Amex Gold Rewards Card: New Offer of 75,000 MR Points!

In September 2021, the American Express Gold Rewards Card was reborn after being briefly discontinued. The relaunch saw some new perks, an all-time-high welcome bonus, and a snazzy option to order your card in the metal Rose Gold colour.

Now, the card has improved its welcome bonus yet again, through May 11, 2022. Let’s take a look at what’s on offer from one of the most iconic products in the American Express lineup.

New Welcome Bonus of Up to 75,000 MR Points

When you apply via a refer-a-friend link and are approved for a Gold Rewards Card, you’ll get an improved welcome bonus worth up to 75,000 MR points:

  • Earn 55,000 MR points upon spending $3,000 in the first three months
  • Earn 10 MR points per dollar spent on travel expenses in the first six months, up to 20,000 MR points

For the full bonus, you’d have to spend $2,000 on travel purchases. You’ll have six months to hit this target, so don’t worry if you’re not ready to make travel plans quite yet.

However, consider that any travel purchases within the first three months will also count towards the card’s $3,000 threshold requirement to earn the main part of the welcome bonus.

Travel expenses may include cash fares for flights, taxes and fees paid directly to the airline, hotels and alternatives like Airbnb, car rentals, cruises, and so forth. You could, say, book your accommodation using your new Gold Rewards Card, then use those points for a high-value Aeroplan booking to get there.

(Note that the welcome bonus component of 10x bonus points earned on travel encompasses the base rate of 2 points per dollar spent in that category. Thus you’ll earn 10 points per dollar spent on travel up to $2,000 spent, then 2 points per dollar spent once you’ve hit the limit.)

Also, there’s no more anniversary bonus in “months 14–17” – now, you’ll earn the full bonus in the first year. That gives you the option to decide whether or not to renew the card in its second year based on the ongoing value you’re getting, without worrying about forgoing part of the bonus.

In the past, the Gold Card had historically offered welcome bonuses in the range of 25,000–30,000 points, against an annual fee of $150. Now, the welcome bonus has rapidly grown, with the net annual fee remaining the same (as we’ll discuss below).

Also, 55,000–75,000 MR points on the Gold Rewards Card puts it in the same range as the Platinum Card‘s old offers. Before the credit card market heated up in Summer 2021, the Platinum Card usually offered 50,000–70,000 points, but with a high net annual fee of $499.

Now, you can instead score the same haul on the Gold Rewards Card with a net annual fee of just $150!

Metal Card + Rose Gold Card

The Gold Rewards Card is a metal card in the signature gold colour. What’s more, new applicants to the Gold Rewards Card may choose a distinctive Rose Gold colour in addition to the traditional Gold finish. 

Amex Gold Rewards Card: Perks & Benefits

The Gold Rewards Card now offers a $100 annual travel credit, similar to the $200 annual travel credit on its premium counterpart, the Platinum Card. 

The $100 annual travel credit can be redeemed towards any booking of $100 or more through the Amex Travel online portal, including flights, hotels, car rentals, and more.

Since the travel credit also applies to refundable bookings, it’s effectively as good as cash, and it reduces your net annual fee back down to $150. 

In addition, the American Express Gold Rewards Card has added airport lounge access to its suite of travel perks. 

Cardholders will receive four complimentary visits to Plaza Premium lounges in Canada every year, allowing you to make use of the Plaza Premium Lounges in Toronto, Vancouver, Winnipeg, and Edmonton – as well as the Air France Business Lounge in Montreal, which is managed by Plaza Premium. 

In addition, cardholders also receive complimentary membership with Priority Pass, although no free lounge visits are included; instead, every admission to a Priority Pass lounge will be subject to the prevailing rate of US$32 per visit. 

Finally, there’s also a $50 statement credit on NEXUS purchases, valid once every four years when a NEXUS application or renewal fee is charged to the card.

In terms of everyday earning rates, the Gold Rewards Card offers the following:

  • 2 MR points per dollar spent on travel, gas, groceries, and drugstores
  • 1 MR point per dollar spent on all other purchases

These earning rates appear to be weaker than the Cobalt Card, which commands a similar annual fee once you factor in the Gold Rewards Card’s annual travel credit ($150 net annual fee vs. $156.88 annual fee on the Cobalt).

The Cobalt’s 5-2-1 earning structure (including 5x points on food and drinks) blows the Gold Rewards Card’s 2x categories out of the water, especially now that the Cobalt earns points that can also be transferred to airline partners.

