Blue Cash Card from American Express review | finder.com

Review: Blue Cash Card® from American Express – April 2018

Among the three Blue Cash cards, this one is for the biggest spenders on everyday purchases.

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  • Get this card if… you spend big on gas and groceries, and you don’t want an annual fee.
  • Pick something else if… you spend very little on gas and groceries, or if you want travel rewards.

It may seem difficult telling the Blue Cash Card apart from its siblings, the Everyday and the Preferred. But there’s only one thing you need to know: If you spend huge in gas and groceries, the Blue Cash Card is for you.

Product NameBlue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
Intro APR for Balance Transfer0% Intro APR for 15 months (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
Balance Transfer Rate (not intro)14.49% to 25.49% variable
APR for Purchases ( Purchase Rate )14.49% to 25.49% variable
Annual fee$0
Cash Advance Rate26.74% variable
Card TypeAmerican Express
Interest Free Period
The interest-free period on purchases is the period or number of days you do not have to pay interest on your card purchases. You will be charged interest either from the day you make a purchase or from the statement date, unless you pay the closing balance in full by the due date (or within the interest-free period) on your statement.
Up to 25 days
Returned Payment Fee$38
Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (AMEX)
Foreign currency conversion fees are charged when you make a transaction that is converted by a credit card network, such as MasterCard, Visa or American Express, from Australian dollars to a foreign currency. You’ll also incur a currency conversion fee if you make a purchase or obtain a cash advance in Australian dollars while overseas or shopping online with a foreign merchant or financial institution.
2.7% of transaction value
Minimum Credit ScoreFair (660-699)
Minimum Age18 years of age
Annual fee$0
Returned Payment Fee$38
Over The Credit Line Fee$0
Late Payment Fee$38
Cash Advance Fee$5 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater

The Basics

The biggest difference between the Blue Cash Card and the other two Blue Cash offerings is the cash back you’ll receive. To pick the best one for you, consider your spending. Specifically, think of each card as optimal for different amounts of spending: low, medium and high.

The Blue Cash Everyday is ideal if you spend very little on everyday purchases. It doesn’t charge an annual fee, but it has less-powerful cash back on everyday purchases compared to the Blue Cash Preferred. You’ll get 3% back on groceries and 2% cash back on gas.

The Blue Cash Preferred is best for most families. The key is the card’s 6% cash back on groceries and 3% cash back on gas. Even with its $0 p.a. annual fee, the Preferred will likely save you more money than the Everyday.

The Blue Cash Card promises up to 5% cash back on groceries, gas and more — but hold the horses. Each year, you first receive 1% cash back on everyday purchases up to $6,500. Only then do you start earning 5% cash back. Because of this, the Blue Cash Card’s cash back options will underwhelm low spenders. However, they’re stellar if you spend big on gas and groceries.

Here is an example of total spending and the rewards you can get for each card.

The Nuts and Bolts

Product nameBlue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
Issuing bankAmerican Express Centurion Bank
Annual fee$0 p.a.
Signup bonusN/A
Intro purchase APR0% for the 15 months
Intro balance transfer APR for the 15 months
Balance transfer feewhichever is greater, $5 or 3
Foreign transaction fee
Cash advance rate26.74% variable
Cash advance fee$5 or 3% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
Penalty APRUp to 29.99%
Late payment feeUp to $38
Returned payment feeUp to $38.00
Overlimit feeNone
Maximum credit limitNone
Minimum interest chargeTypically $35

Comparison of AMEX’s Blue Cash Cards

Everyday spending per yearCash back – Blue Cash EverydayCash back – Blue Cash PreferredCash back – Blue Cash Card
$3,000 total: $2,500 on groceries, $500 on gas$85$70$30
$9,000 total: $6,000 on groceries, $3,000 on gas$240$355$190
$15,000 total: $10,000 on groceries, $5,000 on gas$320$455$490

The Perks

  • CASH BACK: Best if you spend big on everyday purchases.
    First $6,500 in purchases: 1% cash back at US supermarkets, gas stations and some drugstores (everyday purchases). 0.5% on other eligible purchases
    Above $6,500 in purchases: 5% on everyday purchases (up to $50,000; 1% afterwards). 1% on other eligible purchases
  • ANNUAL FEE: No annual fee.

You’ll also like…

  • Travel protection. You’ll have access to American Express’ Global Assist Hotline and Roadside Assistance Hotline, which you can use if you find yourself in a pinch on vacation. Also, get complimentary car rental and travel accident insurance.
  • Purchase benefits. Get free two-day shipping at ShopRunner, as well as extended warranties and purchase protection on eligible items.
  • Cardmember-only entertainment. As a cardholder, you’ll have access to exclusive events and ticket presales.

What to watch out for

  • Not as widely accepted overseas. Because the Blue Cash is an American Express card, you might not have as many opportunities to use it overseas as you would with a Visa or Mastercard. It also has a foreign transaction fee.
  • It hurts to pay late. Making late or returned payments could saddle you with fees as high as $38.

