Each individual has a different kind of spending, and to address those needs there are many cards, but it can get confusing when you have to pick one. Blue Cash Preferred® from American Express is a card that is meant to address your grocery and gas-related spending.
We are going to be looking here at the different opportunities which can earn us rewards from day to day activities.
How to earn cash back on Blue Cash Preferred® card
Cashback on Groceries
Using a Blue Cash Preferred® card you can get a 6% cash back on your purchases which are made at US Supermarkets. However, items that are bought at superstores such as Walmart, Target, and Warehouse clubs like Sam’s, Costco and specialty stores are not eligible for cashback rewards. The cash back at 6% is received until you reach the first $6000 per year in purchases at supermarkets, beyond which you get cash back at 1% for your grocery purchases.
Cashback on US Subscription Services
A 6% cash back is not just for groceries but is also available to new users if they use this card to pay for US subscription services. Some of the subscription services where you would be able to receive a 6% cash back are Hulu, Apple Music, Amazon Music, HBO Now, Spotify and Netflix.
If any of your subscriptions services are bundled with another product/service or if your subscription is not directly with the retailer then you do not receive cash back at 6%.
Cashback at US Gas Stations
Blue Cash Preferred® card offers 3% cash back when you refuel your vehicle at US gas stations. Gas stations that are linked to superstores, supermarkets, and warehouse clubs are not considered as gas stations and do not qualify for cash back earnings. Purchases made at Shell, Exxon, Mobil are few stations where your gas purchases would make you eligible for reward dollars.
Cashback on Transit Service
Many cards offer high cash back for airfare and hotels bookings but with this card, you can get rewards for daily commute related activities. If you travel to work using a train or taxi cabs or ride shares or take the subway then you could earn 3% cashback on your purchases. Some of your toll and parking charges are also eligible to earn reward dollars. What is not included are the purchases made towards airfare, cruises, and car rentals.
All other purchases made using this card would earn you 1% cashback.
Additional Card Holder Benefit
If you have issued an additional card to a family member then any purchases they make, earns cash back that is similar to your card.
All the cashback earned is in the form of reward dollars. They can be redeemed for a statement credit when your reward balance is $25 or more.
The cashback earned on all the credit cards are based on the merchant code assigned to them. If the retailer you shopped at does not have a correct code assigned then you may miss out on the cashback. You can call the numbers on the back of your card for any questions you have regarding rewards credited to your account. You can click on the link to know more about the retailers’ where you can earn cashback.
Optimize the benefits offered on Blue Cash Preferred® card
Blue Cash Preferred® card can be used for planning and paying your small and large purchases. This card comes with Pay It® and Plan It® benefit.
Pay It®: Pay It® feature is for small purchases which are lesser than $100. You can make small payments throughout the month by using this feature in the American Express app. The payments that are made are posted towards the outstanding balance, and not the specific billed purchase.
Plan It®: Plan It® will allow you to make large purchases and you can have up to 10 payment plans to repay the amount. The purchases must be equal or more than $100 to be able to use this feature. You would have to pay a fixed monthly fee which would be displayed upfront to use this benefit.
We are sharing a link which answers questions regarding this feature: https://www.americanexpress.com/us/credit-cards/features-benefits/plan-it/index.html. You can also use the Plan It® calculator to understand how the feature works. When you activate a plan you do not incur monthly interest but you are charged a monthly fee for the duration of the plan.
Additional Benefits available on Blue Cash Preferred® card
Fraud Protection: This benefit protects all your online and offline transactions. When you use your Blue Cash Preferred® card, if there is a fraudulent activity then you won’t be held responsible for it. You must call the number on the back of your card to report the activity if you notice something suspicious.
Extended Warranty: You could receive up to 1 year of extended warranty protection on qualified purchases with this card. If the original manufacturer warranty period exceeds five years then the item does not receive any coverage.
Purchase Protection: You get up to 90 days of protection coverage in case of accidental damage or if the item is stolen. This is a secondary coverage and you would be eligible up to $1,000 for an item and up to $50,000 for all covered Incidents per cardholder, per year. Few of the items that are not covered under this protection are consumable & perishable items, antiques, motorized vehicles, items on rent, permanent household and business fixtures. You can refer to the benefits guide to know the detailed list of exclusions.
Return Protection: This card also gives you 90 days to claim a refund for a purchase that a merchant has declined to accept. The coverage is up to $300 per item and up to a maximum of $1,000 per calendar year for a card member.
Car Rental Loss and Damage Protection: The Car rental insurance is available to cardholders who rent a car up to 30 consecutive days. Insurance does not cover rentals beyond 30 days. Your coverage protects you against damage and theft however this is a secondary coverage. To be eligible for this coverage the entire rental cost must be paid with your American Express card. Certain vehicles such as antique cars, limousines, vans, and off-roading vehicles are excluded from the coverage.
Global Assist Hotline: This benefit can help you while you are on your trip. The services available through Global Assist Hotline are
- customs information
- foreign exchange rates
- passport visa/information
- Emergency Medical Transportation Assistance
- EmergencyTranslation/Interpretation and more.
There are charges associated with some of the services such as medical, legal and translation services which must be paid by the cardholder.
This is not a card that you would want to use while you are traveling out of the country. If you use the Blue Cash Preferred® to make transactions abroad then you would be charged a fee of 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to US dollars.
Blue Cash Preferred® on its own is a good card for cash back. But you can get more mileage if you pair it with an alternate cash back card such as Blue Cash Everyday® or Chase Freedom Unlimited which has no annual fee and a flat cashback offering.