Why we’re excited about the new American Express Gold card
I’ve only got 6 spaces for cards in my wallet, so I have to decide very strategically what goes in there. One space is for my Driver’s License, one space is for my debit card. The other 4 spaces rotate on a fairly regular basis, depending on what kind of spend requirements or bonuses may be going on. Until I got the Platinum Card from American Express, the
Premier Rewards Gold card American Express Gold card was occupying a slot.
It didn’t make sense, at the time, for me to have both the Gold and the Platinum card. I mean, why earn 3x membership rewards points on travel when I can 5? The Gold card was about to be relegated to the reject bin when the annual fee came due.
Then, as if by some divine force, the powers that be over at American Express had a revelation.
Someone in a board room: “Hey, this card really isn’t that special. What can we do to make it better?”
Someone else in a board room: “How about giving a unique reward category, and make it good!”
Cheers from everyone in the board room: “Here here! Right-on! Jolly Good!”
At least… that’s what I assume was said.
Yesterday it was announced that moving forward, the American Express Gold card would offer some pretty kick ass benefits that compliment our spending habits (and perhaps yours as well) beautifully.
The New Perks
- 4X Membership Rewards at U.S. restaurants
- Adios Chase Sapphire Reserve! Your 3x dining won’t cut it anymore
- 4X at U.S. supermarkets up to $25,000 per calendar year
- Spending $25,000 a year is a cinch! Especially considering all the lovely things that grocery stores sell. And all those Fuel Points too? Yes!
- Up to $10 in statement credits for dining each month
- Sure you have to enroll, but that’s just a click. We use GrubHub and Seamless all the time. Easy $120
This is in addition to the $100 incidental fee credit that the card has always had. Take those $100 and add in the $120 from dining and you’re recouping $220 of the $250 annual fee. Sounds like a win in my book!
Sure, you’re losing the 2x on gas purchases, but you weren’t using this card to purchase gas in the first place, were you? There’s plenty of other options that are better for large fuel purchases, one from American Express and the other from Citi. The Hilton Ascend (more info here) gives you 6x at gas stations while the Citi Thank You Preferred (more info here) gets 3x points at gas stations. Both would be a heck of a lot better use of your dollar.
Exploring the Dining Perk
I do travel somewhat for work, and when I take clients out for dinner, it’s a no brainer that I want to earn miles and points. The idea of earning 4x Membership Rewards at all U.S. restaurants just makes me more inclined to take this card out of my wallet to pay. Even for my monthly Starbucks reload, 4x the points is a massive win.
Exploring the Grocery Store Perk
We all shop at grocery stores, but some of us more than others. $25,000 a year (or just under $2100 a month) is easy to spend at grocery stores. I won’t go into too much detail, but just think of all the things that a grocery store sells (typically in a 10 foot tall rack by the check out counter) that you could take advantage of.
Most chains of grocery stores now offer Fuel Points in one way or another. Both the Kroger and Safeway near us offer fuel points and often run 2-4x promotions for general shopping and even on gift cards! This is another big way for us to rack up an easy 100,000 membership rewards points a year.
Exclusive, Shiny, and New
Not that it matters in the grand scheme of life, but the Gold card will now come in Gold and Rose Gold. The Rose Gold is only available until January, so act fast!
I just realized how incredibly petty that last sentence was, but it should be noted that I am asking for mine to be delivered in Rose Gold 🙂
Small Welcome Bonus, Powerful Residual Benefits
The 25,000 membership rewards that you receive as a welcome bonus aren’t the most spectacular (you earn them after $2,000 in spending) but the 100,000 Membership Rewards points each year from Grocery stores is my main reason for keeping this one close.