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While it seems that the more rewards are being offered on a credit card, the more you’ll pay for the annual fee, it isn’t always the case. Many times, the perks will offset the fees. One example is The American Express® Gold Card, one of the best mid-tier travel cards. However, you may be wondering if the American Express Gold Card is worth it, especially given that it has a $250 annual fee (See Rates & Fees)?

If you like to travel (even if you aren’t traveling now) but also want to maximize your stay-at-home purchases, this card may actually be perfect for you. Even better, there are several ways to offset that annual fee.

Learn more: Johnny Jet Recommended Credit Cards

Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Visit to learn more.

Is the American Express Gold Card Worth It?

The best reason to get any credit card is for its purchase rewards and additional benefits that make sense for your spending and lifestyle. Having a travel card that also earns on everyday spending is ideal if you’re looking to do a bit of both. So, when determining if the American Express Gold Card is worth having, the first thing you’ll want to look at is the card perks and whether you’d use them.

Here are the various card benefits that you get with the Gold Card to help you decide if the card is worth it.

Earn Amex Membership Rewards

It earns 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S., and earns 4X Membership Rewards® Points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X). Plus, earn 3X Membership Rewards® Points on flights booked directly with airlines or on

Membership Rewards points are most valuable when you redeem them for award flights and gift cards. If you have other American Express credit cards that earn Membership Rewards, you can pool your point balances to redeem pricier redemptions more often.

1:1 Point Transfers

In addition to booking award flights on, you can transfer your points to domestic and international airlines and hotels. Most transfer partners offer a 1:1 transfer ratio and your points can be worth more than 1 cent each if you play your cards right.

Each Membership Reward is only worth up to 1 cent each when redeemed directly through your American Express account. When possible, consider transferring your points as you’re likely to get more value.

Some of the American Express airline transfer partners include:

  • Delta Air Lines
  • Hawaiian Airlines
  • JetBlue
  • Avianca Airlines
  • Singapore Airlines
  • Virgin Atlantic

The hotel transfer partners are Choice Privileges, Hilton Honors, and Marriott Bonvoy.

Point transfers are exciting, but many of us are not traveling as often as usual. Flight and hotel cash prices are cheaper as a result. However, you might transfer points to avoid spending cash and to keep your travel miles from expiring.

$120 Dining Credit

Another perk is the ability to earn up to $10 in statement credits on a monthly basis when you use your Gold Card to pay at the following dining establishments (enrollment is required):

  • Grubhub
  • The Cheesecake Factory
  • Goldbelly
  • Milk Bar
  • Shake Shack (only at participating locations)

This perk can save you up to $120 annually.

Learn more: Johnny Jet Recommended Credit Cards

Baggage Insurance

Amex offers complimentary baggage insurance of up to $1,250 for carry-on bags and $500 for checked bags (up to $10,000 aggregate maximum for New York State residents).  This insurance is eligible for common carrier travel such as flights, train, bus, or ship when purchased on an eligible card.

This can be one of the best travel credit cards thanks to this extra insurance.

Secondary Rental Car Loss and Damage Insurance

By declining the rental car agency collision damage waiver and reserving and paying for the entire rental with your eligible card, you get free car rental collision and theft insurance. However, coverage is secondary and does not include liability coverage, meaning you will need to file a claim with your auto insurance provider first. This insurance applies to most car rentals in the US and abroad, though exclusions and restrictions apply.

Amex Offers (Enrollment Required)

An additional way to save money on select local and online purchases is with Amex Offers. These one-time offers let you get a bonus statement credit if you happen to shop at these merchants. To add the offers to your card, simply login into your account or use the American Express app. Then use your American Express Gold Card to pay and enjoy rewards. These will appear directly on your statement.

Learn more: Johnny Jet Recommended Credit Cards

Amex Gold Welcome Bonus

The current welcome bonus for the American Express Gold is 60,000 Membership Rewards worth up to $600 in award travel or gift cards. You earn the bonus by spending $4,000 in the first 6 months. Most cards only give new cardholders 3 months to earn a bonus.

The 60k welcome bonus is one of this card’s highest bonus offers. Timing your application for an outsized bonus can be a smart move.

Also, Rose Gold is back! Cardholders can choose between Gold or Rose Gold. 

Terms apply.

Related: The Best Limited-Time Credit Card Offers

Is the Amex Gold Worth It?

As you shouldn’t judge a book solely by its cover, you shouldn’t choose a card only for its annual fee. The American Express Gold Card has a $250 annual fee (See Rates & Fees). This fee is higher than most credit cards that cap out at $95 but is cheaper than premium credit cards that charge $550 each year.

While you pay a higher fee upfront, the various card benefits can be worth more than $250. If that’s the case, the American Express Gold Card is worth it.

Should You Get the American Express Gold Card?

Is the American Express Gold Card worth it? You should consider getting the American Express Gold for these reasons:

  • Balances travel and dining rewards
  • Earns up to 4x Membership Rewards
  • The annual fee is lower than premium credit cards
  • Has more benefits than most travel credit cards

This mid-tier travel credit card gives you a taste of the premium credit card benefits but with a smaller fee. The purchase rewards make it easy to earn bonus Membership Rewards at home and when you travel.

Learn more: Johnny Jet Recommended Credit Cards

One of the perks of the American Express Gold Card is the dining statement credits. Credit: American Express

Alternatives to the American Express Gold

The Amex Gold can be a good card for travel and dining rewards. However, you may find it difficult to use the card benefits enough to justify the $250 annual fee. The Gold Card is worth it if the benefits are something you’ll use. Otherwise, these cards can provide more value.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Simplicity can be a primary goal of your life at the moment. If so, the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is for you. Purchases earn 2x Venture miles per $1 spent and you can redeem them for travel statement credits, future travel, and gift cards.

