Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express Review

The card_name offers one of the highest cash back rates on groceries at 6% on up to $6,000 per year. That makes it a valuable card for many families, especially when you toss in the $84 credit for Disney+. This card also earns 6% cash back on select streaming services with no cap and 3% cash back on gas and transit. There’s a $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95. There’s also a 0% introductory APR offer. You’ll get Cash Back in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit or at Amazon.com checkout. The annual fee is waived for the first year; after that, you’ll have to decide if your rewards justify the fee. We dive into the details and your approval odds in this Blue Cash Preferred review.

Welcome Offer

Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months. Terms Apply.

Our Rating

4.5/5.0

Welcome Offer

Earn a $250 statement credit

Annual Fee

$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.

0% Intro on Purchases

12 months

Reward Rate

1%-6%

0% Intro on Balance Transfers

12 months

Welcome Offer

Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.

Editorial Review

Having written about credit cards for a long time, it’s become easy to distinguish good cards from bad. A good credit card will deliver in a variety of ways. Big perks, big bonuses, good rewards program, etc. A bad credit card wows you with one feature, then takes advantage of you in every other way.

The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is a credit card I knew I always wanted. When it was released many years ago, my credit score was in the tank (high 400s), so I had no reason to apply. After a few years of saving and working hard to restore my credit, I finally had the opportunity to own this cash-back credit card. I use this card for every grocery store purchase and easily save hundreds of dollars a year.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express Welcome Offer + Cash Back Rewards Program

The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express has the following welcome offer: Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.

If you’re worried about being able to spend that amount of money, don’t be. My cable bill + grocery bill each month is well over $700. After just a few months, I would have no trouble reaching the $3,000 hurdle. Toss in gas, department stores, restaurants, and other utility bills, and getting there should be even easier. Last, you can pay for health, life, and auto insurance with a credit card.

Cash Back Reward Tiers

Beyond the welcome offer, this credit card excels in another major area: cashback. The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express offers an amazing set of tier levels to earn cash back on everyday spending:

1% cash back
On all other eligible purchases
1% cash back on all other eligible purchases
3% cash back
Gas
3% cash back at U.S. gas stations
3% cash back
Transit
Cash Back on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more)
6% cash back
U.S. supermarkets
6% cash back on groceries up to $6,000 per year in purchases at U.S. supermarkets, then 1%
6% cash back
Streaming services
6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions

If the 6% cash back category stands out, this is one of the only credit cards offering better than 5% on anything. Its inclusion in such a widely used category makes this card valuable to people who spend a lot of money on groceries. The other cash-back amounts are also nice. When I don’t have a 5% gas cash back quarter available, this is the card I use at the pump.

Cash back from American Express comes in membership rewards dollars, and they never expire so long as your account is in good standing. Rewards dollars can be redeemed for a statement credit, check, or gift card through the American Express portal. There is never any limit to how much cash you can earn back.

Blue Cash Preferred Rewards Calculator

Use our calculator to see how much cash back you can earn with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express.

How to Maximize the Cashback You Earn with the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

So, how often should you use the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express? Let’s discuss how this card can fit into your wallet, depending on how many credit cards you own, to maximize rewards.

  • If the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is the only card you use for all purchases.
  • If the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is one of two credit cards you own.
  • If the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is one of three credit cards you own.

Annual Cash Back Using Only the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

CategoryMonthly SpendingAnnual Cash Back
Groceries (6%)$500$360
Streaming Services (6%)$50$36
Gas (3%)$200$144
Travel (1%)$500$60
Dining Out (1%)$250$30
(Online) Shopping (1%)$100$12
Other (1%)$1,000$120
ANNUAL CASH BACK (Minus Annual Fee)$667

Annual Cash Back Using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express AND Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card

CategoryMonthly SpendingAnnual Cash Back w/ BCPAnnual Cash Back w/ WF AC
Groceries (6%)$500$360
Streaming Services (6%)$50$36
Gas (3%)$200$144
Travel (2%)$500$120
Dining Out (2%)$250$60
(Online) Shopping (2%)$100$24
Other (2%)$1,000$240
ANNUAL CASH BACK (Minus Annual Fee)$445$444

