Amex Green Card is Here (It Looks Good!)

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We have known about a refresh coming to the American Express Green Card for a while and that refresh is finally here!

The card does not have all of the perks that I anticipated but the perks are still pretty solid in my opinion (especially for travel).

This is also a fantastic opportunity to capitalize on earning more Membership Rewards, as the card has a new welcome bonus. 


Welcome bonus

The American Express Green Card will come with 30,000 Membership Rewards when you spend $2,000 in the first three months. Also, you can get $100 in statement credits toward any purchases made with Away (luggage) in your first three months (Offer ends 1/15/2020). 

30,000 Membership Rewards is a pretty decent bonus. It would have been nice to see this bonus up at 40,000 or 50,000 points. However, the Green Card has always historically had a low bonus (or no bonus at all) so 30,000 points for this card is not bad.

Some have reported success with higher Incognito offers but that did not work for me. Referral links are also reportedly higher. 

Suitcases for Away start at $225 and you can find amenity bags for under $100. 

Note: the welcome offer is not available to applicants who have or have had this Card or previous versions of the American Express Green Card. No surprise there. 


Bonus categories

  • 3X on travel
  • 3X on dining

3X travel is a huge bonus category for American Express.

Up to this point, there has been no American Express product that offers a good multiplier of bonus points on general travel costs.

Now, just like the Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can earn triple the points on general travel with the American Express Green Card (you just won’t get all of the same travel protections). 

Earning triple the points on dining is also very nice. Personally, I will stick to using my American Express Gold Card to earn 4X on dining. But if you don’t want to get the Gold card (with its $250 dollars annual fee) this is a pretty good option.


CLEAR membership

The American Express Green Card will offer you $100 per year in statement credits for CLEAR (the regular price for CLEAR is $179 a year).

If you are not familiar with that service, basically it allows you to bypass the security lines at airports in different venues such as stadiums.

If you have TSA Pre-Check, this will save you tons of time during rush hour at airports. I would recommend that you read our review here if you need to find out more.

This is a huge perk if you ask me (unless you don’t care for CLEAR of course). 

LGA Terminal C CLEAR TSA Pre-Check

$100 for LoungeBuddy

You will get $100 in annual credits for LoungeBuddy. 

This is a really interesting benefit for the American Express Green Card. LoungeBuddy is a way for you to get access to various airport lounges. Not every airport has a relationship with LoungeBuddy but for those that do you might be paying anywhere from $25-$50+ for lounge access. 

So this credit gives you 2 to 4 visits per year covered (again prices can vary widely). 

For anybody without Priority Pass this could be a great way to get airport lounge access when you need it. However, I already have the Platinum Card and so I don’t think this lounge benefit would do much for me. 


Annual fee

The annual fee is $150 and is not waived the first year. Given the trends that American Express has been doing over the past couple of years, it is no surprise to see the fee increased. 

With $200 worth of statement credits for CLEAR and airport lounge access, this fee can easily be offset with the two of them.

For me personally, I would only use the $100 CLEAR credit. That would leave me with about $50 in annual fee costs I would need to offset. That would not be very hard to do with 3X on travel/dining, so this could easily be a keeper card. 

For example, if I spent $1,000 on travel and earned 3,000 MR, that would be $54 worth of MR (based on 1.8 cent valuation). Combine that with only one $100 credit and the entire fee is offset. 


Final word

Overall, I think the American Express Green Card is a decently strong travel card. There is now a way to earn triple points on travel expenses with this card and I really like the statement credits for CLEAR. The credits for LoungeBuddy are great too it is just that I already have so many lounge memberships that I don’t know I would be using it. 

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7 comments

      1. Got an email confirming the benefits on the card. They tend to mirror the Chase Sapphire Reserve with a huge downside: huge foreign transaction fees.

  1. Clear :sigh: , we’re in NJ and fly to Chicago, so no benefit. Love AMEX, have been a member for decades, but the premium cards never seem to make sense for us, Delta is a bit player at EWR and the airline credits don’t get covered if you buy up your ticket (to get a checked bag). Who wants to wait on line to pay at the counter?

    I wish AMEX would change it to travel on the GOLD. Now that would be a super card.

    1. 3X on Travel on the Gold would be amazing but Amex is definitely strategically adding these bonus categories. What I really like about the new Green is that they are at least getting more creative with the credits (even though they don’t always add value for a lot of folks).

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