AMEX Gold Card Review: Built for Foodies With 4X Points and up to $120 in Dining Credits
If the way to your heart is through your stomach, you’ll love the newly refreshed American Express® Gold Card because it’s a foodie’s dream come true!
You’ll earn 4X AMEX Membership Rewards points at US restaurants. And another 4X points at US supermarkets on up to $25,000 in spending per year (then 1X point per $1). Other perks, like up to $120 dining credit at certain restaurants each year, and up to $100 back for dining in the first 3 months, only seal the deal.
You’ll also earn 25,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points after spending $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening, when you apply by January 9, 2019. And 3X AMEX Membership Rewards points on flights booked with the airline or through AMEX Travel. That gets you closer to your next big award trip!
You can apply for the AMEX Gold card here.
I’ll share all the details about this new card offer!
The New AMEX Gold Card Is Built for Foodies and Has a 25,000-Point Welcome Bonus!
Apply Here: American Express® Gold Card
When you open the American Express® Gold Card through January 9, 2019, you’ll earn 25,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points when you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. You’ll also receive 20% back in statement credits (up to $100 back) when you dine at US restaurants within the first 3 months!
Also, when you apply by January 9, 2019, you’ll have the option to receive your card in a limited-edition rose gold color.
The points you’ll earn are enough for a round-trip coach award flight within the US when you transfer them to AMEX travel partners like Air Canada, Delta, or Singapore Airlines.
25,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points are enough for a round-trip coach award trip to Hawaii for folks on the West Coast. Plus, if you love to dine out or buy lots of groceries, those 4X categories add up fast!
There’s a $250 annual fee. But the credits you’ll earn cover most of it. You’ll get up to $120 in dining credit, broken into $10 monthly over the course of a year to spend at certain restaurants.
You’ll also get a $100 airline incidental credit on your selected airline to use for things like seat selection, upgrades, checked bags, and much more.
Both of these credits are worth up to $220. If you make the most of them, that makes the annual fee a lot more palatable (pardon the pun!).
How to Earn Points With the AMEX Gold Card
With this card, you’ll get:
- 4X AMEX Membership Rewards points at US restaurants
- 4X AMEX Membership Rewards points at US supermarkets, on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases (then 1X)
- 3X AMEX Membership Rewards points on flights booked directly with airlines or on Amextravel.com
- Up to $120 dining credit ($10 monthly) each year at participating restaurants (enrollment required)
- $100 airline incidental fee credit each calendar year on your selected airline
- No foreign transaction fees
- Terms apply
How to Use AMEX Membership Rewards Points Earned With the AMEX Gold Card
The best way to use your AMEX Membership Rewards points is to transfer them to travel partners, like ANA, Delta, Hilton, or Singapore Airlines.
I’ve personally transferred my points to British Airways and Air France for flights around the US, and to Hawaii.
AMEX Membership Rewards points are valuable because they’re so flexible. And considering you’ll earn 4X or 3X points in popular bonus categories, expect the points to roll in fast!
AMEX Gold Card Benefits
The AMEX Gold card has some delicious perks – and not just for foodies!
Up to $120 Dining Credit Each Year
You’ll get $10 per month in dining credit when you spend at:
- The Cheesecake Factory
- Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse
- Participating Shake Shack locations
It’s not valid for merchandise or gift card purchases. But if you use the credits each month, that’s $120 in free food!
Of course, who can spend $10 at a restaurant? You’ll likely spend $25+ each time you go out. So I consider this more of a rebate than anything else. And it’s only useful if you like the restaurants on the list.
That said, GrubHub and Seamless are delivery services, so you can choose healthier restaurants if you have dietary restrictions, or want to order in with fewer calories.
$100 Toward Airline Incidentals
Each calendar year, you’ll get $100 to use toward incidentals on an airline you choose. That includes like seat upgrades and selection, checked bags, and much more.
If you travel a lot, chances are you’ll encounter fees at some point. The AMEX Gold card helps you offset them!
