Editors Note: All information about American Express Green Card has been collected independently by 10xTravel. American Express Green Card is no longer available through 10xTravel.

It wasn’t all that long ago that the American Express Green Card got a complete makeover, featuring new bonus categories and benefits. Since then, it’s drawn a fair bit of attention from consumers who had paid it little mind in the past thanks to its competitive earnings structure that mirrors that of popular competing cards.

But the new benefits don’t come without a price. At $150 per year, is the Amex Green Card worth it?

Read on to find out!

What Benefits Do You Get With the Green Card?

Welcome Bonus

New Amex Green cardholders will net 45,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $2,000 on purchases in the first six months of card membership. There’s no denying there are larger bonuses out there, but this one has a relatively low spending threshold for netting the bonus. If you’re looking for a good jump-start to building your points stash but don’t want to lay out a ton of cash to get it, the Green Card makes a great option.

Earn 3X Membership Rewards Points on Travel

The Green Card offers 3X points per dollar spent on travel, making it an excellent option for those who are often on the road (or those who intend to be after they start making use of their newly earned rewards points!).

Don’t worry if flights and hotels aren’t part of your near-term future plans, because Amex’s travel category for the Green Card is broad, as it covers lodging options such as Airbnb and vacation rentals.

Earn 3X Membership Rewards Points at Restaurants

The other bonus category for the Green Card is also relatively easy to maximize, with restaurant spending earning 3X points per dollar. Under the restaurant umbrella, you’ll find everything from fine dining to fast food covered, and takeout and delivery count too.

Because people often eat out when they’re traveling, these categories go hand and hand and make the Green Card the perfect option for vacations, work trips and beyond.

air travel

Transfer Points to Airline and Hotel Loyalty Programs

Just as important as how many points you’re earning is the question of what you can do with them once you have them. Luckily, with American Express, you have a lot of options.

Amex Membership Rewards points can be transferred to a range of airline and hotel partners, meaning that no matter where you want to go, you can probably find a way to use your points to get there. Here’s the list:

Amex Membership Rewards Airline Transfer Partners

Aer LingusANAEl AljetBlue
Aero MexicoAviancaEmiratesQantas
Air CanadaBritish AirwaysEtihadSingapore Airlines
Air France/KLMCathay PacificHawaiian AirlinesVirgin Atlantic

Not only does such a long lineup of partners ensure you can get where you want to go, but it also gives you options so that you can transfer your points to whichever program helps you get maximum value. Need to get to Western Europe, for example? Try using 55,000 Aeroplan miles for a one-way business class ticket on Turkish Airlines or SWISS, or as few as 53,000 Flying Blue miles for Air France or KLM business class.

$100 CLEAR Credit

American Express knows its fees are a tough sell for some customers, so it loves to pack them full of credits that help offset the annual charge.

In the case of the Green Card, one such credit is a benefit of up to $100 towards a CLEAR membership. The biometrics-based service helps customers breeze by lines at security, ensuring a stress-free airport experience. Simply pay for a CLEAR annual membership using the Green Card, and up to $100 will come right back to your statement.

$100 LoungeBuddy Credit

The second credit the Green Card features is a LoungeBuddy credit up to $100. LoungeBuddy is a service that provides airport lounge access. When you buy access directly from LoungeBuddy using its website or app, you’ll see up to $100 annually come back to your statement.

This credit helps the Green Card compete with some of its pricier counterparts, which bear high annual fees but also come with Priority Pass access, Centurion Lounge access or both. If you only need access a handful of times per year, the Green Card can cover you.

Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver

Secondary Car Rental Insurance

When you rent a car and pay with the Green Card, you can decline the collision damage waiver offered by the rental car company and Amex will automatically cover you, pending some exclusions and restrictions based on country and vehicle type.

travel protection

Travel Protections

The Amex Green Card also comes with a couple of other key travel protections for when you’re traveling by plane, train, ship or bus. If you book a round-trip on your card and your trip gets delayed by more than 12 hours for a covered reason, you can seek reimbursement of up to $300 per trip for related expenses that you put on the Green Card. While it’s not as much as some other cards offer, it’s definitely enough to help you in a pinch if you find yourself stranded and need overnight accommodation.

The card comes with baggage insurance, too. You can claim coverage of up to $1,250 per carry-on bag and $500 per checked piece if your luggage is lost, damaged or stolen while in transit.

Shopping Protections

While they tend to go under the radar, the Green Card also comes with some shopping protections that can save you money and headache in a couple of key situations. First, purchase protection shields new items paid for with the Green Card for up to 90 days after the purchase date, covering you up to $1,000 per occurrence and up to $50,000 per year.

