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AMEX Cards -- How widely accepted are they now?

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  • Zaphod
    replied




    Like many I use:

    Penfed for gas at 5%

    Fidelity Amex for 2% for mostly everything

    Citi Forward for restaurants/bars (works out to 5% if i convert thankyou points to student loan rebate).

    I have one rotating card for sign on bonuses. currently using the AA Citi Advantage to get miles.
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    I recently got both the Citi AA personal/business for the 106K miles bonus, sweet deal for regular spending. Whats this thank you points to student loan rebates you speak of?

    Leave a comment:


  • nmehta211
    replied
    Like many I use:

    Penfed for gas at 5%

    Fidelity Amex for 2% for mostly everything

    Citi Forward for restaurants/bars (works out to 5% if i convert thankyou points to student loan rebate).

    I have one rotating card for sign on bonuses. currently using the AA Citi Advantage to get miles.

    Leave a comment:


  • LH
    replied
    Nothing wrong with getting both cards. The key is discipline to NEVER carry a balance on those cards. You'll probably build your credit faster having two cards that you pay on time regularly than one.

    Leave a comment:


  • AlexxT
    replied
    I have a no-fee  Amex through Fidelity for Costco, and for a few other places that at one time wouldn't take anything else.  At one time Amex was better for international travel for currency fees, but I don't know if that's still the case.   I have a Visa and a Master card as well.  Both of those are no-fee airline mile cards.  I will eventually get a cash back card, but I keep the mileage cards for now because the miles are good to have if you need to fly somewhere on short notice.  I have family on the other side of the country, and on occasion have needed to fly out the same day.  That's when miles are good to have, to catch a red-eye that night without having to pay exorbitant prices for short notice flights.

    I have never seen a business that took Visa without also taking Master Card, or vice versa.  However, I keep both because of fraud/identity theft.  I have had my card number stolen on several occasions.  The credit card company almost always noticed before I did.  They will usually Fedex a new card to me the next day, but it's nice to have a backup card around just in case.

    Leave a comment:


  • Diggidy
    replied




    Diggidy,

     

    You are right. Once you reach 2500 dollars on groceries annually you have paid your 75 dollar fee (compared to 0 dollar fee for blue cash everyday). That is only 210 dollars a month on groceries. I spend around 400-500 monthly on groceries for my wife and I at the best grocery market in the US (Wegmans).

    I don’t get the gas rewards because I use my Amex at Costco where I do not get a discount. However, I save more by buying Costco gas than if I got gas elsewhere with 3% off.

    I think you will be happy with the Blue Cash Preferred. Good luck with moving!
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    Aaaaaah, Wegmans... *swoons*

    Leave a comment:


  • ndayev6
    replied
    Diggidy,

     

    You are right. Once you reach 2500 dollars on groceries annually you have paid your 75 dollar fee (compared to 0 dollar fee for blue cash everyday). That is only 210 dollars a month on groceries. I spend around 400-500 monthly on groceries for my wife and I at the best grocery market in the US (Wegmans).

    I don't get the gas rewards because I use my Amex at Costco where I do not get a discount. However, I save more by buying Costco gas than if I got gas elsewhere with 3% off.

    I think you will be happy with the Blue Cash Preferred. Good luck with moving!

    Leave a comment:


  • The White Coat Investor
    replied
    My main card is an AmEx (the Fidelity 2% cash back one.) I bet I find one place a month that doesn't take AmEx. I throw that on my REI card (along with REI purchases.) That card is also my oldest card, so aside from the REI benefits, it's probably the best one for my credit score. Gas goes on a PenFed 5% back card. We could probably monkey around a bit and get a little more in rewards (especially with new cards) but that combination has been working well for us for years. I have a separate card for WCI.

    Leave a comment:


  • Diggidy
    replied







    I have the AMEX blue cash preferred. Have had it for over 3 years. I absolutely love it. 6% groceries up to 6000 annually (which was capped because people were abusing and buying gift cards at grocery stores as you have suggested), 3% gas and department stores, 1% everything else. It has a 75 dollar fee annually. When I signed up there was 150 dollar cash back for spending 1000 in the first 3 months. We buy everything on this card. There are occasional restaurants and liquor/wine stores that will not take AMEX which is why I also have a standard Visa through my bank.

    There is no hassle with getting the cash back and I usually accumulate enough cash back over 4-5 months to pay a good portion of one month’s spending.

    I highly recommend this card.
    Click to expand…


    Once I get married and start a family, will get this card for groceries.  I have the AMEX right below that one, 3% groceries with no fee.  I don’t spend $6k/yr yet.
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    How much do you spend on groceries per month? The break even point for the Preferred over standard is 2500, so any dollar spent over that is a "profit". This doesn't take into account the fact that the preferred also gets you an extra percent for gas as well (3% vs 2%), but you would need to spend 7500$ to break even just with the gas benefit.

