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American Express Gold Rewards Card Review

American Express Gold Card

Using the American Express Gold Rewards card after the free first year – is it worth it?

What is the Gold Rewards Card?

The American Express gold rewards card is a card that gets reward points on every pound that you spend. Doubling up if you spend on the AMEX travel site. But don’t do that, as it’s more expensive than your usual booking.com, or going direct to the hotel chain.

amex gold rewards card
American Express Gold Card

How much does it cost?

It’s free in the first year and then £140 per year after that (soon raising to £160, but with more perks). 

But don’t worry – you can cancel it before the year is up and the fee is pro rata. So if you cancel it a month after you only get charged £12 or thereabouts and get refunded the rest.

What are the sign-up offers?

If you spend £3000 in the first three months you get 22,000 bonus points. But limited-time offers pop up every now and then, where the bonus boosts to 30-35,000 points.

Is the Gold Rewards Card Metal?

A lot of people wonder if the cards are metal. Well, they aren’t, they’re plastic. But it does look the part, with the gold colouring and premium feel of the card.

You feel more flashy knowing you’re gaining free points for every time you spend. Especially leading up to that bonus!

Advantages with the American Express Gold Rewards card:

The card gets you many perks including a £5 credit back when you order deliveroo, up to twice per calendar month. It shows as a refund to your balance after a few days. I have used this perk many times, at least once a month. So have saved around £80/year doing this, and for a free card (in the first year), it’s a very good deal.

Having travelled abroad for the first time in two years, I made use of the free lounge passes you get with the card. The first time whilst I was in Malta – their airport lounge was a great experience.

Airport Lounge with Priority Pass

I got to do some work and enjoyed the free food and drink, fast wifi and quiet, comfortable seating during my trip.

There was also a handy outdoor area that I could use. As with the Amex rewards gold card you get two free lounge passes per year with priority pass. You can even take up to two extra guests for free with this offer. Meaning up to 6 people per year can make use of a free airport lounge – with the potential to save hundreds.

Depending on what offer you get given in the app, other perks come with the American Express Gold Rewards Card too. This includes discounts in the form of cashback with Morrisons groceries. Plus a host of other cashback discounts and perks when spending at selected stores.

In recent months the offers have been less exciting. Although a recent offer popped up, offering a £15 off £80 spend in ASOS, ideal if you’re buying clothes or shoes.

What you can do with Reward points

Now the points. They of course can mean prizes!

avios to nectar points with american express gold card
Nectar and Avios Points Conversion

Each reward is worth roughly 0.5% based on the cashback percentage. The Amex reward scheme means you can exchange 10,000 points for £50 of vouchers for retailers like Amazon.

But, there’s a trick.

There is a better trick for those wanting to use reward points as Nectar points. By first swapping your Amex rewards with Avios (British Airways Airmiles Program). You get one point for every Avios point. But with Avios, they have partnered with Nectar.

Using the Avios and Nectar conversion means that you get more for your points. Let me tell you how.

250 Avios points are actually worth 400 nectar points, which increases the points value by 60%. Meaning that 0.5% cashback rate that you get is now 0.8% if you use them as nectar points. By first converting them from Avios points.

Confusing? Let’s start again with a breakdown of how to do this.

  1. First link your American Express account to your British Airways Avios points account. It’s free to sign up!
  2. Then convert your American Express points into Avios points.
  3. It may take a few days to go onto your Avios account. But once it’s finally done, convert 250 Avios to 400 nectar points.
  4. Then once the points are shown in your balance on your nectar account, you can convert them into vouchers. To spend at places like Argos, Sainsbury’s and eBay.

There are limits on each of these retailers for how many nectar points you can use. But eBay is the best because there’s no limit to how many vouchers you can redeem on purchases. The only limit is by having a max £200 in a single voucher, by converting 40,000 nectar points.

The downside of American Express Gold Card (it’s only a small one)

Now Amex. Some are against this card, as it is not used everywhere as Mastercard and visa are.

This is true, but during my time having this card, it was only not accepted in a handful of places.

I’d say 95% of places accept it. A few independent shops, restaurants and pubs may not accept it. This is because of their apparent high transaction fees.

Although saying this, Amex has a “spend in small businesses” offer where if you spend £15 you get £5 back. They release this offer every year for a few weeks, which is another great perk. Keep an eye out in your app and email inbox for this.

I would say to make sure you carry another card in your wallet or purse just in case. As you can get caught out if you only carry this around. Which you should do anyway because some places don’t accept credit cards.

Debit Card Reccomendation

I would recommend the new Chase bank as it offers 1% cash back for up to a year on everyday purchases. Plus it is just a standard MasterCard debit card so you can use it everywhere. You can also open separate savings accounts which have 1.5% interest paid monthly.

chase bank logo

Conclusion

I definitely recommend the American Express Gold Rewards Card. As long as you pay it off, in full, every month. You’re getting heaps of perks with this credit card, without any of the drawbacks.

I would also say to get the most from the bonus offers that the Amex Gold Card has. Either by checking the app regularly in the offers section or by signing up for an account on hotukdeals.

What you can do with Hotukdeals is set an alert to show you when American Express offers appear. It’s a great community and deals are posted there all the time.

My experience with the American Express Gold card

I signed up for this card in June 2021, before going on a trip to Scotland. I did this to get over that £3000 mark to get the bonus points. So from that point of you, I can say it’s a very good credit card to start off with!

The perks are exceptional, especially if you are a frequent traveller. By using the free lounge passes, you more than makeup for the cost of using the card after the first year. But there’s no obligation to continue after the first year. You can contact American Express and cancel the card before the year is up. Meaning all those perks will be completely free!

Letting my points build up, I was even able to get the latest iPhone 13 pro max for less than £100 (in fact, closer to £50). But more on that in another blog post, check here for updates.

Sign up to the card today and get rewarded for your spending!

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