everyday preferred

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Swapping AMEX for Citi: Bye Platinum, Hello Prestige? And Bye, EveryDay Preferred, Hello ThankYou Premier?

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And, bye EveryDay Preferred, hello ThankYou Premier?

Recently, I’ve seriously been pondering why it is I hang on to my AMEX cards.

I’ve had at least 2 since 2012, and haven’t accumulated enough points to actually do much.

Membership Rewards… meh.

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My Experience Getting the Amex EveryDay Preferred Card

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This was my first Amex experience where I was NOT instantly approved. In fact, I was straight up DENIED for the Amex EveryDay Preferred card.

I didn’t take a screen shot of the “denied” decision page because I was kind of shocked and didn’t think to do it. But yes, it said I would receive a letter in the mail… and all that yada yada.

This was to be my sixth Amex card, and the fourth issued directly from Amex (I have the Platinum Card, the Premier Rewards Gold, and Delta Platinum SkyMiles cards). Recently, I’ve been thinking of closing the PRG and/or Delta card because I really don’t use them all that much. I’d need to spend at least $30K on the PRG to make it worthwhile, and you all know how I feel about Delta by now.

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Just got the American Express EveryDay Preferred Card

Yes, another one (following the recent Kohl’s card).

The Amex EveryDay cards weren’t supposed to be live until April 2nd, but for whatever reason, they went ahead and released them early. I’ve been considering dumping one (or two) of my Amex cards after getting screwed out of Membership Rewards bonuses multiple times which caused me to wish Amex to DIAF.

I’ve decided to give them another chance due to this long overdue and solid entry into the premium card market, which pits them directly against my beloved Chase Sapphire Preferred and the Barclaycard Arrival Plus, which I just decided to keep for another year.

About the Amex EveryDay Preferred card

This card is truly set up to be an “everyday” card for daily spend. Their marketing people are geniuses. The card earns full Membership Rewards point which are fully transferable to 17 air and hotel partners. The signup bonus is a modest 15,000 Amex Membership points at the time of writing, which, who knows, maybe I’ll actually get this time.

I’m not using the Premier Rewards Gold card as much as I thought I would. Yes, it earns 3 points/dollar for airfare, but the other categories really aren’t much to write home about. The card is truly only worth keeping if you spend $30K in a year, which earns you a bonus 15,000 points.

So I’m glad they’ve put out a new card with a new new points earning structure:

  • 3x at grocery stores
  • 2x at gas stations
  • 1x everywhere else

That’s all fine and good. The kicker is that you get 50% more points if you use the card 30 times or more in a month. And you can track your progress on the mobile app and website. This forces you to constantly interact with the product to make sure you get the bonus each month. How smart is that?! I know I will be checking to make sure I get that bonus. It brings the spend categories to:

  • 4.5x at grocery stores
  • 3x at gas stations
  • 1.5 everywhere else

That is a wonderful earning structure.

By following our axiom of getting 2 cents of value out of every point or mile, we will effectively get this rate of return:

  • 9% back at grocery stores
  • 6% back at gas stations
  • 3% back everywhere else

That gives this card the best rate of return for travel in the industry. And yet, I don’t see it, personally, as a competitor to the Chase Sapphire Preferred. The CSP’s big categories are 2x points (4% cash back) at restaurants and on travel purchases, which makes these two cards unlikely complements of each other. Between the new Amex EveryDay Preferred and the Chase Sapphire Preferred, I’ve got a solid earning strategy for daily spend. But, the Barclay Arrival card is STILL valid thanks to its ease of earning, great shopping portal, free TripIt Pro, and really cool online community.

Bottom line

Overall, this is a very, very good thing and a welcome addition to the credit card market. The more, the merrier in this case.

I will be sure to post more thoughts as I begin to use and interact with the card and the app. But for now, very glad I got this one. It holds a lot of potential.