Blue Cash Everyday Card by American Express: Quite Possibly Your New Everyday Credit Card
We all know the American Express advertisement, “Membership has its privileges.” The problem with membership is there is usually a membership fee. With high membership fees, many people feel they cannot afford to own an American Express card.
Well, put that thinking aside, and let's take a hard look at the Blue Cash Everyday Card. With no annual fee and some competitive rewards, it could be your next everyday card.
Customer reviews for the American Express Blue Cash Everyday card are mixed. However, most people have issues because they did not do their homework prior to getting the card. As with any credit card -- not just American Express -- the consumer must carefully assess its pros and cons. It's not fair to American Express to complain about a feature you expected when you were never offered it.
American Express delivers what it promises with this credit card. It is a primary everyday use card. With no annual fee, an easy-to-hit incentive quota, and head-turning cash back rewards, the American Express Blue Cash Everyday card provides the simplicity of a great go-to card. People who expect premium perks from American Express must look to their other line of cards that charge an annual membership fee.
The Blue Cash Everyday card has a constant incentive and one that changes periodically. What's consistent is a 0% introductory APR on purchases for 15 months. After the initial period is over, the purchase APR goes to 13.99% - 23.99% variable.
Currently, the introductory offer that changes from time to time is an impressive 20% cash back up to $200 on Amazon.com purchases made in the first six months of having the card. You can also earn $100 statement credit for a limited time after spending $1000 in the first six months. This cash reward might not be as high as some other cards, but it is reasonably easy to attain, making it an extra $100 for nearly everyone, not just the big spenders. It is not certain how long this offer is in affect, nor is it clear what introductory off will take its place eventually.
These days, most people want a credit card that works for them and brings in cash back. The Blue Cash card does just that with impressive percentages in categories.
3% back at US supermarkets for up to $6000 annually. After the cap is hit, the reward is 1%.
2% back at gas stations with no cap
2% back at selected department stores with no cap
1% back on all other purchases.
While the Blue Cash card is a category credit card, it does not have alternating categories. This means no signing up to receive your rewards and no trying to remember what is offered every quarter.
There are some limitations on rewards that are worth mentioning. Check them out.
The 3% back at supermarkets is not available for warehouse stores, superstores, and specialty stores such as meat markets and bakeries. As mentioned above, the 3% caps at $6000 annually.
Gas purchased at a superstore pump, a supermarket, or a warehouse club will not earn the 2%.
While the list of eligible department stores is ample, some stores do not honor the 2% cash back deal. A full list of participating stores is on the American Express website.
The Blue Cash Everyday Card is not one with a lot of mind-blowing features, but it holds its own with the competition. The following basic characteristics are comparable to other credit cards in its league.
No annual fee
Requires a 700+ credit score
13.99% - 23.99% purchase APR after 0% introductory rate
$40 max late payment fee
$0 over limit fee
29.24% variable max penalty fee
25 day grace period
25.24% cash advance APR
5% ($10 minimum) cash advance fee
2.7% foreign transaction fee
Smart chip enabled
The truth about acceptance and travel
Merchants have snubbed American Express in the past because of higher swipe fees for the store. However, according to a 2020 Nilson Report, American Express now has a 99% acceptance rate in the US.
Most consumers would argue, however, that American Express still gets turned away more frequently than other cards. And, the 99% acceptance rating is only in the US. Many destinations abroad do not accept American Express.
Because the Blue Cash card will probably not be your choice for travel, the travel perks are a bit lacking. Any serious travel card has a 0% foreign transaction fee. The Blue Cash Everyday Card, however, charges 2.7% for international purchases.
Feel secure with a 24/7 Global Hotline to assist in any travel hic-ups you may encounter more than 100 miles from home. The hotline is there for you in various circumstances: lost wallet, visa or passport issues, customs issues, doctor referrals, and more.
If you happen to rent a vehicle while on vacation -- depending on the vehicle because some are not covered -- you will be covered with secondary collision and theft insurance if you waive the rental car company insurance and charge the vehicle to your Blue Cash Everyday Card.
Other features worth mentioning
If your credit score is 700 or above, you can pre-qualify on the American Express website in as little as 30 seconds.
Obtain additional cards for your family members for free. Anyone 13 years of age or older can have a card that is linked to the main account. All rewards pool together.
This card has virtually no extra fees if you pay your balance in full and on time every month.
Get Entertainment Access which is a feature that sets you up with ticket pre-sales for exclusive entertainment events such as plays, sporting events, concerts, and more.
Receive a year-end summary of purchases that can be handy for budgeting and tax time.
$0 fraud liability. You will never be responsible for purchases you didn’t make.
Pay It / Plan It
Only American Express has the Pay It / Plan It options to make flexible payments that fit your budget and time-frame. One of the best features of these plans, other than the flexible payments, is you still earn rewards for your purchases. These payment options are easily set-up and managed using the American Express app.
The Pay It option allows you to pay off smaller purchases of under $100 throughout the month. These amounts are applied to your minimum monthly payment. Many people like this option because they can check off items as they get them paid. Additionally, many people on this plan end up paying more than their minimum, keeping interest down.
The Plan It option is designed to pay off larger purchases of over $100 with a set amount each month, with no interest added. Plan It customers can have up to 10 plans at a time. These plans have a fixed monthly fee that is shown upfront, so you know your exact payment. American Express has a handy Plan It Calculation link on their website that helps you customize this plan.
While the Blue Cash Everyday Card might not be for everyone, it does bring some competitive features to the table for a primary everyday card. Here's a review of features, both good and not so hot.
No annual fee
Easy to obtain $100 sign-on bonus for making $1000 of purchases in 6 months
Pay It / Plan It payment flexibility
Constant category rewards you do not have to sign-up to get
Free additional cards for family members
Not so hot
More limited acceptance, especially outside of the US
Relatively high purchase APR after the introductory period
With the basics covered, the Blue Cash Everyday Card holds a spot as a viable option for an everyday use card.