Tough sell in a competitive cash-back landscape: Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express review

Feb 11, 2021

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Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express overview

The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers several bonus cash-back categories and modest perks. Although the Blue Cash Everyday Card doesn’t charge an annual fee (see rates and fees), most consumers will find that other cash-back card options provide more value. Card Rating*: ⭐⭐⭐

*Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.

Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with new information.

My parents recently asked me about getting a new credit card for groceries. They generally prefer no-annual-fee cards and are only interested in earning cash-back rewards. My first thought was the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express. After all, the Blue Cash Everyday earns 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 each calendar year (then 1%).

But the Blue Cash Everyday Card may not be the best choice for everyone. After all, other cash-back rewards cards compete in the same categories. In this guide, I’ll take a closer look at the Blue Cash Everyday Card so you can decide whether this card is right for you.

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In This Post

Who is this card for?

(Photo by Eric Helgas/The Points Guy)

The Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex is best suited for you if you prefer cash-back rewards over travel rewards. And this card may be a good fit if you aren’t willing to pay an annual fee or you won’t spend more than several hundred dollars on your card each month.

Although the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex isn’t a student credit card, it can help students and young professionals continue to build credit while earning modest rewards. But if you plan to use your card for more than several hundred dollars each month, you’ll likely get more out of other cash-back options.

Related: Why you should get (and keep) a no-annual-fee credit card

Welcome offer

The Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex’s current welcome offer is Earn 20% back on Amazon.com purchases on the card within the first six months of card membership, up to $150 back. Plus, earn $100 back after you spend $2,000 in purchases on the card within the first six months of card membership. Cash back received in the form of statement credits.”

However, due to Amex’s once-per-lifetime rule, you likely won’t be eligible for this welcome offer if you have or previously had the Blue Cash Everyday Card. Amex may also consider other factors when determining your eligibility for the welcome offer.

Luckily, Amex has a welcome offer eligibility tool that will tell you after you apply whether you’re eligible for the bonus. So, if not being eligible to earn the bonus is a deal-breaker, you can withdraw your application before there’s a hard pull on your credit.

Related: How to use the CardMatch tool to get better welcome offers

Main benefits and perks

Rental Cars in a lot
You can get secondary car rental coverage when you pay for eligible rentals with your card. (Photo by alexfan32/Shutterstock)

As with most no-annual-fee cash-back credit cards, the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex doesn’t offer many benefits. However, the card does offer the following perks:

  • Intro APR: You can get 0% intro APR on purchases for 15 months from the account opening date (see rates and fees). After the introductory APR period, you’ll get a variable APR of 13.99% to 23.99% based on your creditworthiness and other factors (see rates and fees).
  • Secondary car rental loss and damage insurance: You’ll get secondary coverage for damage or theft of a rental vehicle when you use your card to pay for the entire rental and decline the collision damage waiver at the rental counter. However, this coverage excludes some vehicles and rental locations.
  • Amex Offers: As an American Express cardholder, you’ll get access to targeted offers that can save you money.
  • Global Assist Hotline: When you’re more than 100 miles away from home, you’ll get 24/7 access to medical, legal, financial and select emergency coordination and assistance services. However, you’ll be responsible for any costs charged by third-party service providers.
  • Pay It® Plan It®: If you need additional flexibility when paying your credit card bill, you can use Pay It® to quickly make payments for purchases under $100 throughout the month (available through the American Express app). You can also use Plan It® for qualifying purchases of $100 or more and split them up into monthly payments with a fixed monthly fee.
  • American Express Experiences: Amex offers cardholders access to pre-sale tickets and exclusive events.

Related: Which is the best American Express credit card for you in 2021?

Earning

Woman shopping at a supermarket
Earn 3% cash back on up to $6,000 of spending at U.S. supermarkets each calendar year. (Photo by Maria Savenko/Shutterstock)

With the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex, you’ll earn:

  • 3% cash back on the first $6,000 you spend each calendar year at U.S. supermarkets (then 1%)
  • 2% at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores
  • 1% on all other eligible purchases
    • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits.

Earning 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets might sound good for a no-annual-fee card (see rates and fees). But maxing out the $6,000-per-calendar-year spending cap at U.S. supermarkets will only net you $180 in cash-back rewards each year. As such, many consumers looking for a cash-back card that earns bonus rewards at U.S. supermarkets will do better with a higher-earning card such as the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express.

You may also want to use a different card for your other spending. After all, several no-annual-fee cards provide bonus cash back on all purchases. For example, the Citi® Double Cash Card offers 1% cash back when you buy and 1% cash back when you pay for a total of 2% cash back. And the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card offers 1.5% cash back on every purchase.