Free ShopRunner Shipping
You’ll get a free ShopRunner membership with the card, which gets you free 2-day shipping at 100+ stores. That’s worth $79 a year!
Access to AMEX Offers
This is an easy way to save on purchases you might make anyway!
I’m always adding and redeeming these offers for bonus points and statement credits. All you have to do is add them to your card and spend like normal.
Rental Car Insurance
You can get primary rental car insurance with the card when you enroll in the American Express Premium Car Rental Protection program for up to 42 days.
You must decline the rental agency’s collision insurance and charge the entire rental to your AMEX Gold card to use the benefit.
If you rent vehicles for business often, this can be a tremendous money saver and give you peace of mind.
But you must opt-in to get coverage. If you don’t, coverage is secondary and covers up to a maximum of $50,000 per rental agreement.
When you purchase an item with your card, AMEX will extend the original manufacturer’s warranty up to 2 additional years, on US warranties of 5 years or less. And they’ll match the warranty if it’s under 2 years.
Your purchases are protected from accidental damage or theft for up to 120 days, up to $1,000 per occurrence and $50,000 per calendar year. And the coverage is secondary.
Is the AMEX Gold Card Worth the Annual Fee?
If you’ll make the most of the $120 dining credit and $100 airline incidental credit, that’s $220 toward the $250 annual fee right there. But even if you don’t, the sheer number of points you’ll earn might be worth it.
At the very least, AMEX Membership Rewards points are worth 1 cent each toward travel or a statement credit (but please use them for award travel instead!).
To cover the $250 with points at the 1 cent rate, you’d only need to spend ~$521 per month in the 4X categories each year. After that, the earning is all extra!
That’s because you’d need 25,000 points to cover a $250 charge at 1 cent per point. And if you spent ~$521 per month, that would be more than enough ($521 X 4 points X 12 = ~25,000 points).
This is an easy spending threshold for many families, especially if you like to dine out or buy lots of groceries. Between the credits and 4X earning, the annual fee is totally worth it.
Does the AMEX Gold Card Charge Foreign Transaction Fees?
Do You Qualify for the AMEX Gold Card?
The AMEX Gold card used to be called the AMEX Premier Rewards Gold card. That’s important to know because AMEX only awards intro bonuses once per person, per lifetime. So if you’ve ever had that card, you can NOT earn this welcome bonus.
But if you’ve never had that card, and are interested in this newest iteration, you should qualify to earn the welcome offer!
Customer Support for the AMEX Gold Card
AMEX makes it easy to reach out via 24/7 phone support, secure messaging, or chat through their website.
They’re known for fast and responsive service to most issues. So you should feel cared for when you call with an issue.
Credit Cards Similar to the AMEX Gold Card
Apply Here: Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
Apply Here: Capital One® SavorOne℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card
The dining rewards cards are competing! We recently saw Capital One release the Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card, which earns 4% cash back on dining and entertainment. And there’s also the Capital One® SavorOne℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card, which earns 3% cash back on dining.
More often these days, card issuers are going after customers who spend at restaurants. But while the Capital One cards earn cash back, the AMEX Gold card earns flexible rewards, which are more valuable if you like to travel.
But if you want cash back, check out our full review of the Capital One Savor card to help you decide if it’s the better card for your wallet.
The American Express® Gold Card has a welcome bonus of 25,000 AMEX Membership Rewards points when you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months of account opening, and statement credits up to $100 when you dine at US restaurants within the same timeframe! This offer is valid through January 9, 2019.
You’ll earn 4X AMEX Membership Rewards points when you dine at US restaurants, and on up to $25,000 in spending per year at US supermarkets. This card also comes with up to $120 in dining credits ($10 monthly) at participating restaurants and $100 toward airline incidentals on your selected airline each year.
Put simply, this is now the best card out there for foodies. And the $250 annual fee is quickly covered when you eat out and shop for groceries in the US, in addition to the statement credits.
Will you consider picking up this newly updated card for its fantastic bonus categories?