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The American Express Business Gold - credit card review
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The American Express® Business Gold Card Review

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Matt Brown

The American Express Business Gold Card is the newest business credit card from American Express. Launched in November 2018, it’s a newly introduced version of the former Business Gold Rewards Card that offers improved earning rates, new bonus categories and a unique new way for businesses to maximize bonus category spending.

Welcome Bonus

In a bit of a surprising move, the Amex Business Gold Card was launched with a welcome bonus that didn’t include Membership Rewards points, which is definitely a bit of a shock since the $295 annual fee isn’t waived the first year either.

(Though a 50,000 bonus point offer can be found via a personal referral link)

Instead, the American Express Business Gold Card includes the following as the bonus:

  • Up to 1 year free of Google’s G Suite Basic – for up to 3 users ( $180 value)
  • Up to 1 year free of ZipRecruiter Standard

These benefits are offered in the form of statement credits, so you’ll have to sign up or change your billing information to your Amex Business Gold Card if you’re already a customer on these specific plans, in order to receive these benefits.

Shortly after the launch, American Express released a referral offer that includes a welcome bonus of 50,000 Membership Rewards points with a minimum spend of $5,000 in 3 months.

American Express Business Gold Card Earn 4x points on 2 select business categories. Terms Apply.Learn More

Bonus Categories

The new American Express Business Gold Card is unique in that it allows businesses to earn 4X Membership Rewards points per dollar on your two most used bonus categories each month. The spend in the remaining categories will earn 1X Membership Rewards point per dollar.

AMERICAN EXPRESS BUSINESS GOLD CARD - Bonus Categories

Under the previous Business Gold Rewards card, you had to select one of five categories to earn 3X Membership Rewards points per dollar and you were locked into that category for the entire year.

This new structure offers greatly enhanced opportunities, especially if you’re a business that spends heavily on more than 1 of the selected bonus categories.

The new Amex Business Gold Card also added U.S. restaurants as a sixth bonus category. This is a welcome addition and a great opportunity for those who regularly have lunch meetings.

These are the bonus categories:

  • Airfare purchased directly from airlines
  • U.S. purchases for advertising in select media (online, TV, radio)
  • U.S. purchases made directly from select technology providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions
  • U.S. purchases at gas stations
  • U.S. purchases at restaurants
  • U.S. purchases for shipping

Perhaps, the most convenient feature of the new Business Gold Card is that American Express automatically determines which categories are your top two for the month and awards Membership Rewards points accordingly.

If you have a business that spends heavily on one of these bonus categories, this is a great card for you since you get more flexibility in bonus earning options for your business spending. The bonus category spend does have a cap of $150,000 in combined purchases per calendar year.

 

American Express Business Gold Card - bonus category - technology providers

U.S. purchases made directly from select technology providers of computer hardware, software, and cloud solutions

Amex Offers

One of the biggest benefits behind most of the American Express cards is that they have access to Amex Offers. Amex Offers is a way for you to use targeted discounts for extra discounts and savings as well as to also earn extra Membership Rewards points at select merchants.

The available offers change regularly, so it’s always worth checking what might be available at select merchants as it can easily translate into hundreds or even thousands of dollars of savings annually — or tens of thousands of extra Membership Rewards points.

All you have to do is add the offers that you want to use to your American Express Business Gold Card and then use the card at that merchant and the offer will be applied to your account.

Screenshot 2018 10 25 22.05.23

Often, you’ll even find Amex Offers that overlap with the bonus categories for the Business Gold Card. In the screenshot above, if one of your top monthly 4X categories is shipping, not only would you be earning 4x Membership Rewards points for each dollar that you spend (up to $150,000), but you could also earn to 10% back on that first $1,000 in spend as well!

Membership Rewards: Transfer Partners And Rebate With Amex Travel

The Business Gold Rewards card earns Membership Rewards points. You can redeem these points in a number of ways, but in almost all cases the most lucrative ways to redeem them is by transferring them to any of American Express’ travel partners.

Airline Transfer Partners (transfer rate)Hotel Transfer Partners (transfer rate)
Aer Lingus AerClub (1:1)Choice Privileges (1:1)
AeroMexico Club Premier (1:1.6)Hilton Honors (1:2)
Air Canada Aeroplan (1:1)Marriott Rewards (1:1)
Air France KLM (1:1)
Alitalia Millemiglia (1:1)
ANA Mileage Club (1:1)
Asia Miles (1:1)
Avianca LifeMiles (1:1)
British Airways Executive Club (1:1)
Delta SkyMiles (1:1)
El Al Israel Frequent Flyer Club (1000:20)
Emirates Skywards Miles (1:1)
Etihad Guest (1:1)
Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles (1:1)
Iberia Plus (1:1)
JetBlue TrueBlue (250:200)
Singapore Krisflyer (1:1)
Virgin Atlantic FlyingClub (1:1)

Along with earning and redeeming Membership Rewards points by transferring to partners, The Business Gold Card introduces its’ own version of a popular feature of the Business Platinum Card from American Express – the 25% airline rebate.

The Business Platinum Card from American Express Earn 50,000 points after you spend $10,000, an extra 25,000 points after an additional $10,000 all in the first 3 months. Terms apply.Learn More

If you book a flight with American Express Travel using Membership Rewards Points for first or business class airfare, or any class with your selected qualifying airline, you get 25% of those points back as a refund. It’s important to note that rebate only works if you book via American Express Travel, and don’t transfer your points to one of American Express’ numerous transfer partners.

