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American Express Rewards Checking
4.5
★★★★★
Finder score
4.6
★★★★★
Fee
$0 per month
APY
1.00%
Minimum deposit to open
$0

Our verdict

A rewards checking account with no monthly maintenance fees — but you’ll have to be a current customer.

The American Express Rewards Checking account offers both interest and cashback rewards. It was released in 2022 as Amex's first-ever consumer individual checking account. You earn a 1.00% APY on all balances, and you can earn membership reward points: one point for every $2 spent on eligible purchases made with the debit card. There's no opening deposit required and no monthly maintenance fees. But to qualify for this account, you must have a US Amex consumer credit card that's at least three months old, and business checking customers aren't eligible right now, either.

Best for: Current Amex credit card holders who want a free rewards checking account.

Pros

  • $0 monthly fees
  • No opening deposit required
  • Earn 1% APY
  • Earn points with debit card transactions
  • No fees with MoneyPass ATMs

Cons

  • Must have US Amex consumer credit card
  • No physical branches
  • No online bill pay

In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Your reviews
  • Ask a question

Who is American Express Rewards Checking best for?

The American Express Rewards Checking account is designed for current Amex customers who have a US Amex consumer credit card. If you’ve been considering getting an Amex credit card, this checking account is worth looking into once you’ve had the credit card for at least three months.

It’s best for anyone in need of a low-maintenance, everyday interest-bearing checking account that earns decent rewards.

Also, customers are limited to opening one Amex Rewards checking account, but joint account holders are accepted.

What we like about Amex Rewards Checking

The Rewards Checking account is free to open and maintain, thanks to its lack of a monthly maintenance fee, having no balance requirements and requiring no opening deposit. American Express also has a network of over 37,000 MoneyPass ATMs you can use for free. There’s also no overdraft, nonsufficient funds or returned check fees. If you try to make a transaction that would put your account in a negative balance, Amex will decline it.

Rewards and high APY

As the name suggests, Amex’s Rewards Checking account comes with some sweet rewards. The account is interest-bearing, offering up to 1.00% APY on all balances. While this is lower than the best high-yield checking accounts, it’s still a very competitive rate and is higher than the national average of 0.08%, according to the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.

Amex also features its Membership Rewards Program. With the Rewards Checking account, you earn one point for every $2 spent on eligible debit purchases, which equals about 8 cents per point. There’s no limit to how many points you can earn. To access your points, log in to your account to redeem them. You can use your points for the following purposes:

  • Purchasing gift cards for Amazon, Best Buy, Grubhub, Dell.com and more
  • Donating your points to JustGiving for various US charities
  • Covering New York City cab fares
  • Sending points to American Express Travel program
  • Transferring points to other loyalty programs

Where Amex Rewards Checking falls short

As an online bank, there are no physical American Express branch locations, so your customer service is limited to online communications and 24/7 phone support at 800-446-6307.

One of the biggest drawbacks is the fact that you must have an existing Amex credit card to qualify. If you decide to open a credit card to specifically qualify for the Rewards Checking account, you may be paying an annual fee to maintain the credit card, which could be anywhere from $95 to $695 per year. But there are Amex credit cards with no annual fees, such as the Blue Cash Everyday Card.

The account also lacks online bill payments, and you can’t send any wire transfers.

Amex Rewards Checking’s fees and access

Type of feeFee details
Monthly service$0
Opening deposit$0
ATMs
  • Domestic: $0 with MoneyPass, $2.50 out-of-network ATM fee
  • International: 2.7%
Debit card fees
  • Cash withdrawals: $0 at MoneyPass ATMs
  • Foreign transactions: 2.7%
  • Card replacement: $0
Overdraft or nonsufficient funds$0
Wire transfers
  • Incoming
    • Domestic: $0
    • International: $0
  • Outgoing
    • Domestic: Unavailable
    • International: Unavailable
Other fees
  • Paper checks: Varies, must be ordered from third-party provider
  • Cashier’s checks: $0
  • Returned checks: $0
  • Expedited online transfer fee: $0

Compare American Express Rewards Checking to other top checking accounts

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American Express Rewards Checking logo

American Express Rewards Checking

★★★★★

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Fee

$0


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

1.00%


Minimum deposit to open

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Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

4.60% on balances of $0+
0.50% on balances of $0+
1.20% on balances of $0+


Minimum deposit to open

$0

Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus logo

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Finder rating 4.3 / 5

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Fee

$0


Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

N/A


Minimum deposit to open

$0

How to open American Express Rewards Checking

To get the Rewards Checking account, you must have an active Amex consumer credit card that’s been open for at least three months. If you don’t have an Amex credit card, compare the top Amex credit cards here.

If you already have a credit card, apply for the American Express Rewards Checking account online. It doesn’t require an opening deposit, but you’ll need to fund the account within 60 days.

American Express customer experience

A well-known online bank, American Express earns an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). With over 173 years in the industry, there’s a large number of customer reviews and ratings.

On its BBB profile, Amex earns 1.07 out of 5 stars. A poor rating like this is common with banks, but it’s still not ideal. The majority of the customer reviews are in reference to Amex’s credit cards — its flagship products. Many of the reviews are unique circumstances, some stating displeasure with cards being closed without notice, issues setting up automatic payments, unhappiness with high APRs on the cards and poor customer service.

Amex fairs a little better on Trustpilot, holding a 1.6-star rating out of 5 based on over 3,000 reviews. Positive reviews mostly reference their credit cards, praising the cashback rewards on select credit cards, the points reward system and the travel and flight perks. Negative reviews are in the same vein as BBB, citing issues with accounts closing, high APRs and poor customer service.

Overall, there aren’t any specific red flags to call out with American Express, and its reviews and ratings are in line with common complaints we see with other financial institutions.

Frequently asked questions

What kind of accounts does American Express offer?

Amex offers credit cards, savings accounts and now a consumer checking account. The bank is most well-known for its credit cards.

Is it hard to get a American Express account?

It may be difficult to qualfiy for the Amex checking account if you have poor credit. This is because the Amex checking account requires having a consumer Amex credit card that’s at least three months old. And when it comes to Amex credit cards, they typically require good to excellent credit to qualify (670 and higher).

Does Amex offer checks?

Yes, you have the option to buy checks with the American Express Rewards Checking account. You can order checks through its third-party check provider online or with the Amex app.

Ask a question

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Bethany Finder

Editor, Banking

Hi there, looking for more information? Ask us a question.

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