Is the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express Worth its Annual Fee?
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.
The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express comes with a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. While that isn’t necessarily cheap after the first year, the cost is mitigated by two key factors: One, the card’s annual fee is waived for the first year. Two, cardholders can earn a statement-credit welcome bonus, which more than covers the annual fee for multiple years. Terms apply.
Is the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express worth a slot in your wallet, even with its mid-level annual fee?
Valuable perks of the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express
The welcome bonus
Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months. Terms Apply.
For a typical cash back card, this welcome offer is sizable. The cash earned can offset the annual fee for a few years.
Attractive earning scheme
The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express earns cash back at the following rates:
6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%). Even if you spend just $300 a month on groceries, you will earn back more than double the card’s annual fee.
6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions. Qualifying services include Netflix, Spotify, Hulu and many others.
3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and on transit. This includes taxis, rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more.
1% cash back on other purchases.
If something you’ve purchased with your Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express ends up stolen or damaged, you can get a refund for up to 90 days from the date of purchase for up to $1,000 per item. This coverage maxes out at $50,000 per eligible card per calendar year.
This is a nice peace-of-mind benefit, but many other cards offer it as well. Terms apply.
The ShopRunner membership gets you free shipping and free returns at over 100 online retailers, a valuable benefit that can cost up to $79 a year. Registering your Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express with ShopRunner can save you money on shipping costs whenever you shop with participating merchants. Terms apply.
As an American Express cardmember, you can add money-saving deals to your card to earn statement credits or discounts on purchases through AmEx Offers. Featured deals are updated periodically, and include offers like a percentage back on a monthly bill or discounts on shipping.
» Learn more: How to add money-saving offers to your AmEx card
More ways to earn cash back
You can earn cash back at the same rate every time an additional card member makes an eligible purchase, which is why we think this could be the ultimate family card. You even have the option to add spending limits to accounts associated with additional card members as needed. Terms apply.
The bottom line
The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express pays 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (capped at $6,000 annually), 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming services, and 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and on transit, with a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. annual fee. Terms apply. These rates look good (and they are) however, the main appeal here is the attractive rewards rate on purchases at U.S. supermarkets.
So then, who is this card right for? If you usually spend a significant portion of your budget on groceries each month, this card can save you hundreds of dollars every year. If you’re single or prefer eating out, you might want to keep shopping for other cards, like the American Express® Green Card, which can earn you 3x points at restaurants, including takeout and delivery. Terms apply.
All information about the American Express® Green Card has been collected independently by NerdWallet. The American Express® Green Card is no longer available through NerdWallet.
How to maximize your rewards
You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2023, including those best for:
Flexibility, point transfers and a large bonus: Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
No annual fee: Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
Flat-rate travel rewards: Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card
Bonus travel rewards and high-end perks: Chase Sapphire Reserve®
Luxury perks: The Platinum Card® from American Express
Business travelers: Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card