AmEx just TRUMPED Chase…and it’s GREAT news for you!

AmEx just TRUMPED Chase…and it’s GREAT news for you!

There is a war going on in your wallet and you don’t even know it!

AmEx just released an update of benefits to their Gold/PRG (Premium Rewards Gold) card.

Most of you know our fondness for the Chase Reserve card. We’ve written many posts about it. However, AmEx just released a beast on Chase and it’s great news for you!

We love our Chase Rsv and use it for the 3X bonus earnings. When we spend $1 in certain categories (food/travel) you get 3X Chase Ultimate Rewards points. That’s about one of the best earnings you can get for those categories these days, until NOW!

Look what AmEx Just did with their rebrand/update now calling it the AmEx Gold Card.

Did you see that?!?

AmEx is now offering 4X per $1 US dollar at US restaurants and 4X per $1 US dollar at US supermarkets (up to $25k a year).

Well played AmEx…but, what are my thoughts.

First, my AmEx Gold PRG now called AmEx Gold card has always been in my wallet.  Those of you that have come to our travel sessions know our goal.  What is it?  To earn a minimum of 2 of something back on every dollar we spend. 2 points, 2¢, two of something back.  Under the old terms of the PRG card you got 2X per $1 US dollar at grocery stores.  We’d use the Gold PRG card for grocery visits and the Chase Rsv for everything else.  Getting us a min of 2X at most places we spend money.  Helping with that 2 of something goal.

But…it seems AmEx is doing something different from Chase.  The Chase Reserve will cost you an annual fee of $450, however you get $300 of that back giving you a net amount of $150.  Basically costing you $150 for a Priority Pass membership.

The AmEx gold PRG card doesn’t come with Priority Pass membership, however, has an annual fee of $250 but it comes with the $100 travel credit each calendar year.  Making it a $150 fee card, but wait, AmEx is giving you more…Check this out…

AmEx is giving you an annual credit of $120 a year to these restaurants.

  •  This is a $10 monthly credit that can be used at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Shake Shack.  $120 dining credit is annually.
This cancels out all but $30 of the annual fee, IF, you use the benefits.  If you find yourself at one of these restaurants a month, and use the annual airfare credit, you are crazy not to get and use the card.

For the first CARD MEMBER year, you will get the $100 travel credit twice, ($200, 1 per calendar year) and the $120 dining credits, basically cancelling out the $250 fee.

Not all is good though, they will be removing the following from the old version of this card:

The current benefit of 2X gas at US gas stations will no longer be available.  Good news if you already have this though, according to AmEx:

In October 2019, the 2X on U.S. Gas Stations will be removed from the Gold Card for all current Gold Card Members who were approved before October 4, 2018.

You can see a full list of the card benefits by clicking here.  You’ll notice great benefits like no foreign transaction fee, the hotel collection, membership rewards, roadside assistance and many insurance offerings.

You will notice there is NO benefit of Priority Pass.

We won’t stop using our Chase Reserve though…

Not everything is perfect with the AmEx Gold card.  There’s one little thing, that 4x is only in the U.S.  As we travel frequently, we will still use our Chase Rsv as it will continue to earn 3x anywhere in the world.

Chase is also more liberal with what codes as 3X for travel.  We’ve seen Uber, parking meters and more.

“But they don’t take, American Express”

Plus not all businesses take American Express, so it will be nice to have a back up with our Chase Reserve.

I thought Chase Ultimate Rewards points were GOLD??  What can I do with AmEx Membership Rewards Points??

Just like chase, AmEx Membership Rewards points transfer to many travel partners.  Marriott, Delta, ANA, Singapore, Hawaiian, Jetblue and Hilton are just a few.

Plus, on occasion they offer transfer bonuses, like these, currently:

There are MANY ways to use AmEx Membership Reward points….

Current Sign up bonus

Many are seeing a current sign up offer of 50k MR points with $2,000 spent in 3 months.  Some are seeing 25K MR points.  Obviously, if you can get the 50k, get it.

This is what you should be offered to sign-up:

  • 50k with $2k spend in 3 months
  • $100 statement credit.  We’ll Pick Up the Tip. Receive 20% back as a statement credit at U.S. Restaurants with The American Express® Gold Card within the first 3 months of Card Membership, up to $100 back.

Another great benefit, they will offer a metal Rose Gold option until January 2019!

To recap, you should get this:

First year you hold the card:

  • $200 Annual Travel Credit ($100 each year of the first year)
  • $100 Statement Credit
  • 50k MR sign-up offer (if you can get it to show you the 50k offer over 25k)
  • $120 dining credits ($10 a month)
  • 4X on US restaurants and 4X (up to $25k) at US grocery stores
  • Card name changes from AmEx PRG to AmEx Gold Card (same card if you currently have, just a refreshed name)

Bottom Line

While the war in my wallet continues between Chase and AmEx, I’ll happily sit back and be the beneficiary of this battle.  3x, 4x anything but 1x is a plus gain to me.  This will help us with our goal of 2 of something back for every $1 we spend.  Which also gets us closer to our travel goals.  PLUS a (depending on how you use it) reimbursed annual fee makes this a big win for us.

Thoughts?  Will you be adding or moving the AmEx Gold PRG to the front of your wallet?

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