Credit card showdown: Amex EveryDay Preferred vs. Amex Blue Cash Preferred

Apr 2, 2020

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American Express fields a diverse range of rewards credit cards, with options ranging from cash-back cards to premium products with benefits such as airport lounge access and annual travel statement credits. Right in the middle of the pack are the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express and the Amex EveryDay Preferred® Credit Card from American Express.

The first earns cash back of between 1% and 6% on purchases; the second earns Membership Rewards points that you can transfer to 19 airline and three hotel loyalty programs.

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Given their similar annual fees, welcome offers and earning structures, you might be trying to decide between these two cards. The good news is, there’s no wrong choice. You will just need to decide if a cash-back card or one that earns transferable points fits better into your rewards strategy.

Here’s how the two cards compare.

The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
Annual fee $95 $95 (see rates and fees)
Welcome offer 15,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $1,000 in three months

0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months  then variable 12.99% to 22.99%)

$250 statement credit after spending $1,000 in three months

0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months (then variable 12.99% to 23.99%)

Earning 3x at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year then 1x

2x at U.S. gas stations

1x everywhere else

50% bonus points every billing period with 30 or more purchases

6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year, then 1%

6% on select U.S. streaming subscriptions

3% on transit and at U.S. gas stations

1% on everything else

Redemptions Transfer to over 20 airline and hotels

Statement credits

 

Cash back for statement credits, gift cards, direct shopping
Other benefits Purchase protection

Return protection

Extended warranty

Secondary car rental insurance

Amex Offers

ShopRunner

Purchase protection

Return protection

Extended warranty

Secondary car rental insurance

Amex Offers

ShopRunner

The information for The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express card has been collected independently by The Points Guy. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Now for the details on each and their respective benefits.

In This Post

Annual fee

Both cards charge the same annual fee, $95 a year. Neither card waives its annual fee for the first year.

Winner: Tie.

The Blue Cash Preferred offers a simple cash-back formula. (Photo by The Points Guy)

Related reading: My mom got her first rewards card after using cash for 50 years

Welcome offer

Now we get to the first major difference between the cards. New Blue Cash Preferred cardholders can earn up to $250 in cash back in the form of a statement credit after spending $1,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months of card membership.

Related reading: The Best Cash-Back Credit Cards for 2020

The current welcome offer for the Amex Everyday Preferred is 15,000 American Express Membership Rewards points after spending $1,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months of account opening. These are full-fledged, transferable Amex Membership Rewards points, which TPG currently values at 2 cents apiece. So we’d peg those bonus points at around $300 in value. However, if you redeem these points for cash back, such as for gift cards, travel, Amazon.com purchases, or simple statement credits, you get between 0.6 cent and 1 cent per point in value. So your best redemption option by far is to transfer them. We’ll get into this more below.

Both cards are offering 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 months, which can come in handy if you need to carry a balance for a short period of time.

Winner: A bonus of 15,000 Membership Rewards points isn’t that large, so you actually might be better off with the Blue Cash Preferred Card’s $250 statement credit.

Related reading: Credit Card Review: American Express Blue Cash Preferred

Earning

When it comes to cash-back credit cards, the Blue Cash Preferred is a top all-round earner. The card racks up multiple percentage points in numerous categories including:

There are two things to pinpoint about this earning formula. First, it features a wide array of bonus-eligible categories where consumers tend to spend a lot, such as groceries and gas, which can really rack up statement credits quickly. Second, getting 6% back even on a single category is a pretty phenomenal rate of return. You probably won’t see a huge return on your spending for streaming services unless you subscribe to a ton of them, but that grocery bonus could net you $360 cash back if you max it out each year.

Related reading: The Best American Express credit cards for 2020

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Both cards offer bonus earning at U.S. supermarkets. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The Amex EveryDay Preferred offers some pretty attractive bonus opportunities as well. The card accrues 3x Membership Rewards points per dollar on up to $6,000 per year at supermarkets and 2x points per dollar with no cap at gas stations as well as on certain purchases through AmexTravel.com, such as prepaid hotel stays and cruises. It earns 1x per dollar on all other eligible purchases.

