Best AmEx Blue Cash Rewards?

July 8, 2010

American Express sends out a monthly email to Blue Cash cardmembers with information about different features, tools, and rewards for the card. They’ve been asking a series of questions over the last few months to get our opinion about the best credit card rewards.

Here are the last three questions they’ve asked about rewards.  After each I share which of the rewards the card members thought were best and what I think of the picks.

1) Which categories would you like to earn more on spending?

  • Wireless Service
  • Home Improvement
  • Restaurants
  • Department Stores
  • Other

Obviously the answer to this one is going to depend on your lifestyle.  A young couple with a newer home and no kids might not spend very much on home improvement but might eat out five nights a week.  Whereas a family with 4 kids and an older home might spend a lot on home improvement but not eat out much because it costs so much to feed 6 people.

Personally, I don’t spend that much on wireless service because we’re grandfathered into a good cell plan and I hardly ever step foot into a department store. I agree that restaurant spending can add up over a month, even though we don’t eat out all that often.  While home improvement includes bigger tickets purchases we don’t make them as frequently so for me it’s a toss up between home improvement and restaurants.

The results of the survey were that more card holders would like to earn more on spending at restaurants. How about you, which would you pick?

2) What travel benefits sound most exciting to you?

  • Airport lounge access
  • Premium baggage protection
  • Baggage fee waiver
  • No foreign exchange fee on your Card
  • None of the above

The top pick for travel benefits among card holders was the baggage fee waiver. I’m not surprised at all with this one, no one likes to pay extra for bags when they fly.  Some American Express cards, like the American Express Delta SkyMiles, are already offering a baggage waiver fee if you buy the plane ticket with your card. This airline reward could come in especially handy if you’re traveling with a big family, the savings would be multiplied by each person who was flying.

3) Which type of entertainment access interests you most?

  • Big ticket concerts
  • Live private concerts with new bands
  • Tickets to the largest events across the country
  • Access to nightlife and club events in major cities
  • None of the above

Entertainment rewards are probably the lowest on my list simply because our entertainment spending is pretty limited due to our two little kids. Entertainment these days consists of going to the pool, playing in the park, or watching a kid movie from the library.

If we did get out more the option of access to nightlife in major cities could be an useful one. Of course not everyone lives in a big city, which is probably why the top choice for entertainment rewards was “Big Ticket Concerts”. Concert tickets aren’t cheap in the first place, then when you add in all the handling and processing fees places like Ticketmaster charge it can get expensive quickly.

Overall, the best Blue Cash rewards option for me would be to earn more cash back. Since our spending on entertainment and travel are minimal, getting more cash back at restaurants or on home improvements would be my choice.

If American Express decides not to add in those rewards, I could always use the Chase Freedom for home improvement purchases to earn more in the spring or the Discover More card to earn 5% cash back at restaurants in the winter. I’ll keep an eye out to see what, if any, changes American Express makes as a result of the survey feedback. Which credit card rewards would you like to see added?


This content is not provided or commissioned by American Express. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of American Express, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express. This site may be compensated through American Express Affiliate Program

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Ben Edwards, the founder of Money Smart Life, saved up enough to buy a Nintendo back when he was 12 years old. When he used the money to buy shares of Wal-Mart stock instead, he knew he wasn't like the other kids... His addiction to personal finance has paid off for his family and now he's helping you to afford the life that you want. Check him out on the web at Google Plus, Twitter and Facebook.

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3 Responses to Best AmEx Blue Cash Rewards?

  • Ben

    Hey bloake, I don’t remember when I started getting the emails; I might have had to sign up at one point to receive them. The newsletter was called the “Blue Cash Voice” and now its called “Cash Back News”.

  • bloake

    how come i never get these emails? ive been a member since 08


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