies Re: 11:11 Nov 11

College students get mentored to build their FICO. The really smart founder, Mike Arrington, who has a Stanford Law degree was using common sense.

Urban myth #7 is actually true if that college student was using Larry Chiang as their mentor MMPQQ (mentor mention per quora question). Nick Lee got a credit card. See his answer BELOW.

URBAN MYTH #8: Congress doesn't read the FCRA, FCBA, or the CARD Act

This is NOT an urban myth. Just like bloggers, the only people that read it are the people that wrote it. Cato Institute quizzes Congresspeople about the Constitution and gives out copies of it.

When I testified before U.S. Congress on privacy (thx Billy Tauzin / Tom Campbell / Tom Udall) I cited and sourced FCRA a half dozen times . they thought I was a genius. Robert Pitofsky said some overly positive things about me and my effort to debunk credit myths to college students. He was Federal Trade Commission Chairman.

thx for reading this far!!

BONUS URBAN MYTH #9: college students are protected by the CARD Act (HR 627, House (of Representatives) Resolution #627)

I passed this law because college students were dropping out more due to credit card debt than academic disqualification.

MYTH 9(a): The problem is that there is a catch 22 of what comes first . getting a credit card or adding positive pieces of information to the Credit History Bureaus .

Hmmm, maybe that is a company idea.

UPDATE: OCT 2, 2013.

Based on my support and my augmenting HR 627, zero traditional freshman, zero sophomores and zero juniors will drop out of college due to college credit card debt.

Previously, it had spiked as high as 7.6%. Thanks to my mentorship, my weirdness' and my acting Paris Hilton-ie, the United States of America will have zero college drop outs due to owing credit card debt.

Currently, if you drop out of college due to a $300 credit card bill (the max credit line is under $500!), you didn't drop out because you owe, you dropped out because of other reasons. Before HR 627, credit lines could be as high as $78,000. See the historic practice of Capital One laying away college students

I used to work for Amex. I would be pretty surprised if you weren't able to get an SPG. Can't provide too much more detail without giving away the precise risk formulae that they use (note that it's more than just a FICO Credit Score ), but, based on your stats, there are a lot of accounts in the SPG portfolio with worse credit / less credit history.

edit: I can't comment on answers anonymously but Larry Chiang 's answer totally nails it

another credit myth is one that Fair Isaac promotes. They say the average FICO average is 723. They have removed it, the false FICO average claim, from "MyFico9quot; website. I think it was Craig Watts that said it.

Good luck in the system that has been engineered against you.

Good luck in a system where an oligopoly holds super majority of the credit report data.

Good luck in a system where credit scoring is run by a monopoly.