AMEX Green Card vs AMEX Gold Card Calculator

Side by side comparison of the AMEX Green versus the AMEX Gold. Find out which card earns you the most Membership Rewards Points based on your spend.


The American Express Gold and American Express Green cards have both undergone some changes within the past year. The AMEX Gold, previously know as the Premier Rewards Gold, received a boost in earnings across both the supermarket and restaurant categories as well as a $100 dining credit. The AMEX Green Card, which previously featured no bonus categories, was revamped entirely adding travel and dining as 3x categories. Both the AMEX Gold and AMEX Green Cards are solid choices for anyone looking to earn Membership Rewards Points.

Bonus Categories

The AMEX Green Card has three bonus categories which are travel, transit, and restaurant. There's no limit to the amount of bonus Membership Rewards Points you can earn spending in these categories and no limit to the amount of Membership Rewards Points you can earn with the card overall.

The AMEX Gold Card features three bonus categories as well which are restaurant, U.S. supermarket, and airline purchases made either directly with the airline or through the AMEX Travel portal. There's no limit to the amount of Membership Rewards Points you can earn spending in the bonus categories or on the card overall.

get go gas 4x
My AMEX Gold Card earns me 4x points per $1 spent on gas at Giant Eagle Get Go.

AMEX Green Card

  • 3x Travel
    • AMEX defines travel as being:
      • Airfare
      • Hotels
      • Timeshare Rentals
      • Vacation Rentals
      • Car Rentals
      • Cruises
      • Tours
      • Vacation Packages
      • Third Party Travel Agencies (i.e. Expedia)
    • Purchases made on the AMEX Travel Portal will also count towards this bonus category.
  • 3x Transit
    • AMEX defines transit purchases as (but is not limited to):
      • Trains
      • Taxi Cabs
      • Rideshares
      • Ferries
      • Tolls
      • Parking
      • Buses
      • Subways
  • 3x Restaurant
  • 1x Non-Category

AMEX Gold Card

  • 4x Restaurant
    • Purchases are for restaurants worldwide.
  • 4x U.S. Supermarket
    • Note that these purchases are for the U.S. only; International supermarket purchases will earn you the non-category rate.
    • Annual spend cap of $25,000 per year; Earns at non-category rate once cap is hit.
      • Limit is to cap gift cards that can be picked up from grocery stores.
      • Earning 4x on gift cards is a great way to expand this category to others (e.g. getting a $100 AutoZone gift card is equal to earning 4x on AutoZone purchases).
  • 3x Airfare
    • Can be booked direct or through the American Express Travel Portal.
  • 1x Non-Category

Perks & Benefits

The AMEX Green Card comes with two annual benefits that you will receive once per calendar year. You will receive an annual $100 credit towards a CLEAR membership which helps you cut to the front of the security line in the United States (either front of PreCheck or non-PreCheck line). You will also receive a $100 credit towards LoungeBuddy which allows you to purchase one-time lounge passes, on-demand, when you need them. The value of these benefits will depend on whether you use either of these services.

The AMEX Gold Card also comes with a handful of annual credits. You'll receive a $100 Airline Incidentals credit which will trigger on incidentals purchases with a select airline. You'll also receive $120 in annual dining credits good towards select restaurants and delivery services.

AMEX Green Card

  • Annual $100 CLEAR Credit
    • Triggers when you use the card to pay for your CLEAR membership.
    • CLEAR allows you to zoom through airport security at selected airports and stadiums.
  • Annual $100 LoungeBuddy Credit
    • Triggers on purchases with LoungeBuddy.
    • With LoungeBuddy you can purchase one-time lounge passes, on demand, when you need them.
  • ShopRunner Membership
  • No Preset Spending Limit (NPSL)
  • AMEX Offers
  • AMEX Entertainment Access
    • AMEX Presales
    • AMEX Preferred Seating
    • Access To Exclusive Events
  • Insurance and Purchase Protections

