Dive Deeper: Noteworthy Third Party Amex Cards & Why They Are Important

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Third Party Amex Cards

Third Party Amex Cards

I feel Amex has enough cards to keep any hobbyist busy.  That’s just one reason they’re my favorite card issuer.  Perhaps I can’t get enough Amex, because I’m also interested in tracking down third party Amex cards issued by other banks.  I’ve noticed that such cards can have some surprisingly solid benefits.  And they also possess a few other traits that make them even more attractive.  I’m describing these characteristics first and sharing a few noteworthy third party Amex cards which are still available for new applications.

What Makes Third Party Amex Cards Great

Third party Amex cards are a bit of an endangered species – relatively few exist, and some banks have eliminated these cards or no longer allow new applications (Wells Fargo Propel Amex is just one example).  Here are the top three positives, in my view:

  • Third party Amex cards aren’t subject to Amex’s general credit (5) or pay over time card (10) product limits.
  • They can provide additional access to Amex Offers that give you the ability to grab multiples of the same offer.
  • These cards can earn rewards on online Serve loads.

Many other positives exist, and you can read more here.  But now, I’ll dive into some of the best third party Amex cards.

Noteworthy Third Party Amex Cards

Third Party Amex Cards
Source: Comenity.

Bread Cashback Amex

Probably the newest kid on the block, the Bread Cashback Amex arguably provides the best rewards for everyday spend of any third party Amex card.  Cardholders earn 2% cash back on all purchases, and unlike Amex’s Blue Business Cash, there is no spend cap for that earn rate.  This card has no annual fee and can compete with similar cash back cards offered by other banks.

Third Party Amex Cards

Navy Federal More Rewards Amex

I’ve had my eyes on this one for a good while. This one’s bonus categories shine, at least compared to those of other third party Amex cards.  Cardholders earn 3x at supermarkets, restaurants/food delivery, gas stations, and transit, and 1x everywhere else.  Points are worth one cent each and can be redeemed for cash back, travel, gift cards, and merchandise.  The card has no annual, balance transfer, or foreign transaction fees.

The biggest downside is there’s no public welcome offer currently.  But I just received a targeted mailer noting I was “preselected for a special offer” – 30k points with $3k spend.  That’s not eye-popping for a credit card in general, but it is solid for a third party Amex.  I plan to apply soon.

Third Party Amex Cards
Source: US Bank.

US Bank FlexPerks Gold Amex

This is Mark’s favorite card which he can’t obtain.  The FlexPerks Gold Amex has a 30k welcome offer with $2k spend and is worth $450 in airfare, hotel stays, car rentals, and more.  The card earns 5x on prepaid hotel reservations and car rentals, 3x on dining, and 2x on airline, gas, and EV charge spending, and 1x everywhere else.  Also, the card provides a statement credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry.  The 1.5 cent per point value is tempered by the card’s $85 annual fee.

Third Party Amex Cards
Source: USAA.com.

USAA Amex Cards

The USAA Cashback Rewards Plus Amex earns 5% cash back on the first $3k in combined gas and military base purchases annually, 2% cash back at grocery stores, and 1% everywhere else for no annual fee.  The USAA Rewards Amex earns 3x points at restaurants, 2x at gas stations and grocery stores, and 1x everywhere else with no annual fee.  Cardholders receive 2,500 bonus points after their first purchase.  Point value is just under a penny each.

Source: Macys.com.

Macy’s Star Rewards Amex

Issued by Citi, the Macy’s Star Rewards Amex offers 3% back in rewards on dining purchases, 2% back at gas stations and supermarkets, and 1% back everywhere else.  Rewards are redeemable for Star Money rewards at 1 cent per point.  Macy’s spenders (Silver, Gold, and Platinum levels) can earn in escalating amounts for spend at the department store, from 2% to 5%.  Those who open an account can save 20% off (up to $100 total) within the first two days of opening the account.

Dillard’s Amex

Loyal Dillard’s shoppers may enjoy this Amex card issued by Wells Fargo.  The card earns 2x at Dillard’s, gas stations, and grocery stores, and 1x everywhere else.  Points are redeemable for a 10% off shopping pass or $10 certificate for 1.5k points.  Shopping passes and certificates are capped at 12 and 48 each year, respectively.

Avid Dillard’s shoppers are better off going for the shopping pass, since they can do better than reward certificates with a 2% cash back card.  Interestingly, I see no purchase cap for the 10% off shopping pass in the terms and conditions.  Cardmembers can reach Dillard’s Elite status with $2k annual spend.  This unlocks benefits such as complimentary shipping, gift wrapping, and bonus points opportunities.

New cardholders receive a 10% off shopping pass after their first statement if they charge at least $100 at Dillard’s on the day of their approval.

Conclusion

These are the most noteworthy third party Amex cards still available which I’ve found.  I didn’t bother highlighting more inferior third party Amex cards.  Regardless, I’d be happy to be proven wrong!  Please share your favorite third party Amex cards in the comments.  In the meantime, I’ll keep searching and will follow up with anything else I’ve discovered.

Benjy Harmon
Benjy is a fan of points, miles, and financial independence (FI). An experienced world traveler, husband, and father, he currently focuses on roaming throughout the USA for close to free. He enjoys helping others achieve their FI and travel goals.

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3 COMMENTS

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3 COMMENTS

  1. While the US Bank Gold Amex seems great on the surface, oh! Wow! 5x on hotels and car rentals, those are prepaid and just a pain in the butt to use IRL plus if you have to give up one reservation you lose a ton of the proposed value of the card points. Besides who in the world makes prepaid car rental reservations? The 3x on dining is decent but a regular Gold Amex is 4x for about the same fee. 2x on gas is good but a lot of cards offer that. The points also have to be redeemed through their portal which can be OK but a regular Amex MR card is much better. I don’t value the points over 1 cent each. I’d say if you are very vested in the US Bank card system it’s “OK” but unless you can’t get other standard Amex MR cards or Chase UR cards those are much better overall. I have a regular Flexperks card because my main checking account is through US Bank but I hardly ever use it. In fact, you’d be better off applying for the Flexperks Signature Visa or $400 annual fee reserve card that earns about the same and offers a 50k points SUB.

  2. And in Canada you have the Scotiabank Amex cards! I had thought of cancelling mine and moving its paltry 1k limit over to my line of credit, but I then decided against it after getting an amazing offer for United Airlines that saved me a ton of money on an upcoming trip.

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