Related reading: A guide to earning transferable points and why they’re so valuable

And, for every billing cycle in which you use your card to make 30 purchases or more, you get a 50% points bonus. That brings your potential earning up to 4.5x per dollar at supermarkets and 3x at gas stations. Since these are full Membership Rewards points, we peg those figures at 6-9.5% return on spending in the bonus categories and 3% back on everyday spending. Nonethtless, how much value you get from your Membership Rewards points will really depend on how you redeem them.

Winner: It’s hard to argue with the Blue Cash Preferred’s simple 6% cash back on groceries and 3% back on gas — especially since you have to track your transactions to maximize the Amex EveryDay Preferred Card’s 50% boost after 30 transactions.

Redemptions

With the Blue Cash Preferred Card, you can redeem your rewards for cash back when your balance is over $25 in one of three ways:

  • Receive a statement credit
  • Redeem for gift cards
  • Shop with your rewards

The best strategy is usually just to redeem for a statement credit since you can buy the gift cards from a retailer with your credit card, earn even more cash back on those purchases, and then redeem your points for those purchases.

Singapore Airlines flight from Newark to Singapore in business. (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)
Earning Membership Rewards points can open up fantastic awards, such as Singapore Airlines business class. (Photo by Zach Griff/The Points Guy)

With the Amex EveryDay Preferred, you earn American Express Membership Rewards points that you can transfer to the following airline and hotel partners:

Airline Partner Programs

  • Aer Lingus AerClub
  • Aeromexico Club Premier (transfer ratio 1:1.6)
  • Air Canada Aeroplan
  • Air France/KLM Flying Blue
  • Alitalia MilleMiglia
  • ANA Mileage Club
  • Avianca LifeMiles
  • British Airways Executive Club
  • Cathay Pacific Asia Miles
  • Delta SkyMiles
  • El Al Matmid (50:1)
  • Emirates Skywards
  • Etihad Airways Guest Program
  • Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles
  • Iberia Plus
  • JetBlue True Blue (1:0.8)
  • Qantas Frequent Flyer
  • Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer
  • Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

Hotel Partner Programs

  • Choice Privileges Rewards
  • Hilton Honors (1:2)
  • Marriott Bonvoy

Related reading: How to redeem American Express Membership Rewards for maximum value

You can also make direct redemptions of your points sort of like cash back, but this is not usually a great deal. For flights booked through AmexTravel.com, you get a rate of 1 cent apiece, but just 0.7 cents per point for other bookings such as hotels and car rentals. For statement credits against purchases, you only get 0.6 cents per point, and around 0.7 cents per point on Amazon.com purchases.

Winner: Amex EveryDay Preferred. If you’re just looking for cash back, the Blue Cash Preferred is hard to beat. However, for the versatility of being able to transfer your points to 19 airline and three hotel partners, or just book direct through AmexTravel.com, you can’t beat good, old-fashioned Membership Rewards points.

(Photo by The Points Guy)
The Amex EveryDay Preferred is the better option for redemptions because of its lucrative travel rewards. (Photo by The Points Guy)

Related reading: Credit card review: The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card

Other benefits

Neither of these cards is packed with perks, but there are a few. Both offer secondary car rental insurance, return protection, purchase protection, extended warranty, and Amex Offers discounts as well as free ShopRunner membership. Unfortunately, both also charge foreign transaction fees of 2.7%.

Winner: Tie.

Related reading: Best credit cards with no foreign transaction fees in 2020

Bottom line

The Blue Cash Preferred is one of the best cash-back credit cards currently available from any issuer thanks to its 6% and 3% categories and reasonable annual fee. But if you’re looking for a card that earns transferable points and opens up decent bonus-earning opportunities, the Amex EveryDay Preferred might be a better choice. Which card is right for you will come down to how you hope to redeem your points.

For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, see here.

Featured photo by John Gribben for The Points Guy

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

WELCOME OFFER: 60,000 Points

TPG'S BONUS VALUATION*: $1,200

CARD HIGHLIGHTS: 2X points on all travel and dining, points transferrable to over a dozen travel partners

*Bonus value is an estimated value calculated by TPG and not the card issuer. View our latest valuations here.

Apply Now
More Things to Know
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on orders over $12 for a minimum of one year on qualifying food purchases with DashPass, DoorDash's subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Earn 5X points on Lyft rides through March 2022. That’s 3X points in addition to the 2X points you already earn on travel.
Intro APR on Purchases
N/A
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Annual Fee
$95
Balance Transfer Fee
Either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Recommended Credit
Excellent/Good

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.