However, if you are wanting to earn a few more miles on travel, good news—earn 5x miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel. Plus, Venture cardholders will earn 5x miles when booking through the Turo app or on (through May 16, 2023). 

You also get a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit, up to $100.

The annual fee is $95.

Enjoy a one-time bonus of 75,000 miles once you spend $4,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel, with the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card.

American Express Green Card

The information for the American Express® Green Card has been collected independently by Johnny Jet. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

The American Express® Green Card is less robust than the Gold Card but offers different perks. You also get a lower annual fee of $150 (See Rates & Fees). Key card perks include:

  • Earn 3x Membership Rewards on dining, transit, and travel
  • $189 CLEAR membership credit (enrollment required)
  • $100 LoungeBuddy credit (enrollment required)
  • Up to $300 in trip delay insurance (on qualifying round-trip purchases; limitations apply)
  • Terms apply

Related: American Express Green Card Review

Chase Sapphire Reserve

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is a premium card with flexible redemption options. Despite the $550 annual fee, you get these perks:

  • 50% redemption bonus for travel purchases
  • Annual $300 travel credit
  • Fee credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck

Plus, the Sapphire cards have gotten a boost, and you can now earn 5x total points on flights and 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® immediately after the first $300 is spent on travel purchases annually. Earn 3x points on other travel and dining & 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. Airport lounges are also in the works. 

Points are worth 50% more when redeemed for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories with the Chase Pay Yourself Back feature

New Chase Sapphire Reserve® cardholders can earn 60,000 bonus points after spending $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $900 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Related: Chase Sapphire Reserve Benefits and Perks


Is the American Express Gold Card worth it? The American Express Gold Card makes it easy to earn Membership Rewards when you stay at home or travel. However, its most valuable point redemptions are for award travel. If you don’t travel often and don’t use the annual dining credits, the American Express Gold Card may not be worth it.

Learn more: Johnny Jet Recommended Credit Cards


Is the Amex Gold Card metal or plastic?

The American Express Gold card is metal.

Related: The Best Metal Credit Cards 2020 (Reliable, Durable, Sleek, and Secure)

Does the American Express Gold Card have a credit limit?

No, the American Express Gold Card doesn’t have a preset spending limit.

No Preset Spending Limit means your spending limit is flexible. Unlike a traditional card with a set limit, the amount you can spend adapts based on factors such as your purchase, payment, and credit history.

Like The Platinum Card® from American Express, the Gold Card also has the Pay Over Time Limit. Cardholders have the flexibility to carry a balance with interest or can use the Plan It feature to split up large purchases into monthly payments with a fixed fee (terms apply).

Cardholders may be able to keep spending beyond their limit and still earn rewards, so long as they pay for any new purchases in full when the bill is due.

While you can’t spend money indefinitely, you likely won’t reach the upper spending limit if you pay your balance in full monthly.

Is the Amex Platinum better than the Amex Gold?

The Platinum Card® from American Express can be the better card if you’re a frequent flyer and want better travel rewards and fewer dining rewards.

Cardholders earn 5x Membership Rewards® Points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel, up to $500,000 on these purchases per calendar year, and earn 5x Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels booked with American Express Travel.

Cardholders can get $200 back in statement credits each year on prepaid Fine Hotels + Resorts® or The Hotel Collection bookings with American Express Travel when they pay with your Platinum Card®.

Also, select one qualifying airline and then receive up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year when incidental fees are charged by the airline to your Card.

Plus, American Express has expanded The Centurion® Network to include 40+ Centurion Lounge and Studio locations worldwide. Now there are even more places your Platinum Card® can get you complimentary entry and exclusive perks.

Other Platinum Card from American Express Benefits

There’s also a digital entertainment credit. Cardholders can get up to $20 in statement credits each month when they pay for eligible purchases with the Platinum Card® at your choice of one or more of the following providers: Peacock, Audible, SiriusXM, The New York Times, and other participating providers. Enrollment required.

In addition to enjoying TSA PreCheck or Global Entry access, cardholders can also enjoy CLEAR perks. Breeze through security with CLEAR® Plus at 45+ airports nationwide and get up to $189 back per year on your membership (subject to auto-renewal) when you use your Card.

Another exciting benefit is the ability for cardholders to get up to $300 back each year on an Equinox+ subscription or any Equinox club membership when they pay with their Platinum Card. Enrollment required. Learn more.

Plus, get a $155 Walmart+ credit, which covers the cost of a $12.95 monthly Walmart+ membership with a statement credit after you pay for Walmart+ each month with your Platinum Card. The cost includes $12.95 plus applicable local sales tax.

Get the full details and learn more in our in-depth The Platinum Card from American Express review.

The annual fee is $695 (See Rates & Fees) but can be offset with the perks, which are valued at over $1,400.

Welcome Bonus Offer

New The Platinum Card® from American Express cardmembers can earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® points after spending $6,000 on purchases on their new Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. 

Learn more: Johnny Jet Recommended Credit Cards

The Amex Gold is a better option if you travel less often and want to earn bonus points on more daily purchases.

Related Articles:

For rates and fees of The American Express® Gold Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the American Express® Green Card, please click here.

And for rates and fees of The Platinum Card® from American Express, please click here.

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