Unveiling FoundersCard: An Exclusive Membership Worth the Price Tag? [2023 Review]

Business travel benefits

We may earn money or products from the companies mentioned in this post.

Are you an entrepreneur or a business owner seeking exclusive benefits and networking opportunities to elevate your professional life? Look no further; FoundersCard might be the answer you’ve been searching for. In this review, we’ll explore the ins and outs of this exclusive membership program tailored for entrepreneurs, business owners, and frequent travelers.

Key Takeaways

  • FoundersCard is an exclusive membership program offering valuable benefits and discounts for entrepreneurs.

  • Membership tiers vary in cost, with Standard providing hotel elite status and waived resort fees, while Elite offers additional credits and a concierge service.

  • Weigh the costs against individual needs to determine if FoundersCard is worth the investment, customer service has been positive in our experience.

Initial Impressions of FoundersCard

Entrepreneur networking event

FoundersCard is a private membership club designed for entrepreneurs, offering a range of benefits related to travel, lifestyle, and small business needs, such as hotel elite status and preferred pricing on various products and services. As one of the FoundersCard members for the past four years, I’ve experienced first-hand the advantages and drawbacks of this membership program. Considering its annual fee of $595, one must consider the benefits in relation to the costs to ascertain its worthiness as an investment.

Elite status and hotel discounts are among the most enticing benefits of FoundersCard membership. However, the program also offers a myriad of other perks, such as flight discounts, resort fee waivers, and exclusive networking opportunities. Getting the most out of your FoundersCard membership involves effectively using these incentives to lower business costs and forge valuable connections with community members.

FoundersCard markets itself as a valuable tool for business owners and frequent travelers who lack access to corporate discounts or credit card perks. Although some benefits may seem similar to those offered by premium credit cards such as the American Express Business Platinum Card, One should remember that FoundersCard is not a replacement for your credit card, but a supplement to it. The two can be used together to maximize your rewards and savings.

Getting Started with FoundersCard

Joining FoundersCard is a straightforward process that requires basic personal information and a referral code from a current member. Use of a referral code allows you to decrease membership fees, bringing down the yearly expense to $495 and eliminating the initiation fee. Moreover, the discounted rate remains fixed for renewal fees during your membership period.

Once you become a FoundersCard member, you’ll receive a physical membership card and access to their member-only web portal. The card grants you entry to networking events and is occasionally required for in-person redemptions (such as hotel stays). Meanwhile, the web portal serves as a platform for browsing and redeeming online discounts and benefits.

Understanding the FoundersCard Structure

Exclusive hotel discounts

FoundersCard offers two membership tiers: Standard and Elite, with an additional gold status option. Each tier provides different benefits and perks, with the Elite membership offering additional exclusive advantages for a higher annual fee.

The subsequent sections will detail the benefits of each membership tier to assist you in deciding which one suits you best, with insights from the points guy.

Perks of the Standard Membership

Business travel benefits

Standard FoundersCard membership provides numerous benefits and discounts for its members. Among the most attractive benefits are:

  • Hotel elite status with brands like Hilton and Caesars

  • Waived resort fees at select properties

  • Travel insurance coverage

  • Flight discounts with a selection of airlines, ranging from 5% to 25% off standard fares.

The hotel and resorts program offered by FoundersCard includes discounted rates, flexible cancellation privileges, and hotel benefits such as complimentary upgrades and amenities. These advantages are available at select properties like Four Seasons Seattle, The Ritz-Carlton Osaka, Park Hyatt Melbourne, and Kimpton Hotels, just to name a few.

Standard FoundersCard membership combines individual and small business benefits. As a business insider, you’ll appreciate the exclusive retail discounts members get on popular retailers like:

  • Slack

  • Lenovo

  • Amazon Web Services

  • Dropbox

Members can save on tech items, app memberships, subscriptions, office supplies, marketing services, and more. These perks are designed to cater to the unique needs of entrepreneurs and small business owners, making FoundersCard an attractive option for this target audience.

Analyzing the Elite Membership

At an annual fee of $995, the FoundersCard Elite membership enhances the standard offering with added benefits for a VIP experience. The Elite package includes:

  • Enhanced elite status with rental car companies such as Avis and Hertz

  • Exclusive credits, discounts, and benefits from a range of business-related brands

  • Elite Concierge service for travel and personal assistance

The primary appeal of the Hilton Gold Elite Status membership is the Elite Concierge service for travel and personal assistance, a feature that is also prominent in the Platinum Elite Status tier.

