When you sign up for the American Express® Gold Card (Amex Gold Card), you have the opportunity to earn a welcome bonus of 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
With this card, you’ll earn 4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X) and 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
This charge card comes packed with beneficial features especially if you’re constantly traveling whether it be for business or leisure. If this card is of interest, continue to learn more about this card and what it has to offer below!
Table of Contents
- 1 American Express Gold Card Summary
- 2 American Express Gold – 35,000 Membership RP
- 3 Earning Membership Rewards Points
- 4 Redeeming Membership Rewards Points
- 5 American Express Gold Cardholder Benefits
- 6 Author’s Verdict
- 7 Alternative Credit Cards Options
American Express Gold Card Summary
The American Express® Gold Card offers 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
You'll have the opportunity to earn 4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide & at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X); 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
This card has an annual fee of $250 with no foreign transaction fees. Some benefits including earning up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth's Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. In addition, a $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
American Express Gold – 35,000 Membership RP
After spending $4,000 in the first 3 months of opening your account, you can earn 35,000 Membership Rewards Points (RP). There are many ways to go about this. Down below are several options to acquiring these points.
• Plastiq - Using Plastiq allows you to pay for your personal expenses such as rent, tuition, mortgage, auto lease etc. Although they charge a 2.5% processing fee for using your credit card, this will contribute to the card bonus that you will receive. There is also a referral program that allows you to earn "Free-Free Dollars" that goes towards processing fees as well.
• Funding Checking Accounts - When it comes to funding a checking account, opening your initial deposit with a credit card is the usual way to go about it. However, if you want to have more opportunities, you should open a checking account that offers a sign-up bonus. This allows you to work towards bonuses from not one but two different sources instead. Banks like Chase, Huntington Bank, TD Bank and BBVA offers credit card funding, and for your opening deposit, you can often fund anywhere from $50-$1000 with a credit card, depending on what bank offers it.
• Gift Card Purchases With Using a Credit Card - Another way to acquire the bonus is using your credit card to purchase gift cards. Buying a a gift card or an individual merchant card typically do not require a purchase fee and are used towards leisure, so gift cards are ideal. However, gift cards such as a Visa or American Express do incur purchase fees because they can be spent anywhere, but gift cards that are specifically for a certain online shopping site such as Amazon or eBay don't.
As for a Citi Credit Card, you should call customer service and ask them to lower your Cash Advance limit to $0 before making any purchases because Citi tends to read gift card purchases as a Cash Advance.
Ideally, you should do this with any card just to be safe. Lastly, there is such thing as a discounted gift card which can be purchased on Raise or eBay. If you use a credit card often for everyday purchases, it can build your credit score that will contribute towards paying for things such as bills and taxes.
Earning Membership Rewards Points
The 4X on restaurants worldwide is huge, especially if you dine out a lot, on the American Express Gold Card.
The 4X points at U.S. supermarkets is also very big. However, this bonus is capped at the first $25,000 you spend per calendar year. Then, it decreases to 1X points. But even with the cap, the American Express Gold Card is one of the best cards for grocery spending, as it’s a common expense that many incur.
Plus, if you like flying, earn 3X points on flights purchased directly from the airline or at amextravel.com when you use this card to pay.
Redeeming Membership Rewards Points
Membership Rewards Points earned can be transferred to American Express’ travel partners, and each point is worth about 2 cents. These include Etihad Guest, ANA, Choice Hotels, Hilton and Marriott Bonvoy. Each travel partner has different values for your points, so make sure to do your research to find the best ones. Check the chart down below for more partnered airlines from Amex.
Membership Rewards Airline Partners
|Aer Lingus||AeroMexico||Air Canada|
|Air France/KLM||Alitalia||All Nippon Airways|
|Avianca||British Airways||Cathay Pacific|
|Delta Air Lines||El Al Israel Airlines||Emirates|
|Etihad Airways||Hawaiian Airlines||Iberia|
|JetBlue Airways||Qantas||Singapore Airlines|
Membership Rewards Hotel Partners
|Choice Privileges||Hilton Honors||Marriott Bonvoy|
You’ll generally get the most value from your points by transferring them to a partner. But you can also use points to cover charges on your billing statement, to shop on Amazon, to cover Uber rides, to buy gift cards and more. Plus, you can use points to book travel directly through Amex.
American Express Gold Cardholder Benefits
The Amex Gold Card offers benefits you can find on many cards with annual fees. These include Purchase Protection, Return Protection, Extended Warranty, Car Rental Insurance, and much more.
You must use your American Express Gold Card to get these benefits. Below are the top benefits with this card:
- $120 Annual Dining Credit: Pay with your Amex Gold Card at select merchants to earn up to $10 in statement credits each month. These include Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. You must enroll for this perk.
- $100 Annual Airline Fee Credit: Each calendar year, receive up to $100 in statement credits toward incidental airline fees such as baggage fees and in-flight purchases. You must pick a qualifying airline for the credit, and you can only change this once a year. Be sure to choose a carrier you’ll be flying with at least once.