The Green Card will also extend the original manufacturer’s warranty by one year for warranties of five years or less, giving you peace of mind in case something goes wrong.

American Express Gold Entertainment Benefits

Entertainment Benefits

Holders of the Green Card also get access to some of Amex’s signature entertainment benefits, including exclusive presale ticket access to hot events including concerts and sports games.

What Other Cards Should You Consider in the Same Price Range?

With a fee of $150, the Green Card occupies a unique place between cards in the $95 range and premium cards, the most popular of which check in at $550. It’s worth examining some other options, though, to: a) make sure you’re getting enough bang for your extra bucks over entry-level cards, and, b) not passing on a pricier card you may get more value from.

American Express® Gold Card

There is one other popular option that falls between the $95s and the $550s, and that’s the American Express Gold Card. At $250 (rates and fees), its annual fee is higher, but so are its earnings multiples in popular spending categories. Cardholders earn 4X Amex points per dollar at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets on the first $25,000 spent every year (1x thereafter). If you’re a big food spender, those will add up quickly. The card also nets 3X points per dollar on flights, so you won’t be totally giving up travel as a bonus category if you opt for the Gold instead of the Green.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

On the other hand, if a $150 annual fee still seems tough to swallow and $95 feels more comfortable, take a look at the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.

If you spend a lot on travel and dining, it might not seem worth it to leave that many bonus points on the table just to save $55. But the Preferred has some other selling points, too, particularly if you’re just starting out in the world of points and miles.

For one, it offers a welcome bonus of 60,000, which will go a long way toward your first major redemption. Second, many people choose to begin with Chase cards thanks to Chase’s 5/24 rule, which stipulates that if you’ve opened five or more credit cards in the past 24 months you’ll be automatically rejected for the majority of Chase’s offerings, including the Sapphire Preferred.

When Would It Make Sense to Pay for a More Expensive Card?

If major points-earning potential and lots of statement credits float your boat, you may want to look into The Platinum Card® from American Express. The card bears a $695 price tag (rates and fees), but it’s also chock full of benefits that can easily offset the fee if you make use of them.

With The Platinum Card, benefits include:

  • the same $100 hotel credit with The Hotel Collection that the Gold Card offers,
  • up to $10 in monthly Uber Credits, usable on rides or Uber Eats,
  • a fee credit for Global Entry or TSA Pre✓,
  • Up to $50 annually in Saks Fifth Avenue credits, two times per year.
  • access to Amex’s Global Lounge Collection, including Centurion Lounges,
  • access to Delta Sky Clubs,
  • Priority Pass membership, including access to the Priority Pass network of lounges and credits at participating restaurants, and,
  • Gold status with both Hilton Honors and Marriott Bonvoy
  • $695 annual fee.

And that’s not even the full list. You’ll also earn 5X Membership Rewards points on flights booked directly with the airline or with Amex Travel and on prepaid hotels booked through Amex Travel.

Liking the sound of Chase, on the other hand? The Chase Sapphire Reserve®, priced at $550, boasts travel and dining as bonus categories just as the Sapphire Preferred and the Amex Green do, earning 3X points per dollar on each.

Other benefits include:

  • $300 annual travel credit (applied automatically to all travel purchases),
  • complimentary access to Priority Pass airport lounges and restaurants,
  • $60 DoorDash credit (in both 2020 and 2021),
  • One-year Lyft Pink membership (including 15% off all Lyft rides),
  • 10x points per dollar spent on Lyft rides,
  • $100 Global Entry credit or $80 TSA PreCheck credit, and,
  • enhanced travel protections.

Points are also worth 1.5 cents each when redeeming for travel through the Chase travel portal.

When Does a No-Annual-Fee Credit Card Make More Sense?

If you’re just starting out with points and miles and feeling hesitant to commit to an annual fee at all, the Amex EveryDay Credit Card makes a great starting point. You’ll earn 2X Membership Rewards points at U.S. supermarkets up to $6,000 per year, and one point per dollar on everything else. You’ll also get a 20% bonus in points when you make 20 transactions with the card during your statement period.

While its earning potential isn’t nearly as high as that of its counterparts, it affords you an opportunity to dip a toe into the points world and see what kind of earning your usual spend can generate. You can always upgrade to another card in the Amex family once you get the hang of things!

Bottom Line

If you can make use of its earnings power, statement credits and other benefits, the Amex Green Card is definitely worth the price. Not sure if you can? Check out the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Amex EveryDay, which will help you get your bearings in the world of points and miles without costing you three-figure fees.