Cash Value Comparison: AMEX Green vs AMEX Gold

Review the earning rates and benefits of the AMEX Green and AMEX Gold Card. Calculate the cash value side by side based on spend, benefits, and fees.

The AMEX Green Card and AMEX Gold Card are two of the top cards in the AMEX Membership Rewards Program. The AMEX Green Card is centered around those who travel as it offers the bonus categories of travel and dining while also offering benefits such as $100 in CLEAR credits and $100 in Loungebuddy credits. The AMEX Gold Card is more focused on your everyday spend with categories like restaurant and U.S. supermarkets along with $120 in dining credits and $120 in Uber Cash. Both cards provide a way to earn lots of valuable points assuming you can put them to use to make the annual fees worth paying.

Quick Details
Issuing Bank
Card Network
Rewards Earned
Annual Fee
Authorized User Fee
Foreign Transaction Fee
Quick Details
Issuing Bank
Card Network
Rewards Earned
Annual Fee
Authorized User Fee
Foreign Transaction Fee

Rewards Rate Details

The AMEX Green Card and AMEX Gold Card both feature three bonus categories. The AMEX Green features travel, transit, and restaurant while the AMEX Gold features U.S. supermarkets, restaurant, and airfare.

AMEX Green Card Categories

The AMEX Green Card is going to be the better option if you're looking to earn points on travel. The card earns 3 Membership Rewards Points per $1 spent on general travel purchases (airfare, hotels, car rentals, etc.) and transit purchases. That makes the AMEX Green one of the top choices for road trips and vacations. The card also has no international transaction fees which makes it a good choice for international travel (assuming you're visiting somewhere in which AMEX is accepted).

AMEX Gold Card Categories

The AMEX Gold Card is what you'll want to pick up if you're looking to earn on everyday purchases. The card earns 4 Membership Rewards Points per $1 spent at U.S. supermarkets and restaurants. The AMEX Gold Card also earns 3 Membership Rewards Points per $1 spent on airfare which is great if you're looking to book airline tickets directly with an airline. Like the AMEX Green, the AMEX Gold also has no foreign transaction fee which makes it a great option for earning lots of points spending at restaurants internationally. Unfortunately, the supermarket category is tied to United States establishments only so you will not be able to use the card to earn at international supermarkets.

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

Overlapping Categories

The AMEX Green and AMEX Gold Card both feature restaurant as an overlapping category. The better option in terms of points will be the AMEX Gold Card since you're earn an additional point per $1 spent.

Since the AMEX Green Card features general travel purchases as a category, airfare can be considered to be an overlapping category. If you frequently travel, the AMEX Green will be the better option just because it covers many subcategories of travel.

One big plus to the AMEX Gold Card is the 4 Membership Rewards Points per $1 you earn on U.S. supermarket spend. Many supermarkets offer gift cards which means you can easily earn 4x on categories you wouldn't normally be able to. For example, I can go to my local Giant Eagle or Meijer and buy a $200 Kohl's Gift Card or $100 AutoZone Gift Card. This would be equal to me earning 4x at both since I can use the gift card to checkout as normal in-store or online with either retailer. This can add a significant amount of value to the AMEX Gold Card if you don't mind buying gift cards. Just note that the U.S. supermarket category is capped at $25,000 in purchases per calendar year.

American Express 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

American Express Gold Card

  • 4x Restaurant
    • Includes takeout and delivery.
  • 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 and AMEX Gold Card both feature annual credits that can add more value as well as offer several other benefits and insurance. When it comes to comparing the AMEX Green's benefits versus the AMEX Gold, it will depend on if you're able to fully use these credits.

AMEX Green Benefits

The AMEX Green Card offers an annual $100 credit towards CLEAR which uses biometrics to speed you through airport security and an annual $100 credit towards LoungeBuddy which gives you the ability to purchase one-time lounge passes, on-demand, when you need them.

