Edited by: Juan Ruiz
& Keri Stooksbury
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Even if you’re new to the world of points and miles, you’ve likely noticed that many credit cards offer a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck credit. Alternatively, there are only a few credit cards on the market that offer a CLEAR Plus statement credit, and the American Express® Green Card is one of them.
In this guide, we will break down what CLEAR is and why it’s useful, how it compares to TSA PreCheck, and how to maximize the CLEAR Plus statement credit you receive from the Amex Green card.
This card can provide a great way to accumulate Membership Rewards points on eligible travel, transit, and at restaurants.
The American Express® Green Card is an excellent all-around travel rewards card thanks to earning 3x Membership Rewards® points on eligible travel and transit purchases and at restaurants, access to American Express transfer partners, and a reasonable annual fee.
If you don’t already have the Amex Green card, here are some of its top benefits to consider when determining if it’s a good fit for you.
For starters, it’s a great card to earn Membership Rewards points with, as it offers 3x points per $1 spent on dining, transit, and travel purchases — all popular spending categories. Further, the transit and travel categories are quite broad and include normal travel purchases like airfare and hotels as well as public transit, rideshares, trains, tolls, and more. Plus, you’ll have access to Amex’s airline and hotel transfer partners such as Delta, Marriott, British Airways, and more.
Beyond that, the card offers solid travel and purchase protections, access to Amex Offers, and an annual LoungeBuddy credit of up to $100 (good for 2 to 3 airport lounge visits a year) in addition to the annual CLEAR Plus statement credit.
CLEAR is a program that provides an expedited security experience at a large number of U.S. airports and stadiums via biometrics to verify your identity.
At U.S. airports this allows you to avoid waiting in line (both the regular security line and the TSA PreCheck line) to have your identity verified by a TSA agent. Instead, you’ll head to a CLEAR pod where you’ll scan your eyes or your fingers and then head right to the front of the security line to scan your boarding pass.
Usually, an annual CLEAR Plus membership will set you back $189, which is the exact amount of the annual statement credit on the Amex Green card. However, there are some options for you to get your CLEAR Plus membership at a discounted rate:
|Membership||Annual CLEAR Price|
|Delta SkyMiles Diamond Medallion members and United MileagePlus Premier 1K members||$0|
|Delta SkyMiles Silver, Gold, and Platinum Medallion Members||$149|
|United MileagePlus Premier Silver, Gold, and Platinum Members||$149|
|Delta and United Credit Cardholders||$149|
|General Delta SkyMiles and United MileagePlus Members||$179|
You’re able to get anywhere from a $10 to $40 discount, or even a free CLEAR membership, depending on your elite status level in the Delta SkyMiles or United MileagePlus programs and/or what credit card you hold.
Why is this useful if the Amex Green card statement credit covers the full amount of the membership anyway? That is because you can add a CLEAR Plus membership for up to 3 family members for just $60 each.
Consider this: if you and your spouse or significant other often travel together, and you hold a Delta or United card in addition to your Amex Green card, the cost for a CLEAR Plus membership for the 2 of you would be $209 ($149 for the primary member thanks to your Delta or United card and $60 for the second person). But, thanks to the CLEAR Plus statement credit of up to $189 from your Amex Green card, you’ll only need to pay $20 out of pocket. A solid deal!
If you’re planning to sign-up for CLEAR via Delta or United in order to get a discount, you can do so without issue. All you need to do is use your Amex Green card to pay for the membership during the checkout screen and you’ll receive the statement credit.
Note that American Express states that it can take 6 to 8 weeks after your membership is charged to your card to receive the credit, but in our experience, the statement credit often posts much faster than that (often within a few days of the charge posting).Hot Tip:
CLEAR is now in 100+ airports and dozens of stadiums throughout the U.S. You can view every location in our complete guide to CLEAR.
If you already have TSA PreCheck you might be wondering how useful a CLEAR Plus membership would be for you. Fortunately, the 2 services are very complementary and can greatly enhance your airport security experience.
As you may know, TSA PreCheck offers an expedited security screening so that you can keep your shoes on, keep your laptop and liquids in your bag, and often has a much shorter line than the standard security line.
The key thing here is, even if you have TSA PreCheck, you still have to wait in line to have your ID verified by an agent. Or worse, if for some reason the TSA PreCheck lane is not open, you still have to wait in the general security line … and this is where having CLEAR Plus can be a huge benefit.
When you have CLEAR Plus, you simply head to a pod and your identity is verified in less than 60 seconds, allowing you to then be escorted right to the front of the TSA PreCheck or general security line.
To summarize, those with TSA PreCheck have shorter lines and a faster experience when going through security, but those with CLEAR Plus get to go right to the front of whichever line they are in (TSA PreCheck or general security), and those with both CLEAR Plus and TSA PreCheck are able to get through security much faster than people with just 1 or the other.
The Amex Green card is an excellent travel card and the annual CLEAR Plus statement credit is just 1 of the reasons why it’s a great option for frequent flyers.
If you currently just have TSA PreCheck or do not have any priority airport security membership, then getting a CLEAR Plus membership via your Amex Green card is a great way to make your airport experience smoother.
Don’t forget to maximize this annual statement credit to the fullest by getting a discounted CLEAR Plus membership via Delta or United so that you can add additional CLEAR members to your account for less money out of pocket.
The information regarding the American Express® Green Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Centurion® Card from American Express was independently collected by Upgraded Points and was not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
CLEAR uses biometrics (such as the retina in your eye or your fingerprints) to offer an expedited security experience at select U.S. airports and sports stadiums. Using CLEAR allows you to head directly to the front of the line and pass all of the others waiting to have their identity verified by an agent.
Yes, the Amex Green card offers up to a $189 annual credit, which covers the cost of an individual CLEAR Plus membership.
The credit cards that offer an annual CLEAR Plus statement credit are the Amex Platinum card, the Amex Business Platinum card and the Amex Green card.
Neither is necessarily better than the other, and we recommend that you have both if you want to get through airport security as quickly as possible — and who doesn’t want that? TSA PreCheck gives you an expedited security experience by allowing you to keep your laptop and liquids in your bag, keep your shoes on, etc. While CLEAR expedites your ID check, allowing you to jump to the front of the security line, regardless of if you’re in the TSA PreCheck line or the general security line.
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