As such, the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex isn’t a particularly compelling option for earning cash-back rewards.

Related: 3 reasons why you need a cash-back credit card in your wallet

Redeeming

Woman's hand putting cash into a wallet
Redeeming for statement credits can effectively put cash back in your wallet. (Photo by dolgachov/Getty Images)

The Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex is a cash-back credit card. As such, the redemption process is relatively straightforward. Specifically, you earn cash-back rewards in the form of Blue Cash reward dollars. And you can redeem reward dollars for statement credits whenever your reward dollars balance is $25 or more.

Occasionally, American Express may offer you other ways to redeem reward dollars, such as gift cards or merchandise. However, if given other options, ensure that your redemption rate is the same or better than redeeming for a statement credit. And if you decide to close your account, plan to redeem a reward dollars balance of $25 or more shortly before canceling your card.

Related: Best ways to use the cash back from your credit card

What cards compete with the Blue Cash Everyday?

Two cash-back credit cards compete closely with the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex: the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express and the Citi Double Cash Card. So let’s take a closer look at these competitors.

Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express

Blue Cash Everyday and Blue Cash Preferred credit cards
The Blue Cash Preferred is a strong competitor to the Blue Cash Everyday. (Photo by John Gribben/The Points Guy)

The most direct competitor to the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex is the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express. The Blue Cash Preferred has a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95 (see rates and fees). But you’ll earn as follows with the Blue Cash Preferred:

  • 6% cash back on U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per calendar year, then 1%)
  • 6% on select U.S. streaming services
  • 3% at U.S. gas stations and on transit
  • 1% on everything else
    • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits.

The Blue Cash Preferred currently has a welcome offer of 20% back on Amazon.com purchases on the card within the first six months of card membership, up to $200 back. Plus, earn $150 back after you spend $3,000 in purchases on the card within the first six months of card membership. You will receive cash back in the form of statement credits.

Depending on your grocery budget, the Blue Cash Preferred may be a better option than the Blue Cash Everyday. For example, my parents spend at least $6,000 at U.S. supermarkets each year. So, after spending $6,000 at U.S. supermarkets with the Blue Cash Preferred, they’d get $360 of cash-back rewards. Even accounting for the annual fee, they’d still come out ahead using the Blue Cash Preferred instead of the Blue Cash Everyday when shopping at U.S. supermarkets.

To learn more, see the full Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express review.

Related: Who should (and who shouldn’t) get the Amex Blue Cash Preferred card?

Citi Double Cash Card

Citi Double Cash Card
The Citi Double Cash Card is another competitor to the Blue Cash Everyday. (Photo by John Gribben/The Points Guy)

Another card to consider is the Citi Double Cash Card, which earns 2% back on every purchase (1% when you buy and 1% when you pay your bill). Although the Blue Cash Everyday Card from Amex offers a slightly higher 3% on the first $6,000 spent each calendar year at U.S. supermarkets (then 1%), the Citi Double Cash will likely end up reaping more rewards since you can earn up to 2% on every single purchase.

The Double Cash doesn’t have an annual fee. And you can convert Double Cash rewards to ThankYou points if you hold an eligible Citi ThankYou Rewards credit card. You may not care about this option if you’re only interested in cash-back rewards. But this added flexibility can provide value if you eventually want to earn transferable points.

To learn more, check out our complete Citi Double Cash Card review.

Related: What credit score do you need to get the Citi Double Cash Card?

Bottom line

To be a top cash-back credit card, a card must offer an excellent rewards structure. Unfortunately, the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express falls flat in the earning department compared to several competitors.

Granted, students and credit card beginners with low monthly budgets might find value from the Blue Cash Everyday Card. But most cardholders looking for a new cash-back rewards card should look elsewhere — such as the Blue Cash Preferred or the Citi Double Cash.

For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday, click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred, click here.

Featured photo by Eric Helgas/The Points Guy.

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 20% back on Amazon.com purchases on the Card in the first 6 months of Card membership, up to $150 back.
  • Plus, earn $100 back after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months of card membership. You will receive cash back in the form of statement credits.
  • 3% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).
  • 2% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores.
  • 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases from the date of account opening, then a variable rate, 13.99% to 23.99%.
  • Plan It® gives the option to select purchases of $100 or more to split up into monthly payments with a fixed fee.
  • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Intro APR on Purchases
0% on purchases for 15 months
Regular APR
13.99%-23.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$0
Balance Transfer Fee
N/A
Recommended Credit
Excellent, Good
Terms and restrictions apply. See rates & fees.

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.