Going forward, it appears that the Cobalt Card is very much positioned as the perfect card for Canadian travellers looking to optimize their return on daily spend, while the Gold Rewards Card is more of a hybrid travel card that offers a travel credit, lounge passes, NEXUS credits every four years, and stronger travel insurance.

Conclusion

The refreshed American Express Gold Rewards Card is has upped its offer once again, continuing to shine as brightly as its new metal veneer. 

It’s now offering an all-time high of 75,000 MR points, through May 11, 2022. The grand total is more than before, as is the amount awarded in the first year, even if you skip the travel spending.

While the card’s new features since its relaunch aren’t wildly innovative, instead resembling a “lite” version of the Platinum Card, this welcome bonus is certainly something to behold. If you’re mostly looking for points via the welcome bonus, rather than perks or ongoing earning rates, the refreshed Gold Rewards Card is a strong contender for your next credit card application.

56 Comments
  1. Elton

    With Priority pass and Plaza Premium lounge splitting, how does the plaza premium pass work? Can I just show my Amex Gold, or do I need to get some type of plaza premium membership first? Thanks!

    1. Rachel YYZ

      Just showing your card will suffice!

  2. Theon

    Anyone knows how much a companion of a gold card holder gets charged when one goes to Plaza premium?
    I have platinum, but it’s not worth it right now unless the priority pass includes 30 usd restaurant dining for free. I got that from a Mastercard from other country, it’s 100x better.

  3. Rob

    Anybody got the bonuses with this Amex Gold after relaunch as a previous Amex Gold holder?

  4. Zahil

    When you say the travel credit is as good as cash. Are you saying that I can purchase a ticket (say for $1000) with the $100 credit. Then refund that ticket and get back $1000, so essentially having a free $100 credit that applies to my other purchases rather than being limited to travel purchases? I have the platinum so would love to get some clarification from you regarding this. Thanks a lot, btw first time me commenting here but been watching your YouTube vids for a lil over 3 years now.

  5. SoyMexicano

    Hey Ricky,

    About two months before the relaunch (Sept./21) I cancelled my Gold card, which I’d had for two years. I believe it was a charge card when I had it.

    Is the revised ($75K) WB bonus on the relaunched American Express Gold Rewards Card a credit card? If so, given the once in a lifetime rule, can I apply for the rebranded card and still receive the WB?

  6. Jacky

    Hi Ricky, your amex flowchart infographic was updated this morning. It says Cobalt/Gold/Bizgold are now able to refer at 15k a piece.

    However when I review the Cobalt referral link it only shows 5k (not 15!) to another person ONLY if they get the Cobalt. They have the option to select another card instead of applying for the Cobalt. However I have chatted to two individual agents on the amex app today and they said, if the referee opts to apply to another card using the Cobalt referal link then then the person issuing the referal will not get a referal bonus (e.g. Referrer gets 0 points! instead of the 5k offered in the link or 15k according to your flow chart).

    What is correct here?

    1. Ricky YVR

      The flowchart shows that the Business Gold Card earns 15K for referring to the Gold Rewards Card, not that the Gold Rewards Card can earn 15K for referring to other cards.

      If the referee opts to get a different card, the referrer still gets the bonus.

      1. Jacky

        ok thanks BUT just to be crystal clear if P1 Referrer Cobalt refers P2 Referee Cobalt (but P2 opts to get Gold or Biz Gold instead of Cobalt).

        Then P1 Referrer will get 5k referral bonus points?

        Many thanks!

        1. Ricky YVR

          Yep!

  7. Tom

    If I don’t know anyone to get a referral is my best option to apply through the GCR?

    1. DM

      Yes, I was looking at that as well and might just do it even though I have P2 with a Cobalt Card and Platinum Card. I can only refer myself from the Cobalt Card to get this card. Platinum only allows you to get Platinum or Bus. Platinum through a referral link.

      All told, the trade-off is $120 cash from GCR vs. 10,000 (assuming the person referring is in the same household, so the referral bonus stays in the “pool”) fewer MR points. I know Ricky and everyone else will say get the extra 10,000 MR points (worth $210 according to Ricky’s valuation and I’d agree since I consistently get more value per point than that), however, I am sitting on more than 500,000 MR points already (spread across US and Canada accounts of P1/P2), so I am in favor of saving some dough right now so that I can use that saved fee on another card later in the year (perhaps the Chase Aeroplan Card in Jan 2023!).

