AmEx Blue Cash Everyday Review: A Rewarding Cash-Back Card for a $0 Annual Fee

You get bonus rewards of 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations and U.S. online retail purchases. Terms apply.

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Our Take

4.9

NerdWallet rating 
The bottom line:

If groceries, gas and online shopping are significant parts of your budget and you refuse to pay an annual fee, this card is a fine choice.

Jump to: Full Review
American Express Blue Cash Everyday Credit Card
Annual fee
$0
Regular APR
17.74%-28.74% Variable APR
Intro APR
0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers
Rec. credit score
690-850 (Good - Excellent)
Apply now

on American Express' website

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • High rewards rate

  • Intro APR period

  • Bonus categories

Cons

  • Requires good/excellent credit

  • Spending caps on bonus rewards

Alternate Pick: Higher reward rates
American Express Blue Cash Preferred Credit Card
NerdWallet rating 
Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
BIg-time grocery and gas rewards, for a fee

There's a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. If you spend more than $61 a week on groceries, you'll get more value out of this card. You get a whopping 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets, on up to $6,000 a year in spending (then 1%); 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions; 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and on transit (including such things as taxis, rideshares, parking, tolls, trains and buses); and 1% cash back on all other purchases. (Terms apply.)

Read our review

Compare to Other Cards

NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Annual fee

$0

Annual fee

$0

Annual fee

$0

Regular APR

17.74%-28.74% Variable APR

Regular APR

17.74%-27.74% Variable APR

Regular APR

15.74%-26.74% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers

Intro APR

0% intro APR on Balance Transfers for 18 months

Intro APR

0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers

Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
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Full Review

If you spend a lot at the grocery store, the gas pump and online — and can't stand the idea of paying an annual fee on a credit card — the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express may be calling your name.

For a $0-annual-fee card, it pays an excellent 3% cash-back rate at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations and U.S. online retail purchases. You’ll earn that 3% rate on the first $6,000 in spending per year in each of those three categories. All other purchases (including above the $6,000 cap in the categories) earn 1% cash back. Terms apply.

The card is frequently compared with its sibling, the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, which is perhaps the ultimate gas and groceries card. It has a$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. In exchange, it offers some of the highest rewards rates of any cash-back card.

When you compare the Blue Cash cards head to head, the pricier Preferred will come out on top for many households, but that doesn't mean the Everyday can't hold its own against its fellow AmEx or the rest of the cash-back competition. It all comes down to how you spend.

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express: Basics and benefits

To view rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express, see this page.

Basic features

Card type: Cash back.

Annual fee: $0.

Bonus offer: Earn up to $250 – Here’s How: Earn up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal. Earn 20% back as a statement credit on purchases when you use your new Card to check out with PayPal at merchants in the first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $150 back. Plus, earn $100 back as a statement credit after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply.

Rewards:

  • 3% back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 spent per year.

  • 3% back at U.S. gas stations on up to $6,000 spent per year.

  • 3% back on U.S. online retail purchases on up to $6,000 spent per year.

  • 1% back on other purchases.

  • Terms apply.

Interest rate: 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 17.74%-28.74% Variable APR.

Other benefits:

  • A $180 credit for Home Chef, a meal kit delivery service, in the form of $15 monthly statement credits.

  • A $84 credit for a subscription to The Disney Bundle, in the form of $7 monthly statement credits. The Disney Bundle includes Hulu, Disney+, and ESPN+.

Supermarket rewards

Getting 3% back on your U.S. supermarket spending is a nice return on a potentially big portion of the household budget. It essentially means getting a discount on all the food, paper goods, personal care products and other items you buy regularly at the grocery store. Terms apply.

Rewards are based on where you’re shopping — in this case, U.S. supermarkets — not what you buy there. American Express’ definition of U.S. supermarkets excludes wholesale clubs such as Costco and Sam’s Club, superstores like Target and Walmart, specialty food stores and others. So consider not only how much you spend on groceries but also where you most often buy them.

The 3% rewards rate applies to the first $6,000 in U.S. supermarket spending annually. That’s generous for a rewards spending cap. Maxed out, it’s worth $180 annually in bonus cash back. But it’s still a cap — one a family could blow through before the year is done. The average U.S. household of four spends about $6,200 on food at home annually and hundreds more on housekeeping supplies and personal care products that are also common purchases in supermarkets, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics' most recent Consumer Expenditure Survey. So a family of four could exceed its limit for 3% rewards and then revert to 1% cash back.

Gasoline rewards

A 3% cash-back rate at U.S. gas stations is competitive, though other cards may earn as much as 5% back on gas.

Restrictions apply here, too. The $6,000 annual spending cap could limit your earnings if you put a lot of miles on your car. Also, higher gas rewards are available only at traditional gas stations. Warehouse clubs, superstores and supermarkets that sell gas don’t count, according to American Express. American Express maintains a list of examples of qualifying stations.

