A Chinese billionaire who buys million dollar art with his AmEx racked up an insane amount of frequent flyer miles

Chicken CupVincent Yu/APThe ‘Chicken Cup’ for which Yiqian paid $US36 million last year and earned a ton of frequent flyer miles.

Billionaire Liu Yiqian is a regular globetrotter, often travelling abroad to bid millions of dollars in auctions for ancient Chinese art. But he usually travels for free.

That’s after Bloomberg reporters inspired him to start using his air miles, earned from the millions of dollars he’s paid on his American Express Centurion card for the ceramics and antiquities he collects, Bloomberg’s Frederik Balfour reports.

After Yiqian’s last major purchase back in July — $US36 million for a ceramic piece known as the “Chicken Cup” — Bloomberg asked Yiqian about the frequent flyer points he must have earned.

Now, Yiqian, who is worth about $US1 billion, is sure to use his miles whenever he travels — including when he recently flew to Hong Kong to pay $US45 million for a 15th century silk Buddhist tapestry he won in a November auction.

That took more than 30 transactions to process, and should earn earn Yiqian another 18,750,000 points, Bloomberg estimates.

Read the full story over at Bloomberg>>

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