      Obviously, everyone’s situation and preference will vary, but I wanted to layout my math and reasoning (for whatever it is worth) to a fellow miles enthusiast.

  8. Prateek

    Any idea about when the $100 annual credit shows up after the account is opened? We opened my wife’s account about 10 days ago, but the thing at the top right which shows this benefit has still not appeared. Is there another way to take advantage of it? I have a hotel booking I need to make.

  9. Bhargav

    Are supplementary cards metal too?

    1. John

      Just received my Gold supplementary card (to a Gold primary card) and it’s the old plastic design unfortunately.

  10. Xian Montinola

    I have this card since last year and was my primary until the upgraded cobalt. I think it was said that I get a $100 rebate for previously owning the card to let me give it a try.
    I love my cobalt card so much, I am planning to switch to it permanently after I have tried out the new gold (I actually just want the rose gold to collect). Since I am keeping my coblat, any tips on what how to “safely” get rid of my gold? Should I downgrade (can I) and if I can, is there a way I can earn MR points bonus for doing so? Should I just cancel after a year? What should I do? Any tips please?

    1. Ricky YVR

      Cancelling after a year should be fine. If you cancel after the annual fee posts and then get a refund, it’s a more “credible” cancellation in the sense that you’ve truly decided not to renew the card. There’s no downgrade path.

  11. JY

    As someone already having the Plat (got it with that insane 150k MR summer offer yoo-hoo), will have to think about getting this one. Probably after finishing up with the Plat welcome bonus.

    But outside of getting that 65k welcome bonus, seems pretty weak. Probably will get that cool-looking Rose Gold Card, meet the MSR, finish the bonus in year 2, and then cancel (and keep that Rose Gold as a souvenir lol).

  12. Torah

    Thinking about this new card compared to the cobalt. Any thoughts?

    1. Ezequiel

      With little spending about $1000 a month in my case I’d have 10k more points if going the Cobalt way. It depends on you, if you travel two or three times a year I think the Gold would make more sense.

  13. Brian

    Anyone knows if I apply for a rose gold version, will I be able to request to have an additional card for myself in gold to separate personal and business transactions?

  14. Tom Devlin

    Are there any data points as to what constitutes a “new” applicant?

    I had the Gold card approx. 5 years ago.

    Will I receive the bonus if I apply for the card now?

    TIA

    asdf

    1. Ricky YVR

      Technically it’s the same product as before, so the once-in-a-lifetime rule still applies. However, I feel like Amex may be keen to welcome back new applicants for this relaunched card, so perhaps that might help your chances. It’s still a gamble, though.

      1. Tom Devlin

        Thanks for the response.

        I will come back and post the results if I do decide to take the gamble.

        asdf

    2. Marco

      Anyone know if this offer expires? Don’t see an expiry date so might take advantage of other offers first like TD FCT

      1. Ricky YVR

        No expiry date. Given that this is the launch offer, I’d expect to see it last until at least the end of the year and likely well into Q1 2022.

    3. Leigh

      Wondering this as well!

  15. Daniel

    Hi Ricky. Do we know how this affect Gold cards that are issued as supplemental to Platinum card holder?

  16. Joel

    Is it a “credit card” or a “charge card”? No option to carry a balance on a charge card but a good way to stay out of debt. Amex definitely want their customers to pay interest $$$

    1. Ricky YVR

      Update: I was wrong. While there was no indication at the time, it’s now confirmed the Gold Rewards Card is a credit card going forward upon its relaunch and reopening to new applications.

    2. Ricky YVR

      It’ll remain a charge card.

  17. Santiago

    Will existing Cardholders receive four complimentary visits to Plaza Premium lounges ?

    1. Ricky YVR

      Yes, as of October 18.

  18. MichaelK

    Earning rate needs to improve for me to keep this card given I have the Plat, Aeroplan Reserve and Cobalt. Was waiting to see what the new offer was before making a decision, nothing worth the wait given the earn rates on Cobalt and the new $100 credit for Nexus on Plat

  19. Daniel

    Thanks for the update. Do you know what is happening with the BUSINESS Amex Gold? I have one and the 3 preferred vendor program will be discontinued soon as you’ve reported. TIA

    1. Ricky YVR

      No confirmed updates at this time but I’d expect to see more changes to that card soon too.

