American Express OPEN Savings Sponsors Free In-Flight Wi-Fi on AirTran

American Express' efforts to capture a larger share of the small business purchasing market have taken to the skies. American Express OPEN Savings now includes a five percent discount on AirTran Airways tickets when purchased directly from the carrier. AirTran and AmEx announced plants to celebrate their new partnership by sponsoring free Wi-Fi Internet access on all wireless-enabled flights between March 13 and March 27.

American Express spokesperson Kirk Fitzsimmons told reporters that OPEN Savings discounts process automatically with merchants at time of checkout, with no required coupon codes or special logins. "With this new partnership, small businesses can reduce their airline expenses just by using their American Express Business Card."


Both promotions come on the heels of retailer complaints that high credit card interchange fees strain the budgets of small businesses. By creating an ecosystem of business owners who both accept and use American Express, the OPEN Savings program can allay some merchants' fears while generating added value for cardmembers. Participants already enjoy discounts of up to 5% from Marriott, FedEx, Hertz, and various online vendors.

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Joe Taylor Jr. is an internal business consultant for a Fortune 500 company, who writes about finance, culture, and design. He holds a Bachelor of Science in Communications from Ithaca College.