- The Hotel Collection: Book a stay through the Amex Hotel Collection to earn 2X points on your purchase. Plus, enjoy a $75 credit toward dining, spa and resort activities at the property. Note that the credit only applies to stays of two consecutive nights or longer.
- Baggage Insurance: If your luggage is lost, stolen or damaged when you’re traveling with a common carrier, you’re eligible for up to $1,250 in coverage for carry-on baggage and up to $500 for checked baggage.
- Access to Amex Offers: Enjoy rewards at places you like to shop, dine, travel, and more. Log in to your account or use the American Express app to add offers to your card. Then, use your Amex Gold Card to pay and enjoy rewards directly on your statement.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees: Note, some categories, such as the 4X earning on restaurants and supermarkets are limited to transactions made in the U.S.
To acquire the American Express® Gold Card, you will pay an annual fee of $250 (which seems heft, but be assured the benefits far outweigh this).
To compensate for the high annual fee, you’ll receive a $100 airline fee credit and Hotel Collection benefits. Additionally, you are eligible to earn a $75 hotel credit to spend on qualifying dining, spa, and resort activities.
This will apply when you book a stay of at least two consecutive nights at participating properties, at americanexpress.com/hc. Plus, there are many other perks it offers as you can find above.
This card definitely offers many beneficial features that will make-up for it’s steep annual fee. However, keep in mind that this is a charge card. You will be required to pay off your balance in full every month. If you do not have the ability to do so, then this card is not for you.
Provide feedback in the comment section below by telling us your thoughts and experience with this card. For more Amex offers, see our list of the Best American Express Credit Card Promotions or an extensive list of the latest credit card deals.
Learn more about this card and its features here.
Alternative Credit Cards Options
If you are looking for a rewards card that is more focused on travel rather than just dining, then consider looking into these other cards. For a higher annual fee, you can enjoy traveling and leisure with the Platinum Card from American Express, and for lower annual fee alternatives, check out the Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® , Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card.
High Annual Fee Alternative + Exclusive Benefits
Being an upgrade from the Amex Gold Card, the Amex Platinum Card offers even more exclusive benefits for a slightly higher annual fee.
The The Platinum Card® from American Express offers 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
This card comes with an annual fee of $550, but you cardholders can enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings. Furthermore, you'll receive $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline. Plus, up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card® & receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts.
In addition, you can earn 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel & on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
Lower Annual Fee Alternatives + Great Bonuses
The annual fee for Barclaycard Arrival Plus® World Elite Mastercard® is not only lower, but also offers a sign-up bonus and rewards and do not have an airline or hotel restrictions.
The annual fee for the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card is also lower and you can utilize the 1:1 transfer ratio by moving points to another Chase card through partnered airlines or hotels.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®!
You'll earn 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide; 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases. And when you redeem your points for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards, you'll get 25% more value!
The annual fee for the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is yet again lower but has a flat 2% rate rewards rate concerning all purchases. Your rewards are applied as a statement credit on travel expenses.
The Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card offers a one-time bonus of 50,000 miles once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening (equal to $500 in travel). Named ‘The Best Travel Card' by CNBC, 2018.
You're able to earn 2X miles on every purchase, every day. Plus earn 10X miles on thousands of hotels, through January 2020; learn more at hotels.com/venture.
This card does come with a $95 annual fee, however, there is a $0 intro annual fee for the first year. Enjoy no foreign transaction fees and receive up to $100 application fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✔®.
• Chase Bank Bonuses. Chase usually offers the most sign-up bonuses out of all the big banks. Read up and enjoy several promotions for their Checking, Savings and Business accounts.
• HSBC Bank Bonuses. HSBC has some big value offers available for their Checking accounts. Some require hefty deposits to qualify. They also have an online Savings account offering a very competitive rate.
• Huntington Bank Bonuses. Huntington has Consumer Checking and Business Checking accounts available throughout the year.
• Discover Bank Bonuses. As an online bank, Discover offers high and competitive rates on their Savings, CD, and Money Market accounts. Enjoy excellent customer service nationwide.
• TD Bank Bonuses. TD Bank consistently offers great Checking account bonuses all year long. Savings account offers are less frequently available.
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|HSBC Advance Checking Member FDIC||$200 Cash||Review|
|HSBC Advance Checking Member FDIC||Up To $240||Review|
|Chase Total Business Checking®||$300 Cash||Review|
|Chase Premier Plus CheckingSM||$300 Cash||Review|
|Chase Total Checking®||$200 Cash||Review|
|Huntington 25 Checking||$500 Cash||Review|
|Huntington 5 Checking||$200 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Asterisk-Free Checking®||$150 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Unlimited Plus Business Checking||$750 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Unlimited Business Checking||$400 Cash||Review|
|Huntington Bank Business Checking 100||$200 Cash||Review|
|TD Bank Beyond CheckingSM||$300 Cash||Review|
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