Emma Balmforth is a Producer at Finder. She is passionate about cryptocurrency, credit cards and loans, and enjoys helping people understand the often confusing world of finance. Emma has a degree in business and psychology from the University of Waterloo. She wants to help people make financial decisions that will benefit them now and in the future.
Get this card if you spend a lot of money on dining out, nightlife and transportation.
Pick something else if you don’t want to pay a monthly fee or you want to get cash back.
Apply with a fair, good to excellent credit score of 650 or higher.
The offers 5x the Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent on eligible eats and drinks, including groceries and food delivery in Canada. What’s more, you will earn 2 Membership Rewards points for every $1 spent on eligible transit and gas purchases in Canada, as well as 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. With the American Express Cobalt Card, there are endless ways to rack up Membership Rewards points.
While this is a regular credit card, unlike many other cards you will be charged a monthly fee of $10. Over the course of a year, the American Express Cobalt Card will cost you $120 in fees.
The American Express Cobalt Card can be a powerful credit card if you find that you spend big on eats and drinks purchases across the country. Potentially earning 30,000 Membership Rewards points on your first year, your points can be redeemed for hotels, car rentals, vacation packages, merchandise and flights, including eligible short-haul trips via Fixed Points Travel Program; or $300 credit towards travel purchases charged on your cards; or $300 worth of tickets on Ticketmaster.ca and more.
Earn up to 30,000 Membership Rewards.
Spend $500 a month in purchases on your Cobalt Card and earn 2,500 Membership Rewards points a month in the first year of card membership. This can add up to a total of 30,000 Membership Rewards points over the course of the first year, in addition to further points earned.
5 points per $1 spent on eligible purchases.
Earn 5x the Membership Rewards points for every $1 spend (up to $30,000 annual spend) when you use your Cobalt Card to pay for purchases at eligible eats and drinks, including groceries and food delivery services across Canada.
Cobalt Perks Program. Cobalt card members receive regular perks, bonus rewards and access to great events.
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2 points per $1 spent on eligible purchases.
Receive 2 Membership Points per $1 spent on eligible transportation and gas purchases, as well as eligible travel purchases. Eligible travel purchases include air, water, rail and road bookings, lodging and tour operator sales.
1 point per $1 spent on everything else.
Earn 1 Membership Rewards point for every $1 spent on everything else, whether that is a movie ticket, clothing or money spent overseas at restaurants, hotels and bars.
The Hotel Collection (THC) benefits includes up to US$100 hotel credits based on eligible room charges such as spa, dining and resort activities and a room upgrade upon check-in at over 600 participating properties when booked through American Express Travel. This is offer is valid when you charge your card for at least two consecutive nights stay at the same hotel.
Travel insurance coverage.
The Cobalt Card comes with a host of travel insurances. Receive up to $250,000 Travel Accident Insurance and Emergency Medical Insurance, alongside Lost and Stolen Baggage Insurance, Flight and Baggage Delay Insurance, Car Rental Theft and Damage coverage and Hotel/Motel Burglary Insurance.
Buyer’s assurance doubles the manufacturers warranty (up to one year) when you use your American Express credit card to purchase the item. Your eligible items are also covered against theft and accidental damage with Purchase Protection.
Exclusive American Express perks.
American Express offer a range of opportunities to cardholder-only experiences and preferred seating at select events. You can get advance access to concerts, theatres, films, dining, shows and events through Front of the Line by American Express Invites.
What to watch out for
The monthly fee.
The card’s monthly fee is $10. However, over the course of a year, this will amount to a total fee of $120. If you use the rewards and benefits, the monthly fee may be worth the expense.
The cash advance rate.
If you decide to withdraw cash using your Cobalt Card, you will face a cash advance rate of 22.99%. Unlike the purchase interest rate, the cash advance rate is charged from the moment you withdraw the cash.
Not as widely accepted overseas.
Compared to Visa and Mastercard, American Express is much less widely accepted in locations across Canada, the US and around the world. This might provide you with less opportunity to use the card, and therefore less opportunity to reap the rewards.
It hurts to pay late.
Alongside paying the interest rate of or 19.99%, additional fees and charges may occur, such as a late payment fee of $25.
Consider other cards if …
You want cash back.
