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It doesn't happen every day; American Express has recently launched two new credit cards, The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express and The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express. It did so in a big way, with a large ad buy premiering during the Oscars telecast that features actress, comedian, mother, and former Saturday Night Live star Tina Fey.
American Express chose Tina Fey because they thought she represented the multi-tasking moms that this card would appeal to, this according to Elizabeth Rutledge, their executive vice president of card products and benefits.
How Does This Card Appeal to Busy Moms?
Like other American Express cards, Amex EveryDay cardholders earn one point in their Membership Rewards program for each dollar spent, with double points earned at supermarkets on the cardholder's first $4,000 spent each year. In addition, cardholders earn a 20% bonus each month that they use their cards to make at least 20 separate purchases. There is no annual fee for the standard version of this card.
This card is also available as the Amex EveryDay Preferred. This version offers triple points at supermarkets and double points at gas stations. Furthermore, cardholders receive a generous 50% points bonus each month when they use their card to make at least 30 payments. There is a $95 annual fee for this card
The idea is that instead of asking these busy moms to change their spending habits to earn rewards from the card, Amex is rewarding cardholders just for using the card often at the places they normally shop. It also seems to presume that busy moms, and dads I suppose, want to earn rewards from their daily purchases at supermarkets and gas stations. According to Elizabeth Rutledge, "Our research shows that our customers tend to shop at the same 5 stores within 20 minutes of home, and they make an average of two purchases a day with their credit cards." As she explained, these are not the kinds of cardholders who have the time to drive all over town looking for discounts, they want rewards for using their card the way they already do.
Amex EveryDay Compared to Their Current Cards
If the new Amex EveryDay and EveryDay Preferred cards sound familiar, it is because American Express also offers two cards called Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express and Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. Since these existing products aren't going away, let's take a look at how these new products compare.
|Terms||Amex EveryDay Card||Blue Cash EveryDay Card||Amex EveryDay Preferred Card||Blue Cash Preferred Card|
|Intro APR on Purchases||0% for 12 months||0% for 12 months||0% for 12 months||0% for 12 months|
|Intro APR on Balance Transfers||0% for 12 months||0% for 12 months||0% for 12 months||0% for 12 months|
|On-going APR||13.49%-23.49 Variable*||13.49%-23.49 Variable*||13.49%-23.49 Variable*||13.49%-23.49 Variable*|
|6% Cash Back||N/A||N/A||N/A||at US Supermarkets up to $6,000/year|
|3% Cash Back||N/A||at US supermarkets up to $6,000/year||at US supermarkets up to $6,000/year||at US gas stations & select US dept. stores|
|2% Cash Back||at US supermarkets up to $6,000/year||at US gas stations & select US dept. stores||at US gas stations||N/A|
|1% Cash Back||on all other purchases||on all other purchases||on all other purchases||on all other purchases|
|Cash Back Redemption Options||as a statement credit or transfer to miles||as a statement credit||as a statement credit or transfer to miles||as a statement credit|
|New CardMember Bonus||10,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months*||Earn $100 back*||15,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months*||Earn $150 back*|
|Monthly Bonus||Earn 20% bonus each month you make 20 separate purchases*||None||Earn 50% bonus each month you make 30 separate purchases*||None|
|Access to Membership Rewards Loyalty Program||Yes||No||Yes||No|
*Terms and restrictions apply
As you can see, the key differences are:
- The new Amex EveryDay cards allow you to earn Membership Rewards points transfer points to airline miles.
- The new cards offer more points per dollar than most of their other cards, even those with higher annual fees.
- These new cards offer bonus rewards for making more transactions, which is unique.
- The Amex EveryDay cards are equipped with EMV smart chips from day one, which allows them to compatible with the next generation of credit card readers already being used in other countries. Other Amex cardholders will have to wait until later this year to request that feature.
How This Card can Appeal to a Much Larger Segment
As a busy parent myself, I think I understand the segment of the market that Amex is trying to capture. But if anything, I think they might be selling this product a little short. The credit card rewards junkie in me recognizes that this is a valuable card in some other significant ways.
The standard Amex EveryDay is the only American Express card that has no annual fee, but earns Membership Rewards points that can be transferred to miles with 17 airlines. When used this way, it is possible for savvy cardholders to see a value of well beyond the one cent per point when booking travel reservations directly through the American Express travel agency. For example, Virgin America airlines is a points transfer partner and their points are worth about 1.8 cents each. And when transferring point to miles for use on business class international tickets, it is not uncommon to realize 4-6 cents per point in value. Other programs also offer point transfers to airlines, such as Chase Ultimate Rewards and the Starwood Hotels Preferred Guest card, but Amex EveryDay is the only one of these cards that doesn't have an annual fee.
Furthermore, these new cards can offer a good deal more points per dollar than most American Express cards. For example, those who hold the Amex EveryDay Preferred version and earn the 50% bonus for making 30 transactions, can earn 4.5 points per dollar at the grocery store and 3 points per dollar at the gas station. Of course, it isn't very hard to imagine creative cardholders ringing up some of their grocery purchases separately in order to ensure that they reach the 30 transaction goal.
Finally, there is yet another use for this card. Let's say you have one of the American Express cards such as the Platinum or Premier Rewards Gold, and it just isn't justifying its annual fee for you ($495 and $175 a year respectively). If you cancel the card and it is the only Membership Rewards card you have, then you will lose your hard earned points. But if you have the Amex EveryDay card, then you will retain the points and the ability to redeem them as necessary, while avoiding paying an annual fee. In fact, American Express may be willing to offer you the Amex Everyday when you call to cancel another one of their cards.
American Express is targeting a strong niche of busy parents who are willing to use one card for all of their purchases. In doing so, they might have also created an extremely competitive rewards card that can appeal to anyone who wants to earn valuable airline miles without paying an annual fee.
*Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express.
*The content in this article is accurate at the publishing date, and may be subject to changes per the card issuer.