Amex Gold Card: The Best All-Around Credit Card, Period
Amex Gold Card

Amex Gold Card: Why It Deserves a Spot in Your Wallet

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There are dozens (if not hundreds) of travel credit cards to choose from, with a dizzying array of benefits, points bonuses, perks, and more. But we’re just going to say it: The American Express Gold Card is simply one of the best travel rewards credit cards out there.

It’s packed with easy-to-use benefits and a solid welcome bonus offer. But what really makes it shine is that it’s so rewarding on everyday spending. The lucrative bonus categories that earn you more points at grocery stores and restaurants are second-to-none.

And that’s especially true in the upside-down world of 2020, when nearly everyone’s spending and shopping patterns have shifted. It’s one of the few travel rewards credit cards that hasn’t received big new benefits update during the pandemic. That speaks volumes: It’s too good to begin with, and it’s the perfect fit for the world we all find ourselves in.

So let’s break down everything you need to know about the Amex Gold Card and help you make the decision on whether or not it’s right for you.

Amex Gold Card 1

Click Here to learn more about the American Express Gold Card.


Full Benefits of the Amex Gold Card

  • Receive 35,000 Membership Rewards Points after spending $4,000 within the first three months of card membership.
  • But see if you qualify for a 75,000- point offer via CardMatch with the same spending requirement.
  • There are also many different offers via personal referral links that may provide more Membership Rewards points.
  • Earn 3x points for flights booked directly with airlines and at
  • Earn 4x points at restaurants worldwide on an unlimited amount of spending.
  • Earn 4x points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 of spending per calendar year. 1x points per dollar spent after that
  • Earn 1x points on other purchases
  • $120 annual dining credit split up monthly in $10 increments for charges at GrubHub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Boxed & Participating Shake Shack locations
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit per calendar year for baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline. Read about the best ways to maximize this credit.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
  • $250 annual fee (not waived for the first year). See our full breakdown of whether theAmex Gold Card is worth its annual fee.


Amex Gold Card 1

Click Here to learn more about the American Express Gold Card. 

Our Amex Gold Card Analysis

The Amex Gold Card is a solid card for those who spend a lot on groceries & restaurants. In fact, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better option in either category.

Everyone will value Amex points differently. Personally, I value Membership Rewards points at somewhere around 1.7 cents each, so earning 4x points on restaurants worldwide and at U.S. supermarkets is essentially a 6.8% return on those categories. 

Here’s a powerful example: Let’s say your household spends $500 on groceries at U.S. supermarkets a month, and another $200 at restaurants monthly – a fairly conservative estimate for many. But thanks to the 4x points you earn on both categories, you’d earn nearly 34,000 points a year. That’s like earning the Amex Gold Card’s welcome bonus each and every year!

There is no other card that can compete with that earning rate on these categories, which makes it an immediate winner. This alone makes it an everyday card for many as the Chase Sapphire Reserve and Chase Sapphire Preferred Card only earn 3x and 2x points per dollar spent on dining, respectively.

Read: Amex Green, Gold, and Platinum Cards: Which is Right for You?

amex gold card 

The $120 annual dining credit is split up in $10 monthly installments. And much like the Saks Fifth Avenue Credit on the Platinum Card from American Express, if you don’t use it in any given month you’ll lose it. It can be used for charges at GrubHub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse, Boxed & Participating Shake Shack locations. But if you use it up in each of the 12 months, it will take $120 out of the sting of the card’s $250 annual fee.

The annual fee on the Amex Gold Card is $250 and it is not waived for the first year of card membership. However, with the $100 airline fee credit, the monthly $10 dining credit, and the ability to earn 4x points worldwide at restaurants and 4x points at U.S. supermarkets, recouping the annual fee shouldn’t be too terribly difficult each year that you hold the card.

Read more: Is the Amex Gold Card Worth the Annual Fee?

Finally, Membership Rewards points are one of our favorite transferable points currencies as they are incredibly flexible. They can be transferred to airlines like Delta, Virgin Atlantic, and Air France/KLM, and hotel partners like Marriott and Hilton. In fact, transfers to Delta are a big reason why the Amex Gold Card makes our list of the best credit cards for Delta travelers.

Make sure to check out our post on Great Ways to Redeem American Express Membership Rewards Points, and our guide on how and where to transfer Membership Rewards points.

Bottom Line

The Amex Gold Card packs a massive punch in terms of benefits, bonus earning, and a good-to-great welcome bonus – all with a reasonable annual fee. Before the pandemic, we considered it the best all-around travel credit card thanks to how many points you can earn on dining and groceries. Now, it’s more valuable than ever.

Make sure to see if you’re eligible for the 60,000- or 75,000-point welcome offer bonus for the Amex Gold Card via CardMatch.


Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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