American Express Membership Rewards is one of the largest and most popular rewards credit card programs on the market, offering members a wide variety of benefits that include cash back, airline miles and even discounts at hundreds of different stores. As with all rewards programs, there are some things to keep in mind when you choose to join, so here's a short guide.
First off, don't forget that American Express Membership Rewards offers a number of different reward programs, and you may want to check them all out to see which ones best suit your spending needs. In general, these cards are great because they offer very low interest rates and low balance transfer fees, and generally speaking the reward programs tend to be pretty good value. However, some of the best cards will have an added benefit called a “transaction fee” which is designed to help cover the costs of running the program.
If you're looking for cash back rewards, American Express Membership Reward cards are probably going to be the best option for you. These cards offer a wide variety of rewards, from travel points and discounts at hotels to cash rebates every time you use your card. American Express Travel Rewards credit cards typically offer a larger number of rewards, but they tend to require a higher interest rate in order to keep the reward value high.
American Express Membership Reward cards are very well known as airline rewards, with the credit card program paying a percentage of your ticket expenses. The percentage varies by card, so if you have a particular airline you prefer to use, it's a good idea to shop around before you choose your reward card. You can also get airline miles through the program, which can be useful to reward yourself for frequent travel. The most popular airlines include American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Continental Airlines, US Airways and British Airways.
Another thing to keep in mind when choosing an American Express Membership Reward card is that they typically have an annual fee attached. Typically this fee is around $50, so if you want to receive all the benefits of the rewards program has to offer, it's usually a good idea to plan ahead. Some cards don't have an annual fee, and only require you to pay a one-time annual fee when you first apply. For people who plan on regularly using their card, the one-time annual fee may be a better value.
If you're not sure which American Express Membership Rewards card to choose, it's best to shop around and compare the different offers. to get a good idea of what each offer has to offer.