Consider other cards if…

  • You don’t spend much on everyday purchases. You’ll probably find the card’s cash back features underwhelming. Consider a general cash back card like the Citi Double Cash.
  • You spend a lot on everyday purchases, but you don’t spend much over $6,500. The Blue Cash Card hits its stride after you spend $6,500 in everyday purchases. If you spend very little, the Blue Cash Everyday is a better choice. It’ll give you 3% cash back at US supermarkets and 2% cash back at US gas stations and some department stores.
  • You’re looking for travel rewards. There are many great travel cards, but the Blue Cash Card isn’t one of them. Instead, look for cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred or the Barclaycard Arrival Plus.

Compare other American Express credit cards

Rates last updated April 23rd, 2018
Name Product APR for Purchases ( Purchase Rate ) Intro APR for Balance Transfer Annual fee Product Description
Wells Fargo Propel 365 American Express® Card
15.24% to 23.24% variable
0% Intro APR for 12 months (with $5 minimum, 5% balance transfer fee)
$0 annual fee for the first year ($45 thereafter)
20,000 bonus points if you spend $3,000 (net purchases) in first 3 months
Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Card
14.24% to 26.24% variable
0% Intro APR for 12 months (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
20000 bonus points if you spend $1,000 (net purchases) in first 3 months
Blue from American Express® Card
16.49%, 19.49% or 21.49% variable
16.49%, 19.49% or 21.49%% Intro APR for within 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
Earn rewards with no annual fee.
Blue Sky from American Express® Card
18.49%, 21.49% or 23.49% variable
18.4921.4923.49% Intro APR for within 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
Flexible travel rewards and no annual fee.
Hilton Honors™ Card from American Express
16.99% to 25.99% variable
16.9925.99% Intro APR for 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, 5% or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
Earn 50000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after spending $1,000 or more in purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
Hilton Honors™ Surpass® Card from American Express
16.24% to 20.24% variable
16.2420.24% Intro APR for 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$75
Earn 100000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after spending $3,000 in purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
American Express Serve®
FREE ATM withdrawals at over 24,000 MoneyPass® ATM locations nationwide.
The Mercedes-Benz Credit Card from American Express
16.49% variable
16.49% Intro APR for 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$95
Earn 10000 Membership Rewards ® points after using your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
Plenti® Credit Card from Amex
15.99% to 25.99% variable
15.9925.99% Intro APR for 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
Earn 5000 Plenti® points after you spend $250 in purchases on your Plenti® Credit Card from Amex within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
16.99% to 25.99% variable
16.99% to 25.99%% Intro APR for 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$195
Earn 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs)
and 35000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months. In addition, earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new card within your first 3 months.
Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
16.99% to 25.99% variable
16.99% to 25.99%% Intro APR for 60 days of account opening (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Earn 30000 bonus miles after you make $1,000 in purchases on your new card within your first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.
Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express
16.99% to 25.99% variable
$450
Earn 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) and 40000 bonus miles after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card
16.99% to 25.99% variable
16.99% to 25.99% variable% Intro APR for 60 days (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$195
Earn bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
American Express® Green Card
No interest charges because you pay your balance in full each month
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Shop with more confidence
Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express
No interest charges because you pay your balance in full each month
$0 annual fee for the first year ($195 thereafter)
More Points. More Rewards.
The Platinum Card® from American Express
No interest charges because you pay your balance in full each month
$550
Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5X points on eligible hotels booked on amextravel.com.
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
14.49% to 25.49% variable
0% Intro APR for 15 months (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
Earn $150 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. You will receive the $150 back in the form of a statement credit.
Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
14.24% to 25.24% variable
0% Intro APR for 12 months (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$95
Earn $200 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. You will receive the $200 back in the form of a statement credit.
Amex EveryDay® Credit Card
14.24% to 24.24% variable
0% Intro APR for first 12 months (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0
Earn 10000 Membership Rewards® Points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card
14.24% to 24.24% variable
0% Intro APR for 12 months (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$95
Earn 15000 Membership Rewards Points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
Starwood Preferred Guest American Express Credit Card
16.49% to 20.49% variable
16.4920.49 % Intro APR for 60 days (with whichever is greater, $5 or 3% balance transfer fee)
$0 annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
Earn 25000 bonus Starpoints® after you use your new Card to make $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
USAA Secured Card American Express®
11.15% to 21.15% variable
$35
You can get travel benefits (no foreign transaction fees), retail benefits and collision damage waiver coverage on your rental car.
USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card
13.15% to 27.15% variable
$0
Get high cash back rewards on most purchases, including gasoline, groceries and military base purchases.

Compare up to 4 providers

What to know before you apply

To apply for the Blue Cash Card, you must be:

  • At least 18 years old
  • A US resident

What credit score do I need?

You’ll have a better chance of being approved for the Blue Cash Card if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 680 or higher.

How to apply for the card

1. On the American Express website, click the Apply Now button.

step 1 blue cash card american express
2. Fill out the application form. Provide information like your Social Security number, home address, income source and total annual income.

step 2 blue cash card american express

How long will it take to be approved?

Because conditional credit card approval is automated on the website, you can get a decision on your application within 60 seconds.

I got the card — now what?

  • Making payments. Register an account at the American Express website to pay your balance online. You can also enroll in autopay.
  • Avoiding fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $38.00.
  • Customer service. Help documents aren’t easily accessible on the American Express website, but you can call 1-800-528-4800 for customer service. According to market research company J.D. Power, cardholders give American Express high marks in customer interaction.

Bottom line

The Blue Cash Card is a home run if you spend big on everyday purchases.

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