How the AmEx Gold Travel Insurance Works

This AmEx card gets you baggage, car rental and trip delay insurance alongside AmEx Global Assist services.
JT Genter
By JT Genter 
Edited by Meg Lee

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The American Express® Gold Card is best known for its dining, grocery and rideshare perks. However, this mid-tier rewards card also offers cardholders several benefits that can make it an appealing option for booking flights and rental cars. Terms apply.

Does the American Express® Gold Card have travel insurance? Yes — in fact, several kinds. From travel protections to car rental damage waivers, let's find out how the American Express® Gold Card travel insurance works. Terms apply.

What types of travel insurance does the American Express® Gold Card provide?

American Express® Gold Card
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American Express offers four types of travel insurance and protections to holders of the American Express® Gold Card:

  • Baggage insurance that covers lost, damaged or stolen baggage.

  • Car rental insurance which covers damage to or theft of eligible car rentals.

  • Trip delay insurance reimburses expenses when your travel plans are delayed by more than 12 hours.

  • Global Assist helps coordinate services when things go wrong on a trip.

Terms apply.

Each of these travel protections has limits, exclusions and requirements. For example, you'll generally need to pay for trips with your American Express® Gold Card to get these travel protections. And the maximum benefit for each of these is capped at a certain amount. Let's dig into the details. Terms apply.

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Understanding the American Express® Gold Card baggage insurance policy

Cardholders of the American Express® Gold Card can get baggage protection on their checked and carry-on bags when traveling on a common carrier — such as an airline. To activate this coverage, all you need to do is pay for the entire cost of the flight, train, bus or cruise with your American Express® Gold Card or American Express Membership Rewards points. Terms apply.

AmEx even covers the loss or damage of bags on the way to or from the "common carrier terminal" (e.g., the airport). And it's not just the cardmember's bags that are covered. AmEx also covers the bags of your:

  • Spouse or domestic partner.

  • Dependent children under 23.

  • Certain disabled dependents.

If you need any more incentive to pack light: AmEx protects up to $1,250 in loss, damage or theft for carry-on bags and $500 max for checked bags. Note that this limit is applied per person — and not per bag. So, you won't get a higher amount of coverage if you spread your personal items across several bags. Terms apply.

AmEx also places a $250 cap on the amount that it will reimburse for "high risk items" — such as jewelry, cameras, sports equipment, computers or other precious metals. Terms apply.

How to get rental car insurance through the American Express® Gold Card

Another useful American Express® Gold Card travel insurance protection covers cardmembers when they rent a car. To activate this coverage, just pay for the entire rental with your American Express® Gold Card and decline the rental company's collision damage waiver product. Then, AmEx will automatically reimburse up to $50,000 in damage or theft for most rentals up to 30 days in length. Terms apply.

However, you'll need to be wary of several key restrictions:

  • Coverage is secondary. That means you'll need to file with your personal auto insurance company first.

  • AmEx doesn't provide coverage for vehicles rented in Australia, Italy or New Zealand.

  • Certain vehicle types are excluded — such as cargo vans, motorcycles, mopeds and campers.

  • This AmEx collision damage waiver, or CDW, covers damage and theft to the car you rent. You're still responsible for damage and injury done to others. So make sure your personal auto insurance covers your liability when renting cars.

Terms apply.

American Express® Gold Card trip delay travel insurance

One of the newest travel insurance perks of the American Express® Gold Card (added as of Jan. 1, 2020) is trip delay insurance protections. This trip delay insurance kicks in when you pay for a trip with your American Express® Gold Card or AmEx points. Terms apply.

Then, if your flight is delayed for more than 12 hours for a covered reason, American Express will reimburse you up to $300 for reasonable expenses such as meals, lodging, toiletries, medication and other personal use items. Terms apply.

Unfortunately, not every flight delay will be covered. This American Express® Gold Card travel insurance takes effect only when your trip is delayed more than 12 hours due to:

  • Inclement weather.

  • An equipment failure of the airline or common carrier.

  • Lost or stolen passports or travel documents.

  • Terrorist action or hijacking.

Terms apply.

Note that you must be on a trip starting from your city of residence to be covered. But, don't worry if you booked a complicated itinerary. This trip delay insurance is effective as long as you start from your home and pay for your entire trip with the American Express® Gold Card — including all round-trip and one-way travel along the way. Terms apply.

How AmEx Global Assist Works

Think of AmEx Global Assist as your travel assistant. AmEx Global Assist can help with everything from visa and vaccination information before your trip, to emergency cash wires if things go wrong during your trip.

AmEx provides many travel advice and assistance services free of charge. However, if you need outside help — such as emergency translation or legal assistance — you'll be on the hook for payments to third-party service providers.

The AmEx Global Assist Hotline services available to American Express® Gold Card members aren't as comprehensive as what you'll get on other premium AmEx cards. However, it can still be an excellent resource when you need help before or during your travels. Terms apply.

American Express® Gold Card travel insurance, recapped

While the American Express® Gold Card isn't a premium travel card, it still offers core travel insurance protections that can make it the go-to card for booking travel and rental cars. Terms apply.

Use your American Express® Gold Card to book travel to get up to $1,250 in coverage for lost or stolen baggage and up to $300 in reimbursements during a covered delay of 12 hours or more. Rent a car with your American Express® Gold Card to get secondary coverage of up to $50,000 for damage or theft. And you can fall back on AmEx Global Assist anytime you run into issues — when planning your trip or if you have an emergency during the trip. Terms apply.

To view rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, see this page.

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