Chinese billionaire earns first-class travel for life as he puts a $170 mil painting on his Amex


Is there such a thing as ‘how to use your credit effectively?’ Because Chinese billionaire Liu Yiqian found a way and this one will blow your mind! Yiqian and his family is now eligible to fly free all over the world for free, after he used his American Express ‘black’ card to buy a $170m painting.

Yiqian made the big purchase after bidding and winning the Amedeo Modigliani’s Reclining Nude at a Christie’s auction house earlier in November. The transaction when it closes, till accrue enough air miles that he will never have to pay for a plane ticket again. How clever is that!

The American Express centurion card, also known as the Amex Black card is given to customers on an invitation-only basis to the company’s biggest spending clients. There is no official credit limit on the card – of course and allows customers to earns points which can be converted to air miles – just like we regular folks do.

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This is not the first time Yiqian has made such purchases. A high-profile collector of Chinese antiquities and art, he also used Amex in 2014 for a $36m tea cup from the Ming Dynasty. We are equally impressed with Yiqian smart use of his credit facility as much as we are of his collectibles shopping list.

According to Amex spokesperson, it is possible to put such a large purchase on an American Express card, based on their relationship with that individual card member and surely enough, these decisions are made on a case-by-case basis. While the Amex card issued in each country accrues points differently, if he were to get one point per dollar (based on how points are collected in the US), Yiqian would earn 170,400,000 membership reward points for his current purchase plus Christie’s charges. Not to forget the tens of millions of points he’s already collected for his earlier buys. If he then chooses to convert them into the Singapore Airlines frequent flyer programs, he and his family will be able to make 3,000 trips between the US and Europe – in first class suites of course (estimated cost: $17,800 round trip). Not bad, eh?

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There unfortunately is one loser in this brilliant business transaction – Christie’s. For everytime Every time Yiqian makes a purchase, Amex charges the merchant a 2% to 3% fee, depending on the merchant. That’s enough and more money made to pay for Yiqian’s flights forever.

[ Via : Theguardian ]

Written By
Previously travel-editor and long-time resident of extravagant Dubai, Shalu is likes a dash of luxury in everything she does. While luxury travel is a weakness, she believes there is something very attractive about understated luxury. And when she’s not dreaming of pristine beaches, private jets and molecular dining, a shiny pair of Blahniks is what she lusts for.