Changes to the Amex Preferred Rewards Gold Card

American Express has now pulled the Preferred Rewards Gold Charge Card and replaced it with the Preferred Rewards Gold Credit Card. The new version of this card has kept all the same perks, including its 20,000 points sign-up bonus (22,000 if referred or by using the links on this page) and no card fee in the first year.

The change likely stems from Amex wishing to push their own brand cards, since a recent court ruling declared that their co-brand cards (such as the BA card) will be affected by the 0.3% card fee cap (Amex issued cards are unaffected by this ruling). Switching this card to a credit card will likely increase the appeal of the card, especially to people who are unsure about how charge cards work, or of the opinion that they are for the super-affluent.

The new card offers an interesting opportunity to current charge card members paying the £140 annual fee. Whilst such members would not qualify for the points bonus, obtaining the Gold credit card and cancelling the charge card would allow card members to save at least some of the cost of the annual fee (Amex refund the card fee pro-rata upon cancellation). It should be noted, however, that there is no guarantee as to the credit limit you would be offered for the new card. Since a charge card has no specified credit limit, users do have the option of placing substantial purchases should they wish.

In the long term, this card will likely prove to be one of the better air mile cards. With no cap on the fee that Amex can charge merchants, there is no reason for Amex to cut the earning rate of 1 rewards point per £1 spent (points convert to air miles at a 1:1 rate).


American Express

Preferred Rewards Gold Card

  • Impressive 20,000 points signup bonus (increased to 22,000 if referred by an existing card member or using the link on this page)
  • No card fee in the first year.

Annual fee: free for first year, then £140 Earn rate: 1 point per £1 - Apply

The representative APR is 57.6% variable, based on an annual fee of £140 and assumed credit limit of £1,200. The purchase rate is 22.9% variable.

Sign-up bonus: 20,000 Membership Rewards points (20,000 Avios) when you spend £2,000 in the first three months. 22,000 Membership Rewards points (22,000 Avios) if you are referred by an existing cardholder, or sign-up with this link.

Eligibility: You will not get the bonus if you have held a Platinum, Gold or Green Amex charge card or the American Express Rewards credit cards in the last six months.

Eligibility: You will be eligible if you hold any other AMEX issued card (i.e. BA, SPG, Nectar, cashback etc.).

On-going benefits include: Double points on all airline and foreign spend, double points on all spending on the Amex Travel website, 10% Hertz discount, US$75 in-hotel credit with 350 selected hotels worldwide, two free airport lounge passes each year. You receive an annual bonus of 10,000 bonus Membership Rewards points if you spent £15,000 in the previous year.

Apply Here

The American Express Gold Rewards card offers an impressive sign-up bonus of 20,000 Membership Reward Points when you spend £2,000 in the first three months. This is equivalent to a £100 amazon gift card, however better value can be found by transferring points into other reward schemes. Membership Reward points can be converted into most major airline mileage schemes including Avios and Virgin Atlantic at a 1:1 rate. Combined with the waivered card fee during the first year (usually £140) makes this card a must have for any serious miles points collector.

Membership Rewards points can also be transferred into three hotel schemes: Starwood Preferred Guest (2 Membership Rewards points = 1 starpoint) Hilton Honors (1 Membership Rewards point = 2 Hilton Honors points) and Club Carlson (1 Membership Rewards point = 3 Gold Points).

You can get an even higher bonus of 22,000 Membership Rewards points if you are referred by an existing American Express Platinum or Gold cardholder. My referal code can be found here.

The other great benefits of this card include:

  • Earn rate: 1 point per £1
  • a bonus 10,000 Membership Rewards points after each year of Cardmembership when you spend at least £15,000 within the 12 month period of your Card anniversary. This benefit increase the points earning of this card to 1.67 points per pound spent for the first £15,000.
  • Supplementary cards can be added to your account - their spending counts towards the £15,000 'target' for the bonus points
  • Membership to Lounge Club - providing two complimentary lounge visits per year (subsequent visits cost £15 per person) at over 500 airport lounges around the world.
  • Access to "The Hotel Collection" by American Express. Enjoy a room upgrade (where available) and a US$75 hotel credit when you stay two consecutive nights at over 500 hotels worldwide including Hilton Hotels, Intercontinental and Hyatt Hotels when you book online via American Express Travel.
  • An often skipped over benefit from this card is the additional points earnt when spending directly at airlines or in foreign currency (2 points per pound spend). Whilst this card does have a FX fee of 2.9% the additional points can sometimes be justified. Addition points can also be earnt on bookings made directly through American Express Travel (3 points per pound).

After the first year the £140 fee kicks in however, you can cancel at anytime for a pro-rata fee refund

Conclusion

The sign-up bonus of 20,000 Membership Rewards points (22,000 if you use my referral link below) is one of the most generous incentive available. I strongly recommend signing up and giving the card a try, if only for the first free year.

Apply Here

  • This card usually has a £140 annual fee, but this is waived in year one.
  • Reward points can be transferred into several airline schemes including British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Delta, Emirates, Finnair, Iberia, Virgin Atlantic Flying Club and Singapore Airlines - you can see the full list on the Membership Rewards site.
  • The card is an American Express, which isn't as widely accepted as Visa or Mastercard so be aware of that when you apply.

Conclusion

The sign-up bonus of 20,000 Membership Rewards points (22,000 if you use my referral link below) is one of the most generous incentive available. I strongly recommend signing up and giving the card a try, if only for the first free year.

Apply Here


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It should be noted that by discussing credit and charge cards on this site, we are in effect, acting as a credit broker. Expert with Points Ltd is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA FRN 792662) to act as a credit broker.

This is a journalistic website, as such, we merely describe different travel related credit card options available to you; it is your responsibility to determine whether these products are suitable for your financial circumstances. Nothing on Expert with Points should be seen as constituting financial advice. Recommendations given, for any financial products, are based on the benefits and perks they offer.

Ross Slater

Dr Ross Slater

Ross is Expert with Points' main contributor. Sharing his knowledge of various travel reward schemes, to help your travelling go further.

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