The latest credit card from American Express offers a generous first year bonus, plus unlimited cash back on ordinary purchases. Find out if this card is for you in our American Express Cash Magnet™ Card review.
The latest addition to the American Express lineup is the American Express Cash Magnet™ Card. It offers both upfront bonuses and ongoing cash rewards that are very easy to qualify for. And if that isn’t enough, there’s also a generous 0% APR introductory offer on both purchases and balance transfers, as well as the fact that the card charges no annual fee.
About American Express Cash Magnet™ Card
You can earn a total of $250 cash back in the first year. First, you get $150 cash back after you spend at least $1,000 in purchases within the first three months of card membership. You can then earn an another $100 cash back after you spend an additional $6,500 within your first 12 months of opening the account.
You’re eligible for the $100 cash back bonus even if you don’t qualify for the first bonus. If additional card members on the same account make purchases, those will also count toward the cash back bonuses. However, only the primary card holder qualifies to use the bonuses.
That converts to $250 for spending $7,500 over 12 months. It works out to be $333 spent on the card in each of the first three months to get the $150 bonus, then $723 per month over the next nine months to get the $100 bonus.
You can then get an unlimited 1.5% cash back on regular purchases going forward. There are no special categories needed to qualify.
The cash rewards are in the form of Rewards Dollars and can be redeemed for a statement credit, gift cards or select merchandise when a reward balance reaches 25 or more. Bonus statement credits apply 6 to 8 weeks after you meet each of the two threshold requirements.
The card also comes with a 0% introductory APR on both purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months. Balance transfers must be completed within 60 days of opening your account.
You will receive an Online Year-End Summary reflecting all activity in your account from January 1 through December 31 of the prior year. The statement will usually be available sometime in January.
Credit required: Good/excellent.
American Express Mobile App: You can access your account information anytime through the Amex Mobile app, which is available for both iOS and Android devices.
Customer Service: Available by phone, Monday through Friday, from 9:00 AM to 12:00 AM; Sundays and Saturdays, from 10:00 AM to 6:30 PM, all times Eastern. Online chat is also available any time you are logged into your account.
Features and Benefits of American Express Cash Magnet™ Card
The American Express Cash Magnet™ Card provides the following additional features and benefits:
Roadside Assistance Hotline: Get assistance with obtaining emergency services, like towing, changing a flat, or boosting a battery (you’ll be responsible for third party charges).
Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance: Rent a car using the card, and decline the collision damage waiver at the rental car counter. You can be covered if the car is damaged or stolen. This is secondary coverage and does not include liability coverage (which should be part of your primary auto insurance policy).
Travel Accident Insurance: Coverage for accidental death and dismemberment while traveling on a common carrier. The fare must be charged to the card to be eligible.
Global Assist Hotline: Provides lost passport replacement assistance, translation services, missing luggage assistance and emergency legal and medical referrals. You must be traveling more than 100 miles from home, and you will be responsible for third party charges.
Purchase Protection: Pay for a purchase using the card, and you’ll be protected from accidental damage or theft for up to 120 days.
Extended Warranty: When you make a purchase using the card, you can get up to two years additional warranty coverage on eligible purchases added to the original manufacturer’s warranty (of five years or less).
Return Protection: American Express will reimburse you for the full purchase price of an eligible item purchased within 90 days, if the merchant won’t take it back. It’s good for up to $300 per item, up to a maximum of $1,000 per calendar year.
Dispute Resolution: If there is a fraudulent or incorrect charge on your statement, American Express will work with you to help resolve the issue.
Entertainment Access: Provides exclusive access to ticket pre-sales on events in a city near you. Includes Broadway shows, concerts tours, and family and sporting events.
PLAN IT: You can set up a monthly payment plan for large purchases with a fixed monthly fee and no interest charges, and still enjoy the same rewards and protections you get on other purchases.
How to Sign Up for the American Express Cash Magnet™ Card
You must be at least 18 years old and have both a U.S. mailing address and a Social Security number.
You can complete the application online (but you can also apply over the phone), by providing the following information:
- Email address
- Date of birth
- Phone number
- Home address
- Total annual income (non-taxable annual income is optional)
- Your income source – employed, self-employed, unemployed, retired, military, business owner, or other)
Once your application is complete, you can get a decision in as little as 30 seconds.
American Express Cash Magnet™ Card Pricing
Annual Fee: None
Annual Percentage Rate (APR): 0% introductory APR on both purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months, then 14.99% to 25.99% variable APR, based on your creditworthiness. APR for cash advances is 26.99%
Balance Transfer Fee: The greater of 3% of the amount of each transfer, or $5
Cash Advance Fee: The greater of 3% of the amount of each transfer, or $5
Foreign Transaction Fee: 2.7% of each transaction after conversion to U.S. dollars
Late Payment Fee: Up to $38
Returned Payment Fee: Up to $38
Over-limit Fee: None
American Express Cash Magnet™ Card Pros and Cons
- The initial bonus of $150 is easy to qualify for, with just $1,000 in purchases in the first three months.
- There are no caps or categories attached to the 1.5% cash back rewards.
- The card offers a 0% introductory APR on both purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 months.
- There is no annual fee.
- The card comes with the type of benefits you expect from American Express, including roadside assistance, travel accident insurance, purchase protection, and extended warranty.
- The card does charge a foreign transaction fee of 2.7%. Many competing cards don’t charge this fee.
- The upfront bonus offer is not as generous as competing cards. For example, the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card offers up to $750 in travel credits after making $4,000 in purchases in the first three months, while Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card offers up to $500 in travel credits when you spend $3,000 within the first three months. Of course, both offers are primarily for frequent travelers and have higher spending requirements for qualification.
- The 1.5% unlimited cash back on all purchases is not as generous as the Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express, that offers 6% cashback on groceries, 3% on gas stations and at department stores, and 1% cashback on other purchases.
Should You Sign Up for American Express Cash Magnet™ Card?
The American Express Cash Magnet™ Card has one of the most user-friendly offers for both its upfront bonus and for ongoing rewards. All you need to do to qualify for the bonus is go about your regular spending–and not a whole lot at that–and you’ll qualify for $250 in the first year. After that, you’ll earn 1.5% cashback on everything else you buy. There are no restrictions, and no categories you need to adhere to qualify for rewards.
In addition, rewards are available as either statement credits, gift cards or merchandise. This makes them much simpler to redeem than some of the more generous travel rewards that come with travel centered cards. And you can take full advantage of the rewards even if you aren’t a frequent traveler. They can be spent or redeemed any way you like.
The 15-month 0% introductory APR is another major benefit. You can use it for balance transfers, which is always a solid advantage. But you can also use it for purchases, which means you can be earning rewards while at the same time paying no interest on your balance.
There are other cards available that offer either a more generous bonuses, or higher rewards. But those cards typically have higher spending qualifications, and more limited redemption options.
If you’re looking for a card that combines good first year bonus rewards, easy-to-qualify-for ongoing rewards, and a 0% introductory APR–along with no annual fee–the American Express Cash Magnet™ Card is one of the better choices.
Topics: Credit Cards • Reviews