It has been very quiet lately on the first year annual fee waive front for credit cards on high sign up bonus points credit cards. One of the rare ones left is the American Express Gold Card. The following are the highlights of the credit card:
- $150 annual fee (waived the first year)
- Earn 25,000 points when you spend $500 in the first 3 months
- Earn 10,000 points when you refer a friend
- Earn 2 points for every $1 spent on gas, groceries, drug stores travel (flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, etc.) purchases
- Earn 1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases
There is no way to know how much longer the first year annual fee promotion will still be around. Furthermore, the 25,000 sign up bonus points is very generous. I value Membership Rewards points at 1.8 cents a piece, so 25,000 points can be worth up to $450 depending on how you leverage those points.
Furthermore, when you earn 2 points for every $1 spend on gas, groceries, drug stores travel purchases, that is up to a 3.6% return (1.8 x 2).
Membership Rewards points are some of my favourite p0ints because of its ability to transfer to other loyalty programs whenever I need the points. You can also use your points at a 1:1 ratio to redeem towards a travel expense. I do not believe that it is a good use of the points, but it is an option. For example, if you have flight ticket that costs $227, tax included, you will need 22,700 points to credit the expense back. Even though the website advertises that it will cover the taxes and fuel surcharges (which is true), you are only getting a 1 cent per point value, which is far less than the potential of these points. The positive is that there is much less hassle by redeeming your points this way.
You just have to decide what works best for you and go for it! Either way, this is a great credit card to have in your wallet and I would get it sooner rather than later, just in case the first year annual fee is no longer waived.