Best No Annual Fee American Express Credit Cards

Top Picks & Rewards Calculator
Check out our top picks for the best no annual fee American Express credit cards and find out which cards will earn you the most rewards based on spend.
Last Updated 2022-08-27 By R.Flowers III

American Express offers a handful of great credit cards that can earn you cash back, points, and miles at no annual fee. Review the best American Express credit cards and calculate which cards can earn you the most rewards and best return based on your spend.

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Best For Supermarket, Gas, and Online Retail

The Blue Cash Everyday Card is an excellent choice if you're looking to earn a high return across several popular categories without paying an annual fee.

The card earns 3% cash back on up to $6,000 in U.S. supermarket purchases per year (then 1%), 3% back on up to $6,000 in U.S. online retail purchases per year (then 1%), and 3% back on up to $6,000 in U.S. gas station purchases per year (then 1%). All other purchases on the card earn 1% back.

If you spend more than $270 per month at U.S. supermarkets, you'll want to consider the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express which earns 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000, then 1%) as you'll earn more overall even with the annual fee.

Intro Bonus: Earn up to $250 - Here's How: Earn up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal. Earn 20% back as a statement credit on purchases when you use your new Card to check out with PayPal at merchants in the first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $150 back. Plus, earn $100 back as a statement credit after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership.

Best For Flat-Rate Cash Back

The American Express Cash Magnet® Card is an excellent flat-rate cash back credit card that earns 1.5% cash back on all purchases with no annual fee. Cash back earned with the card can be redeemed towards purchases made to the card, gift cards, and more.

If you're really looking to maximize your cash back with American Express, I you can pair the Cash Magnet Card with the Blue Cash Everyday Card. You would use the Blue Cash Everyday to earn 2% to 3% across it's bonus categories and use the Cash Magnet Card to earn 1.5% cash back on everything else!

Intro Bonus: Earn a $200 statement credit after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.

Best For Travel Rewards

The American Express Everyday Card is one of the best no annual fee card for earning flexible travel rewards.

The card earns 2 Membership Rewards Points per $1 spent on the first $6,000 in U.S. supermarket purchases (then 1X) and 1X points on all other purchases. When you make 20 or more purchases during a billing period, you'll earn 20% more points on those purchases meaning you'll earn 2.4X on U.S. supermarket purchases (1.2X after cap is hit) and 1.2X on all other purchases.

Membership Rewards Points earned with the card can be redeemed for 1 cent apiece towards airfare booked via AMEX Travel or they can be transferred to AMEX's airline and hotel partners for a shot a higher value. This includes Delta Airlines, Hilton Honors, and Marriott Bonvoy to name a few.

Intro Bonus: Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $2,000 on purchases on the Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

Best For Hilton Travelers

If you want to build up hotel rewards without paying an annual fee, the Hilton Honors American Express Card is a solid option.

It earns 7X at Hilton properties, 5X on U.S. restaurant, U.S. supermarket, and U.S. gas stations, and 3X on everything else.

As a Hilton Honors American Express Card holder, you'll receive complimentary Hilton Honors Silver which comes with a handful of perks including bonus points and access to Hilton's 5th Night Free benefit on award bookings.

If you stay at Hilton once or twice a year, you can't go wrong with the Hilton Honors American Express Card. You'll easily be able to build up Hilton Honors points that you can redeem towards free night redemptions.

Intro Bonus: Earn 80,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors American Express Card in the first 3 months of Card Membership.

Best For Delta Travelers

The Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express Card is an excellent no annual fee credit card that earns Delta SkyMiles on all purchases.

You'll earn 2 Delta SkyMiles per $1 at restaurants worldwide and on Delta purchases and 1 Delta SkyMile per $1 spent on everything else.

The card offers grants access to Delta's Pay with Miles option which allows you to easily redeem SkyMiles for a minimum of 1 cent each and it offers a 20% discount on eligible Delta in-flight purchases of food, beverages, and audio headsets.

The Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express also has no foreign transaction fee which means you can earn SkyMiles on purchases internationally without being penalized.

Intro Bonus: Earn 10,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months.

Best For Business Travel Rewards

If you're looking for a small business credit cards that earns rewards great for travel at no annual fee, turn your attention to the Blue Business Plus Credit Card.

It earns 2X Membership Rewards Points on the first $50,000 in purchases made during the calendar year, then 1X for the remainder of the year.

Points can be redeemed for 1 cent apiece towards travel booked directly through American Express Travel or you can transfer points to AMEX's large list of airline and hotel partners for a shot at significantly higher value.

I recommend pairing the Blue Business Plus with any business (or personal) credit card to maximize your points with American Express.

Intro Bonus: Earn 15,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership.

Best For Business Cash Back Rewards

If you would rather earn cash back for your business instead of Membership Rewards Points, the American Express Blue Business Cash Card would be the route to take.

It offers 2% cash back on the first $50,000 in purchases made during the calendar year, then 1% for the remainder of th year.

Cash back earned with the card is automatically applied to your statement, so you don't have to worry about keeping up with rewards.

Intro Bonus: Earn a $250 statement credit after you make $3,000 in purchases on your Card in your first 3 months.

Best No Annual Fee American Express Credit Cards Summary

Credit Card Best For Annual Fee
Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express Supermarket, Gas, and Online Retail $0
American Express Cash Magnet® Card Flat-Rate Cash Back $0
American Express EveryDay® Credit Card Travel Rewards $0
Hilton Honors American Express Card Hilton Travelers $0
Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card Delta Travelers $0
The Blue Business® Plus Credit Card from American Express Business Travel Rewards $0
American Express Blue Business Cash™ Card Business Cash Back Rewards $0

AMEX Credit Card Rewards Calculator

Use the American Express Credit Card Rewards calculator to find out how much you can earn and which cards are best based on the spend amounts you enter into the tool.

Results will be sorted by net return which is the average value of the rewards earned, plus annual credits, and minus annual fees.

Results will consist of top-rated American Express credit cards offered by our partners.

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These estimates are to help guide you towards making the best decision when it comes to picking up a rewards credit card. They should be used for illustrative purposes only.

You can click on the estimated earnings to see the calculations or click on the card to learn more and apply for the card through our partners.

Do note that all spend amounts entered into the tool above will carry over to every credit card rewards calculator on the site, so there's no need to re-enter spend if you choose to dive deeper into calculating rewards for credit cards on the site.

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