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American Express Cobalt Card

Last updated: September 29, 2021
  • 50,000 MR points
  • $944 First-year value
Best offer is available via a referral link
Signup bonus:
2,500 MR points for each of the first 12 months in which you spend $500
20,000 MR points upon spending $3,000 in the first three months
Total of 50,000 MR points in the first year for spending $7,500
Monthly fee:
$12.99
Earning rate:
5 MR points per dollar spent on groceries and dining
3 MR points per dollar spent on streaming services
2 MR points per dollar spent on gas, public transit, and travel purchases
1 MR point per dollar spent on all other purchases
Referral bonus:
5,000 MR points per referral, up to 75,000 MR points per calendar year
First referral before October 27, 2021 triggers 3x bonus points for all purchases between November 25, 2021 and February 28, 2022, up to 30,000 bonus points
Perks & benefits:
Special offers for Cobalt cardholders throughout the year
Insurance:
Good

The American Express Cobalt Card is one of the most popular cards in Canada, and for good reason. It’s the ultimate lifestyle card, earning incomparable rewards on groceries and restaurants, with an extremely flexible points program.

Bonuses & Fees

Eschewing the traditional credit card model, the Cobalt Card is designed as a “monthly membership” card, offering a bonus of up to 50,000 Membership Rewards points over the course of the first 12 months of your membership.

Here’s how it works: for each monthly billing cycle during the first 12 months that you complete $500 in spending, you’ll earn 2,500 MR points, for a total of 30,000 MR points.

Also, upon spending $3,000 within the first three months, you can earn an additional 20,000 MR points.

The annual fee of $155.88 is also charged on a month-to-month basis – each month, you’ll be on the hook for a “Membership Fee Installment” of $12.99.

As a cardholder, you’ll earn 5,000 MR points for every referral you make, up to a maximum of 75,000 MR points per calendar year. You can also add supplementary cards for free.

As a limited time offer, the first referral you make before October 27, 2021 will trigger a 3x bonus points offer for all your purchases between November 25, 2021 and February 28, 2022, up to 75,000 bonus points.

Earning Rewards

The American Express Cobalt Card is a game changer when it comes to the returns on daily spending. You’ll earn:

  • 5 MR points per dollar spent on groceries & dining, specifically “(i) restaurant, quick service restaurant, coffee shop and drinking establishments in Canada, (ii) stand-alone grocery stores in Canada, (iii) delivery of food and groceries in Canada as a primary business”
  • 3 MR points per dollar spent on eligible streaming services, which include Apple TV+, Apple Music, Crave, Disney+, fuboTV, hayu, Netflix, RDS, SiriusXM Canada, Spotify, and TSN
  • 2 MR points per dollar spent on travel purchases, transit, and transportation, specifically “(i) stand-alone automobile gasoline stations in Canada, (ii) travel services or travel bookings including air, water, rail and road transport, lodging and tour operator sales, (iii) local commuter transportation in Canada including subway, streetcar, taxi, limousine and ride sharing services”
  • 1 MR point per dollar spent on all other purchases

These elevated category-specific earning rates apply up until a combined maximum of $30,000 in purchases annually. After, all spending will earn 1 MR point per dollar spend, regardless of category.

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that Amex has the millennial demographic locked in their sights with this credit card. As someone who’s often lumped into the millennial category myself, I can attest to the fact that the vast majority of my spending goes towards food and travel, and I do indeed get amazing value out of this card.

This is also the only 5x category multiplier on spending in Canada, which is something our neighbours down in the US have had for many, many years.

Insurance Coverage

The major coverage categories are pretty much all included, with the exception of Trip Interruption and Trip Cancellation. In particular, the following benefits are included:

  • Emergency medical insurance, of up to $5,000,000 per insured person
  • Lost, stolen, or damaged baggage insurance, of up to $500
  • Baggage delay insurance, of up to $500
  • Car rental loss or damage insurance, so you can save on the insurance fees usually charged by car rental companies
  • Hotel or motel burglary insurance, of up to $500

Apply Now

The American Express Cobalt Card is relatively easy to get approved for. There is no minimum income requirement, meaning that anyone is eligible to apply.

You'll earn the best available signup bonus if you apply using a referral link. Consider supporting Prince of Travel by applying for the card via our referral link below.

32 Comments
  1. KathyG

    I have received the 20K bonus points but the monthly spend points are not showing up. Is it possible they will award these at the end of the year in a lump sum?

  2. Joshua

    Best card on the market by far. Lounges are operating at reduced hours in Canada at the moment. My platinum card was almost useless travelling recently. 5x the points to earn 50000 aeroplan points for a business class ticket to Toronto? With rbc 10000 isnt even enough for economy to Calgary from Vancouver. Way better value than anything out there. Thanks Ricky for tips on travel.

  3. Michael

    With the recent changes to the cobalt and gold cards, are the cobalt points still considered Mr select points despite the new 1:1 Aeroplan transfer rate?

  4. aib

    i confermation

  5. Julie

    Hi there! So I applied for the card when the incognito offer appeared for me. Upon receiving all documents and creating my online account, I don’t see any mentions of this extra bonus whatsoever. I understand that I need to spend $3,000 within the first three months before I can earn the points, but is it normal that it isn’t mentioned anywhere?

    1. Ricky YVR

      Yes, it’s normal for incognito offers to be treated this way. As long as you spend $3,000 in the first three months, you should get the extra 20,000 MR points.

