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  • FIRST POST
    • ZacharyJohn
    • By ZacharyJohn 11th Oct 17, 6:21 PM
    • 8Posts
    • 2Thanks
    ZacharyJohn
    Amex Reward Credit Cards
    • #1
    • 11th Oct 17, 6:21 PM
    Amex Reward Credit Cards 11th Oct 17 at 6:21 PM
    Hi there,

    I've been using a Barclaycard for miscellaneous purchases for a couple of years (always paying off the balance in full every month so as not to accrue any interest) and now I'm looking to get a little more from my credit card.

    I've been looking at reward credit cards (cashback mainly) and the one that keeps popping up is the American Express Platinum Cashback Everyday Card. It has no annual fees and a relatively good cashback offer on all purchases compared with most other credit cards.

    My question is, is there anything I should be aware of? I've heard AmEx cards don't all necessarily work the same as other credit cards and I know there are less places that accept them as a form of payment - I don't want to get it and not be able to use it anywhere!

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Page 1
    • dj1471
    • By dj1471 11th Oct 17, 8:51 PM
    • 965 Posts
    • 643 Thanks
    dj1471
    • #2
    • 11th Oct 17, 8:51 PM
    • #2
    • 11th Oct 17, 8:51 PM
    Some of Amex's cards are charge cards rather than credit cards so don't work the same, but that one's a credit card.

    They are not as widely accepted so you need to carry a backup. Acceptance really depends on where you shop; I use mine for 95% of purchases, for some people it's much less.
    • Anthorn
    • By Anthorn 12th Oct 17, 1:37 PM
    • 3,302 Posts
    • 849 Thanks
    Anthorn
    • #3
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:37 PM
    • #3
    • 12th Oct 17, 1:37 PM
    Hi there,

    I've been using a Barclaycard for miscellaneous purchases for a couple of years (always paying off the balance in full every month so as not to accrue any interest) and now I'm looking to get a little more from my credit card.

    I've been looking at reward credit cards (cashback mainly) and the one that keeps popping up is the American Express Platinum Cashback Everyday Card. It has no annual fees and a relatively good cashback offer on all purchases compared with most other credit cards.

    My question is, is there anything I should be aware of? I've heard AmEx cards don't all necessarily work the same as other credit cards and I know there are less places that accept them as a form of payment - I don't want to get it and not be able to use it anywhere!

    Any help would be greatly appreciated!
    Originally posted by ZacharyJohn
    Personally, I have never had any problem using Amex with most major retailers I use. However smaller retailers and charities such as British Heart Foundation (I bought a brand new sofa and chair from there for 150 quid) don't accept Amex.

    Consider how much you will have to spend over a given period in order to get the rewards.

    In my view, exercise caution in using direct debit to pay Amex credit cards. In my experience they will flout their own Ts & Cs and take full payment of the statement balance whenever they want even if you have an agreement with them to the contrary. They also take direct debit payments a week in advance of the statement minimum payment due date and will apply a late payment charge and consequently increase the APR if the direct debit fails even if you then make payment before the statement minimum payment due date.

    Overall, I have decided that Amex credit cards is not worth the hassle and my Amex cards are in process of cancellation at this time. Their APR is exorbitant anyway.
    • guesswho2000
    • By guesswho2000 13th Oct 17, 3:09 PM
    • 1,550 Posts
    • 731 Thanks
    guesswho2000
    • #4
    • 13th Oct 17, 3:09 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Oct 17, 3:09 PM
    Personally, I have never had any problem using Amex with most major retailers I use. However smaller retailers and charities such as British Heart Foundation (I bought a brand new sofa and chair from there for 150 quid) don't accept Amex.

    Consider how much you will have to spend over a given period in order to get the rewards.

    In my view, exercise caution in using direct debit to pay Amex credit cards. In my experience they will flout their own Ts & Cs and take full payment of the statement balance whenever they want even if you have an agreement with them to the contrary. They also take direct debit payments a week in advance of the statement minimum payment due date and will apply a late payment charge and consequently increase the APR if the direct debit fails even if you then make payment before the statement minimum payment due date.

    Overall, I have decided that Amex credit cards is not worth the hassle and my Amex cards are in process of cancellation at this time. Their APR is exorbitant anyway.
    Originally posted by Anthorn
    I agree with the direct debit thing, they take it earlier than due if you didn't have one, but this is clear in the T&Cs. I've never bothered checking, but they probably also state that it'll be taken regardless of whether other payments are made, many companies do the same (though not all). I've always paid my Amex cards by debit card, it clears instantly and the credit is available to use again straight away (irrelevant if it's a charge card, generally).

    The APRs of the credit cards are high, but they aren't aimed at long term borrowing, certainly aren't ideal for such and, if not being used for revolving credit, the APR therefore doesn't matter .