Online retail purchase rewards

If you make most of your purchases without leaving home, the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express earns a respectable 3% cash back when you shop online, on up to $6,000 in spending per year. Goods bought through a retailer’s website or app are eligible to earn 3% back. But paying for services online doesn’t count toward this category. According to American Express, “services” means purchases such as travel bookings and online food delivery.

Bonus offer

The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express comes with a bonus offer for new cardholders: Earn up to $250 – Here’s How: Earn up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal. Earn 20% back as a statement credit on purchases when you use your new Card to check out with PayPal at merchants in the first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $150 back. Plus, earn $100 back as a statement credit after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply. That’s a nice incentive.

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express: Pitfalls and other possibilities

Blue cash vs. blue cash

A primary consideration with the card is deciding whether you should instead apply for the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, which comes at a price. It has a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. That's steep for a cash-back card, but in exchange, you'll get an extensive suite of benefits that can be really lucrative for road warriors and home chefs.

So when is the annual-fee card a better deal? The easiest way to compare the Blue Cash cards is to look at grocery spending alone. If you spend at least $61 per week at U.S. supermarkets, you’ll earn more with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, even after the annual fee. Our comparison of the two Blue Cash cards goes into more detail and includes a calculator for comparing rewards.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

U.S. supermarkets

6% (on up to $6,000 a year in spending)

3% (on up to $6,000 a year in spending)

Select U.S. streaming subscriptions

6%

1%

U.S. gas stations

3%

3% (on up to $6,000 a year in spending)

Transit (including taxis, rideshares, parking, tolls, trains and buses)

3%

1%

U.S. online retail purchases

1%

3% (on up to $6,000 a year in spending)

All other purchases

1%

1%

If you don’t spend enough on groceries or some combination of other bonus categories to justify paying an annual fee, the best alternative might be a step down to the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express.

A "flat-rate" card that pays the same rewards on all spending might also be a better fit.

For example, a $0-annual-fee alternative is the low-hassle Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card, which pays 2% cash back on all purchases with no spending categories to remember. It also offers a sign-up bonus for new card holders.

Or consider the generous 5% rotating bonus rewards categories of the Chase Freedom Flex℠ and Discover it® Cash Back, which have in the past included grocery stores and gas stations. The 5% cash back rewards on these cards apply up to a $1,500 quarterly spending maximum, and you have to activate the categories each quarter. All other purchases on the cards get 1% back. If you prefer to have reward rates on the categories flipped, the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card offers 3% cash back on the spending category of your choice, which includes gas as an option, and 2% on groceries. (With these cards, the amount of spending eligible for bonus rewards is capped; click through to their pages for details.)

Less ideal for international travel

The card is not ideal to use abroad because acceptance internationally lags Visa and Mastercard, and it charges a 2.7% fee on international purchases. Some cards charge no foreign transaction fee.

You can learn more about cash-back credit card alternatives by visiting NerdWallet's list of the best credit cards to have.

Is the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express right for you?

The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers good, relevant cash-back rewards that could match your needs if your spending at U.S. supermarkets isn't high enough to justify applying for the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express — or if you’re looking to earn solid rewards on gas and online purchases.

To view rates and fees of the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express, see this page. To view rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, see this page.

on American Express' website

Methodology

NerdWallet reviews credit cards with an eye toward both the quantitative and qualitative features of a card. Quantitative features are those that boil down to dollars and cents, such as fees, interest rates, rewards (including earning rates and redemption values) and the cash value of benefits and perks. Qualitative factors are those that affect how easy or difficult it is for a typical cardholder to get good value from the card. They include such things as the ease of application, simplicity of the rewards structure, the likelihood of using certain features, and whether a card is well-suited to everyday use or is best reserved for specific purchases. Our star ratings serve as a general gauge of how each card compares with others in its class, but star ratings are intended to be just one consideration when a consumer is choosing a credit card. Learn how NerdWallet rates credit cards.
Frequently asked questions

This card pays 3% cash back on up to $6,000 a year in spending in each of these three categories: at U.S. supermarkets, U.S. gas stations and U.S. online retail purchases. After you hit the $6,000 cap in any of these categories, you earn 1%. Other purchases earn 1% cash back. Terms apply.

The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express offers higher cash-back rewards — as high as 6% — but it has an annual fee: $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.. A good guideline: If you spend more than $61 a week at U.S. supermarkets, you’ll come out ahead with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, even after paying the annual fee. For a more detailed breakdown, use the calculator in our comparison article.

The annual fee is $0.

Yes. The welcome offer for new cardholders is: Earn up to $250 – Here’s How: Earn up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal. Earn 20% back as a statement credit on purchases when you use your new Card to check out with PayPal at merchants in the first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $150 back. Plus, earn $100 back as a statement credit after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply.

You’ll need at least good credit to qualify for the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express. Generally speaking, “good credit” is defined as a score of at least 690. But a credit score alone isn’t enough to qualify for any credit card. Issuers take into account your income, existing debts and other information.