Wells Fargo Propel AmEx: Applications are Paused; Still a Valuable Card

Existing customers can still rack up triple rewards across a wide swath of common spending categories like dining, travel, gas stations and streaming, all while paying no annual fee.
Jul 28, 2022

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Our Take

4.9

NerdWallet rating 
The bottom line:

This card offers excellent rewards to existing customers, and for an unbeatable price. What it lacks, however, are luxury travel perks.

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Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Credit Card
Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card
Annual fee
$0
Regular APR
14.49%-24.99% Variable APR
Intro APR
0% intro APR for 12 months from account opening on purchases and qualifying balance transfers
Rec. credit score
690-850 (Good - Excellent)

Quick Facts

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • No annual fee

  • No foreign transaction fee

  • Intro APR period on Purchases and qualifying Balance Transfers

Cons

  • American Express isn’t accepted at as many merchants as Visa or Mastercard

  • Requires good/excellent credit

Alternate Pick: Straight cash back
Citi® Double Cash Card
NerdWallet rating 
Citi® Double Cash Card
No categories to remember: 2% everywhere

If you prize simplicity in a rewards credit card, this is a good option. You get an unlimited 2% cash back on every purchase: 1% when you buy something and another 1% when you pay it off. No categories to remember or points to mess around with. The annual fee is $0.

Read our review

Compare to Other Cards

NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Annual fee

$0

Annual fee

$95

Annual fee

$0

Regular APR

14.24%-25.24% Variable APR

Regular APR

18.24%-25.24% Variable APR

Regular APR

See Terms

Intro APR

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

Intro APR

N/A

Intro APR

See Terms

Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
Recommended Credit Score
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Full Review

» This card is not accepting applications

The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card is no longer available to new applicants. However, in late June 2022, Wells Fargo launched the Wells Fargo Autograph℠ Card, which is a similar product with similar benefits.

As of April 2021, the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card was not accepting new applications.

But for existing cardholders, the card still offers a compelling value proposition: triple points in a variety of popular categories — including dining and travel — all for a $0 annual fee. There aren't many cards in its class that can compete with it, and indeed the Propel has won three consecutive NerdWallet Best-Of awards, as "Best No-Annual-Fee Travel Credit Card."

Unlike more expensive cards, however, the Propel doesn't offer swanky perks such as travel credits, airport lounge access, travel transfer partners or reimbursement for Global Entry or TSA Precheck. But it does come with some extras like cell phone protection and supplementary rental car insurance. That's a ton of value for a card that costs nothing to carry.

If you're an existing holder of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card, here's what it offers you.

Key features of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card

Card type: Travel.

Annual fee: $0.

Rewards: Earn 3 points per $1 spent on the following categories:

  • Eat & Drink. This category includes restaurant dining, takeout and bars.

  • Ride & Drive. This category includes gas stations, rideshares and transit.

  • Fly & Stay. This category includes flights, hotels, homestays and more.

  • Watch & Listen. This category includes multiple eligible streaming services, such as Amazon Prime, Audible, Apple Music, Apple TV+, Disney+, ESPN+, fuboTV, HBO Now, Hulu, Netflix, Pandora, Sirius XM Radio, Spotify Premium and more.

All other eligible spending earns 1 point per $1 spent.

Points are worth a penny each and can be redeemed for things like travel, cash back or gift cards through the Wells Fargo Rewards portal. You can book travel using a combination of points and a payment card. For cash back, you can redeem via a Wells Fargo ATM, as long as it's in $20/2,000-point amounts. You can also redeem by phone or online in $25/2,500-point increments, which can be applied directly toward any eligible Wells Fargo account or you can request a check.

🤓Nerdy Tip

You can pool Wells Fargo Rewards among Wells Fargo cards. So if you're a Propel cardholder and also have the Wells Fargo Visa Signature® Credit Card, you can move your points over to the Visa Signature product and take advantage of that card's enhanced redemption value on airfare, a Wells Fargo representative confirmed. The Wells Fargo Visa Signature® Credit Card isn't available via NerdWallet.

Foreign transaction fees: None.

