Who Is This Credit Card Best For?
Flies regularly and likes finding ways to score even more travel—for free See more cards
Diligently searches for the best products and delights in a good bargain See more cards
Hits the road often, whether for work or play See more cards
Loves to explore places and experience new things See more cards
The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card is a solid pick if you want a rewarding, everyday card for supermarket and gas purchases.. If you spend $400 to $500 on groceries each month, you’re in the sweet spot to earn the maximum supermarket-shopping bonus points without going over the annual bonus-earning cap on those purchases, either.
Since this card doles out points in the Membership Rewards program instead of traditional cash back, there are several ways to redeem points, but the most valuable is actually for travel. So this card is a good option if you want to earn reward trips, but don’t routinely spend a lot on hotels and airfare—the types of purchases most other travel cards reward mostThe Amex EveryDay Preferred card offers travel rewards on everyday shopping instead.
On the flip side, it’s worth noting that you may not be able to qualify for this rewards credit card if your credit profile is thin or your score needs work. Amex recommends applicants have a good credit score (670 or higher, based on FICO standards) before applying for this card.
Competitive earning rates on routine purchases
More points for frequent spenders
Flexible travel rewards
Earning caps may limit grocery rewards
Weak bonus for new cardholders
- Competitive earning rates on routine purchases: Most people spend money at supermarkets and gas stations all year long, so it’s easy to take advantage of this card’s highest earnings categories. The top earning rates are among some of the best available for those purchases, too.
- More points for frequent spenders: You'll get 50% more points when you use your card 30 or more times per billing cycle. If you are someone who makes many small purchases or uses your credit card at least once per day, it will be easy to maximize this perk.
- Flexible travel rewards: Since the rewards earned with this card are issued in the form of American Express Membership Rewards points, there are many ways to use the rewards you earn. The most valuable are flights or transfer them to popular travel partners (often at a 1:1 ratio).
- Annual fee: We don’t love the annual fee—especially since Amex doesn’t waive it the first year as some competing travel rewards cards do. Many cash-back cards don’t charge annual fees at all, and you can find other solid gas-and-supermarket rewards cards without an annual fee.
- Earning caps may limit grocery rewards: You’ll earn 3 points per $1 on groceries—but only on up to $6,000 in spending at U.S. supermarkets each year. That means if you average more than $500 on groceries each month, you’ll reach the limit before the end of the year. Once that happens, you’ll earn just 1 point per $1 on all your grocery spending.
- Weak bonus for new cardholders: The welcome offer doesn’t compete with promotions offered by other travel rewards cards that charge an annual fee, though at least it’s easier to earn. More about this below.
Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card Welcome Bonus
You'll get 15,000 Membership Rewards points if you spend $1,000 on your card within your first three months. That’s worth $180, based on The Balance's average valuation of Membership Rewards points, which takes into account the most common ways consumers are likely to redeem their points. The value is much lower than bonuses offered by similar travel cards, but the spending requirement is also much lower than on those other cards.
Earning Points & Rewards
The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card offers a rewards proposition you don’t see with many other point-earning credit cards. You not only earn 3 points per $1 on up to $6,000 in U.S. supermarket spending, 2 points per $1 spent at U.S. gas stations, and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases, but you also earn 50% more points when you use your card for a minimum of 30 purchases each billing cycle. In addition, you earn 2 points per $1 on bookings through amextravel.com and 1 point per $1 spent on everything else.
Even if you only max out the grocery store earnings every year, you’ll earn 18,000 points, which is worth $216 based on our research into the value of Membership Rewards points. That more than makes up for the annual fee.
Your points will never expire as long as you have at least one credit card that earns Membership Rewards points open.
While this may look like a cash-back card in many ways, we actually consider it a decent travel rewards card because you get the most value from your Membership Rewards points when you use them for travel, either by booking flights through amextravel.com, or by transferring points to one of the program’s 22 airline and hotel partners.
When you book flights through amextravel.com, your points are worth 1 cent each. If you transfer to an airline partner, they may be worth much more. For example, if you transfer to Delta Air Lines, our research shows your points are worth an average of 1.54 cents each.
There’s typically a fee for each point transfer to a U.S. airline—0.06 cents per point, with a maximum fee of $99—but Amex is waiving that nominal cost for the remainder of 2020 in light of travel disruptions caused by the global pandemic.
Membership Rewards points can also be used for a number of different rewards, including gift cards, statement credits (cash back), and as payment with a handful of online retailers such as Amazon and BestBuy. While you can get decent value from your points by using them to buy some gift cards, each point will only be worth 0.6 cents when used for statement credits, and 0.7 cents when used to pay with points at most of the offered retailers.
How to Get the Most Out of This Card
Use the Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card for all your purchases in the bonus categories. Maximizing the rewards on supermarket spending will yield you 18,000 Membership Rewards points per year, and spending $100 per month at U.S. gas stations could help you earn an additional 2,400 points within that time. Add in the 15,000-point welcome offer and you’re at 35,400 points the first year without even counting points you might earn on other purchases.
If you’re able to use your card for at least 30 purchases a month, you’ll get that higher earnings rate, too. Once you have hit the earning cap on groceries, you may want to buy groceries with a different card that earns more than 1 point for each dollar spent.
When you are ready to use your points, redeem them for travel. One of the worst things you can do is redeem points for cash back. We found Membership Rewards points are only worth about 0.6 cents each that way.
The best way to use points is to transfer them to a travel partner rewards program and book an airfare or hotel stay that’s pricey in dollar terms compared to the number of points required.
Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card’s Other Features
This card doesn’t offer any benefits we consider exceptional, but there are some other features worth noting:
- Rental car collision insurance (secondary to your own policy)
- Refund when merchant won’t accept returned item
- Extended warranties
- Insurance for stolen or damaged purchases
- Lowest Hotel Rate Guarantee
- Travel and emergency hotline
American Express is well known for its customer service. A 2019 customer satisfaction survey from J.D. Power ranked American Express second out of 11 card issuers for the customer experience, behind only Discover.
American Express also offers 24/7 customer service you can access on the phone or through online chat. And you’ll have free access to your credit score and credit report through the American Express MyCredit Guide tool, though that’s also available to people who don’t have an Amex card.
The Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card offers a number of industry-standard security protections, including $0 fraud liability and opt-in account alerts. American Express will also watch your account for suspicious activity and will ask you to verify transactions that are unusual to confirm you’re making the purchase. And if your card is lost or stolen, you can request a replacement card be sent overnight for free.
Amex EveryDay Preferred Credit Card Fees to Watch
In addition to the annual fee, the Amex EveryDay Preferred charges a 2.7% foreign transaction fee—both of which several comparable cash-back and travel cards don’t charge. So while you can use this card to earn travel rewards, don’t make it your go-to card when traveling outside the U.S.