    I think I'm going to pull the trigger on the Preferred -- I think I'll probably wait until May or June to get it so I can put all my moving expenses on it and take advantage of the 150$.

    Thanks for all of the advice!

    Leave a comment:


  • ACN
    replied




    I have the AMEX blue cash preferred. Have had it for over 3 years. I absolutely love it. 6% groceries up to 6000 annually (which was capped because people were abusing and buying gift cards at grocery stores as you have suggested), 3% gas and department stores, 1% everything else. It has a 75 dollar fee annually. When I signed up there was 150 dollar cash back for spending 1000 in the first 3 months. We buy everything on this card. There are occasional restaurants and liquor/wine stores that will not take AMEX which is why I also have a standard Visa through my bank.

    There is no hassle with getting the cash back and I usually accumulate enough cash back over 4-5 months to pay a good portion of one month’s spending.

    I highly recommend this card.
    Click to expand...


    Once I get married and start a family, will get this card for groceries.  I have the AMEX right below that one, 3% groceries with no fee.  I don't spend $6k/yr yet.

    Leave a comment:


  • ndayev6
    replied
    I have the AMEX blue cash preferred. Have had it for over 3 years. I absolutely love it. 6% groceries up to 6000 annually (which was capped because people were abusing and buying gift cards at grocery stores as you have suggested), 3% gas and department stores, 1% everything else. It has a 75 dollar fee annually. When I signed up there was 150 dollar cash back for spending 1000 in the first 3 months. We buy everything on this card. There are occasional restaurants and liquor/wine stores that will not take AMEX which is why I also have a standard Visa through my bank.

    There is no hassle with getting the cash back and I usually accumulate enough cash back over 4-5 months to pay a good portion of one month's spending.

    I highly recommend this card.

    Leave a comment:


  • asmallchild
    replied







     

    Amazon prime store card for 5% cash back on everything you buy via amazon (so you don’t need to play the gift card game from supermarkets)

     
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    @asmallchild If you want an Amazon gift card, you can buy it from Amazon in either physical form (1 day shipping) or email.  No need to go to the grocery store.

    If you want to play the Amazon rewards game, the best I found is with the Chase Freedom card.  From Oct-Dec, they offer 5% cash back any purchase with Amazon.  During that quarter, I use my Chase Freedom and load my gift card balance as much as I can afford to last me the entire year.  I also only shop through the Smile Amazon link to support my favorite charity.
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    Agreed, but I prefer this method instead: http://time.com/money/3970639/amazon-prime-store-credit-card/

    That's 5% cash back all year on anything you purchase on Amazon. While it's technically a zero annual fee card, it does require you to be a Prime member.

    Leave a comment:


  • tigeri
    replied
    After I started noticing more places declining to take my AmEx, I got the PenFed Platinum Rewards Visa Signature just before med school. It pays 5% on gas, 3% on supermarkets (I don't think Best Buy would count but places like Walmart or Target do), 1% everything else. No need to worry about points rotating to different categories. If you aren't a federal employee, you can donate $15 to one of their military charities to become eligible to join. You can redeem points for prepaid cards, travel, among other things. They often have gift card to certain retailers or restaurants at a "discount." The card also has a few other nice features, including NO annual fee. All you have to do is leave $20 sitting in a savings account there and they will let you keep using the card. It has turned out to be a solid card. And PenFed seems to be a good bank too. https://www.penfed.org/platinum-rewards-visa-signature/

    Leave a comment:


  • dragonfruit
    replied




     

    Amazon prime store card for 5% cash back on everything you buy via amazon (so you don’t need to play the gift card game from supermarkets)

     
    Click to expand...


    @asmallchild If you want an Amazon gift card, you can buy it from Amazon in either physical form (1 day shipping) or email.  No need to go to the grocery store.

    If you want to play the Amazon rewards game, the best I found is with the Chase Freedom card.  From Oct-Dec, they offer 5% cash back any purchase with Amazon.  During that quarter, I use my Chase Freedom and load my gift card balance as much as I can afford to last me the entire year.  I also only shop through the Smile Amazon link to support my favorite charity.

    Leave a comment:


  • ACN
    replied
    Get both cards.  I use AMEX for groceries and gas (stand-alone, 3% back wont work at Sam's/Costco gas stations).  Then I use Double Cash back for everything else.

     

    I have been looking into getting a travel/points card, but I'm definitely not going to be churning, so not sure if it's going to be that much benefit.

    Leave a comment:


  • Zaphod
    replied
    No, they are not accepted at as many places.

    Get it if it has incentives or rewards that you cant get for a better price elsewhere. I have several cards and they are all complimentary so I can rack up miles at greater than 2x rate on any purchase.

    Leave a comment:

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