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American Express Gold Card Welcome Offer

American Express Gold Card Welcome Offer

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This article was last updated Nov 25, 2019. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

If you’re looking for a card with a generous welcome offer and strong ongoing rewards on dining and supermarket purchases, the American Express® Gold Card might be just the right fit.

The welcome offer is 35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months. For ongoing rewards, you can earn 3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). The American Express® Gold Card does charge a $250 annual fee, however.

It should also be noted that the American Express® Gold Card is a charge card. Generally, charge cards require that you pay off your balance in full each month, rather than allowing you to carry a balance and make minimum payments like you can with a credit card. However, the American Express® Gold Card does have a “Pay Over Time” feature, which allows eligible charges of $100 or more to be paid over time and accrue interest charges.

Let’s take a look at whether you can qualify for this card’s welcome offer, what you can do with the points you earn, and whether this card is a good fit for you.

In this article:

  • 35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.*

  • Earn 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X*

  • Up to $100 per year for incidentals*

Highlights
  • Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Earn up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
  • Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.

See additional details for American Express® Gold Card

More Info

Are you eligible for the American Express® Gold Card welcome offer?

The first thing you should be aware of is the American Express once-per-lifetime card welcome offer policy. What this means is that you can only get a welcome offer for a specific Amex card once in your lifetime — so if you’ve ever received a welcome offer for the American Express® Gold Card, even if you canceled the card many years ago, you may not qualify for this welcome offer.

And, of course, you must meet the spending requirement in order to earn the welcome offer. Spending $4,000 can be a bit of a heavy lift, and comes out to a little more than $1,333 in card purchases each month. It might be easier to meet the requirement if you’re planning on a big-ticket purchase. Note that if you cancel or downgrade your card account within 12 months of acquiring it, American Express might not credit the welcome offer points to your account, or might freeze or take away points that have already been credited to you.

Read our full review of the American Express® Gold Card

How can you use your welcome bonus?

After you’ve met the spending threshold, you should keep an eye out for points to be credited to your account within eight to 12 weeks. There are a variety of ways you can redeem your points:

  • Book or upgrade travel (value ranges from $0.005 per point to $0.01 per point)
  • Redeem for gift cards (value ranges from $0.005 per point to $0.01 per point)
  • Pay with Points at checkout (value ranges from $0.005 per point to $0.01 per point)
  • Cover your card charges (a value of $0.006 per point)
  • Shop with merchant partners (a value of $0.005 per point)

If you choose a redemption option where each point is worth 1 cent, a welcome offer of 35,000 points is worth $350. You can also transfer points to a variety of airline and hotel loyalty programs — more details on that below.

Transferring rewards

You can transfer your American Express Membership Rewards® points to 19 airline loyalty programs and three hotel loyalty programs, most at a 1:1 rate. These are the airline programs:

  • Aer Lingus (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Avios)
  • AeroMexico (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,600 Premier Points)
  • Aeroplan (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Aeroplan Miles)
  • AIR FRANCE KLM (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Flying Blue Award Miles)
  • Alitalia (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Alitalia Miles)
  • ANA Mileage Club (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 ANA Mileage Club Miles)
  • Asia Miles (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Asia Miles)
  • Avianca LifeMiles (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 LifeMiles)
  • British Airways Executive Club (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Avios)
  • Delta Air Lines (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 miles)
  • El Al Matmid Club (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 20 Matmid Points)
  • Emirates Skywards (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Skywards Miles)
  • Etihad Guest (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Etihad Guest Miles)
  • HawaiianMiles (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 HawaiianMiles)
  • Iberia (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Avios)
  • JetBlue TrueBlue (250 Membership Rewards points = 200 TrueBlue points)
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer (500 Membership Rewards points = 500 Qantas Points)
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 KrisFlyer Miles)
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Flying Club miles)

And these are the hotel loyalty programs you can transfer points to:

  • Choice Privileges (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Choice Privileges)
  • Hilton Honors (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 2,000 Hilton Honors Points)
  • Marriott Bonvoy (1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,000 Marriott Bonvoy points)

Other ways to earn rewards

This card earns 3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).

Read: Best Grocery Credit Cards

The bottom line

The $250 annual fee for the American Express® Gold Card might be more than some consumers are willing to pay. However, the card offers good value through its welcome offer and its ongoing rewards. There are also two annual statement credits that can help mitigate the cost of the annual fee — an airline fee credit of up to $100 and a dining credit of up to $120.

On top of that, you have the opportunity with this card to earn two more credits (see your card agreement for terms and conditions):

  • A credit of up to $100 for new bookings of at least two consecutive nights at properties in The Hotel Collection.
  • A credit of up to $100 for new bookings of a vacation package or cruise of at least $3,000 with a participating supplier made through American Express Travel or eligible Travel Representative Network agents.

If you want to earn Membership Rewards points but aren’t sure the American Express® Gold Card is the right fit for your spending habits, check out our list of best American Express cards.


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