Annual Cash Back Using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express AND Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card AND Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

CategoryMonthly SpendingAnnual Cash Back w/ BCPAnnual Cash Back w/ WF ACAnnual Cash Back w/ CSP
Groceries (6%)$500$360
Streaming Services (6%)$50$36
Gas (3%)$200$144
Travel (Through Chase Travel(SM)) (5%)$500$300
Dining Out (3%)$250$90
(Online) Shopping (2%)$100$24
Other (2%)$1,000$240
ANNUAL CASH BACK (Minus Annual Fee)$445$284$295

Looking at the above three scenarios, the total annual spend amount is the same: $31,200.

  • Using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express as your only credit card, you could earn $667 or an overall cashback rate of 2.14%.
  • Using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express as one of two credit cards could earn $889 or an overall cashback rate of 2.85%.
  • Using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express as one of three credit cards could earn $1,024 or an overall cashback rate of 3.28%.

Remember that one benefit of using more than one credit card for your spending is earning multiple welcome bonuses. Still, your monthly spending patterns may need tweaking to meet multiple spending requirements.

When considering how many credit cards you should own, a simple way to think about it is how much you find yourself spending with credit cards each month. If the number exceeds the proposed budget, 3+ cards best suit you. If the amount is around or slightly below the proposed budget, you’re best owning 2-3 credit cards. If you do not use your credit card often, owning a single, strong cash-back credit card is likely best.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express Pricing Details

New cardholders will receive a 0% intro APR for 12 months on purchases and 12 months on balance transfers from the account opening date. After the intro rate expires, the variable ongoing APR is 19.24% – 29.99% based on your credit history. Other interest rates and fees on the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express are as follows:

  • Foreign transaction fee – 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.
  • Late payment and returned payment fee – Up to $40
  • Annual fee – $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.

Paying an annual fee on a cash-back credit card can be a bad idea if you plan to use your credit card sparingly. However, if you plan to use this card for most of your shopping and grocery purchases, the cash back earned is well worth the price of the annual fee.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Welcome offer: Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in eligible purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.
  • Up to 6% cash back: Unparalleled 6% Cash Back at U.S. Supermarkets (on up to $6,000 in purchases, 1% after)
  • Cashback on gas: Great 3% Cash Back at U.S. Gas Stations

Cons

  • Annual fee: $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express Comparison

Another version of this card is the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express. The rewards program is a bit smaller, but the big selling point is that the card carries an $0 annual fee. Assuming the same spending patterns for a family, what kind of annual cash-back savings can you expect from each card?

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

CategoryMonthly SpendingAnnual Cash Back
Groceries (3%)$500$180
Streaming Services (1%)$50$6
Gas (3%)$400$144
Travel (1%)$500$60
Dining Out (1%)$250$30
(Online) Shopping (3%)$100$36
Other (1%)$1,000$120
ANNUAL CASH BACK$576

Using the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is often better than its no-fee counterpart. The savings at the grocery store are too great a feature for people who shop there regularly.

Final Thoughts

I currently own a lot of credit cards. When I browse my wallet, I see that only two have an annual fee. One is the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. The other is the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. I despise annual fees, but you take advantage when you have a credit card offering a 6% cash back category year-round. With a family of four who spends 6-7 days and nights every week making food from home, the savings are tremendous.

Include a welcome offer, a 0% intro APR for 12 months on purchases and for 12 months on balance transfers from the date of account opening (after that, a variable ongoing APR of 19.24% – 29.99% applies), and high cash back percentages on things like gas and at supermarkets. There’s little reason not to own the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express.

Below, we recap the features, fees, credit score requirements, and alternatives.

