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American Express adds 'Apply with confidence' tool prior to submitting applications

Nov. 22, 2022
4 min read
an American Express logo against a wall of leaves at a lounge entrance
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Wouldn't you love to know whether you're getting approved for a credit card before submitting the application and getting an inquiry on your credit report? That dream may be a step closer to reality, now that American Express is rolling out an "Apply with confidence" tool.

In this guide, I'll walk you through this new feature, including how it works, where you can (and can't) see it and an evaluation of how useful it is.

American Express 'Apply with confidence' tool

AMERICANEXPRESS.COM

The new "Apply with confidence" tool allows you to see whether you'll be approved before submitting your application for an American Express card. In this way, you can fill out the application as normal, agree to the terms and then know whether you'll be approved. This is done through a soft pull on your credit to determine whether you'll be accepted. If Amex says you should be approved, then you can accept the card, at which point American Express will do any necessary hard pull on your credit.

AMERICANEXPRESS.COM

If this feature is available during your application, you will see information about it on the first page, above the fields where you fill out your personal information to start the application. Disclosures on the page will inform you that you can know whether you're approved without affecting your credit score and briefly outline the process for you.

AMERICANEXPRESS.COM

After completing the application, you'll have a chance to review your information before you submit it. At the top of this page, you'll also see terms indicating that there is no hard pull and no impact on your credit score at this stage. That's because Amex will only conduct a soft pull during this preliminary stage.

Related: How your credit scores work

Availability of the new feature

AMERICANEXPRESS.COM

This tool is aimed at individuals applying for an American Express personal card for the first time, according to a spokesperson for American Express who indicated this feature should be available to those people online and when calling to inquire about cards. "We think it will be especially useful for those consumers who are unsure if they'll qualify for a card."

Thus, this feature will not be available if you are already logged in to your American Express account and browsing available credit cards.

How useful is this tool?

For those who already have an American Express card, this new feature will have limited value. That's because American Express doesn't tend to perform hard inquiries on existing customers when deciding whether to approve them for another credit card. Moreover, the tool is not aimed at these individuals.

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AMERICANEXPRESS.COM

However, if you don't have any American Express accounts at present, this tool can be handy. Rather than submitting an application, having an inquiry show up on your credit report and then finding out you were denied, you can cancel the application before the hard pull.

Note that this new feature works alongside the Amex pop-up tool, which determines your eligibility for a welcome offer. That is different from this new feature determining whether you will be approved for a new account.

Bottom line

American Express is rolling out a new feature called "Apply with confidence." It's not available on all cards or to all users at present.

However, if it's available during your application, you can know whether your card application should be approved before a hard pull affects your credit report and credit score.

Amex also says prospective applicants will be able to access this new tool through partners' websites in the future, which would apply to credit cards from brands like Delta and Hilton.

We would love to see additional banks implement this feature.

Featured image by ZACH GRIFF/THE POINTS GUY
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

TPG featured card

Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review
Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site

Rewards

3 - 4X points
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.

Intro offer

60,000 bonus points
Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Annual Fee

$250

Recommended Credit

670-850
Excellent/Good
Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Apply for American Express® Gold Card
at American Express's secure site
Terms & restrictions apply. See rates & fees
Best for the well-traveled foodie
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
4 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
4XEarn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3XEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Intro Offer
    Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

    60,000 bonus points
  • Annual Fee

    $250
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

There's a lot to love about the Amex Gold card. It's been a fan favorite during the pandemic because of its fantastic rewards rate on restaurants (that includes takeout and delivery in the U.S.!) and U.S. supermarkets. If you're hitting the skies soon, you'll also earn bonus points on travel. Paired with up to $120 in Uber Cash (for U.S. Uber rides or Uber Eats orders) and up to $120 in annual dining statement credits at eligible partners, there's no reason that the foodie shouldn't add this card to their wallet. Enrollment required.

Pros

  • 4x on dining at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets (on the first $25,000 in purchases per calendar year; then 1x)
  • 3x on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel
  • Welcome bonus of 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first six months

Cons

  • Weak on travel outside of flights and everyday spending bonus categories
  • Not as useful for those living outside the U.S.
  • Some may have trouble using Uber/food credits
  • Few travel perks and protections
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees