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American Express Gold Card — Full Review [2024]

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Jarrod West
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Jarrod West

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Boasting a portfolio of over 20 cards, Jarrod has been an expert in the points and miles space for over 6 years. He earns and redeems over 1 million points per year and his work has been featured in o...
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With a degree in media and journalism, Stella has been in the points and miles game for more than 6 years. She most recently worked as a Corporate Communications Analyst for JetBlue. Find her work in ...
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American Express® Gold Card
Terms Apply / Rates & Fees

American Express® Gold Card

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.
4.59
Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

  • 60,000 points

  • $250

  • See Pay Over Time APR. Carrying a balance will incur interest. Eligible charges can be included in the Pay Over Time balance, up to the Pay Over Time Limit. Pay Over Time only applies to eligible charges meeting minimum transaction amounts.

  • Good to Excellent (670-850)

American Express® Gold Card

This is the best card for food lovers who dine out at restaurants (worldwide), order take-out and want big rewards at U.S. supermarkets!

U.P. Rating
The rating for this card has been determined by our own industry experts who know the in's and out's of credit card products. Bonuses, rewards as well as rates and fees are all taken into account. Compensation from the issuer does not affect our rating. We only recommend products we either use ourselves or endorse.
4.59
Learn More(at Amex's secure site)

Apply With Confidence

Know if you're approved with no credit score impact

If you're approved and accept this Card, your credit score may be impacted.

The American Express® Gold Card is a game-changer.

With this card, you can earn 4x Membership Rewards points at restaurants and you’ll also earn 4x Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1x.

There isn’t another card on the market that offers a 1-2 punch like this. Of course, there are several other benefits of the Gold Card as well, including extra monthly dining rewards and more.

Card Snapshot

Welcome Bonus & Info

  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Satisfy your cravings and earn up to $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the American Express® Gold Card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.
  • Get a $100 experience credit with a minimum two-night stay when you book The Hotel Collection through American Express Travel. Experience credit varies by property.
  • Choose the color that suits your style. Gold or Rose Gold.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.

Pros

  • 4x points per dollar at restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
  • 4x points per dollar at U.S. supermarkets, up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases; and 1x thereafter
  • 3x points per dollar on flights purchased directly from airlines or at AmexTravel.com
  • Up to $120 annual dining credit: up to $10 monthly statement credit when you pay with the Amex Gold card at Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar and select Shake Shack locations
  • Up to $120 in annual Uber Cash: get $10 monthly in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S. when you add your Gold Card to your Uber account
  • No foreign transaction fees (see rates and fees)
  • Access to Amex’s The Hotel Collection
  • Access to American Express transfer partners

Cons

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Great Card If

  • You want flexible redemption options
  • You spend a lot at U.S. supermarkets, on dining out, or airfare
  • You can use the annual dining credit
  • You want a card with no foreign transaction fees (rates & fees)
  • You’re an active-duty military member seeking exclusive card perks and benefits

Don’t Get If

  • You don’t travel often
  • You don’t spend much money on dining out, airfare, or supermarkets
  • You prefer a card without an annual fee
  • You prefer a card with elevated benefits, such as airport lounge access or hotel elite status

Amex Gold Card — Is It Worth it?

The Amex Gold card is a workhorse for earning Amex Membership Rewards points. It’s especially helpful for people with high annual spending on dining or U.S. supermarket purchases. You’d be hard-pressed to find many better cards for these purchases.

Some might see the card’s $250 annual fee (rates & fees) and immediately write it off as a non-starter, but we find it valuable because the card offers an annual dining credit of up to $120 upon enrollment and up to $120 Uber Cash annually.

When you combine those credits with the card’s other benefits, including baggage insurance, access to Amex’s The Hotel Collection, and access to Amex Offers, you can see it’s fairly easy to get more value out of the card than the fee you pay.

