Is the Blue Cash Preferred? Credit Card from American Express a Smart Option?
Credit Needed: Good/Excellent
The Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express is a popular cash back card available in the market today. With up to 6% cash back in popular spending categories, you can earn big cash back every time you swipe your card.
Plus earn $250 welcome bonus in the form of a statement credit after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first three months after opening a new account.
The card charges 14.99% to 25.99% variable rate APR based on your credit history and current interest rates. After that the card charges 14.99% to 25.99% variable rate APR based on your credit history and current interest rates.
$250 Statement Credit – Get a $250 welcome bonus in the form of a statement credit after spending $1,000 in the first three months after opening a new account. That is like earning 25% cash back on your first $1,000 in purchases!
Smart Tip: Bonus points do not preclude you from earning regular rewards. You can still earn 6%, 3%, or 1% cash back (depending on category, terms apply) in addition to the welcome bonus.
Up to 6% Cash Back – Earn 6% cash back on the first $6,000 in United States supermarket purchases, then 1% for the rest of the year. Earn 6% on select U.S. streaming subscriptions. Earn 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and on transit like taxis/rideshare, parking, trains and more. Earn 1% on all other purchases, also with no limit to how much you can earn.
0% introductory APR for a year - New cardholders will be afforded a 0% introductory APR for 12 months on purchases and balance transfers made within 60 days of your account’s opening. Following this intro period your APR will be 14.99%-25.99% Variable, depending on your credit score and history.
ShopRunner – Get free 2-day shipping on qualifying purchases from more than 100 online stores.
Rental Car Insurance – Use the Blue Cash Preferred Card, when renting a car and you are covered for loss and damage to the vehicle if it is not your fault. Not valid for all countries and vehicle types. Just decline the rental car insurance at the car rental counter and you’re all set!
Global Assist Hotline – If you travel 100 miles from home, get free access to the Global Assist Hotline. Call 24 hours a day for access to help with medical, legal, financial, and other emergencies. Medical and legal referrals, access to cash in the event of a lost or stolen wallet, lost passport, missing luggage, and other travel nightmares. You are responsible for charges from 3rd party service providers.
Roadside Assistance – Don’t know the difference between a lug nut and a tire iron? Don’t worry about getting stuck with a flat tire, running out of gas, or a dead battery. Just make a quick call to the number on the back of your card and help will be on the way in most locations in the United States, Canada, and Puerto Rico. 3rd party charges may apply.
Travel Accident Insurance – Travel worry free when booking on major airlines, cruise and ship lines, buses, and trains with travel accident insurance. When the entire fare is charged to your Blue Cash Preferred Card, you and your family are covered.
Extended Warranty – Doesn’t it always seem that electronics and appliances break just after the warranty runs out? When you use your Blue Cash Preferred Card, the manufacturer’s warranty is doubled up to one year. Coverage is up to $10,000 per item and $50,000 per year.
Return Protection – If you buy an item and the merchant won’t take it back, American Express will reimburse you for the cost up to 90 days up to $300 per item and $1,000 per year. Terms and conditions apply.
Damage & Theft Protection – New purchases are covered against accidental damage for up to 90 days after purchase. Dropped your new phone and stuck with a cracked screen? Damage protection will pay for the repair up to $1,000 per occurrence and $50,000 per year as long as it is within the first 90 days.
Exclusive Events & Presales – Get access to Amex presales and cardholder only events including concerts, shows, sporting events, and Broadway musicals with your Blue Cash Preferred Card.
How it Works
Earning up to 6% cash back is automatic with your new Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express. Cash back appears on your monthly statement and can be redeemed for statement credits. Statement credits lower your balance due. For example, if you have a $220 balance and have accrued $200 in cash back rewards, redeem your rewards and all you have to pay is $20 to have a zero balance.
Just use your card for everyday spending anywhere American Express is accepted to take advantage of cash back rewards and protections.
What's the Catch
You can only earn 6% cash back at US supermarkets up to $6,000 in annual spending, or $360 in rewards. After that, earn 1% on supermarket purchases in the U.S. Either way, just that $360 alone makes up for the annual fee charged by this card.
The card charges 14.99% to 25.99% variable rate APR based on your credit history and market interest rates.
Just the Math Please
Rewards are dependent on the category and how much you spend. There is no limit to what you can earn. If you spend $6,000 per year in the 6% category with this card at U.S. supermarkets, or $500 per month on average, you can earn $360 in cash back, enough to cover the annual fee more than three times over.
Using this card for balance transfers can lead to a significant interest savings. Even with the $5 or 3% balance transfer fee (whichever is greater), you can easily save hundreds or thousands of dollars in interest. However, it is important to consider the balance transfer fee and annual fee before signing up for any new card to take advantage of a balance transfer offer.
Rates and Fees
Annual percentage Rate (APR) for Purchases
0% on Purchases for 12 months. After that, a 14.99% to 25.99% Variable APR rate will apply, based on your credit-worthiness. This APR will vary with the market based on the Prime Rate.
APR for Balance Transfers
Pay 0% on Balance Transfers for 12 months. After that, an APR of 14.99% to 25.99% Variable will apply, based on your credit-worthiness.
APR for Cash Advances
Penalty APR and When it Applies
How Long Will the Penalty APR Apply?
Penalty APRs apply for at least six months. Accounts are reviewed periodically by American Express and an account with a six month satisfactory payment history may have the penalty APR rate removed.
How to Avoid Paying Interest on Purchases
Your due date is at least 25 days after the close of each billing period. American Express will not charge you any interest on purchases if you pay your entire balance by the due date each month.
Minimum Interest Charge
This card does not have a minimum interest charge.
Balance Transfer: Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Cash Advance: Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
Foreign Purchase Transaction: 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to U.S. dollars
Late Payment: Up to $39
Returned Payment: Up to $39
This is a great option to earn valuable cash back on your everyday purchases. Earn up to 6% cash back at places you shop everyday (terms apply), and the current $250 bonus is very generous after spending just $1,000 on purchases in the first three months after opening a new account.
The Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express can hold its own in the competitive market of cash back credit cards. Apply today to start earning cash back every time you shop in store, online, or anywhere else American Express is accepted.
- Finding the right financial advisor that fits your needs doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with financial advisors in your area in 5 minutes. If you’re ready to be matched with local advisors that will help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
- Saving money is easier said than done, but having a high-yield savings account is a great start. To see what's available today, take a look at our overview of the top savings accounts.
Editorial Note: This content is not provided by the credit card issuer. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author's alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the issuer.
Advertiser Disclosure: The card offers that appear on this site are from companies from which SmartAsset.com receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). SmartAsset.com does not include all card companies or all card offers available in the marketplace.