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There are very few premium business credit cards. One of them is the American Express® Business Gold Card. If you are looking for a way to maximize your travel and daily business purchases, this might be your card. This American Express Business Gold review will help you decide if the Business Gold is worth owning.
Learn more: American Express® Business Gold Card
American Express Business Gold Review
The American Express Business Gold has a $295 annual fee (See Rates & Fees) which might make you wince at first. But before you dismiss it, know that there might be perks that benefit you and will be worth the fee. This card can be a good option if you have large monthly expenses and plan on redeeming your rewards points for award travel.
The current welcome offer for the American Express® Business Gold Card is the ability to earn up to $500 back (in the form of statement credits) by purchasing qualifying services with FedEx on your card within the first 3 months of account opening. This limited-time offer ends November 06, 2019.
Earning Membership Rewards
The main reason to consider applying for the Business Gold is for the flexible ways to earn and redeem rewards points. Every purchase earns American Express Membership Rewards points which are some of the most valuable credit card points available.
Pro Tip: If you’re looking for ways to earn travel rewards, check out our guide to the best rewards credit cards 2019. You’ll find flexible, airline, hotel, cash back, and business credit cards that can help you reach your travel goals quickly.
Your first $150,000 in combined annual spending earns 4 Membership Rewards per $1on the 2 categories which your business spent the most each billing cycle:
- Airfare purchased directly from airlines
- Advertising in select media (online, TV, and radio) – U.S. purchases only
- U.S. purchases made directly from select technology providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions
- Gas stations – U.S. purchases only
- Restaurants – U.S. purchases only
- U.S. purchases for shipping
With the exception of airfare purchases, you can only earn bonus points on the other 5 categories if the purchases happen in the U.S. All annual spending above $150,000 for the bonus categories and all non-bonus spending earns unlimited 1 point per $1.
As this is a travel rewards credit card, one of your two bonus categories might be travel. The second category can be one of your larger business travel or daily operation expense.
American Express Business Gold Review: Redeeming Points
Redeeming miles is fairly simple (as is exemplified in our redeeming Capital One Venture miles guide). With the American Express Business Gold card, your points are most valuable when redeeming for award flights. You can also book other types of award travel or cash rewards. However, your points will most likely be worth less than 1 cent each.
25% Award Flight Redemption Bonus
The most valuable redemption option can be the 25% award flight redemption bonus. You get 25% of your points back when booking award flights through AmexTravel.com to redeem a second time. This makes the effective cash value of each point at 1.25 cent each.
Each point is worth 1 cent each when booking award flights through Amex Travel. For example, you will need 30,000 points to book a $300 award flight. You then get 3,000 points back to redeem next time.
This redemption bonus applies to one airline of your choice plus any business or first class flight on any qualifying airline. You can get up to 250,000 points back each year.
1:1 Point Transfers
Another main reason to get the American Express® Business Gold Card is the Membership Rewards airline and hotel transfer partners. It’s possible to transfer your points on a 1:1 basis to many of the best domestic and international frequent flyer programs.
Transferring points requires a little more effort but you can get more value from each point. You might consider booking directly through the carrier when each point is worth more than 1.25 cents each. This can be easier than you think for most airlines if you have flexible travel dates.
There are currently 19 airline partners and 3 hotel partners:
- Aer Lingus
- Air Canada
- Air France
- Asia Miles
- British Airways
- Delta Air Lines
- El Al Israel Airlines
- Hawaiian Airlines
- Singapore Airlines
- Virgin Atlantic Airways
- Choice Privileges
- Hilton Honors
- Marriott Bonvoy
You can find good value by booking flights operated through these airlines (side note that Hawaiian Airlines Credit Cards and Avianca LifeMiles Credit Cards each currently have their own limited time offers with high mile-earning opportunities). Another way to save points is by booking partner flights.
For instance, you can book a United Airlines partner flight through Singapore Airlines to Hawaii for 35,000 points roundtrip. Booking directly through United costs you 45,000 miles. You might also notice that United isn’t an Amex transfer partner, so this is a backdoor way to fly on United with Membership Rewards.
Another option is transferring your miles to British Airways. Short-haul flights in Europe and Asia start at 4,000 Avios. You can also book partner flights on American Airlines starting at 7,500 points for flights less than 500 miles when Delta isn’t a good redemption option for your destination.
American Express Business Gold Review: Additional Benefits
You will need to get the American Express Business Platinum Card if you want perks like a $200 airline fee credit or airport lounge access. But you can still enjoy several travel protection benefits.
Premium Roadside Assistance
This is one of the few credit cards that offer free roadside assistance up to four times a year. You get complimentary tows up to 10 miles, battery jumpstarts, and flat tire service.
Lost, damaged, or stolen luggage is eligible for $1,250 in carry-on baggage and $500 in checked baggage reimbursement. These benefits can be in addition to any compensation the airline gives you. You will need to book your entire ticket with the Business Gold Card to qualify for the Amex baggage insurance plan.
Finance Vendor Payments
After owning your Business Gold for a year, you can qualify for the American Express Working Capital Terms program. Amex will pay your vendor invoices upfront and you repay American Express over 30, 60 or 90 days. These financing terms can be better than the standard purchase APR.
The annual fee is $295 starting with your first monthly statement. But, you won’t pay any foreign transaction fees (See Rates & Fees). While this fee is higher than most business credit cards, it can be worth it if you can maximize the bonus categories and travel redemption options.
However, if you are looking for more options, one of the best Chase business credit cards may be better suited to your needs. If you are looking to stay in the American Express family but want to avoid annual fees, the American Express® Blue Business Cash Card doesn’t have an annual fee (See Rates & Fees) but doesn’t come with as many perks.
Credit Score Needed for the American Express Business Gold
You will have the best approval odds with a 670 personal credit score which is the starting point of good credit. A steady business income and being in operation for several years is also important.
As this card is technically a business charge card, it should count against your application limit for getting a new personal credit card. It’s still a good idea to wait at least 3 months before applying for a new credit card so you can establish a positive payment history if you decide to apply for the American Express Business Gold Card.
American Express Business Gold Review: Positives and Negatives
The highlights below can help you quickly decide if the American Express® Business Gold Card is a good option for you.
- 25% award flight redemption bonus
- 1:1 Membership Rewards airline and hotel point transfers
- Earn 4x bonus points on two purchase categories (Up to $150,000 in annual spend)
- No foreign transaction fee
- No complimentary travel credits or airport lounge access
- Points are worth less than 1 cent each when not redeemed for award flights
Summary of American Express Business Gold Review
The American Express Business Gold Card can be a good option if you can earn plenty of points from the two 4x bonus categories and redeem your points for award flights. The premium travel insurance benefits can also be of great value when your travel plans get interrupted.
Learn more: American Express® Business Gold Card
For rates and fees of the American Express® Business Gold Card, please click here.
For rates and fees of the American Express® Blue Business Cash Card, please click here.
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