|Business Rating:||3.5 / 5|
|Annual Percentage Rate||0.3|
|Issuer Customer Experience||4.6|
In a Nutshell:
The American Express Business Gold Card is a solid choice for a small-business owner who wants to earn and redeem points for business or family travel.
Average Yearly Rewards Value ($4,000 monthly spend)
American Express Customer Service Ratings
Other Notable Features: No foreign transaction fee (See rates and fees), 25% travel redemption bonus, pay over time option, access to the Working Capital Terms program and short-term business loans, $50 flat fee to add employee cards (See rates and fees), purchase protection, baggage insurance, no preset spending limit, set limits on employee cards, track receipts through mobile phone, trip delay insurance
The American Express Business Gold Card gets you a stellar 4-point bonus on the two categories you spend the most in each billing cycle. Plus, you’re entitled to a 25% bonus for eligible redemptions through the American Express travel portal. American Express also offers financing features that give cardholders some options for managing cash flow.
Flexible bonus categories
To help match rewards with your spending, the Business Gold Card rewards 4 points per dollar in the two categories your business spends the most in each billing cycle, between directly purchased airfare, U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, U.S. shipping purchases and purchases made directly from select U.S. computer hardware, software or cloud solution providers. This means if you spend more on U.S. restaurant purchases in one month and more on U.S. gas station purchases the next, you’ll still earn great rewards. Plus, you earn 1 point per dollar on the remainder of your purchases.
Note, the 4-point bonus is capped at $150,000 in total purchases per year, but this is a very high spending cap, and cardholders shouldn’t have much trouble earning a large number of Membership Rewards points at a high rate.
Fair introductory bonus
The American Express Business Gold Card currently offers 70,000 points for spending $10,000 on eligible purchases in the first three months of card membership. Though not quite as high as the card’s previous offering (which included up to $300 in statement credits on eligible U.S. advertising and U.S. shipping purchases), the latest bonus is still very generous, worth over $800 according to our estimates. That said, the new bonus carries a high spending requirement, as you’ll need to spend at least $3,333 per month in your first three months to qualify.
When you pair these perks with the bonus points offered on several categories, including gas station and travel expenses, you stand to gain enough in the first few years of ownership to offset the annual fee, especially since the cap is set so high for each bonus category.
25% bonus for travel redemptions
The Membership Rewards points that you earn with the card are a flexible, valuable currency — you can use points in a variety of ways, including buying gift cards and merchandise, and booking travel on the American Express website. You can also transfer points to one of American Express’s 16 partner airlines.
Redeeming your points for travel is probably the best option of all, because – as one of the best benefits of being an Amex Business Gold card member – you get 25% of your points back when you redeem points for eligible travel purchases, including airfare, through the American Express Travel portal. You can get up to 250,000 points back this way per calendar year.
Essentially, this means the points you earn with the Amex Business Gold card are worth 1.25 cents apiece when redeemed for airfare, making them much more valuable than the average rewards card point.
No foreign-transaction fees
The Amex Business Gold Card doesn’t include a foreign-transaction fee (See rates and fees), which means you can use your card overseas without having to pay the additional 2% to 4% in fees that most cards charge. That said, American Express isn’t universally accepted outside of the U.S.
Manage your cash flow
The Amex Business Gold Card offers a few nifty options for business owners looking to finance a business:
- Pay Over Time – With the Pay Over Time option, cardholders can choose to pay for purchases of more than $100 over time with interest, up to a specified limit each month.
- The Working Capital Terms program – American Express offers short-term financing to help card members pay vendor invoices and manage cash flow.
- Business loans – Card members are also eligible to apply for fast (approved in as little as 60 seconds), fixed interest rate loans for working capital and short-term financing.
High annual fee
The biggest drawback to this card is the annual fee: at $295 per year, it is one of the highest among the cards we’ve evaluated, and more than double that of cards with similar offers. The Business Gold Card does justify this fee with some nice features and perks. But you can find cards with similar benefits for half the price and a higher rewards value.
Why get the American Express Business Gold Card?
- You value outsized travel benefits more than regular cash back.
- You want to maximize rewards in the above six categories.
- You are a small business owner searching for a card with travel benefits and options for managing cash flow.
How to use the American Express Business Gold Card:
- Use the Amex Business Gold Card to pay for everything in the bonus categories, unless you have another card that offers a higher rewards rate for a particular category.
- Book your travel through the American Express Travel site to earn a 25% redemption bonus (for eligible purchases, up to 250,000 points back per calendar year).
- Before transferring points to an airline, make sure seats are available.
- Use Membership Rewards points when you need to book expensive flights, such as full-price economy, first class or business class travel.
For rates and fees of the Amex Business Gold card, please click here.
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