New products, Rewards

Fore! AmEx launches site for golf junkies

Emily Crone

Last month, I wrote about the new social network, Members Know, which American Express launched for its jet-setting cardholders. The company recently launched another niche member Web site, Members Clubhouse, which targets AmEx-toting golf aficionados.

“Are your clubs still in storage or are you teed up for the new season?” the Web site’s home page asks. One portion of the site provides tips on improving your golf game and instructional videos from the PGA and ESPN. Even non-cardholders can watch the free videos on the site and learn about the art of the lay-up, swing analysis and keeping your wrist square.

Another component of Members Clubhouse is, of course, the Pro Shop. It contains advice from the pros on “what you need to start the season off right” and a list of clubs cardholders can obtain by cashing in reward points (you can get a Cleveland wedge for a relatively reasonable 16,000 points, but a TaylorMade driver will set you back 37,000 points — not to mention the Callaway iron set for 93,000 points). Card members also have the option to redeem reward points for a spot in a golf academy at a chic resort.

The site also provides course reviews from the PGA, which are available to anyone viewing the site. Only cardholders, however, have the ability to save on stays at certain golf resorts and gain access to “prime-time tee times” at top courses in the United States.

Members Clubhouse offers additional incentives to card members. For example, if you pay for a private lesson with a PGA professional with your American Express card, you can bring a friend for free. The site provides a directory of PGA professionals, so cardholders can find a teacher immediately. Another offer:  If you sign up for any ESPN golf school, you will receive a $400 Callaway Golf gift card. If you enroll for the school with your American Express card, you will receive an extra $50. Not too shabby! You can afford half a Callaway club with that extra dough.

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