Amex reward points to pay for taxi fares
Loyalty credits can be used at physical POS
American Express has partnered with VeriFone Systems to enable its loyalty scheme members to pay for taxi fares in New York City with reward points.
Amex says the programme, which will roll out on VeriFone-supplied in-taxi devices in over 7,000 cabs in NYC, will enable the vehicles to accept Membership Rewards points in the same way as credit card payments.
The card brand’s reward scheme members can already use reward points for travel, online payments and special access to events and entertainment. Previous retail payments with Amex reward points – such as for iPhones at Amazon – had to be made at online sites, but the new initiative moves the use of points for payments to the physical POS for more regular payments.
Amex says its reward points payment system can be used in other physical retail environments and it is likely to expand it beyond the taxi initiative.
At the end of the ride, cardholders who have chosen to pay with “Credit” will be prompted by the Taxi TV screen to swipe their card, as usual. If they have an eligible card enrolled in the Membership Rewards programme with enough points in their account they will receive an on-screen prompt giving them the option to use points for their ride fare, including tip and tolls.
“With this announcement, we’re leveraging our unique technology to bring it to life at the most critical commerce touchpoint – the physical point of sale,” said Leslie Berland, senior VP of digital partnerships and development at American Express. “As a company with 163 years of roots in lower Manhattan, it means even more to be able to debut this new utility in the iconic New York yellow cabs in partnership with VeriFone.”
Before the taxi payment is processed, cardholders will be shown the number of points required to redeem for the ride, and on-screen buttons labelled “Use Points” or “No Thanks.”