Fine art purchase earns free first class flights for life
Billionaire accrues massive number of reward points
A Chinese billionaire is likely to have earned free first class flights for life after using his credit card to buy a US$170m painting.
Liu Yiqian Liu accrued millions of loyalty points after using his American Express card to buy the Reclining Nude portrait by Italian artist Modigliani.
Liu has bought previous artworks in the same way and with the Amex Centurion card he used offering one reward point per US$1 spent he is estimated to have earned 170,400,000 points for the Modigliani purchase.
Liu said the points would be used to enable his family to have free travel for the rest of their lives.
Amex confirmed it was possible to it would approve such a single massive purchase being one of its cards, depending on the relationship with the individual customer.
Liu is estimated to have a fortune of around US$1.27bn, and he and his wife Zhao Wei are among China’s most successful art investors. In July 2014 after a successful bid at a Sotheby’s auction, Yiqian charged US$36m on his Amex card for the “Chicken Cup” Ming Dynasty porcelain artefact, earning an estimated 422 million reward points.