Business owners looking to earn Membership Rewards points should definitely consider the American Express® Business Gold CardDepending on the type of business you run, this card could earn you tons of points and help you book some serious travel.

The Amex Business Gold earns 4X Membership Rewards points for spending in popular categories such as advertising, technology purchases and gas – categories where many businesses spend a good amount of money.

Let’s take a look at everything you need to know about the Amex Business Gold Card.

Generous welcome offer$295 annual fee (not waived the first year; will increase to $375 in 2024)
No foreign transaction feesHigh APR
Business-friendly bonus categories

Welcome Offer

The welcome offer for this card fluctuates, but we’ve seen it recently at 70,000 or 90,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $10,000 within the first three months of Card Membership. You’ll want to check out the current offers to see what they’re offering before you apply.

Remember: Amex only allows you to get a welcome offer once per card per lifetime.

Bonus Categories

The American Express Business Gold Card can earn 4X Membership Rewards points in the following categories:

  • Purchases at US media providers for advertising in select media (online, TV, radio)
  • U.S. purchases made from electronic goods retailers and software & cloud system providers
  • U.S. purchases at restaurants, including takeout and delivery
  • U.S. purchases at gas stations
  • Transit purchases including trains, taxicabs, rideshare services, ferries, tolls, parking, buses, and subways
  • Monthly wireless telephone service charges made directly from a wireless telephone service provider in the U.S.

The 4X bonus categories aren’t quite as straightforward as bonus categories with some other cards. First, you will only earn 4X on the two categories you utilize most per billing cycle. Second, you only earn 4X up to $150,000 in spending per year (then 1X after).

Plus, you can earn 3X Membership Rewards points on flights booked directly with airlines and prepaid hotels booked on using your Business Gold Card.

All other purchases earn 1X points and there’s no annual cap.

If your business spends a lot in one or more of these bonus categories, you’ll see the points accumulate fast and you’ll have enough Membership Rewards for an amazing trip in no time!

How Much Are Membership Rewards Points Worth?

Membership Rewards points can be redeemed through Amex’s travel portal or you can redeem them for flights and hotels by transferring the points to one of its travel partners.

Amex Travel

Membership Rewards points redeemed through the Amex Travel portal have specific values based on what type of travel you are booking.

Redemption TypeRedemption Rate
Flights1.33 cent
Prepaid Hotels0.7 cent
Cruises0.7 cent
Vacations0.7 cent
Upgrade with Points1 cent
Fine Hotels & Resorts1 cent

One of the perks of the Business Gold Card (which will be discontinued on February 1, 2024) is a 25% points rebate for all business and first class flights on any airline through the travel portal. The rebate also applies to economy flights on the pre-selected airline. To take advantage of the rebate, don’t forget to select your airline before booking economy class flights through the portal.

You’ll need to have the full amount of points in your account at the time of booking and the points will be rebated to you 8 to 10 weeks after booking.

If you are using this option, you are looking at a minimum redemption value of 1.33 cents per point. You’ll also earn miles and elite credit on flights booked through the portal.

The rebate is limited to 250,000 points per calendar year.

The welcome bonus alone is worth between $245 and $465 when redeemed through the Amex travel portal. The best value, however, often comes from transferring Membership Rewards points to an airline partner.

Earn 4X on highest spend categories including restaurants

Amex Transfer Partners

Amex’s transfer partners include some of the world’s best and biggest airlines and major hotel chains. It’s easy to take a trip anywhere in the world with the help of Membership Rewards points.

Membership Rewards points are of the most valuable transferable currencies, and because of their versatility, are a favorite among many travelers. Amex has 19 airline transfer partners and three hotel transfer partners.

These are Membership Rewards airline transfer partners:

Aer Lingus AerClub1,000:1,000
Aeroméxico Club Premier1,000:1,600
Air Canada Aeroplan1,000:1,000
Air France/KLM Flying Blue1,000:1,000
Alitalia MilleMiglia1,000:1,000
ANA Mileage Club1,000:1,000
Avianca LifeMiles1,000:1,000
British Airways Executive Club1,000:1,000
Cathay Pacific Asia Miles1,000:1,000
Delta SkyMiles1,000:1,000
El Al Frequent Flyer Club1,000:20
Emirates Skywards1,000:1,000
Etihad Guest1,000:1,000
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles1,000:1,000
Iberia Plus1,000:1,000
JetBlue TrueBlue250:200
Qantas Frequent Flyer500:500
Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer1,000:1,000
Virgin Atlantic Flying Club1,000:1,000

And these are American Express hotel transfer partners:

HotelsTransfer Ratio
Choice Privileges1,000:1,000
Hilton Honors1,000:2,000
Marriott Bonvoy1,000:1,000

By transferring Membership Rewards points to one of the airline partners, you can often get a much better value than 1.33 cents per point you’d get when booking flights through the portal. It’s possible to book some of the best (and most expensive) business class tickets that cost thousands of dollars. By using Membership Rewards points, it’s easy to get a value of 3 cents or even 5 cents per point!