Upgraded Points’ Editor and Content Contributor Nick Ellis explains why the Amex Gold card maintains a place in his wallet:

“The Amex Gold card was clearly designed with foodies in mind, and this is precisely why the card remains in my wallet. A significant amount of my monthly expenses come from eating at restaurants and bars and grocery shopping. The ability to earn 4x Membership Rewards on these purchases allows me to earn valuable Amex points at a rapid clip. I value the up to $120 annual dining credit in the form of $10 monthly statement credits on numerous restaurants and delivery services (including Grubhub, which I use often), and the up to $120 per year in Uber Cash, delivered in the form of $10 monthly statement credits, which can be used for Uber Eats orders.”

Nick Ellis, Upgraded Points editor and content contributor

The Amex Gold card is fantastic at earning points for food lovers. Additionally, if you prefer to do your grocery shopping online to save time, the Amex Gold card earns 4x points on grocery delivery services, including Instacart and FreshDirect.

To help you decide on whether the Amex Gold card is worth it for you, ask yourself these questions:

  • Do I spend a lot each year on dining, airfare, and at U.S. supermarkets?
  • Can I easily get more value out of the card’s benefits than the annual fee I’ll pay?
  • Do I want a card that earns transferable rewards?

If you answered yes to those questions, then the Amex Gold card would likely be worth it for you.

Hot Tip:

Active-duty military? You can access exclusive military benefits as an Amex Gold cardholder.

Amex Gold Card Top Benefits

Rewards Bonus Categories

  • 4x points at restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
  • 4x points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $25,000 per calendar year; 1x thereafter
  • 3x points on flights purchased directly from airlines or with AmexTravel.com

Up to $120 Dining Credit

Earn up to $10 in dining statement credits each month when you use your card with the following restaurants and food delivery services: Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar, and select Shake Shack locations. Enrollment required.

Up to $120 Uber Cash

Your Amex Gold card gives you up to $120 annually in Uber Cash, distributed as $10 each month, that can be used on Uber rides, Uber Eats orders, and Uber groceries in the U.S. (only available in select markets). Be sure to add your Amex Gold card to your Uber account to receive this benefit!

Bottom Line:

According to Fundera, 60% of American consumers order takeout or delivery at least once a week, so most people should find it fairly easy to get value out of the annual dining and Uber Cash credits — both of which can go a long way toward offsetting the annual fee.

The Hotel Collection

The Amex Gold card gets you access to The Hotel Collection. This group of exclusive hotels offers special benefits to cardmembers when booking a stay of at least 2 nights at select properties in the collection. You can enjoy the following benefits with The Hotel Collection:

  • $100 hotel credit to spend on dining, spa, or resort charges
  • Room upgrade when available

Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance

Use your card to reserve and pay for your car rental, decline the rental agency’s coverage, and you’ll be covered (up to $50,000) if the car is damaged or stolen. This coverage is secondary to other insurance.

Baggage Insurance Plan

If you pay for your entire common carrier ticket with your Amex Gold card, and the carrier damages your bag or the items inside, you can receive coverage of up to $1,250 for carry-on baggage and $500 for checked baggage.

Purchase Protection

When you make a purchase with your card and the item is accidentally damaged, stolen, or lost, you’ll receive coverage for up to 90 days from the purchase date and $10,000 per occurrence.

Extended Warranty Protection

If you purchase an item that has a manufacturer’s warranty of fewer than 5 years, your card extends that warranty coverage by 1 additional year.

Best Ways To Earn and Redeem Your Amex Points

Even though the Amex Gold card is great at earning points on its own, there are still many other ways to earn Amex Membership Rewards points.

Since you’ll earn points rapidly, you need to know how to put those points to good use. To do so, we recommend you check out our guide to the best ways to redeem your Amex points for maximum value.

So much of learning how to maximize your points and miles comes down to learning how to effectively use transfer partners. If you want to learn how to squeeze as much value as possible from your points, you must learn about the American Express transfer partners and how to use them!

