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Credit Card Review: American Express Green

Credit Card Review: American Express Green

Sushi on a plate

American Express recently revamped the American Express Green credit card to give it a new look but it came with a higher fee.  Green travelers will be glad to know that 70% of the card is made from reclaimed plastic that was unfortunately tossed at beaches and islands.  Not only did the card get a shinny new look, but the 3X travel rewards rate also extends to restaurants and transit.  Although it might not compare to the American Express Gold or Platinum, the travel perks can outweigh its annual cost.

American Express Green

CURRENT WELCOME BONUS

45,000 Membership Rewards® Points after spending $2,000 during first 6 months

REWARDS

Earn 3X points on travel, restaurants, and transit; 1X point on everything else

APR

15.99% – 22.99%

ANNUAL FEE

$150

FOREIGN TRANSACTION FEE

0%

RECOMMENDED CREDIT SCORE

670 – 850

The American Express Green is best for…

The Amex Express Green credit card is geared towards frequent travelers and foodies who want some premium perks without the hefty annual price tag.  Though it’s not quite up to par with some of American Express’ premium cards, the Amex Green does have a strong rewards rate.  Therefore, if you have good credit, travel frequently, and spend a bit on public transit, this card could be ideal for you.  Some of its perks include credit for lounge access and breezing through security clearance, making for a much more pleasant journey.  Alternately, you can also get a lot our of this card if you dine out frequently; the 3X points include takeout and delivery.  Not too shabby!

The Welcome Offer

American Express has recently changed the time limit for welcome offers.  Currently, if you spend $2,000 within the first 6 months, you will earn 45,000 Membership Points.  American Express estimates the bonus to be worth roughly over $400 of flights, when booked through American Express Travel.  Although the bonus is pretty low compared to other Amex cards, you only have to spend $333.33/month to qualify.

Previous Amex Green cardholders are not eligible for the welcome bonus.

Amex Green Points & Redemption

The card offers 3X points for every $1 spent on travel, transit, and restaurants worldwide (including delivery and takeout).  Fortunately the travel category is very broad: includes not only flights and hotels but trains, taxis, tours, rideshare services, ferries, and even parking.  Bookings made at third party travel websites also qualify. All other purchases outside of those categories earn 1X point.  There is no limit on the amount of points you can earn and they don’t expire.  It’s also important to know that purchases made at restaurants located inside other establishments are not eligible for additional points.  For example, a purchase made from a restaurant located inside a hotel doesn’t qualify.

Points Redemption

One of the best ways to redeem Membership Rewards points is by booking travel through American Express Travel.  Points can also be used for Amazon purchases, Tickemaster, gift cards, or statement credits etc.  In addition, American Express allows members to transfer to any of the 22 airline and hotel loyalty programs.  Amex does charge a fee of .06 cents per point, otherwise transfers are a 1:1 ratio.

Additional Perks

$100 LoungeBuddy Credit

$100 CLEAR Credit – to ease your way through security

  Car Rental Loss Insurance

 Coverage for Lost Baggage and Trip Delay insurance

BOTTOM LINE

The American Express Green Card is pretty solid travel card.  Although some might find the price tag a bit steep, savvy travelers will know how to get the most out of it. All things considered, if you use the card on all things travel and food, get the welcome bonus, & avoid redeeming points for statement credits, you will get the most bang for your points!  However, if you’re still looking for a reasonable amount of travel rewards without the bigger price tag, check out the Chase Sapphire Preferred.  But if you are where the money resides, try the Amex Platinum Card.

Amex Green 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!

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