When economy class tickets prices are high, you can often get a better value than 1.33 cents per point by transferring to one of the partner airlines. And when you transfer points to book an economy flight, you can transfer them to any partner airline, not just the pre-selected airline.

Amex often offers 15%-40% transfer bonuses to some of its partners, making the points that much more valuable.

Amex charges an excise tax fee of $0.0006 for every point transferred to a U.S.-based airline. So, for example, transferring 10,000 Membership Rewards to Delta SkyMiles will cost you $6. The fee is capped at $99.

Using the Amex Business Gold Card, you can earn 4X Membership Rewards points in U.S. purchases for shipping.

No Foreign Transaction Fees

The American Express Business Gold Card has no foreign transaction fees. Perfect for any globe-trotting business owner. However, keep in mind that most of the 4x point categories are restricted to U.S. purchases only. (Rates and fees)

Travel Benefits

Trip Delay Insurance

If your trip is delayed at least 12 hours, the trip delay insurance will reimburse for reasonable additional expenses, such as meals, lodging, toiletries, medication, and other personal use items up to $300 per covered trip. To be eligible, you need to charge the full amount to your Amex card or pay the award taxes and fees with your Amex Business Gold card.

Baggage Insurance

To take advantage of this benefit you’ll need to fully charge your airline tickets to your Amex Business Gold Card. The coverage includes loss or damage to your checked-in or carry-on bags and personal effects up to a maximum of $500 per trip.

The card also provides insurance coverage for delayed bags if the trip is delayed by six or more hours. You can receive up to $500 coverage of essential clothing and personal care items made up to four days into the trip.

Hotel and Motel Burglary Insurance

If your hotel or motel room is burglarized, you are covered up to $500 against the loss of most personal items (excluding cash). To take advantage of this benefit, the hotel must be fully booked and paid for with the Amex Business Gold.

Shopping Benefits

Purchase Protection

When you use your American Express Business Gold Card for covered purchases, you get purchase protection from accidental damage or theft for up to 90 days from the purchase date (exclusions and restrictions apply).

Extended Warranty

You can get up to one extra year of warranty added to the original manufacturer’s warranty. This applies to warranties of five years or less on covered purchases in the United States or its territories (exclusions and restrictions apply).

Statement Credits

The annual fee for credit cards can often be offset, either fully or partially, by receiving statement credits for select purchases. Previously, American Express Business Gold didn’t offer statement credits, but they recently added the following:

  • Earn up to $20 in statement credits monthly after you use the Business Gold Card for eligible U.S. purchases at FedEx, Grubhub, and Office Supply Stores. This can be an annual savings of up to $240. Enrollment required.
  • Get $12.95 back in statement credits each month when you pay for a monthly Walmart+ membership (subject to auto-renewal) with your Business Gold Card. $12.95 plus applicable taxes.

Flexible Payment Option

This benefit could come in handy for a business making a large purchase. The Pay Over Time option lets you carry a balance with interest on purchases of $100 or more (all purchases under $100 are due in full each month).

How it works:

  • Purchases of $100 or more are eligible to be paid over time, up to the amount of your Pay Over Time limit on your account.
  • You can choose to pay for these purchases over time with interest, or you can pay your full balance.

American Express Business Gold Vs Chase Ink Preferred

The Chase Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card is perhaps the most similar card to the Amex Business Gold Card.

It has a variety of bonus categories that earn 3X Ultimate Rewards points up to $150,000 per year. Bonus categories for the Ink Preferred include:

  • Travel
  • Shipping
  • Internet, cable and phone services
  • Advertising with social media sites and search engines

All other purchases will earn 1X Ultimate Rewards point with no cap.

The Ink Preferred card also comes with a generous welcome bonus. The annual fee of $95 is not waived the first year.

With think Ink Preferred, you have the chance to earn a bigger bonus if you can meet a higher minimum spend and the annual fee is lower. The lower minimum spend threshold with the American Express Business Gold might be easier for some folks though.

Of course, many business owners choose to use both cards to earn tons of Amex and Chase points via the bonus categories.

Another thing to consider is your 5/24 status with Chase as you can only get the Ink Preferred if you’ve opened fewer than 5 cards in the previous 24 months.

Is the Amex Business Gold Worth the $375 Annual Fee?

If you’ll be able to take advantage of the 4X bonus categories, the $375 annual fee can easily be worth it. If the benefits are useful to you, then that’s even better!

As with any card, it’s just a matter of weighing the points you’ll earn and the benefits vs the cost of the annual fee.

A 1-2 Punch with The Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express

A great no annual fee card to compliment your Amex Business Gold is The Blue Business Plus Credit Card from American Express. This workhorse of a card earns 2X on all purchases, up to $50,000 a year. If you have both cards, you can easily earn a ton of Membership Rewards points.

Final Thoughts

While the annual fee of $375 isn’t the cheapest card option, it can easily be worth it.

The ability to make large purchases without the spending limit of a traditional credit card plus the 4X bonus categories make the Amex Business Gold card a solid choice for many small business owners.