If you’re looking to reap the benefits of cash back, you may want to consider a cash back rewards card. These types of cards typically offer anywhere from 1-5% cash back on purchases. If you spend frequently on gas, groceries and dining out, a cash back rewards card may be more beneficial for you than a travel rewards card.
You don’t want to pay a monthly fee.
The American Express Cobalt Card comes with a $10 monthly fee. Over the course of a year, this will amount to a total of $120. If paying a fee this high is not in your best interest, consider other types of travel or rewards cards with lower, or even $0, annual fees.
You don’t spend a lot of money on dining out, nightlife or transportation.
If you find that your purchases don’t match up with the perks of having this card, perhaps you’d be better suited to a card that offers more points per dollar spent on the types of purchases that you make. Or, you may find that a completely different rewards card is more suitable for your spending habits.
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What should I know before I apply?
To apply for the American Express Cobalt Card, you must:
Be at least 18 years old, or the age of majority in your province or territory.
Be a Canadian citizen or a permanent resident.
Have a valid Canadian credit file.
What credit score do I need?
You’ll have a better chance of approval if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 650 or higher. In addition to having a good credit score, a relatively high annual income or combined household income may be beneficial for approval.
Here are a few other factors that might affect your odds of approval:
Hard inquiries on your credit report. If you have several hard pulls on your credit history, it could indicate to a provider that you’re desperate for credit or have trouble managing your debt. As a result, the provider may be less likely to approve your application.
Factors that tie into your credit score. Your credit utilization ratio can play a major factor in your approval. Customers who have low balances relative to their credit limits are usually preferable to providers.
What do customers say about the American Express Cobalt Card?
Customers that have the American Express Cobalt Card generally say positive things about it. This card appears to be tailored toward a younger crowd, since it offers 5 points on restaurant, bar and cafe purchases, as well as charging a monthly fee for the card – similar to a monthly subscription fee that Netflix would charge. It’s important to keep in mind that the monthly fee of $10 adds up to $120 over a one year period.
On the flip side, customers report that the company has inflexible policies, but many customers report being pleased with the punctual and helpful customer service team.
How to apply for the American Express Cobalt Card
Click Go to site on this page to be directed to the American Express Cobalt Card page, and click Apply Now Securely.
Complete the application with information including your full name, home address, income source and total annual income.
Review and submit your application.
How long will it take to get my American Express Cobalt Card?
Pre-approval for an American Express credit card is automated on the website, which means you may get a decision on your application within just 60 seconds. If there are issues with your application, it may take a few days or even weeks to hear back.
Once your application has been approved, you’ll typically receive your card in the mail within 5 to 10 business days.
I got the card. Now what?
Make your repayments. Register for an account on the American Express website to pay your balance online and enrol in autopay. The American Express Cobalt Cardis a regular credit card, so you don’t have to pay off the entire balance each month if you don’t want to. Keep in mind you will face interest rates if you don’t pay off the balance in full each month.
Avoid fees. Late and returned payments will incur fees, so be sure to pay on time. If you’re enrolled in autopay, be sure to have enough funds in your account to pay off your balance each billing cycle.
Get help. If you’re not able to find what you need on the American Express Canada website, call 1-800-567-2639 to speak with a customer service representative.
The American Express Cobalt Card is a worthy competitor if you find you spend a lot of money at restaurants and bars and on transportation costs. Even if you travel outside of Canada with the card, you’ll still be able to earn Membership Rewards points no matter where in the world you use the card.
Frequently asked questions about the American Express Cobalt™ Card
You may enrol in the Membership Rewards Program for an annual fee of $50, plus applicable taxes. Once you’re a member, your points give you access to a variety of travel and entertainment experiences, merchandise, gift cards and more.
Any purchases charged to the card will be subject to an interest rate of American Express Cobalt Card. Should you choose to not pay off your balance in full, you will face an increased rate from American Express Cobalt Card.
The minimum amount you must pay back is the lesser of the two:
$10 + interest and any other fees (such as dishonoured payment fees and overlimit fees) or;
The entire new balance on the billing statement
Yes, most credit cards offered by American Express do, however the offers differ as well as the annual fees of each card. Many other credit card providers offer welcome bonuses too with less steep annual fees.
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