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What are the benefits of the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card (Amex Gold)?

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Why should you get the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold credit card?

Today, I want to look at the top 10 card benefits you get if you get the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold (Amex Gold) credit card in the UK.

Here is the legal information we need to tell you:

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Bonus: 30,000 points
SPECIAL OFFER

Read our full reviewApply here

Other information:

  • Amex Gold is our recommended ‘first card’ for a miles and points beginner
  • Get two free airport lounge passes when you sign up, and a further two each year
  • After your two free passes, you can visit further lounges for a small fee
  • You receive £120 of Deliveroo credit each year (24 x £5 credits)
  • Annual fee: Free for the first year, £140 from Year 2

Representative 59.9% APR variable.  Annual fee applies after the first year.

See if you qualify for the 30,000 points sign-up bonus +

You will receive 30,000 American Express Membership Rewards points as a sign-up bonus on the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card if you spend £3,000 within 90 days of signing up.

This is a special offer which runs to 9th November 2021.  The bonus will drop to 20,000 points from that date.

Membership Rewards points are hugely flexible, which is why we recommend this as the best choice for your first miles and points card.  You can transfer them into Avios, Virgin Flying Club or other airlines (at 1:1) or into various hotels schemes, into Club Eurostar or use them for shopping vouchers.

To qualify for the bonus, you must NOT, currently or in the previous 24 months, have held any other personal American Express card.

You are OK if you had a supplementary card on someone else’s American Express account.

You are OK if, currently or in the previous 24 months, you have held a Business American Express card.

For clarity, you can still apply for the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card even if you do not qualify for the bonus.  You would still benefit from the two free airport lounge passes and the ‘no fee in Year 1’ offer.

Learn more about the card benefits +

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold comes with two free airport lounge passes.  These allow either you and a friend, or yourself twice, to visit any lounge in the Priority Pass network.  You make additional lounge visits for £20 per person.  You receive an additional two free passes each year.

You earn double Membership Rewards points on all airline spend (made directly on an airline website) and all spend made outside the UK.

If you spend over £15,000 in a card year, you will receive an additional 10,000 Membership Rewards points when you renew.

Starting in May 2021, you receive £120 of Deliveroo credit each year.  Amex will repay you £5 for the first two Deliveroo orders charged to your Gold card each month.

Other benefits include a 10% discount on Hertz car rentals and special deals at 350 selected hotels worldwide, where Preferred Rewards Gold cardholders receive a $75 in-hotel credit per stay.

The top 10 benefits of American Express Gold:

1.  You receive 20,000 Membership Rewards points for signing up

The American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card comes with a very generous sign-up bonus of 20,000 Membership Rewards points.  You won’t find a free UK travel rewards credit card with a more valuable bonus.

(If the information box above shows a higher bonus, you will receive this. The box is automatically updated with the best deal available on the date you are reading this.)

You qualify for the bonus as long as you haven’t had a personal American Express card in your name in the previous 24 months.

You need to spend £3,000 within three months to receive the bonus.

You CAN still get a sign-up bonus on other American Express cards even if you don’t qualify for one on Amex Gold. This article looks at what American Express sign-up bonuses you are still eligible for.

2.  Those 20,000 Membership Rewards points convert into Avios at 1:1 – or into MANY other airline or hotel schemes

Membership Rewards are HUGELY flexible because you can convert them into lots of different things.  You aren’t stuck with Avios, Virgin Points or whatever.  You can keep them with Amex for as long as you want and only convert them when you need them.

Click here to see the full list of American Express Membership Rewards transfer partners.

3.  You receive one Membership Rewards point for every £1 you spend on the card

There are a few exceptions (cash withdrawals do not earn points) but in reality virtually every £1 you spend on your Amex Gold card will earn another point.

4.  You receive DOUBLE points on all airline spending

Airline spend, as long as it is made on an airline website and not via a travel agent, earns double points – 2 per £1.

5.  You receive DOUBLE points on foreign spending

You receive 2 points per £1 when you spend in a foreign currency.  However, American Express adds a 3% foreign exchange fee, so if you have another credit card with 0% foreign exchange fees I would still use that instead.

Unfortunately there are no travel rewards card without a foreign exchange fee.  One option is to get a free Curve Card – see this HfP article – and link it to a miles-earning Visa or Mastercard.

Another option is to get a free card from Currensea. Currensea is a simple but clever idea. You pay abroad with your Currensea Mastercard debit card. Currensea translates the cost to Sterling with just a 0.5% fee (83% less than Amex charges) and withdraws the money from your bank account. You can find out more by clicking here. Currensea is free so there is no risk in giving it a try.