Here at Upgraded Points, we’ve used our Amex Membership Rewards points to book world-class travel experiences, including Singapore Suites, Etihad Apartments, and Thai Airways first class.

Alternatives to the Amex Gold Card

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

The Chase Sapphire Preferred card is one of the most popular travel rewards cards on the market, and with benefits including 3x points on dining, 2x points on travel, no foreign transaction fees, and flexible redemption options (including transfer partners), it’s easy to see why the card is so popular.

For just a $95 annual fee, you’ll be able to start earning Chase Ultimate Rewards points, one of the most valuable loyalty currencies available. Chase Ultimate Rewards points can be redeemed for incredible value through the program’s select Chase transfer partners.

See how these 2 cards stack up: Amex Gold card vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred card.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

There’s a lot to love about the Capital One Venture card — including Capital One airline and hotel transfer partners and at least 2x miles on all purchases.

If the majority of your daily spending comes from purchases outside of dining and travel categories, then the Capital One Venture card might be a great option for you.

See how these cards stack up: Amex Gold card vs. Capital One Venture card.

Citi Strata Premier℠ Card

The Citi Strata Premier card offers 3x points on travel purchases, including gas stations and EV charging stations, making it one of the few travel credit cards to offer a high return on gas purchases. It also earns 10x points on hotels, car rentals, and attractions booked through CitiTravel.com.

This makes the card an excellent choice for those who drive often for work or love taking road trips. Citi Strata Premier cardholders will also earn 3x points on restaurants and supermarkets.

See how these cards stack up: Amex Gold card vs. Citi Strata Premier card.


We’ve compared the Amex Gold card to some other popular credit cards:


UP’s Card Review Methodology

Every card we review is assigned a “U.P. Rating” – our star-based system that encompasses all the key details to showcase a card’s standout features, where it falls short, and how it stacks up for travelers to maximize rewards.

These ratings range from 0 to 5 stars and are determined by carefully weighing crucial factors like:

  • Bonus categories
  • Benefits and perks
  • Quality of associated loyalty programs
  • Annual fees and other costs
  • Size of the welcome bonus (and relative to the annual fee)
  • And several more

You can learn more about how Upgraded Points reviews and rates credit cards.


For the car rental loss and damage insurance benefit of the American Express® Gold Card, car rental loss and damage insurance can provide coverage up to $50,000 for theft of or damage to most rental vehicles when you use your eligible card to reserve and pay for the entire eligible vehicle rental and decline the collision damage waiver or similar option offered by the commercial car rental company. This product provides secondary coverage and does not include liability coverage. Not all vehicle types or rentals are covered. geographic restrictions apply. Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations Apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company. Car Rental Loss or Damage Coverage is offered through American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.

For the baggage insurance plan benefit of the American Express® Gold Card, baggage insurance plan coverage can be in effect for eligible persons for eligible lost, damaged, or stolen baggage during their travel on a common carrier (e.g. plane, train, ship, or bus) when the entire fare for a common carrier vehicle ticket for the trip (one-way or round-trip) is charged to an eligible account. Coverage can be provided for up to $1,250 for carry-on baggage and up to $500 for checked baggage, in excess of coverage provided by the common carrier (e.g. plane, train, ship, or bus). For New York State residents, there is a $10,000 aggregate maximum limit for all covered persons per covered trip. Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

For the purchase protection benefit of the American Express® Gold Card, purchase protection is an embedded benefit of your card membership and requires no enrollment. It can help protect covered purchases made on your eligible card when they’re accidentally damaged, stolen, or lost, for up to 90 days from the covered purchase date. The coverage is limited up to $10,000 per occurrence, up to $50,000 per card member account per calendar year. Coverage limits apply. Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

For the extended warranty benefit of the American Express® Gold Card, when an American Express® card member charges a covered purchase to an eligible card, extended warranty can provide up to one extra year added to the original manufacturer’s warranty. Applies to warranties of five (5) years or less. Coverage is up to the actual amount charged to your card for the item up to a maximum of $10,000; not to exceed $50,000 per card member account per calendar year. Eligibility and benefit level varies by card. Terms, conditions and limitations apply. Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

The information regarding the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Citi Strata Premier℠ Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Business Gold Card, click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday® from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, click here.
For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, click here.
For rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, click here.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Amex Gold card worth it?

