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Review: American Express Gold Rewards Card

Barry Choi

As a budget travel expert I’m often asked what the best travel rewards credit card is. That question is a bit harder to answer than you would think. Every card offers different rewards and each has their own restrictions, so it really is a matter of preference.

Fortunately, Ratehub.ca’s credit card rewards comparison tool can help you pick out the best card for you, but there are other things to consider.

If you’re looking for something simple with the potential to gain a lot of rewards quickly, the American Express Gold Rewards Card is arguably the best card available.

Card details

  • Annual fee: $250
  • Earn a welcome bonus of 50,000 Membership Rewards® points when you charge $3,000 in purchases to your Card in your first 3 months of Cardmembership.
  • Earn an additional 10,000 points when you make a purchase between 14 and 17 months of Cardmembership
  • Earn 2 points for every $1 in Card purchases at eligible gas stations, grocery stores and drugstores in Canada
  • Earn 2 points for every $1 in Card purchases for eligible travel purchases, including flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, and more
  • Gain access to an annual $100 CAD Travel Credit, compliments of your American Express Gold Rewards Card. Use the credit once annually towards any single travel booking of $100 or more charged to your Gold Rewards Card through American Express Travel Online
  • 1 Free Additional Gold Rewards Card (a $50 value) to help you earn points faster
  • Convert your Membership Rewards points to Aeroplan Miles or Avios on a 1:1 basis
  • Offers subject to approval. Terms and conditions apply.

What makes the American Express membership rewards points so appealing is the fact that you can transfer them to Aeroplan and Avios on a 1:1 basis. Points can also be transferred to other programs, including but not limited to the Starwood Preferred Guest, Asia Miles, and Delta SkyMiles programs.

Perhaps the most attractive feature is the fact that American Express points don’t expire, so you can transfer your points only when you need to.

Welcome Offer

 

One excellent feature of the American Express Gold Rewards card is it's generous signup offer. You can earn a welcome bonus of 50,000 Membership Rewards® points when $3,000 in purchases is charged to your card in your first 3 months of ownership. Plus, you can also earn an additional 10,000 points when you make a purchase between 14 and 17 months of Cardmembership. Considering the fact that 60,000 points is enough to redeem for a round-trip flight to almost anywhere in Europe with the American Express Fixed Travel Points Program, that's an excellent incentive. In addition, you'll get one free additional Gold Rewards card (a $50 value) to help you earn points even faster.

 

Points System

 

When it comes to their point system, the American Express Gold Rewards card offers a respectable 2 points per $1 spent at eligible gas stations, drug and grocery stores in Canada. You'll also earn 2 points per $1 on eligible travel purchases (flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, and more).

Outside of that, you'll earn one point per $1 spent in all other categories.

To redeem points, simply log in to your account for a statement credit.

One other excellent feature of their points program is the ability to transfer points 1:1 to several different frequent flyer and loyalty programs.

 

Travel Perks

 

While travelling abroad, there's certainly no shortage of perks with the American Express Gold Rewards card.

As a Cardholder, you'll have access to an annual $100 CAD travel credit. This can be used once a year towards any single travel booking of $100 or more charged to your Gold Rewards Card through American Express Travel Online.

You'll also be treated to complimentary membership in Priority PassTM  – one of the world’s largest independent airport lounge programs. Enjoy complimentary refreshments and WiFi as you wait for your flight in a quiet, spacious atmosphere. You'll also get to enjoy four complimentary visits per calendar year to Plaza Premium Lounges across Canada. Enrollment is required and entry fees apply.

As an added bonus for frequent travellers to the U.S., you'll also receive a $50 CAD statement credit when a NEXUS application or renewal fee is charged to your American Express Gold Rewards Card.

 

Final word

 

Between it's excellent welcome offer and travel perks, the American Express Gold Rewards card has much to offer frequent travellers. With an purchase APR of 20.99%, it's interest rate is on the higher end, but it may be worth it for users who will get the most out of it's many appealing features.

If you’re interested in this card, apply now.

Flickr: Sam-Cat

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