Features & Benefits

SecurityEMV Chip Enabled, Fraud Monitoring, Zero Liability, Alerts
Contactless PaymentsTap to Pay, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Samsung Pay, Fitbit Pay
BenefitsExtended Warranty Coverage, Purchase Protection, Return Guarantees, ShopRunner, 24/7 customer service
Travel PerksAccess to Special Events and Concerts, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Emergency Travel Assistance

Rewards

1% cash back
On all other eligible purchases
1% cash back on all other eligible purchases
3% cash back
Gas
3% cash back at U.S. gas stations
3% cash back
Transit
Cash Back on transit (including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more)
6% cash back
U.S. supermarkets
6% cash back on groceries up to $6,000 per year in purchases at U.S. supermarkets, then 1%
6% cash back
Streaming services
6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions

Interest Rates & Fees

Annual Fee$0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95.
Foreign Transaction Fee2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.
Regular APR19.24% - 29.99% (V) APR
Balance Transfers0% Intro APR for 12 months on balance transfers, then 19.24% - 29.99%(V) APR after that.
Balance Transfer FeeEither $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Purchases0% Intro APR for 12 months on purchases, then 19.24% - 29.99% (V) APR after that.

Insurance

Extended Warranty

When an American Express® Card Member charges a Covered Purchase to an Eligible Card, Extended Warranty§ can provide up to one extra year added to the Original Manufacturer’s Warranty. Applies to warranties of five (5) years or less. Coverage is up to the actual amount charged to your Card for the item up to a maximum of $10,000; not to exceed $50,000 per Card Member account per calendar year.

  • Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. 
  • Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. 
  • Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

Return Protection

With Return Protection, you may return eligible purchases to American Express if the seller won’t take them back up to 90 days from the date of purchase. American Express may refund the full purchase price excluding shipping and handling, up to $300 per item, up to a maximum of $1,000 per calendar year per Card account, if you purchased it entirely with your eligible American Express® Card. Purchases must be made in the U.S. or its territories.

  • Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. 
  • Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details.

Purchase Protection

When an American Express® Card Member charges a Covered Purchase with their Eligible Card, Purchase Protection can help protect their Covered Purchases for up to 90 days from the Covered Purchase date if it is stolen or accidentally damaged. The coverage is limited up to $1,000 per occurrence, up to $50,000 per Card Member account per calendar year.

  • Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. 
  • Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details.
  • Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance

Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance can provide coverage up to $50,000 for theft of or damage to most rental vehicles when you use your eligible Card to reserve and pay for the entire eligible vehicle rental and decline the collision damage waiver or similar option offered by the Commercial Car Rental Company. This product provides secondary coverage and does not include liability coverage. Not all vehicle types or rentals are covered. Geographic restrictions apply.

  • Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. 
  • Please visit americanexpress.com/benefitsguide for more details. 
  • Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company. Car Rental Loss or Damage Coverage is offered through American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.

What Credit Score Is Required to Get the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

The following credit score data are based on publicly available information we have collected from various forums. We have no way to confirm the accuracy of this data. In addition, keep in mind that credit card issuers use numerous factors in their underwriting process, and these factors can change at any time.

Lowest Approved Credit Score: 738

Average Approved Credit Score: 767

App StatusDateCredit ScoreBureauCredit Limit
Approved01/19/2023
825
Not Provided
$6,000
Approved05/04/2023
738
Experian
$20,000
Approved05/04/2023
748
TransUnion
$20,000
Approved05/04/2023
755
Equifax
$20,000

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Welcome offer
  • Up to 6% cash back
Cons
  • Annual fee
  • High APR
  • Foreign transaction fee

What Are the Best Alternatives?

Citi Custom Cash® Card
Citi Custom Cash® Card

Rating

4.7

Rewards Range

1% - 5%

Annual Fee

$0

Citi<sup>®</sup> Double Cash Card
Citi® Double Cash Card

Rating

4.9

Rewards Range

1% to 2%

Annual Fee

$0

Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Chase Freedom Unlimited®

Rating

4.9

Rewards Range

1.5% - 5%

Annual Fee

$0

Related Articles

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