Of course, if you are travelling on business and your company reimburses your foreign spend, feel free to spend away on your Amex Gold ….

6.  You receive two FREE passes to get into an airport lounge

These can be used at any airport lounge in the ‘Priority Pass’ network. There are over 1,200 globally, including at all Heathrow terminals, Gatwick, Luton and Stansted.  Additional visits after your two free ones are charged at £20.

7.  You receive ANOTHER two free airport lounge passes each year when you renew the card

Amex American Express gold

8.  American Express Gold is FREE for the first year

Trying out the card for a year won’t cost you a penny – and you will receive the sign-up bonus and the two free airport lounge passes.

From Year 2, there is an annual fee of £140.  This won’t make sense for many people, so you should remember to cancel before the first year is up.

This article looks at five reasons why you could keep your Amex Gold card after the first year.

If you accidentally forget to cancel, you have nothing to worry about.  The fee is refunded pro-rata, so if you cancel as soon as you notice, you will get almost all the £140 back.

9.  You get 10,000 bonus Membership Rewards if you spend £15,000 in a card year

In addition to the sign-up bonus you can get an extra bonus if you spend £15,000 in a card year. This card benefit is the equivalent of spending an extra £10,000.

Whilst spending £15,000 in a year may sound like a lot, in reality it only requires spending an average of £1,250 per calendar moth.

If you spend exactly £15,000 (£1, and qualify for the sign up bonus, you will have earned 45,000 Membership Rewards points:

  • 20,000 from the sign up bonus
  • 15,000 base points for your spending – 1 point per £1
  • 10,000 point bonus for spending £15,000 in one year

10.  You receive various special travel benefits

These include a 10% discount and free additional driver on Hertz car rentals, and special Amex rates at 600 4-5 star hotels worldwide.  These bookings come with a $100 in-hotel credit and an upgrade when booked by an Amex Gold cardholder.

Conclusion

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is a very generous travel rewards credit card.  You can’t beat a package of ‘first year free’ AND 20,000 Membership Rewards points AND two free airport lounge passes.

You can sign up for Amex Gold, or find out more information, on the official website here.

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Bonus: 30,000 points
SPECIAL OFFER

Read our full reviewApply here

Other information:

  • Amex Gold is our recommended ‘first card’ for a miles and points beginner
  • Get two free airport lounge passes when you sign up, and a further two each year
  • After your two free passes, you can visit further lounges for a small fee
  • You receive £120 of Deliveroo credit each year (24 x £5 credits)
  • Annual fee: Free for the first year, £140 from Year 2

Representative 59.9% APR variable.  Annual fee applies after the first year.

See if you qualify for the 30,000 points sign-up bonus +

You will receive 30,000 American Express Membership Rewards points as a sign-up bonus on the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card if you spend £3,000 within 90 days of signing up.

This is a special offer which runs to 9th November 2021.  The bonus will drop to 20,000 points from that date.

Membership Rewards points are hugely flexible, which is why we recommend this as the best choice for your first miles and points card.  You can transfer them into Avios, Virgin Flying Club or other airlines (at 1:1) or into various hotels schemes, into Club Eurostar or use them for shopping vouchers.

To qualify for the bonus, you must NOT, currently or in the previous 24 months, have held any other personal American Express card.

You are OK if you had a supplementary card on someone else’s American Express account.

You are OK if, currently or in the previous 24 months, you have held a Business American Express card.

For clarity, you can still apply for the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card even if you do not qualify for the bonus.  You would still benefit from the two free airport lounge passes and the ‘no fee in Year 1’ offer.

Learn more about the card benefits +

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold comes with two free airport lounge passes.  These allow either you and a friend, or yourself twice, to visit any lounge in the Priority Pass network.  You make additional lounge visits for £20 per person.  You receive an additional two free passes each year.

You earn double Membership Rewards points on all airline spend (made directly on an airline website) and all spend made outside the UK.

If you spend over £15,000 in a card year, you will receive an additional 10,000 Membership Rewards points when you renew.

Starting in May 2021, you receive £120 of Deliveroo credit each year.  Amex will repay you £5 for the first two Deliveroo orders charged to your Gold card each month.

Other benefits include a 10% discount on Hertz car rentals and special deals at 350 selected hotels worldwide, where Preferred Rewards Gold cardholders receive a $75 in-hotel credit per stay.

Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history.  By recommending credit cards on this site, I am – technically – acting as a credit broker.  Robert Burgess, trading as Head for Points, is regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a credit broker.

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