Paying Taxes? American Express Gives Points for That Too

Credit CardsCalling it a first in the industry, American Express will provide its card members with the option to use Membership Rewards points toward federal, state and local income tax payments, the card issuer said today.
Card members can use points toward the tax payments when filing through pay1040.com and officialpayments.com, starting at 200 points, AmEx said.
“Card members will be able to continue using Membership Rewards points toward applicable convenience and payment fees incurred when filing taxes online,” American Express said in a statement.  
In 2010, Amex members can also continue using a recently-launched program that allows the use of points toward “everyday” charges on their online statement – such as gas, groceries, phone, wireless and cable bills, office supplies – starting at 1,000 points. 
American Express has also expanded its travel reward options. In Las Vegas, it has added several major hotel properties to its Membership Rewards program, including Bellagio, Encore at Wynn Las Vegas, Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, MGM Grand Hotel and Casino, The Mirage, and The Signature at MGM Grand. 
“The addition of these properties greatly expands the choice and variety of Las Vegas hotels available and provides a broader range of accommodations, with hotel reward stays starting at 18,000 points,” AmEx said.
In recent months, AmEx has heavily expanded its rewards offerings. Other major card issuers have followed suit as the industry heavily courts stronger loyalty and new customers. As stricter credit card regulation looms in February with the much-anticipated Credit CARD Reform Act of 2009, card issuers are bracing for potential losses. The reform  includes restrictions on raising interest rates and imposing fees.

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