American Express Gold Card Annual Fee: Is it Worth it?

The American Express Gold Card is a popular choice among credit card users, thanks to its generous rewards program and exclusive perks. However, one aspect that often raises eyebrows is the annual fee. At $250 per year, the Gold Card’s fee is higher than many other credit cards on the market. So, is it worth it? Let’s take a closer look.

What You Get for the Annual Fee

First, let’s review what the Gold Card offers in exchange for the annual fee. Cardholders earn 4x points per dollar spent at restaurants worldwide, 4x points per dollar spent at U.S. supermarkets (up to $25,000 per year, then 1x), 3x points per dollar spent on flights booked directly with airlines or on, and 1x points per dollar spent on all other purchases. Additionally, new cardholders can earn a welcome bonus of 60,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $4,000 in the first six months of account opening.

The Gold Card also comes with a variety of travel and shopping benefits, such as up to $120 in annual dining credits, up to $100 in annual airline fee credits, and access to exclusive events and experiences. Cardholders also receive travel insurance, purchase protection, and extended warranty coverage.

Is the Annual Fee Worth it?

Now, let’s consider whether the Gold Card’s annual fee is worth paying. The answer depends on your spending habits and priorities. If you frequently dine out, shop at supermarkets, and travel, the rewards program alone can easily offset the annual fee. For example, if you spend $500 per month on dining and $500 per month on groceries, you would earn 36,000 points per year just from those categories, which is worth at least $360 in travel or merchandise redemption value.

Additionally, the Gold Card’s travel and shopping benefits can save you money and enhance your experiences. The dining and airline fee credits alone can cover most of the annual fee, and the access to exclusive events and experiences can be priceless.

However, if you don’t spend much in the bonus categories or don’t travel frequently, the Gold Card may not be the best fit for you. In that case, a credit card with a lower annual fee or no annual fee may be a better option.


In summary, the American Express Gold Card’s annual fee may seem steep at first glance, but it offers a robust rewards program and valuable benefits that can make it worth paying for the right cardholder. If you’re a frequent diner, grocery shopper, and traveler, the Gold Card can provide significant value and enhance your experiences. However, if you don’t spend much in those categories or don’t travel frequently, you may want to consider other credit card options.

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