The Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express offers generous rewards in everyday categories with no annual fee. However, rewards caps and limitations make this card a poor fit for some consumers.
The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers generous rewards at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. department stores and U.S. gas stations, making it a solid option for families and people who commute to work. There is no annual fee, and cardholders even get an introductory 0% APR on purchases for 15 months (then 13.99% to 23.99% variable).
Unfortunately, rewards earned with this card can only be redeemed for statement credits, and the bonus rewards earned in the most lucrative category are capped, making the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express a middle-of-the-pack card among cash back credit cards.
What makes the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express good?
There are several reasons the Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express is still considered a good credit card despite its pitfalls, the first being its lack of annual fee. Also note that cardholders get 0% APR on purchases for 15 months, followed by a variable APR of 13.99% to 23.99%. If you have a big expense coming up, like medical bills or new kitchen appliances, this benefit gives you the chance to charge your bills and pay them down without interest for a limited time.
The rewards this card offers are also generous, even if they are limited. For example, cardholders earn 3% back on up to $6,000 in spending at U.S. supermarkets each year, then 1% back. This makes this card a good choice for grocery spending – provided you only shop for food at supermarkets within the U.S. Not only that, but cardholders earn 2% back at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores each year.
That said, potential customers should note the 3% back and 2% back rates don’t apply outside the U.S. Not only that, but the Blue Cash Everyday Card charges a 2.7% foreign transaction fee for purchases made abroad.
Finally, this card only lets you redeem rewards for statement credits. That may be fine for your needs if you prefer statement credits anyway, but be aware that similar cash back credit cards let customers redeem rewards for gift cards, merchandise, travel and more.
Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express: At a glance
The benefits and rewards of the card include these highlights:
- Welcome bonus of a $200 statement credit when you spend $2,000 within six months of account opening
- Earn 3% cash back on up to $6,000 spent at U.S. supermarkets each year (then 1% back), 2% back at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores, and 1% back on general spending (terms apply)
- 0% APR on purchases for 15 months, followed by a variable APR of 13.99% to 23.99%
- Secondary rental car coverage, access to a Global Assist hotline, Amex Send & Split, Pay it Plan it and more
Blue Cash Everyday Card benefits
Before you decide for or against the Amex Blue Cash Everyday Card, you should have a full understanding of its rewards rates and benefits.
The Blue Cash Everyday from Amex offers 3% cash back on up to $6,000 spent at U.S. supermarkets each year (then 1% back), 2% back at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores and 1% back on general purchases. This makes it a pretty good card for earning cash back in everyday spending categories, but it’s definitely not the best.
For starters, the $6,000 cap for earning 3% back at U.S. supermarkets would be limiting for most families. In fact, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reports that the average family with two kids ages 12 and 13 spends $1,189.40 per month on food on a moderate budget. At that rate, a normal family would max out their 3% back in this category in a little over five months, after which they would only earn 1% back on groceries for the rest of the year.
Also note that U.S. department stores eligible for the 2% back category only include the following:
- Bon Ton Stores
- Century 21 Department Stores
- JCPenney (JCP)
- Lord & Taylor
- Neiman Marcus
- Saks Fifth Avenue
- Stein Mart
Finally, earning cash back is different than earning American Express Membership Rewards points. If you want this type of flexible rewards, you’ll have to consider other American Express credit cards.
New Blue Cash Everyday cardholders can earn a $200 welcome bonus when they spend $2,000 on purchases within three months of account opening.
This bonus is definitely better than nothing, but it comes with a much higher minimum spending requirement than most other cash back credit cards. In fact, the majority of similar rewards credit cards with no annual fee offer the same bonus with just $500 to $1,000 in spending within three months of account opening.
No annual fee
The fact the Blue Cash Everyday Card doesn’t charge an annual fee is one of its biggest advantages. After all, this is a card you can keep for the long haul without worrying about annual charges cropping up.
Just keep in mind annual fees aren’t the only ongoing costs you should worry about. The Blue Cash Everyday does charge a 2.7% foreign transaction fee on purchases made abroad.
Pay it Plan It
The Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express comes with a feature known as Amex Pay it Plan it. The “Pay it” component lets cardholders use the Amex mobile app to quickly make payments on purchases under $100 throughout the month, whereas the “Plan it” feature lets cardholders pay off purchases of $100 or more with a fixed monthly fee and no interest.
The Blue Cash Everyday comes with some cardholder perks that can make it more valuable. Major benefits include secondary auto rental coverage and access to a Global Assist hotline. Cardholders also get a complimentary ShopRunner membership, which lets them qualify for free two-day shipping and easy returns with an array of online stores.
Anyone who has this card gets the benefit of the Amex Send & Split feature, which lets them split bills with or send money to any Venmo or PayPal user, directly from the Amex app.
Maximizing the cash back rate on the Blue Cash Everyday Card
If your goal is racking up as much cash back as you can with the Blue Cash Everyday Card, you can start by using it for all your spending at U.S. supermarkets so you earn 3% back until you reach the $6,000 annual cap. At that point, you may want to consider switching to another cash back credit card that offers more than 1% back on grocery store purchases.
Also use your card for all your purchases at U.S. gas stations and at the eligible U.S. department stores we highlighted above. For all your regular, non-bonus spending and bills, you should strive to pay with a rewards credit card that offers a minimum of 1.5% back or 2% back instead.
How to redeem Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express rewards
When you’re ready to redeem rewards earned with your Blue Cash Everyday, you’ll find extremely limited options. This card offers cash back in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.
This means you can use your rewards to cover any charges that are posted to your account, including merchandise, gift cards, travel and whatever else you have purchased. However, this card doesn’t let you shop with your rewards directly.
The Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express can make sense for people who want to earn rewards in categories like groceries. But its rewards cap on $6,000 of purchases a year can be limiting for families that spend more than $500 a month on groceries. Plus, it shouldn’t be used as a card for traveling abroad since it charges foreign transaction fees.
These downsides may not affect you at all. Either way, you should compare this card to other top rewards credit cards so you can make an informed decision.