Fee Free Gold Credit AMEX - Is it worth it?

Discussion in 'American Express Rewards' started by kamchatsky, Aug 11, 2006.

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  1. kamchatsky

    kamchatsky Established Member

    Mar 8, 2006
    2,774
    534
    Somewhere in Sydney
    Hi all,

    Today I receive a letter from AMEX to offer me Gold Credit Card with no annual fee ever (save $70/year). Of couse they said if I want to earn points I need to enrol to their Choices ($40/year) or Ascent ($80/year). I am not part of any other professional associations that gets me fee free AMEX with free rewards.

    The question is,

    - Is it worth getting this card and forking out $80/year joining Ascent? What about Choices?
    - Since they send me this special "invitation" letter does it mean they would still do a credit check on Baycorp, or they skip it completely?
    - Would Earth be a better option as it is cheaper and has 2 cards?

    Here is the info:
    I currently have NAB Velocity Rewards normally spend about $1200 per month, and I normally save up credit card points and put it straight to one of the airline programs (in this case Velocity) if I can as I don't really care about vouchers etc. However the annual fee is coming up at end of year and $150 is a little bit too steep for me for my liking so I will most probably cut it. Also at the moment I do no Business travel at all. Of course I live in Australia so cannot get US credit cards (I do have US Visa debit card though, as I used to live there, but of course it gets me no points).

    Current point balance:
    Qantas Freq Flyer: 74K
    Singapore Krisflyer: 26K
    Velocity Rewards: 45K
    IC Priority Club: 130K
    Starwood Preferred Guest: 5K
    Airpoint Dollars: Too few to count :)

    I normally redeem airline tickets return SYD-HKG Economy on Qantas (60K), but have found their program deteriorating recently with all those surcharges/point increases etc. In fact the taxes/surcharges for the SYD-HKG Econ this Xmas is almost $300!!!!!

    - Anyone experienced Virgin Atlantic Flying Club program, what are their customer services? Their redemption rate for SYD-HKG Economy is 45K and I think it is 1:1 point conversion from AMEX Ascent. But I wonder how long would Virgin Atlantic keep the SYD-HKG route?

    Thank you for your help,

    Edison
     

  2. johnsmith

    johnsmith Member

    Dec 5, 2004
    100
    0
    Very Unlikely that Amex would do a credit search if they offer you a Gold Card, I have the very same Fee Free Gold CC saving $70 per year, I also have a Platinum CC (fee $395 includes Ascent Rewards linked to all 3 cards and free flight) and a charge card (fee $130 this is waived due to having Platinum CC.) So its quite good value having all three cards for the price of one. This set up works well for me, the Earth CC also seems pretty good with the double points.
     
  3. one9

    one9 Active Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    592
    8
    You did not mention if you have an existing Amex card. If no, then it is 99.9% likely they will do a credit check on you. There are no "true pre-approved offers" for personel credit card users in Australia. Even if you have an existing Amex card, unlike most banks, Amex often do a credit check when you increase your limit or upgrade cards with an increased limit.
     
  4. kamchatsky

    kamchatsky Established Member

    Mar 8, 2006
    2,774
    534
    Somewhere in Sydney
    My NAB Velocity card is an AMEX card. Does it count?
     
  5. one9

    one9 Active Member

    Sep 14, 2005
    592
    8
    No, co-branded Amex cards such as NAB Velocity Amex are managed by the issuing financial institution (eg NAB). Amex does not have access to NAB records (except limited information).
     
  6. johnsmith

    johnsmith Member

    Dec 5, 2004
    100
    0
    I assumed that you already had an Amex CC, it would be likely that they would do a credit check if you dont have one already, every time they have offered me a credit limit increase or upgraded CC then they have not done a credit check however when ever I ask them for an increase they always do a credit check.
     
  7. Tiki

    Tiki Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    449
    32
    BNE
    Several days ago, when I applied through the Amex website for the Gold Maximizer, they asked me if I was a current Amex user. I tried to type in my NAB Ant card and it didn't recognize it as an Amex card, so I had to say I wasn't an Amex user.
     
  8. kamchatsky

    kamchatsky Established Member

    Mar 8, 2006
    2,774
    534
    Somewhere in Sydney
    Thank you for your reply so far,

    Just wondering johnsmith, is there any additional advantages of have three AMEX cards rather than have just 1 AMEX card? Wouldn't that be higher credit risk?

    Another question, is it possible to link my AMEX credit card to my partner's Membership Rewards, in order to save the annual fee?

    Oh well I guess I just have to think about whether to have another credit check in my Baycorp credit file, as I am thinking of getting home loan end of next year or even the year after. Don't want to be in bad credit rating .....
     
  9. DanM

    DanM Newbie

    Jun 23, 2006
    4
    0
    Melbourne
    Every new credit card application, not matter what the financial institution is checked through the Credit Bureau. This also includes a new card, despite the fact you may have an existing card with the same institution.
     
  10. johnsmith

    johnsmith Member

    Dec 5, 2004
    100
    0
    The reason that I have 3 cards is that sometimes amex offers me 0% interest for 6 months on the 2 credit cards, with 3 cards this enables me to use this money interest free without disrupting my spending. Not sure if u can link rewards membership.
     
  11. kamchatsky

    kamchatsky Established Member

    Mar 8, 2006
    2,774
    534
    Somewhere in Sydney
    My fiance got her CPA Amex Card (with free membership rewards) on Friday and I was trying to link my credit card account to her membership rewards so she can have all my points, but it was not allowed by the system (must be the same name). Oh well at least I tried. So I will probably just get a supplementary card from her and all the points just go straight to her .... save me $80 (and most likely increase in the future) annual fee anyway.

    Just wondering, has anyone here ever got a fee free AMEX card with free membership rewards without joining any professional associations? Or am I just dreaming?
     
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