American Express program draws dozens of Nexion agents

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Nexion president Jackie Friedman and Travel Leaders Group chief marketing officer Stephen McGillivray discussing the Apex program at CoNexion 2018. Photo Credit: Jamie Biesiada

ABOARD THE HARMONY OF THE SEAS -- A total of 78 Nexion Travel Group agents have signed up for Travel Leaders Group's Apex program, enabling them to give American Express Gold and Platinum cardholders exclusive discounts and amenities, and earn commissions when clients redeem Membership Rewards points for travel.

The program was announced earlier this year during Travel Leaders Network's EDGE conference.

Robbi Hamida, Nexion's senior vice president of agency operations, provided an update on the program at the CoNexion 2018 conference here. Hamida said members wanted the ability to participate in the program and were quick to jump at the chance to participate.

On stage on Monday, Nexion president Jackie Friedman and Travel Leaders Group chief marketing officer Stephen McGillivray discussed the program with agents at the conference.

"It's a can't-miss for you," McGillivray said, describing American Express as "one of the world's most powerful brands."

According to McGillivray, thousands of Travel Leaders Group agents have enrolled in the program. It is open to any agents under the Travel Leaders Group umbrella. 

He said it presents a large opportunity for agents, as American Express has "tens of millions" of members of its Membership Rewards program.

In order to participate, agents must complete a regulatory compliance program. Then, they can redeem clients' points for travel, as well as enable access to the Travel Collection, a curated collection of travel experiences created by Travel Leaders Group (clients without qualifying American Express cards can also be enrolled in the program for $295 annually). 

As part of the Apex program, agents can also offer clients American Express cards. McGillivray said it's not about "peddling" cards but sending clients a link to potentially get a card if it makes sense for them; the agent is compensated with a bonus from American Express if a client does sign up for a card.

Agents must apply and be approved to complete the training to join the Apex program. It's not necessarily for newer agents, Friedman said, but she encouraged new agents to work toward eventually enrolling.

"It might be no for now, but it's not no forever," she said.

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