  20. John

    The lounge pass is weak. Calgary doesn’t even have a plaza premium lounge absolutely crap compare to lounge key and priority pass which works in almost every lounge. Very sad American Express.

  21. Diego

    I wish that the Plaza Premium Lounge access was for all PP lounges as there are some great PP lounges outside of Canada, and it would be great to be able to access the lounge on the way back from an international trip as well.

  22. Matthew

    Any idea if the Platinum card is next up for some changes? It would be nice to see no FX fees, the mobile insurance and maybe the Nexus.

  23. CM

    Any idea if the supplementary card(s) will still be free? Or is there going to be a change to those as well?

    I am still contemplating if the new and improved card will work for me.

    Thanks.

  24. Kenny

    For those (including myself) who had cancelled the gold card within the past few months, and now given this is being billed as a new product launch; if I were to apply again would I be eligible for the WB?

    1. Joshua

      The card is not a bad proposition overall for 150 dollars. Still don’t understand the purpose of this card in lieu of the new cobalt’s earning and transfer ratios though. Guess the four plaza premium passes will lure some, but you can get four free passes with the Cibc Aventura for free.

    2. Wayne Williams

      As I live in Europe (spain) I struggle to find retail outlets who accept the card thus reward points are scarce. The increase in yearly fee is a real deterent…I need to rethink as I also have a supplement card

      1. AG

        Great review, one thing I noted was that of my four Amex cards, the Gold (I have the CPA) offered both the most, and most relevant special offers. I saved a bunch on this card which was free as a CPA, to subsidize fees on others…this value point is sometimes missed. I would love to know how Amex allocates these offers amongst cards.

  25. DM

    I agree with the sentiments that the updates are disappointing, especially with the earnings rate. So many cards come with the NEXUS fee credit that it’s not a differentiating factor anyway and it’s only applicable once in 4 years – WOW. I am glad I convinced my wife to take up the upgrade offer to Platinum earlier this summer. The platinum card, in it’s current form, is providing substantially high value already and we are yet to use it at any airport or hotel!

  26. BG

    Any news for business gold? Now that 2x plastic is canceled?

    1. Oslerscodes

      Just looking fo clarification on the plastiq changes. I keep my Business Gold exclusively for plastiq and annual fee is approaching. Your comment seems to indicate that it is changing but the sentence ends in a question mark.

    2. Ricky YVR

      I’m expecting some meaningful changes to the business version at some point in the not-too-distant future as well.

  27. CT

    What about signing up bonus MR? Are there MR points for new applications later?
    My wife’s Gold card just expired a few days ago, and I see in her account 2500 MR points automatically added with a $150 annual fee, retention bonus points I guess!

    1. Ricky YVR

      The signup bonus is yet to be announced. I’m hopeful that the card can somewhat mitigate these mellow changes by setting a new standard for signup bonuses – say 60,000 or 75,000 MR points for the $250 annual fee price point? I certainly can’t see it being lower than the Cobalt’s 50K, and if it is, that speaks volumes about which product American Express is choosing to emphasize more.

  28. Tammy

    Hmmmmm. Disappointed. I have the AMEX platinum and was keeping the AMEX Gold because my children (under 18) were additional card holders. The 2X groceries, gas and drug stores was also a key selling point for me. Will definitely have to think this one through. Thanks Ricky for the thorough analysis.

  29. Santiago

    My worry is about the Platinum AF being increased soon

  30. EH

    You can enjoy the same fee you’re currently paying for the first year. Your annual fee will be increasing to $250 on your next Cardmembership anniversary date on or after October 18, 2021. We want you to experience all that your new Card has to offer for the same fee you currently pay by issuing you a statement credit after your annual fee of $250 is billed. This means for the first year, you will enjoy the updated American Express Gold Rewards Card for the same fee as today.
    I am a bit confused. Does it mean AMEX will issue an additional $100 statement credit (not travel credit) to offset the increased annual fee for the first year?

  31. steve

    Absolute crap. This is the best they could come up with? No increased earning rate – a complete joke. Keep in mind that NEXUS is so far behind it will take forever to catch up to get you into an interview. I’ll be cancelling upon renewal. I will wait to see what the Plat card overhaul will be before deciding on that one.

    1. Ezequiel

      Same thoughts. Will cancel and get Cobalt. The earning rate is just a joke.

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