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Just about the only underwhelming feature of the revamped American Express® Gold Card is its welcome bonus of 35,000 points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months. The bonus matches the standard public bonus on the old Premier Rewards Gold Card, which the Gold Card replaces, but it’s just not very impressive in light of other currently available offers.
But a 50,000-point welcome bonus appears to be widely available through various online channels. You’ll have to spend $2,000 within the first three months to qualify for the bonus. This offer is subject to change at anytime.
As an American Express cardholder, you may be targeted for this higher bonus when you log on to your account — as I was — or you can grab a referral code from a friend. Referral codes also are available online. (Note: It is TPG policy that referral links are not allowed in the comments section.) Some people have reportedly been able to get the higher bonus offer by calling American Express directly.
It’s unclear how long the jumbo-sized bonus will be available. As long as you can grab it, those points are worth $950 in travel, based on TPG’s latest valuations. You’ll get the most value out of your Membership Rewards when you transfer them to one of the program’s partner hotel or airline loyalty programs.
Even if you can’t snag the big bonus and you have to settle for 35,000 points, the Amex Gold may be well worth the $250 annual fee (See Rates & Fees). (That smaller bonus is worth $500, based on TPG valuations). That’s because the card’s real attraction is its bonus categories:
- Earn 4x points at US restaurants (the best rewards return on dining out)
- Earn 4x points at US supermarkets (the second best rewards return on groceries) up to $25,000 per year; then 1x
- Earn 3x points on flights purchased directly from the airline or on amextravel.com
- Earn 1x points on all other eligible spending
- Terms Apply
The card also comes with some compelling benefits. Then, you can qualify for up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at participating dining partners.
Finally, the card retains the $100 annual airline fee credit that was available on the Premier Rewards Gold Card. Each calendar year, you’ll receive up to $100 in statement credits toward incidental airline fees such as baggage fees and in-flight purchases. You have to pick a qualifying airline for the credit.
For rates and fees of the Amex Gold Card, please click here.
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With some great bonus categories, the American Express Gold Card has a lot going for it. The card offers 4x points at US restaurants, at US supermarkets (up to $25,000; then 1x), and 3x points on flights booked directly with airlines or through amextravel.com. It is currently offering a welcome bonus of 35,000 bonus points after you spend $2,000 in the first three months.
- Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $2,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
- Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. restaurants. 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 $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with The Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Shake Shack, and Ruth's Chris Steak House. This is 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.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees.
- Annual Fee is $250.
- Terms apply.
- See Rates & Fees