      1. HICHAM MAWLAWI

        You can’t transfer to Aeroplan though? Correct.
        You are the reason why we’ve flown for free for the past 2 years Ricky thanks for being awesome

  6. Craig

    “Also, upon spending $3,000 within the first three months, you can earn an additional 20,000 MR Select points.”

    This doesn’t seem to be mentioned on their website currently. “Also, upon spending $3,000 within the first three months, you can earn an additional 20,000 MR Select points. ”

    Has it been removed as they are making those other changes in the next 2 weeks?

    Was looking to get the card but I only do annual fee cards when they do a serious bonus.

  7. Hans

    Hello, I’ve been told by an agent from AE that through a referral link, I won’t get the extra 30k points. It’s only directly through their website that those extra points are available. Is that true?

      1. Kym

        Hello Ricky you had written that Cobalt was changing their policy that points earned through Cobalt AE could be converted to Aeroplan points. I applied for this card for this reason. Please confirm that this is indeed the case.

        1. Ricky YVR

          Confirmed.

  8. Sophia

    Hi Ricky! Can I transfer the MR points from the cobalt card to Aeroplan points?
    Thank you!

    1. Josh YVR

      Cobalt MR points are really MR Select (although not marketed as such by Amex). You can’t transfer them directly to Aeroplan or other airline programs, but you can transfer them to many airlines via Marriott Bonvoy at a rate of 2:1.

  9. John

    Hi Ricky
    Can I transfer MR-S points to my RBC Avion card? Or vice-versa?
    I’m thinking of cancelling either Cobalt or Avion but I’m not sure where to transfer points.

    1. Ricky YVR

      The two points currencies are not interchangeable. You could convert Cobalt points to Marriott Bonvoy for hotel stays, or RBC Avion points to Avios, Asia Miles, American Airlines, or WestJet Rewards for flights.

  10. J

    Hi, when transferring the MR points to fixed points travel, can you use the points on a one way trip? And can you use them as part payment if you don’t have enough to cover the full cost?

  11. Sean Clements

    Do you know what the minimum credit score needed to be approved for Amex Cobalt?

  12. Mr. Blue

    Hi Ricky, do you know of the Cobalt gives 5X points return on food delivery compagnies such as Goodfood and Cookit? I am asking since I curently have the Scotia Amex Gold but I am considering switching to the Cobalt since the Amex Gold no longer gives me 5X the points on my Goodfood purchases. Thanks in advance!

    1. Josh YVR

      I can personally confirm that Cobalt gives 5x on Goodfood!

  13. JDS

    Thanks Ricky, this is an enticing promo.

    I currently have a Cobalt with 280k MR-S. I am considering transferring those points to Marriott @ the usual rate of 1.25, then cancelling and reapplying just before the May 5 expiry of this promo, to try to earn the 45k SUB.

    Do you expect another MR-S to Marriott 25% transfer bonus anytime soon? If so, I am better off to keep my 280k MR-S points and wait for the transfer bonus (especially since there is no guarantee Amex will honour the 45k SUB if I’ve recently cancelled the card).

    Thanks!

    1. Ricky YVR

      It’s a usual rate of 1:1.2. I wouldn’t expect another 25% bonus until later in 2021, perhaps one year after the first one we saw in September 2020 (although there’s no guarantee it will come back again).

      If your plan is to transfer to Bonvoy eventually and you want another shot at the 45K (even if it’s uncertain), I’d go ahead and transfer now. Alternatively, get an Amex Choice Card and park your points there while waiting for the next 25% bonus.

  14. Pius

    I’m an international student living in Ontario and I’ll need travel to Asia, Bangladesh specifically every year. I intend to rack up points to use towards the high priced tickets and maybe even upgrade the seats where applicable. Should I apply for this card ? Or should I apply for the AMEX gold rewards card even though it has lower points per spending?

    1. Ricky YVR

      Ordinarily, the Gold Card would be recommended over the Cobalt for the purposes of earning flights and upgrades, as the Cobalt’s MR Select points can only be transferred to hotel partners and not airline partners.

      However, keep an eye out for an upcoming blog post which *could* make the Cobalt a lot more interesting for flights.

  15. Marlene

    Is there still a$100 stmt credit for ticketmaster because I cant seem to find the link. Expired maybe?

    1. Ricky YVR

      If you follow the Ticketmaster link above, you’ll see the $100 Ticketmaster statement credit listed among the benefits.

  16. Osvald

    I suppose, those 5x earning rates are in Canada only? Has anyone tried using it overseas?

    1. Ricky YVR

      Overseas works too, as long as the merchant is coded as a restaurant.

  17. Linda McCallum

    Can anyone tell me when the 30,000 cap resets – I thought there was a specific date that was not tied to the card activation date so called AMEX – who had no idea – and also could not tell me when I reached the cap etc.

    1. Ricky YVR

      It resets on your cardmembership anniversary date, I believe.

  18. Michael Kurtas

    With the new cap on the 5x spend for cobalt, can I add a supplementary card and get another $30,000 at the 5x earn rate?

    1. Ricky YVR

      Nope, the $30,000 limit is across the account, regardless of primary or supplementary cardholders. To get another $30,000 limit, you’d need to apply with a different individual as the primary cardholder, or cancel and reapply on your own.

Ricky Zhang

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