However, the benefits of upgrading to FoundersCard Elite membership might not be sufficient to justify the additional annual fee for everyone. The advantages are somewhat unclear, and it’s difficult to determine if the increased cost is offset by the additional value provided, except when adding a spouse or team membership. As such, the Elite tier may only be worth considering for those planning to purchase additional memberships for colleagues or family members.

Evaluating FoundersCard Benefits

Customer service support

A comprehensive assessment of the FoundersCard membership’s value involves examining its benefits, customer service, and any potential downsides. In the following subsections, we’ll share personal experiences and common feedback regarding FoundersCard’s customer service and support, as well as analyze the costs associated with the membership to determine if the benefits outweigh the annual fee.

Customer Service Experience

Customer service is a significant component of the FoundersCard experience, as with any membership program. While my personal interactions with their customer support have been positive, feedback from other members has been mixed. Common criticisms include allegations of benefits being a scam, unexpected charges, and difficulties with canceling membership. However, One should remember that individual experiences can differ.

If you ever need to contact FoundersCard’s customer service, they can be reached by phone at (800) 963-1988 or (212) 343-9800. Should you ever decide to cancel your membership, you can request cancellation via phone or email. Based on my experience, I believe they would honor a prior cancellation request before re-billing occurs.

One should understand that all membership programs, including FoundersCard, have their imperfections. While some drawbacks may exist, they have not adversely affected my experience with the program, as I have always been able to redeem benefits as stated in the fine print.

Weighing the Costs

FoundersCard membership comes with an annual membership fee of $595 and a $95 initiation fee. To discern if the membership is a sound investment, one needs to consider the benefits in comparison to the costs. For frequent travelers, complimentary elite status in certain airline loyalty programs can provide significant value, potentially justifying the annual fee. However, those who rarely book flights or hotel stays with cash may not receive enough value to make the membership worthwhile.

The return on investment for FoundersCard membership can vary based on individual circumstances, such as the amount of travel undertaken in a given year. In my case, I have consistently obtained value from my membership, making it a worthwhile investment. However, your unique needs and preferences should be taken into account when deciding if FoundersCard is suitable for you.

To make a sensible choice, you can ask for a preview of membership benefits through the provided link. Carefully review the available benefits and discounts to determine if they align with your needs and can justify the annual fee. If the preview page does not showcase benefits that you would take advantage of, then FoundersCard may not be the right choice for you.

FoundersCard: A Worthy Investment or Not?

Business owner evaluating investment

So, is FoundersCard a worthwhile investment for entrepreneurs, business owners, and frequent travelers? Based on the analysis of its benefits, costs, and target audience, it’s clear that FoundersCard may not be the best option for everyone. However, for those who can maximize the value of the program’s perks and discounts, it can be a valuable tool in their professional toolkit.

The decision to invest in a FoundersCard membership should hinge on your personal needs and preferences. By carefully evaluating the program’s benefits, costs, and customer service, you can determine whether FoundersCard is the right choice for you and your business.


In conclusion, FoundersCard is an exclusive membership program designed for entrepreneurs, business owners, and frequent travelers, offering a range of benefits and networking opportunities. While the program may not be suitable for everyone, those who can take advantage of its perks and discounts may find it a valuable investment. By carefully weighing the benefits against the costs and considering your unique needs, you can decide if FoundersCard is the right choice for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does FoundersCard cost per year?

FoundersCard has an annual fee of $595 plus a $95 initiation fee. Therefore, the total cost per year is $690.

What is FoundersCard membership?

FoundersCard is a members-only program for entrepreneurs that provides exclusive benefits, savings, status upgrades, preferred pricing, and special experiences with over 500 partner brands worldwide.

How to get free FoundersCard?

American Express Cardmembers with Centurion, Icon, Black and Platinum cards issued by a third party are eligible to receive a free trial FoundersCard membership; 12 months for Centurion, Icon and Black members, and 6 months for Platinum members.

Who owns FoundersCard?

FoundersCard is owned by Eric Kuhn, the Founder and CEO who started VarsityBooks in 1997. He created FoundersCard in 2009 to reward entrepreneurs for their accomplishments.

How can I join FoundersCard?

If you know a current member, you can join FoundersCard by completing an application with your personal information and their referral code.

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