American Express Membership Rewards points - Airline Transfer Partner - Etihad Airways

The Business Gold Rewards card earns Membership Rewards points.  Redeem Business Gold Membership Rewards points by transferring them to any of American Express’ travel partners.

With the rebate, select travel booked through American Express Travel will effectively be booked at the rate of 1.33 cents per point, instead of the standard 1 cent per point.

The Business Platinum Card from American Express offers a similar benefit, but it’s a 35% which comes out about 1.53 cents per point.

Final Thoughts

The Business Gold Card definitely has some big positives. Some of these positives that really stick out include:

  • 4x Membership Rewards points on two categories instead of just one bonus category
  • U.S. Restaurants as a sixth bonus category
  • Categories are no longer locked into an entire year and instead are determined by monthly spend
  • 25% Pay with Points rebate

On the negative side, it’s definitely disappointing to see a card with a $295 annual fee – that isn’t waived the first year like previously on the Business Gold Rewards Card – launched with no welcome bonus.

However, if your business can take advantage of the increased bonus category cap and bonus category flexibility, this card can help you earn tons of Membership Rewards points. All in all, it’s a good effort from American Express, we just wish they’d add a real welcome bonus.

American Express Business Gold Card Earn 4x points on 2 select business categories. Terms Apply.Learn More

Editor’s Note: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.

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How to Travel as a Couple using Rapid Rewards points with the Companion Pass with savings on flights with Southwest
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A Year with the Southwest Companion Pass

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Matt Brown

This year was the first time I’ve ever had the Companion Pass from Southwest Airlines. Even though the year isn’t over, with no more planned Southwest travel for the rest of 2018, I wanted to tally things up and walk through how we saved almost $2,500 with our Southwest Companion Pass.

Yes, you read that correctly. We saved almost $2,500 on flights! Read on to learn how we did it and how we’re going to be able to do it again in 2019.

How To Use Southwest Companion Pass

We saved $2,471.31 in 2018 by using Rapid Rewards points plus another $2,471.31 with the Companion Pass, for a grand total of $4,942.62 in savings on flights with Southwest.

What Is the Companion Pass

Southwest Rapid Rewards has consistently been ranked highly by travelers who enjoy the simplicity of the program.  If there’s an empty seat on the plane, you can either pay in cash or use miles. It’s that simple.

But another perk that makes Southwest Rapid Rewards fantastic is the Companion Pass. It is often heralded as the single best domestic frequent flier perk on the market.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Priority Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More

You can bring a designated companion on any Southwest flight for just the taxes and fees. On domestic flights, your companion’s ticket is just $5.60 each way. This is the best part of the Companion Pass – it works for any flight, regardless of whether you pay cash for your ticket or use Rapid Rewards points.

Aside from a few simple and basic rules, there are very few limitations surrounding the Companion Pass and using it. So it provides tremendous value for users year after year, and surprisingly isn’t super difficult to earn!

Check out our complete guide to earning the Southwest Companion Pass for 2019 and beyond.

How I Earned the Companion Pass

You may find this hard to believe, but before I earned my Companion Pass, I had only booked one round-trip on Southwest in my entire life. So, if you’ve heard of this perk before, but thought it was only attainable for Southwest elite fliers, you couldn’t be more wrong.

Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business Credit Card 60,000 points after $3k spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Southwest Rapid Rewards Plus Credit Card Earn Companion Pass and 30,000 points after $4k spend in 3 months. Companion Pass expires 12/31/19Learn More

I earned the Companion Pass by strategically timing when I opened 2 Southwest credit cards – the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Business and the Southwest Rapid Rewards Premier Credit Card. That’s it. That’s the big secret to making this easy.

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Chase Ink Business Cash Credit Card Review
Blog

Chase Ink Business Cash Credit Card Review

Disclosure: This post may contain references to products from our advertisers. We may receive compensation from products we link to. We appreciate your support. You can read our advertising disclosure here.

By: Matt Brown, 10xTravel Contributor

The Ink Business Cash Credit Card is a popular card for business owners that comes with a great welcome bonus. It provides great opportunities to earn tons of Chase Ultimate Rewards points thanks to some very useful bonus categories.

Let’s take a look at what you need to know about the Chase Ink Business Cash.

Ink Business Cash Credit Card $500 bonus cash back after $3,000 spend in the first 3 monthsLearn More

 

Welcome Bonus

The Ink Business Cash Card currently offers a  welcome signup bonus of $500 cash back after spending $3,000 in the first 3 months.

The great thing about this bonus is that the $500 actually comes in the form of 50,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards points.  If you have the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Chase Sapphire Reserve or  Chase Ink Business Preferred, you can combine your points.

Chase Sapphire Reserve Earn 50,000 points after you spend $4,000 in the first 3 months(Learn more)
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card 50,000 bonus points after $4,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More
Ink Business Preferred Credit Card 80,000 Chase Ultimate Rewards Points after $5,000 spend in 3 monthsLearn More

 

Once combined under one of these cards, you can transfer your Ultimate Rewards points to airline and hotel partners. Your points will also be worth more in the Chase travel portal: 1.5 cents each with the Chase Sapphire Reserve and 1.25 cents with either the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Ink Preferred.

Bonus Categories

With the Ink Business Cash, you can take advantage of some great 5X and 2X bonus categories.

  • 5X at office supply stores
  • 5X on internet, cable and phone services
  • 2X at gas stations
  • 2X at restaurants

Both the 5X and 2X bonus categories each have a cap of $25,000 per cardmember year but that should be more than enough to earn some serious points.

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