At first we were startled by the statistic, but then realized we absolutely contributed to it.
Even though the vast majority of Canadians sincerely value their credit card rewards program, a recent study revealed that only 15% admit to researching the options out there.
Yeah. That’s us.
We looked no further than the options offered by our current bank, and gave about ten seconds consideration as to which one would best suit us. The value to us has been minimal, and we’ve never given any further thought to trying something new, assuming them all to be relatively the same and unchanged over the years.
Travel reward programs have also traditionally had the stigma of inflexibility attached to them – blackout periods, needing to book months in advance, etc. And in case you haven’t noticed, that is not us. We aren’t kidding about the “No Plans” part of our tagline – as I write this from our hotel room in Cambodia, we still haven’t booked our plans for next month. (You can call us lazy or committment-phobes, both are probably true to some regard.)
So when American Express asked us to take a look at their Gold Rewards Card, we were skeptical. Can a credit card truly give us perks that will be flexible enough to meet our needs?
Turns out, we were pleasantly surprised by their offer. And given that you are reading this because you value travel (and free stuff!) as much as we do, we truly believe you will be too.
Flexibility is the key to their excellent program:
— You can book a trip through any travel agent, online booking system, tour operator etc., for any kind of travel (flights, hotels, car rentals, vacation packages, plus even the taxes!) and apply the points later. Or, transfer points to your favourite frequent flyer program. It’s all about choice – no need to be stuck to just one program or airline.
— Where you want, how you want, when you want.
— There is currently a welcome bonus of 25,000 points! That’s good for a round-trip flight almost anywhere in North America (which means my Mom will now be bugging us to come home for a visit). Refer a friend and you can earn another 10,000 points. Also save the annual fee of $150 which is waived in the first year.
— An accelerated earn rate will double your points on everyday spending (at the grocery store, pharmacy, gas station…even on all travel purchases)! Rack ’em up just by getting the things you need.
If you are part of those 85% of Canadians who haven’t evaluated their credit card rewards program (like us!) now is the time to do so, and bag that free flight in North America while you’re at it.
(And yes Mom, we’re coming home for a visit soon.)
Learn more about the AMEX Gold Rewards Card here!
This post was sponsored by AMEX Bank of Canada. The views and opinions expressed in this blog, however, are purely our own.
We have the same card and its rewards program has come in handy time and time again (not to mention the excellent customer service and concierge services AMEX offers)! Only wish it was accepted at as many places as visa/ mc.
Granted, I haven’t shopped in Canada much lately, but it is getting better, no?
This is one of the cards I have and I honestly really like it, though I keep forgetting that I can apply my points to any travel purchase rather than just transferring to my Aeroplan account (thanks for the reminder!). The signing bonus when I got the card was 15,000 points so the current offer is awesome.
Not every place here takes AmEx though so I combine it with my BMO Air Miles World MasterCard (gets me 25% off Air Miles flights) and the pair make an awesome travel combination.
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That is one of the best things about this card, I think, is the ability to transfer the points anywhere! Sounds like you are covered on all bases. 🙂
I cannot say enough about AMEX’s Starwood card, so I will have to check this GOLD REWARDS card!
No annual fee and free supplementary card for first year. Second and up years the annual fee is $30 more than other similar cards. Still mighty attractive though.
I’d say! And $30 is a small price to pay. 🙂
Timely info — I’m looking to trim the fat with my credit cards. Definitely have to check into this one.
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I have not had a credit card since 2009. I always think about getting one that has travel perks, but it is hard for me since I live in Thailand and they aren’t really used here. Have thought about doing cash advances and finding the perfect card for traveling, but just never got that far. This is interesting and something I will look in to!
I never thought of the cash advance strategy. Must consider that too!
Need to get me one!!! 🙂
I’m so in that 85% category of people who didn’t research credit cards. I always read posts from bloggers about great credit card rewards, but usually they’re American cards and not offered for Canadians. It’s nice to know there’s a decent reward card for Canadians.
Yeah, I felt the same way. So often, we’re shafted as Canadians! But this is a great option.
I actually have this same card for our KEEN business account, but I’d be more interested to hear the differences among the AMEX cards as I’ve heard their SPG one is even better for travelers.
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It appears that this one is actually more flexible than the SPG (in terms of how you can use the points). Definitely worth looking into further though because like you, I’ve heard a lot of people rave about the SPG.
I have this card and like it. It’s gotten me several free flights and a couple of car rentals.
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Ha! I have a Canadian friend who said there were no points deals in Canada – guess she falls into the 85%…until I send her this link 🙂 I have AMEX in the UK and love the points deals. Thanks for sharing – hopefully my friend can now join me on my next trip.
Can’t blame her, it often feels like us Canadians get the shaft (our American neighbors get so many more options). But this one is a gooder. 🙂
I love AmEx! I have a Delta Gold AmEx and SPG AmEx. Best. Customer. Service. Ever!
My rewards program is the entire reason that we have our credit card. We use the hell out of it.
I had the SPG AMEX for a year and can chime in that the customer service was fantastic! It didn’t make sense for me to keep heading to South America (redemption hotels aren’t as good as they were in Southeast Asia!) but I would go back someday!
I haven’t tested the customer service yet but am glad that so many people have great things to say about it!
I’m ashamed to be one of the 85% who doesn’t research but with an offer of 25,000 it is certainly tempting enough to change that.
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Love to know if thus card is any good for Australian travellers – would love to have a breakdown of best travel/point cards for more than just Nth America. Will look into Amex from the Aussie end anyway,
thanx for the heads up. Cheers Alison