The Amex Gold card offers great earning potential at U.S. supermarkets, restaurants, and on airfare expenses while offering high-value redemption options.

Points can be redeemed with a variety of travel partners and transferred directly to travel loyalty accounts.

Cardholders also benefit from perks such as the up to $120 annual dining credit.

While the card has a $250 annual fee, if you’re able to maximize the bonus categories and card perks, it may be very worth the fee.

What is the annual fee on the Amex Gold card?

The annual fee is $250.

Does the Amex Gold card charge foreign transaction fees?

No, there are no foreign transaction fees when using the card.

Is the Amex Gold card metal?

Yes, the card is metal with a gold finish. A rose gold finish is also available.

Does the Amex Gold card have a credit limit?

No, the card doesn’t have a preset spending limit. But that doesn’t mean you have access to unlimited spending. Your purchasing power will adjust based on the use of your card, payment and credit history, and financial resources.

No Preset Spending Limit means your spending limit is flexible. Unlike a traditional card with a set limit, the amount you can spend adapts based on factors such as your purchase, payment, and credit history.

How do I get the Amex Gold card $120 dining credit?

To receive the dining statement credit (which is up to $10 each statement period), you must enroll through your American Express portal and use your card at participating restaurants.

Those restaurants include Grubhub, The Cheesecake Factory, Goldbelly, Wine.com, Milk Bar, and select Shake Shack locations.

The maximum credit is $120 per calendar year.

Does the Amex Gold card have airport lounge access?

No, the Amex Gold card doesn’t have lounge access. If you’re looking to access airport lounges, consider a card like Amex Platinum card so you can get into 1,400+ lounges around the world.

Who can qualify for the Amex Gold card?

Anyone is eligible to apply for the Amex Gold card if they are 18 or older, have a U.S. address, and a U.S. Social Security number or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number.

What grocery stores does the Amex Gold card cover?

The supermarkets where you’re eligible to earn 4x rewards with the Amex Gold card include but are not limited to:

  • ALDI
  • FreshDirect
  • Gelson’s
  • Hy-Vee
  • Instacart
  • Kings Food Markets
  • Kroger
  • Meijer
  • ShopRite
  • Smart & Final
  • Stop & Shop
  • Trader Joe’sVons
  • Whole Foods
  • Winn-Dixie

Merchants that are not eligible for 4x rewards include:

  • Big box stores (e.g., Walmart)
  • Convenience stores
  • Gourmet shops
  • Liquor stores
  • Meal-kit delivery services (e.g., Hello Fresh)
  • Natural food stores
  • Specialty food stores
  • Superstores including online superstores (e.g., Amazon)
  • Warehouse clubs (e.g., BJ’s Club)

Is the Amex Gold card real gold?

No, the Amex Gold card is a stainless steel metal card that is brushed in either a gold or rose gold coloring. It does not include any real gold.

Is it hard to get the Amex Gold card?

For the most part, it’s not hard to get the Amex Gold card, provided that you have a credit score of 670 or higher and a couple of years of clean credit history.

Do you have to pay the Amex Gold card in full?

The Amex Gold card offers Pay Over Time, which allows you to carry a balance with interest. But ideally, you should pay off your statement balance on time and in full each month when it’s due. Paying this balance not only helps keep your credit score high, but also helps you avoid paying penalties, fees, and interest.

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About Jarrod West

Boasting a portfolio of over 20 cards, Jarrod has been an expert in the points and miles space for over 6 years. He earns and redeems over 1 million points per year and his work has been featured in outlets like The New York Times.

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