The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card from American Express may be the single best card for earning transferable points (points that transfer to airline miles).
The card earns 3x points at US supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1x); 2x points at US gas stations; and 1x points on all other eligible purchases.
What really makes this card special, though, is that when you use the card 30 or more times in a billing period, you get 50% more points. In other words, in every billing period in which you use the card 30 or more times, you earn the following points per dollar:
- 4.5 points per dollar at U.S. Supermarkets, up to $6K spend per year (then the rate drops to 1.5X)
- 3 points per dollar at US standalone gas stations
- 1.5X points per dollar on all other eligible purchases.
As I showed in the post "Best credit card combos: Membership Rewards," an average person (see assumptions in the post) can earn, on average, 2.33 points per dollar!
Membership Rewards points earned with this card are transferable to many airline programs and can be pooled with points earned on other Membership Rewards cards such as Platinum, Gold, and Green cards. One particularly good use is to pool points with the Business Platinum Card so that you can use points to buy airfare at a value of approximately 1.5 cents per point.
|Amex Membership Rewards points can be incredibly valuable if you know how to use them. In general, if you use Membership Rewards points to pay for merchandise or travel, you won't get good value from your points. One exception is with the Business Platinum card where you'll get a 35% point rebate when using points to book certain flights. This gives you approximately 1.5 cents per point value, which is pretty good. Another exception is with the Business Gold Card where you'll get a 25% point rebate when using points to book certain flights. This gives you approximately 1.33 cents per point value. If you don't have either card, then your best bet is to transfer points to airline miles in order to book high value awards. More details can be found here: Amex Membership Rewards Complete Guide.
Amex Application Tips
- Safe to Apply: Amex is the safest bank for trying your luck at a new welcome bonus. They don’t usually issue a hard pull when denying your application. Plus, they’ll now warn you during the application process if you’re not eligible for the bonus.
- Lifetime Rule: If you've ever had the same card before, you are most likely prohibited from getting a welcome bonus for the card if you apply now. Fortunately you'll be warned during the application process if this is the case. Amex is known to "forget" that you've had a card after about 7 years.
- 5/90 Rule: In general, you can get at most one credit card within 5 days and 2 within 90 days. The 5 day limit is not enforced when your applications are automatically approved. Neither rule is enforced for charge cards.
- 5 credit card max:Amex usually won't approve applications for new credit cards if you already have 4 or more Amex credit cards or 10 or more charge cards.
- Better Offers: You may be able to get a better offer than the best available public offer. Details here.
- Hard inquiries combine into 1 when approved same day
Check application status here.
If denied, call reconsideration: 877-399-3083 (new accountholders); 866-314-0237 (current accountholders)
How to Meet Spend Requirements
In order to meet minimum spend requirements, people often look for options to increase spend in ways that result in getting their money back. These techniques are referred to as "manufacturing spend". American Express has terms in their welcome offers that exclude some manufactured spend techniques
from counting towards the minimum spend requirements for the welcome bonus. For example, most new cardmember bonuses have terms like this:
Eligible purchases to meet the Threshold Amount do NOT include fees or interest charges, purchases of travelers checks, purchases or reloading of prepaid cards, purchases of gift cards, person-to-person payments, or purchases of other cash equivalents.
That said, many techniques for meeting minimum spend are perfectly fine. Here are some techniques that are safe for meeting Amex minimum spend requirements (click each link for more information):
Related Cards (Membership Rewards)