Earn surprise gifts for using your American Express credit card

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As it’s the season of giving, American Express is doing just that with its holiday promotion, the Gift Chain, a program that gives a surprise gift to card members every time they spend $25 or more at participating online retailers.

You'll have to hurry, though. This promotion only lasts through Dec. 21.

The gifts range from $5 statement credits to $500 American Express gift cards and 5,000 membership reward points. In some cases, you could win a prize for you and three of your Facebook friends.

To get on the gift chain, register your credit card and spend $25 at one of the following online retailers (you can also earn a gift without spending money by entering via mail): AE.com, BedBathandBeyond.com, BlueNile.com, Dell.com, Gamestop.com, JCrew.com, Lenovo.com, NeimanMarcus.com, Nike.com, PotteryBarn.com, REI.com, RueLaLa.com, ToysRUs.com, us.Venteprivee.com, Walmart.com, YoYo.com or Zappos.com.

Once you make a qualifying purchase (and that $25 minimum can include shipping and tax), American Express will send you an email revealing a surprise gift, which could possibly be shareable with your Facebook friends.

You’re allowed 10 gifts, or until supplies of gifts last.

Of course, chances are you probably won’t receive the triple-digit gift card or thousands of reward points in your inbox.

The most common gift is a year of free membership to ShopRunner.com, which offers free two-day shipping on Internet purchases made on retail websites.

A friend of mine was happy to receive a $2 gift card, while another lucked out with a $20 statement credit.

If you're already planning to shop at one of these retailers, this promotion allows you the chance to get a bit of a bonus.