The American Express (Amex) Business Gold Card offers cardholders 4x the points on the top two select categories they spend the most money in. They also receive 1x for all other purchases. The card also offers a generous introductory offer that could help users offset the $295 annual fee. This is a higher annual fee than some competitive cards. However, the fee is largely offset by some of the card’s premium benefits.
Who Is the Card For?
The Amex Business Gold card is targeted at large, established businesses that have the ability to write off certain expenses. One reason for this is the card does not provide cash back (i.e. statement credits) to offset the annual fee. So card members will need the revenue to spend the money required to maximize the benefit.
How Do Users Earn Points?
Cardholders who receive the American Express Business Gold card can receive an introductory offer of 35,000 bonus points if they spend $5,000 in the first three months of opening the account. Assuming each point is valued at one cent apiece, the 35,000-point bonus is worth $350.
This means users can earn more than the annual fee just by collecting those points. American Express has been known to run special promotions that might provide an even richer introductory offer through the CardMatch tool.
In addition to the introductory offer, the Amex Business Gold card offers other point-earning opportunities. In fact, one of the best benefits to this card is that it gives cardholders 4x points per dollar on spending in select categories. The categories are:
- Airfare that members purchase directly from airlines.
- Online, television and radio advertising*
- Purchases made directly from select providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions*
- Gas stations*
*U.S. purchases only
This benefit applies to the first $150,000 in combined spending per year from the categories. The benefit can change per month. For example, if one month your top two categories are advertising and restaurants you will earn 4x the points in those categories. However, you are not locked into those categories. The next month you may spend the most in airfare and gas stations. In that case you will get 4x the points for those categories.
Aside from these categories, members can receive 1x the points on all purchases. And points are transferrable to help card members take advantage of special promotions being run by a select network of airlines and hotels.
What Other Member Benefits Are Included?
The Amex Business Gold card is one of three Amex business cards to offer a Pay With Points redemption bonus. Cardholders will earn a 25% rebate when paying with points (up to 250,000 points per calendar year). This adds a distinct travel benefit to the card.
Cardholders have the ability to earn 2x the points and a $75 property credit when booking a stay through the Amex Hotel Collection. Some limitations apply. Card members have access to Amex Offers which can provide same additional offers. Plus, the Business Gold card provides peace of mind when traveling with access to baggage insurance and secondary car rental insurance. And there are no foreign transaction fees.
For an additional $50 fee per year (which is waived the first year), card members can add up to 99 employee cards, and earn points on those purchases. Cardholders can also designate a specific employee to be an account manager which will allow them to review statements, add new employees, and make payments to the card. Other business tools include a receipt match feature that allows receipts to be uploaded from desktop or mobile devices and sync it with QuickBooks if desired.
Extended warranty protection that extends eligible manufacturer’s warranties of five years or less by up to one additional year. Purchase protection against theft, accidental damage or loss (up to 90 days from the purchase date) and return protection of up to $300 an item (excluding shipping and handling) on eligible items (up to 90 days from date of purchase when merchant will not take item back). Return protection is capped at $1,000 per calendar year per card account.
What is the Annual Percentage Rate (APR)?
Like all American Express cards, the Amex Business Gold card is technically a “charge card” instead of a credit card. With that in mind, the card does not have a preset spending limit. Cardholders have a general limit that will fluctuate based on purchase and credit history.
Customers can activate a Pay Over Time feature. When activated, all purchases of $100 or more automatically are classified as Pay Over Time. This allows card members to carry a balance from one month to the next, like a credit card. The variable Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is currently 14.24% - 22.24%. There is a limit on a card member’s Pay Over Time balance. If they exceed this limit, the purchases become Pay in Full.
A Pay in Full transaction is any transaction below $100 and any purchase above the Pay Over Time limit. These purchases must be paid off completely each month to avoid interest charges.
Do You Qualify?
The Amex Business Gold card is for individuals with good to excellent credit defined as having a credit score between 690 and 850. This is typical of most cards at this level. Most applicants will likely already have a credit score that will qualify them for this card.
Does the Card Have Limitations?
The Amex Business Gold card is designed for the high-spending business owner who spends money in one or more of the six rewards categories that can earn them 4x the points. The card does not necessarily maximize points on everyday purchases.
Also, if a cardholder expects to do frequent traveling they may want to consider the additional benefits and perks they would get from the Amex Platinum card. However, they would be paying a hefty $550 annual fee.
American Express may not be accepted at as many retailers as a Mastercard or Visa. This could be a limitation for card members in some areas.
What Cards Are Similar to The American Express Business Gold Card?
The American Express Business Gold card is similar to the Ink Business Preferred credit card from Chase. The Business Preferred card has a lower annual fee of $95. It awards 3x per dollar on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories.
The Amex Business Gold card is a solid choice for the established business owner who knows they will pay a lot in one of the six categories that qualifies them for 4x the points. When they do, they can easily help offset the $295 annual fee. And, the 25% rebate via the Pay With Points feature offers cardholders a travel bonus for owning the card.