In this review I will go through the pros and cons of using American Express Preferred Rewards Gold as your credit card. The purpose of writing this review is to help others understand when it may or may not be the right choice for you.

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Who is the card for?

This card is for individuals that has the United States as their primary residence.

  • Frequent flyers / travelers.
  • Spending more than $600 at restaurants and/or supermarkets every month.

Reward credit cards can be a great way of getting more when you shop but are best avoided if you can’t pay off your balance in full each month.

What does it cost?

The American Express Preferred Rewards Gold has an annual fee of $250.

No fee on foreign transactions.

Interest rate is 15.99 to 22.99% APR variable which is charged on the balance. Cash advances carry a higher interest rate. To avoid interest fees always pay the full balance on or before the due date. This way regardless of how much the interest rate is on your credit card, you will not pay any interest fees = FREE. A good way to avoid late payments is to set up direct debit. Additionally, if you like to follow your spending on your phone you can choose to download the AMEX app.

Perks & Other Benefits

In addition to earning points the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold Card offers the following advantages for cardholders:

  • Bagage insurance.
  • Car rental loss and damage insurance.
  • $10 added to your Uber account every month. Can use on rides or Uber Eat in the U.S.
  • Up to $10 statement credit at Grubhub, Seamless, Boxed, and other participating partners.

The benefit of having car rental loss and damage insurance cannot be stated enough. It is a perk that could end up saving you hundreds of dollars depending on how much you use a rental car. Rather than paying for the insurance offered by the car rental company, AMEX provides this feature to you at no extra charge. This is one of those “free money” perks that I like to point out.

How do I earn points?

Points earned are based on 3 types of transactions:

  • 4 points for every $1
    • At restaurants worldwide plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
    • Purchases at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per year.
  • 3 points for every $1
    • Bookings directly with airlines or through AMEX Travel website (amextravel.com).
  • 1 point for every $1
    • Other eligible purchases

Tip: Frequent Flyers and Travellers

As seen above the quickest way to earn points is to go all-in with booking your travel using American Express Travel. If you are a frequent flyer/traveler then this card may be a good choice for you as long as you use the American Express Travel service.

Welcome Bonus

You may be eligible for the welcome bonus of 60,000 reward points but you must spend at least $4,000 within the first 6 months of membership. The welcome bonus points alone are worth approximately $500 of Apple gift card. You may also use the points for something else e.g. Airline or Hotel points.

How can I use the points I have earned using my American Express card?

There are multiple ways to spend the reward points that you have earned. The below is a list of some of them:

Reward CategoryPartners
HotelsBest Western, Fairmont, Hilton Honors, Marriott Bonvoy and more
ShoppingApple, Best Buy, Nike, Starbucks and more
This is only a selection of the rewards partners available.

The above is only a selection of what you can use your well-earned points towards. For more information on rewards please visit the American Express website.

How much are AMEX points worth?

The list of reward partners is long so for making a simple overview I have comprised the following table to represent the value of the points earned when using then American Express Preferred Gold credit card.

Below is an illustration of how much your points could be worth:

PointsConversion ($)
1,176$10
2,941$25
5,882$50
11,765$100
58,824$500
This is based on reward conversion schemes e.g. Apple Gift Card.

To earn enough points to justify the $250 annual fee, you would need to earn at least 29,400 points every year. If you spend a total of $613 per month on restaurants and/or supermarkets then card practically pays itself. Remember, that restaurants and groceries purchases earn 4 points per $1.

Breakdown of points earned through spending

The table below illustrates the points earned in a month. For example, assuming you spend $250 at restaurant during the month you will have earned 1,000 points. Spending the same amount ($250) through AMEX Travel or with airlines will earn you 750 points in that month.

Monthly Spend ($)Supermarket /
Restaurants ($)
Airlines /
Amex Travel
Other
$2501,000750250
$5002,0001,500500
$7503,0002,250750
$1,0004,0003,0001,000
$1,2505,0003,7501,250
*Approximate calculation to the nearest whole dollar based on points accumulated during a 12-month period assuming average monthly spend.
** Welcome bonus of 60,000 points when spending $4,000+ within the first 6 months of card membership is not included in above illustration.

Summary

Do you spend more than $600 a month at restaurants or supermarkets? Or do you travel frequently? Then the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold credit card is a great match as the reward points are high for people with this lifestyle.

Remember, the welcome bonus of 60,000 reward points is worth approx. $500.

You can apply for this card here.

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