    As for being worth the hassle, that's subjective of course, but if it's rewards or cash back you're looking for, Amex are by far the best option, especially with the interchange cap limiting what the Visa/MC options are now.
    • smala01
    • By smala01 17th Oct 17, 2:47 AM
    • 150 Posts
    • 102 Thanks
    smala01
    • #5
    • 17th Oct 17, 2:47 AM
    • #5
    • 17th Oct 17, 2:47 AM
    On my AMEX cashback card there is a £3k minimum spend per year or any accrued cashback is forfeited. Cashback is paid annually on card anniversary as a statement credit.
    • Jlawson118
    • By Jlawson118 17th Oct 17, 11:24 AM
    • 844 Posts
    • 113 Thanks
    Jlawson118
    • #6
    • 17th Oct 17, 11:24 AM
    • #6
    • 17th Oct 17, 11:24 AM
    Amex are more expensive for merchants than Visa & Mastercard which is why a lot of small, independent businesses don't use them. But most major companies accept them. I used to have the Lloyds Avios cards which came with an AMEX and Mastercard for places that didn't accept AMEX which came in handy but I no longer have that account.

    You should hold a backup though. I use my AMEX for most of my everyday spend, but if I go to Aldi or anywhere what doesn't accept it then I use my Barclaycard Reward card
    • Heng Leng
    • By Heng Leng 17th Oct 17, 12:40 PM
    • 4,284 Posts
    • 1,322 Thanks
    Heng Leng
    • #7
    • 17th Oct 17, 12:40 PM
    • #7
    • 17th Oct 17, 12:40 PM
    Do the maths and work on basis that some major purchases may not be 'Amexable' to meet the 3k minimum spend. They also offer cashback offers off various things during the year which may/may not work for you.

    A Mastercard/Visa will be accepted almost anywhere (that accepts cards) and can give up 0.5% cashback too.
    • Mr Goodkat
    • By Mr Goodkat 17th Oct 17, 11:01 PM
    • 396 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    Mr Goodkat
    • #8
    • 17th Oct 17, 11:01 PM
    • #8
    • 17th Oct 17, 11:01 PM
    Personally, I have never had any problem using Amex with most major retailers I use. However smaller retailers and charities such as British Heart Foundation (I bought a brand new sofa and chair from there for 150 quid) don't accept Amex.

    Consider how much you will have to spend over a given period in order to get the rewards.

    In my view, exercise caution in using direct debit to pay Amex credit cards. In my experience they will flout their own Ts & Cs and take full payment of the statement balance whenever they want even if you have an agreement with them to the contrary. They also take direct debit payments a week in advance of the statement minimum payment due date and will apply a late payment charge and consequently increase the APR if the direct debit fails even if you then make payment before the statement minimum payment due date.

    Overall, I have decided that Amex credit cards is not worth the hassle and my Amex cards are in process of cancellation at this time. Their APR is exorbitant anyway.
    Originally posted by Anthorn
    Presumably you issued a claim under the direct debit guarantee and received a full refund for them taking a payment against their own t&c's?

    Or more likely you failed to understand the terms and conditions you had agreed to!
    • Mr Goodkat
    • By Mr Goodkat 17th Oct 17, 11:16 PM
    • 396 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    Mr Goodkat
    • #9
    • 17th Oct 17, 11:16 PM
    • #9
    • 17th Oct 17, 11:16 PM
    Amex are more expensive for merchants than Visa & Mastercard which is why a lot of small, independent businesses don't use them. But most major companies accept them. I used to have the Lloyds Avios cards which came with an AMEX and Mastercard for places that didn't accept AMEX which came in handy but I no longer have that account.

    You should hold a backup though. I use my AMEX for most of my everyday spend, but if I go to Aldi or anywhere what doesn't accept it then I use my Barclaycard Reward card
    Originally posted by Jlawson118
    Assume you know to distinguish between a genuine American Express card issued by American Express as a credit or charge card as opposed to a third party i.e. Lloyds using the American Express processing network to issue a third party card?
    • Jlawson118
    • By Jlawson118 18th Oct 17, 4:36 PM
    • 844 Posts
    • 113 Thanks
    Jlawson118
    Assume you know to distinguish between a genuine American Express card issued by American Express as a credit or charge card as opposed to a third party i.e. Lloyds using the American Express processing network to issue a third party card?
    Originally posted by Mr Goodkat
    I know the Lloyds one was third party, which is why after so long I signed up for a proper card. AMEX have quite a high criteria for members to join which I didn't meet earlier last year when I first got the Lloyds one.