AMEX Gold Card

  • Annual $100 Airline Incidental Credit
    • Applies to your chosen airline that you pick upon receiving the card and every January thereafter.
    • Can be used with the following airlines:
      • Alaska Airlines
      • American Airlines
      • Delta Airlines
      • Frontier Airlines
      • Hawaiian Airlines
      • JetBlue Airways
      • Spirit Airlines
      • Southwest Airlines
      • United Airlines
    • Incidental charges are credited back to your account in the form of a statement credit.
    • Baggage fees, lounge fees, and in-flight purchases count as incidental charges; Can also be triggered by some seat costs (such as paying for an Exit seat).
    • Chosen airline does not have to be the same airline you picked on other cards that feature this benefit.
  • Annual $120 Dining Credit
    • Credit is broken up into $15 per month.
    • Credits do not roll over; Use it or lose it.
    • Only applies to the following restaurants:
      • GrubHub
      • Seamless
      • The Cheesecake Factory
      • Ruth's Chris Steak House
      • Shake Shack
      • Boxed
  • The Hotel Collection
    • When staying 2+ consecutive nights, you will receive:
      • $100 USD hotel credit towards hotel amenities such as dining, drinks, and spa.
      • Room upgrade at check-in.
  • The Travel Collection by Travel Leaders Group
  • ShopRunner Membership
  • No Preset Spending Limit (NPSL)
  • AMEX Benefits
    • American Express Experiences
    • American Express Presale(s)
    • American Express Seating
    • AMEX Offers
  • Insurance and Purchase Protections

Sign Up Bonus (SUB)

The standard AMEX Green Card sign up bonus is 30,000 Membership Rewards Points after you spend $2,000 on the card within the first 3 months of card membership. 30,000 Membership Rewards Points are worth an easy $300 when redeemed with AMEX for airfare through the American Express Travel Portal. You can also transfer your Membership Rewards Points to airline and hotel partners at a 1:1 ratio. This gives you an easy 30,000 airline miles or hotel points with most partners which gives you the chance to obtain point values of up to 2 cents or more.

The standard AMEX Gold sign up bonus is slightly higher at 40,000 Membership Rewards Points after you use the card to make $2,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of card membership. This gives you $400 towards airfare booked through the American Express Travel Portal or 40,000 airline miles or hotel points when transferred to AMEX's partners.

You can sometimes get a 50,000-point sign up bonus.

You can sometimes use a incognito/private browser session to get a higher sign up bonus with both cards as a welcome offer.

AMEX Green Sign Up Bonus
Bonus 30,000 Membership Rewards Points
Spend Requirement
Within First 3 Months
$2,000
Est. Value $300+
AMEX Gold Sign Up Bonus
Bonus 40,000 Points
Spend Requirement
Within First 3 Months
$2,000
Est. Value $400+

Fees

The annual fee for the AMEX Green Card is $150 annually. If you're able to make use of the $200 in annual credits this card receives, this card will easily be worth the fee. If not, you'll have to run some moderate spend through the card to make up for the fee which shouldn't be too hard if you typically spend across the categories featured on the card. You can add authorized users to the AMEX Green Card for no charge which can help you make up for the fee even faster. The card also has no foreign transaction fee which makes it a great option for international travel.

The annual fee for the AMEX Gold Card is $250 annually. If you can use the airline incidentals and dining credits, you should easily be able to come out far ahead with this card thanks to the 4x bonus categories. Even if you can't use all the credits, squeeze value out of this card should be too hard to do. The AMEX Gold Card has a $0 authorized user fee which means you can add additional users for free which can help you get even more value out the card. It also has a 0% foreign transaction fee which makes it great for earning points on restaurant spend internationally.

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Rewards and Card Value Calculator

You can use this rewards calculator to calculate how many points, miles, or cash back you can earn based on your spend per category across both cards. This calculator will also give you the dollar value of both cards based on rewards earned and how much each benefit is worth to you minus the fees. Do note that you can only compare the cards covered on this page side-by-side. If you want to compare against other cards, you'll need to go to the card's specific page.

All category spend entered in the primary card's column will carry over to all credit card pages on the site so you don't have to re-enter the same information over again.

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