When Should I Get the Amex Premier Rewards Gold Card?
Update: Some offers mentioned below are no longer available. View the current offers here.
TPG reader Mark messaged me to ask a question about getting the Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express card:
"With the new perks recently announced for the Amex Premier Rewards Gold card, is now a good time to get it? I currently have the Chase Sapphire Preferred card."
It's always refreshing when credit cards add benefits instead of taking them away, and Amex just did that with the Premier Rewards Gold card, adding a $100 airfare rebate as well as double points on all dining, which is clearly a swipe at the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card.
The new benefits of the Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express card (which went into effect this month) are as follows:
• A $100 annual airline fee credit
• No foreign transaction fees
• Receive triple points on airfare
• Receive double points on purchases at US gas stations, US restaurants and US supermarkets
To answer Mark's question, I think now is a great time to get the card, especially if you spend a lot in those bonus categories. If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred, the Premier Rewards Gold card is a good way to diversify and have both Ultimate Rewards and Membership Rewards, which frequently offer transfer bonuses to partners such as Aeroplan and British Airways.
Right now the public offer has a welcome bonus of 25,000 points when you spend $2,000 in the first three months, but that could go up to 50,000 points if you've received a targeted offer. You can use the Card Match tool to see if you're eligible. And don't worry — using the tool won't have any effect on your credit; it will just check to see if Amex has targeted you for a higher welcome bonus. My sources at Amex say they've recently added many targeted offers into the Card Match tool, which is great for consumers.
Even if you haven't received a targeted offer, 25,000 Amex Membership Rewards points is still a great deal, and is worth about $500. Also, there is a $0 Intro Annual Fee for the 1st year, then $195 (increased from $175), and the $100 airline credit can be used each calendar year (so you can use it twice in your first year of cardmembership). If you can get a higher welcome bonus, even better!
You also earn three points per dollar spent on airfare, or four points per dollar when you book through Amex Membership Rewards Travel, which is pretty hard to beat. Even the double points on travel from Chase Sapphire Preferred doesn't compare. Amex Travel also recently waived a lot of fees for members; while those pertain to the Platinum card, it's not crazy to think they might extend a similar benefit to Premier Rewards Gold cardholders down the road.
In summary, if you know how to leverage the card and you tend to spend a lot in the bonus categories, then you should absolutely get the Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express card ASAP!