Other benefits:

  • Cell phone protection of up to $600, minus a $25 deductible, for damage to or theft of your phone (when you use the card to pay your monthly cell phone bill).*

  • Travel accident insurance and lost luggage reimbursement.*

  • Auto protection and insurance including roadside assistance and car rental coverage.*

  • Purchase protections including return protection and extended warranty.*

* Terms and conditions may apply.

Highlights of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card

Annual fee of $0

Some of the best rewards cards — especially those that offer generous welcome offers and high ongoing rewards — come with an annual fee. That means that for a card to be worth it, you would have to earn enough value in rewards to break even with the annual fee. That's not an issue with the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card. It's rare to find a travel rewards card that offers this much ongoing value at no yearly cost (assuming you don't rack up interest charges).

Widely inclusive reward categories

Unlike some other travel cards, the reward categories for the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card are both lucrative and broadly appealing. It's not the only travel rewards card to include certain less-considered categories like campgrounds, tolls and taxis. But the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card also earns triple points on discount travel sites, not to mention homestays and rideshares. The streaming services category is also a differentiator and could be valuable to the right kind of user.

Drawbacks of the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card

Few premium perks

If you're seeking a card with exclusive travel perks and other benefits, you're probably going to have to pay for it. The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card doesn't come with an annual fee, but it also doesn't come with goodies like Global Entry/TSA Precheck reimbursement, airport lounge access, or the ability to transfer your rewards to hotel or airline partners.

Potentially limited international Acceptance

While the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card doesn't charge foreign transaction fees, American Express isn't as widely accepted outside the U.S. as are Mastercard and Visa. So for overseas travel, this card might not be your best bet.

Possible alternatives

Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card

If you want rewards from a travel card without annual fees but find the idea of tracking bonus categories unpalatable, the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card is a solid choice. Cardholders earn an unlimited 1.5 points per dollar spent on all purchases. You also earn 3 points per dollar spent — twice the card's usual rate — at the Bank of America® Travel Center. Rewards can be redeemed for credit against any travel purchase. Those who qualify for the bank's Preferred Rewards program can earn bonuses on their earnings of 25% or more.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

If your goal is travel rewards plus perks, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card is a strong contender. The card earns bonus rewards in various categories, including dining and travel (And through March 2025, it earns 5X the points on Lyft). It has an annual fee of $95, but it also offers a rich sign-up bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. The secret sauce with this card is that points take on 25% more value when used to book travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal. So if you've accrued 10,000 points, you can redeem for $100 cash back, or $125 worth of travel. And because the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card allows you to transfer points to multiple airline and hotel partners, you might be able to squeeze even more value out of your rewards.

Citi® Double Cash Card

If you're not much of a traveler and you're seeking a simple rewards structure, you might want to consider a flat-rate cash-back credit card, like the Citi® Double Cash Card. It has an annual fee of $0, but instead of tiered rewards, it offers 2% cash back on everything — 1% back when you make a purchase and another 1% back as you pay for it.

If you're looking for more credit card alternatives, check out NerdWallet's best credit cards page.

Information related to the Wells Fargo Visa Signature® Credit Card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.

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 earns points in Wells Fargo’s Go Far Rewards program. You earn 3 points per dollar on a range of common expenses: restaurant dining, takeout and bars; gas stations, rideshares and transit; travel purchases like flights, hotels and homestays; and eligible streaming services such as Apple Music, Hulu, Netflix, Pandora and Spotify Premium. All other spending earns 1 point per dollar. Points are worth 1 cent apiece.

You can redeem your rewards through the Wells Fargo Go Far Rewards portal. Points are worth 1 cent apiece. You can redeem them for travel, cash back or gift cards. However, when using them for cash back, you can redeem only in $25 increments — or $20 increments at a Wells Fargo ATM.

There’s no limit to the number of points you can earn on the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card, and rewards never expire as long as your account is open.

This card operates on the American Express payment network, although it is not actually issued by AmEx.

The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card is not accepting new applications. When it was accepting them, it required good to excellent credit. Generally speaking, good credit means a credit score of 690 or better. 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.