American Express "Secret" Perks: Advance Movie Screenings, Amex Offers, and Free ShopRunner

American Express has a handful of underrated perks that don't get the attention they deserve. The great thing about these "secret" perks is that you can have any core American Express or co-branded card to take advantage of them.

Free Advance Movie Screenings

I recently enjoyed a free advance movie screening of Skyscraper thanks to American Express. The advance screening took place on July 11, and the official movie release date is July 13, 2018. Last month, there was a free advance screening of Jurassic World 2, and there's a screening of Mamma Mia! next week. 

 Amex Advance screenings

Amex Advance screenings

 mamma mia! advance screening

mamma mia! advance screening

Sign up for the free Membership Exclusives email here to be notified of future entertainment eventshttps://online.americanexpress.com/entertainmentaccess/home.do#/newsletter

I'm not sure how often free screenings appear since I recently noticed them, but hopefully, they're here to stay!

How to Access Amex Advance Movie Screenings

  1. Sign up for the Amex Membership Exclusives newsletter to be notified of events: https://online.americanexpress.com/entertainmentaccess/home.do#/newsletter
  2. Reserve tickets when they go on "sale"
  3. Have your Amex card ready and enter the customer service phone number (NOT your card number) as the promo code
  4. You can reserve up to 2 free tickets
  5. When you attend the screening, be sure to bring your Amex card and ID to pick up your tickets
 amex booth to pick up tickets

amex booth to pick up tickets

Advance screenings are usually available in the following cities:

  • Alexandria, VA
  • Boston, MA
  • Burbank, CA
  • Chicago, IL
  • Dallas, TX
  • Larkspur, CA
  • Las Vegas, NV
  • Los Angeles, CA
  • New York, NY
  • San Francisco, CA
  • San Rafael, CA
  • Seattle, WA
  • South Barrington, IL
  • South Miami, FL

Tickets are on a first come, first serve basis. I'm a fan of the Amex system because unlike typical advance movie screenings, they don't oversell the seats. You don't have to worry about showing up to the theater super early to wait in line or get a good seat. 

American Express Offers

American Express offers are promotions that are found when you log in to your online account. They usually consist of coupons like "Spend $200, get 5,000 MR points."

There are a set number of offers available, so if you see one you like, be sure to add it to your account. 

I usually have a roundup of Amex Offers that catch my eye each month, so stay tuned. 

Free ShopRunner Membership

ShopRunner is a service that lets you enjoy free 2-day shipping at 140+ online stores. All American Express and co-branded cards are eligible for this benefit.

You can enroll using the link below or navigate to the Benefits section of your American Express account and find the ShopRunner module.

Enroll for free here: https://www.americanexpress.com/us/credit-cards/features-benefits/shoprunner/index.html

How it works:

  1. Sign up for ShopRunner with your eligible American Express card
  2. Shop at a retailer that uses ShopRunner
  3. Sign in to ShopRunner at checkout to get free 2-day shipping

Starter Cards

As mentioned before, the great thing about these perks is that they apply to all American Express cards, including entry level cards. 

Amex EveryDay

  • Signup bonus: 10,000 points after $1,000 in spend within the first 90 days
  • Earns Membership Rewards (MR) 
  • Earn 2X at US Supermarkets (up to $6k/yr)
  • Earn 20% bonus points when you make 20+ purchase with your card

Amex Blue Cash Everyday

  • Signup bonus: $150 after $1,000 in spend within the first 90 days
  • Earns cash back, not MR points
  • Earn 3% at U.S. Supermarkets (up to $6k/yr)
  • Earn 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and select department stores

Amex Hilton Honors

  • Signup bonus: 50,000 points after $1,000 in spend within the first 90 days
  • Earn 7X on Hilton hotels or resorts
  • Earn 5X on dining, groceries, and gas (US only)
  • Earn 3X on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Hilton Silver status

Amex Blue Business Plus

  • Earns MR points
  • Earn 2X on the first $50k in purchases each year
  • Earn 1X on purchases after


Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, vendors or companies, and have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. 

UGC disclosure: These responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.