    I was just saying that it was quite useful of the bank to issue a Mastercard for the places where AMEX isn't accepted. I only had the card because there were no transaction fees abroad and I was planning a two month European trip at the time so having that facility came in handy
    • Anthorn
    • By Anthorn 19th Oct 17, 12:26 PM
    • 3,302 Posts
    • 849 Thanks
    Anthorn
    Presumably you issued a claim under the direct debit guarantee and received a full refund for them taking a payment against their own t&c's?

    Or more likely you failed to understand the terms and conditions you had agreed to!
    Originally posted by Mr Goodkat
    So what exactly is it that you say I failed to understand in the Amex T & Cs?

    Repayments with the Amex credit card as with most other credit cards are very easy to understand and I don't need to reproduce them here. The point is that I arranged for a flat monthly payment and Amex took the full balance without my prior agreement.

    No I didn't claim under the Direct Debit guarantee. For a start one just doesn't do that with Amex and secondly the full statement balance to me was virtually a drop in the ocean.
    • ZacharyJohn
    • By ZacharyJohn 19th Oct 17, 8:35 PM
    • 8 Posts
    • 2 Thanks
    ZacharyJohn
    Thanks for all the replies, guys.

    I'll be mindful of the direct debit method of paying the balance. I don't tend to use direct debit to pay off my credit card balance anyway - I feel a lot more in control identifying the exact amount that's owed myself and paying it off manually.
    • Stigmeister
    • By Stigmeister 21st Oct 17, 7:47 PM
    • 3 Posts
    • 1 Thanks
    Stigmeister
    For what it's worth, i have used an AMEX card issued by MBNA for years and years getting points to use on Virgin Atlantic. I find it very beneficial, always paying off every month and they issue a 'Companion' card by Visa to use whenever AMEX is not.
    • Mr Goodkat
    • By Mr Goodkat 23rd Oct 17, 3:05 PM
    • 396 Posts
    • 235 Thanks
    Mr Goodkat
    So what exactly is it that you say I failed to understand in the Amex T & Cs?

    Repayments with the Amex credit card as with most other credit cards are very easy to understand and I don't need to reproduce them here. The point is that I arranged for a flat monthly payment and Amex took the full balance without my prior agreement.

    No I didn't claim under the Direct Debit guarantee. For a start one just doesn't do that with Amex and secondly the full statement balance to me was virtually a drop in the ocean.
    Originally posted by Anthorn
    I suspect you probably had a direct debit in place to take the full amount each month. You spent a little too much wafting your new Amex card around and decided to make a change to the direct debit from payment in full to a fixed amount but the statement had already been produced so the statement balance was taken in full as agreed or another similar user error issue.

    Amex pride themselves on providing excellent customer service so if the error was on their side I am sure they would have put it right for you and failing that a claim under the direct debit grantee would have been justified and one would be justifiable to do that with Amex.

    If the statement balance was virtually a drop in the ocean why would one set a direct debit for a fixed rather than full balance meaning interest would be paid on that balance and future purchases?
    • Sarastro
    • By Sarastro 16th Nov 17, 9:35 PM
    • 367 Posts
    • 283 Thanks
    Sarastro
    I've used the Amex cashback card for a couple of years and usually get about £200 cash back a year. It's great for bigger purchases and holidays. I've found it's accepted at most stores but not usually smaller independents.
    • Jasonh2015
    • By Jasonh2015 16th Nov 17, 11:14 PM
    • 27 Posts
    • 7 Thanks
    Jasonh2015
    On my charge card and credit card Amex have never done any errors on my direct debit. It tells you and on it says on their website when the balance is due. Ive been with them about 9 years. They’ve even refunded me for a hotel saying I used the mini bar when I didn’t without further discussion.
    • MallyGirl
    • By MallyGirl 17th Nov 17, 9:55 AM
    • 2,102 Posts
    • 6,975 Thanks
    MallyGirl
    I use my Amex cashback platinum wherever possible for the cashback but they are about to drop the rates. It used to be 0.5% on first £3.5k, then 1% up to £7.5k and 1.25% above that (spend in a year). From Jan 2018 it will be 0.5% on first £3.5k, then 1% above that. With 0% on purchases it is still a good card. There are random extra offers but most are a bit London centric - occasionally there is a relevant one for me. Shop Small in December can earn quite a lot of extra.
    You do need another card for the places that don't accept it.
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    • lisyloo
    • By lisyloo 17th Nov 17, 1:06 PM
    • 21,319 Posts
    • 10,243 Thanks
    lisyloo
    My question is, is there anything I should be aware of?
    Make sure you'll meet any minimum spend requirements for cashback.

    Bear in mind you might not be able to use it as much as you think.
    I live in central London and find that about 2/3rds of the restaurants we use don't take it (perhaps that's because we tend to avoid chains and go more for independents and even some cinemas e.g. picturehouse, in central London don't take it.
    It really does depend on your circumstances, but I'd say we're about 50% of the time and we're in central London.
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