One benefit that the AMEX Green offers that the AMEX Gold does not is Trip Delay Insurance. trip delay insurance reimburses you for necessary and reasonable accommodations, restaurant expenses, and sundry items that results from a delayed flight or trip which can be a money saver in the case that everything does not go your way.

AMEX Gold Benefits

The AMEX Gold Card offers two annual benefits as well. You'll receive $120 in annual dining credits broken down into $10 in credits per month for select restaurants and $120 in Uber Cash which is also broken down into $10 in credits per month. These credits do not roll over into the next month, so you'll need to use them otherwise you will lose them.

Overlapping Benefits

Both the AMEX Green Card and AMEX Gold Card features several benefits that you'll find standard on AMEX Cards such as ShopRunner Membership, access to AMEX Offers, and AMEX Entertainment access. You'll also receive some insurance and purchase coverage such as car rental loss and damage insurance, extended warranty, and purchase protection.

American Express 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)
    • No Preset Spending Limit means your spending limit is flexible. Unlike a traditional card with a set limit, the amount you can spend adapts based on factors such as your purchase, payment, and credit history.
  • AMEX Offers*
  • AMEX Entertainment Access
    • AMEX Presales
    • AMEX Preferred Seating
    • Access To Exclusive Events
  • Insurance and Purchase Protections

American Express Gold Card

  • Annual $120 Dining Credit*
    • Credit is broken up into $10 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
  • Annual $120 Uber Cash*
    • Credit is broken up into $10 per month.
    • Credits do not roll over; Use it or lose it.
    • Can be applied to Uber Eats or Uber rides in the U.S.
  • 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)
    • No Preset Spending Limit means your spending limit is flexible. Unlike a traditional card with a set limit, the amount you can spend adapts based on factors such as your purchase, payment, and credit history.
  • AMEX Offers*
  • AMEX Entertainment Access
  • Insurance and Purchase Protections

*Enrollment required.

Rewards 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.

Note! All category spend entered in the first column (primary column) will carry over to all credit card calculators on the site. This means you will not have to re-enter the same information again and again when browsing during the session.

Rewards Calculator

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American Express® Gold Card
American Express® Gold Card
Intro Bonus
Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months.
Rewards Rates
4X
Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, including takeout and delivery.
4X
Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
3X
Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
1X
Earn 1X Membership Rewards® point on all other purchases.
Main Card Highlights
  • Rose Gold is back. You can now choose between Gold or Rose Gold.
  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® Points at Restaurants, including takeout and delivery, and earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X).
  • Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • $120 Uber Cash on Gold: Add your Gold Card to your Uber account and each month automatically get $10 in Uber Cash for Uber Eats orders or Uber rides in the U.S., totaling up to $120 per year.
  • $120 Dining Credit: Earn up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth's Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • Get up to 12 complimentary months of an Uber Eats Pass subscription when you enroll with your Gold Card by 12/31/21.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Annual Fee
$250
Authorized User Fee
$0 for the first five add'l cards, then $35 per card for the sixth card onward
Foreign Transaction Fee
0%
American Express® Green Card
American Express® Green Card
Intro Bonus
View Issuer's Website.
Rewards Rate
3X
Earn 3X at restaurants including takeout or delivery.
3X
Earn 3X on transit including trains, buses, ferries, subway, and more.
3X
Earn 3X on travel including airfare, hotels, cruises, tours, car rentals, and more.
1X
Earn 1X on all other purchases.
Main Card Highlights
  • $100 CLEAR Credit to Help You Breeze Through Security - With CLEAR®, your eyes and fingertips can help you get through security faster at select airports and stadiums nationwide.
  • $100 Credit for Lounge Access - Use the American Express® Green Card to purchase lounge access through LoungeBuddy and receive up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year.
  • No foreign transaction fees
Annual Fee
$150
Authorized User Fee
$0
Foreign Transaction Fee
0%
CardMatch™
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Remove the guess work and find out which cards have a chance to offer you the best return based on your monthly or yearly spend across up to 20 different categories.

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Updated 2021-03-02 By Robert Flowers III

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