Foodies on the market for a good rewards credit card might want to take a look at the American Express Gold Card, which now also comes in rose gold!  It offers a whopping 4X points per $1 spent at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets.  Not to mention, frequent flyers will get 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or through amextravel.com.  Yes, it does come with a hefty price tag of $250 but the rewards and credit you get back might just be worth it!

American Express Gold

CURRENT WELCOME BONUS

60,000 Membership Rewards Points after spending $4,000 during first 6 months

REWARDS

Earn 4X points for every $1 spent on dining & groceries; 3X points on flights; 1X point on everything else

APR

15.99% – 22.99%

ANNUAL FEE

$250

FOREIGN TRANSACTION FEE

0%

RECOMMENDED CREDIT SCORE

670 – 850

The American Express Gold is best for …

With an exceptional points rewards on dining, supermarkets, and flights, the Amex Gold is perfect for frequent flyers who eat out quite often.  Additionally, large families with hefty grocery bills are also best suited for the Gold card.  If you live in Seattle, for instance, Business Insider calculated that the average household spent roughly $516/month on groceries alone.  So an average Seattle family could potentially earn 24,768 points/year with the Amex Gold.

Frequent flyers can also take advantage of the 3X earned on fights, although airfare must either be booked directly with airlines or through amextravel.

The Welcome Bonus

Currently, Amex is offering 60,000 Membership Points (normally 35,000) after spending $4,000 in the first 6 months.  That translates to a spending budget of at least $667/month.  According to amextravel, the bonus points are worth at least $600 in flights, $420 in pre-paid hotels, or up to $600 in gift cards.  On the other hand, the bonus can also offset the card’s annual fee, at least for the first year.

Amex Gold Points & Rewards

This card offers a massive 4X points per $1 spent on restaurants worldwide, 4X points at U.S. supermarkets, and 3X points on flights booked directly with the airline or amextravel.  It’s important to know that points earned at supermarkets are capped at $25,000 spent in a year.  Everything else earns 1X point.  Purchases made at restaurants located inside other establishments, such as a restaurant inside a hotel, might not be eligible for additional points.  Similarly, purchases from nightclubs, convenience stores, or bars are also not eligible for extra points.

Points Redemption

Cardmembers can redeem Membership Rewards points in a variety of ways.  First, points can be used to book travel or upgrade your plane ticket.  Second, they can be used on the Amex shopping portal, redeemed for gift cards, statement credits, or pay with points at Walmart/Amazon/Best Buy checkouts.

Finally, points can also be transferred to your favorite airline/hotel loyalty program, provided it partners with American Express.  Most points will transfer at a 1:1 ratio, however, some airlines/hotels might give you more/less.  For instance, 1,000 Membership Rewards Points transfer to 1,600 AeroMexico Premier Points or 2,000 Hilton Honors Points.  Conversely, 1,000 Membership Points are worth only 800 JetBlue TrueBlue Points.

Additional Perks

▪  Travel Accident/Lost Baggage Insurance

▪  $120 Uber Cash – simply add your card to your Uber account and get $10 in Uber Cash/month for Uber Eats/rides, plus get 4X points for Uber Eats purchases

▪  Up to $100 Hotel Credit

▪  $120 Dining Credit – dine at The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack, Seamless, Grubhub and earn up to $10 when you use your Gold Card

Bottom line:

All things considered, the American Express Gold card can be an excellent addition for people who spend a lot of money on food and travel.  It offers plenty of fee credits to help offset the hefty annual $250 price tag.  However, if you don’t spend a lot of groceries or eat out quite often, then you might want to look for a much cheaper rewards card.  Those looking for more rewards on supermarket purchases, a lower annual, and prefer cash back, the Blue Cash Preferred might be a better option.  But if you are where the money resides, try the Amex Platinum Card.

Reminder: Amex Gold is a charge card, which means your balance must be paid in full.  Fortunately, American Express has introduced the option of carrying a balance (with interest) or splitting purchases into monthly payments with a fixed fee!