Get The Vacationer Newsletter

Get highlights of the most important news delivered to your email inbox

    Get The Vacationer Newsletter

    Get highlights of the most important news delivered to your email inbox

      Advertiser Disclosure

      Amazon Affiliate Disclosure: Jones-Dengler Marketing, LLC via The Vacationer is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of, Inc. or its affiliates.

      American Express® Green Card Benefits & Review (Is it Worth it in 2024?)

      Josh Patoka
      American Express Green Card Benefits Review

      Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit to learn more. The content on this page is accurate as of the posting date; however, some of our partner offers may have expired.

      The Amex Green Card is the issuer’s original travel and dining card, dating back to 1958. Green from Amex continues to serve as a starter travel credit card that earns bonus Membership Rewards points on several purchases.

      The rewards credit card also sports a couple of air travel perks that can reduce the stress of busy travel days or a long layover.

      Here is a closer look at maximizing the American Express® Green Card benefits.

      Benefits at a Glance
      Annual Fee: $150
      Welcome Bonus Offer: Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $3,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. Plus, earn 20% back on eligible travel and transit purchases made during your first 6 months of Card Membership, up to $200 back in the form of a statement credit.
      Up to 3x Membership Rewards per dollar spent at restaurants (worldwide), takeout and delivery in the United States, transit, and travel purchases.
      Award flight and gift card redemptions.
      Up to $189 CLEAR® Plus credit per year (subject to auto-renewal)
      Up to $100 LoungeBuddy credit each year

      Who is the American Express Green Card For?

      The Green Card from American Express is ideal for occasional air travelers that want CLEAR® Plus expedited airport security and up to $100 in airport lounge benefits per year. However, justifying the $150 annual fee without utilizing these two airport perks is challenging.

      Additionally, consider this card to earn Membership Rewards® points as travel, transit, and dining purchases can earn up to 3 points per $1.

      Featured American Express Green Card Benefits

      These are the most valuable perks of this entry-level rewards card.

      60,000 Membership Rewards Welcome Bonus Offer

      New cardmembers can earn a one-time signup bonus of 60,000 Membership Rewards after making $3,000 in purchases during the first 6 months.

      Qualifying transit and travel purchases earn up to 20% back during the first 6 months until you earn up to $200 back as a statement credit.

      Depending on the redemption method, the 60,000 point bonus can be worth thousands of dollars when transferred to a partner airline or hotel.

      CLEAR® Plus Credit

      You can receive up to $189 in CLEAR® Plus membership statement credits each year (subject to auto-renewal). This credential is independent of TSA PreCheck or Global Entry and is an additional way to process through the airport security lines quicker. It works at stadiums across the United States too.

      CLEAR is available in over 50 airports across the United States. After activating your membership, this service verifies your identity so you can reach the TSA security lines sooner for physical screening.

      You can apply for CLEAR online or at an in-person airport location. Just be sure to charge the application fee to your Green Card to receive the statement credit.

      $100 LoungeBuddy Credit

      Your first $100 in eligible airport lounge visits each year are reimbursed. LoungeBuddy partners with several airline-operated and independent networks. 

      For example, when flying through Atlanta, you can use your lounge credit to visit an American Airlines Admirals Club, Delta Sky Club, United Club, The Club ATL, or Minute Suites. Regarding airport lounges, you must have an active itinerary with that particular carrier. 

      If you only visit an airport lounge once or twice per year, this benefit is sufficient and can be more affordable than purchasing an annual membership.

      However, frequent flyers can benefit more from these credit cards with complimentary airport lounge access. With these cards, you can enjoy unlimited visits to thousands of locations worldwide for you and up to three travel companions.

      Earn Membership Rewards

      These card purchases earn 3 American Express Membership Rewards Points per $1 spent: 

      • Transit worldwide
      • Travel worldwide
      • Restaurants worldwide
      • Takeout and food delivery in the United States

      All non-bonus purchases earn 1 point per $1.

      Additionally, the American Express Offers program provides one-time cash rebates at participating physical and online merchants.  

      Other American Express Green Card Features

      Cardholders can also gain additional value from these secondary benefits.

      No Foreign Transaction Fee

      You won’t pay a foreign transaction fee on purchases outside the United States. This benefit and earning triple points on dining, travel, and transit across the world make this card a good option for traveling overseas.

      Travel Insurance

      Cardholders are eligible for these travel insurance benefits:

      • Baggage Insurance Plan: Up to $1,250 for carry-on baggage and $500 for checked baggage, in excess of common carrier coverage, on lost, damaged, or stolen luggage. New York State residents have a $10,000 aggregate maximum limit. 
      • Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance: Secondary rental car coverage on qualifying rentals within the United States and eligible countries.
      • Global Assist Hotline: 24/7 emergency assistance and coordination services when traveling at least 100 miles from home. Third-party service provider fees apply. 
      • Trip Delay Insurance: Up to $300 per trip when eligible roundtrip travel itineraries are delayed at least 12 hours. You can file up to two claims per 12 consecutive month period.  

      These benefits provide peace of mind and limit your out-of-pocket expenses when you’re eligible to file a claim. 

      The Vacationer Tip

      Consider checking out these other credit cards with travel insurance with more extensive benefits. Depending on the card, you can receive trip cancellation and interruption coverage, primary rental car insurance, and emergency evacuation assistance.

      Purchase Protection

      Covered retail purchases that are stolen or damaged accidentally during the first 90 days are reimbursed up to $1,000 per occurrence. The annual limit is $50,000 per calendar year.

      Additionally, qualifying purchases add an extra year to the original manufacturer’s warranty. This benefit applies to warranties of five years or shorter.   

      No Preset Spending Limit

      Green from Amex is a card without a preset spending limit and is flexible. Your spending power varies by month and is based on your purchase, payment, and credit history. Continue paying off your balance in full each month is essential to avoiding interest charges. 

      American Express Experiences

      Cardholders gain exclusive access to ticket presales and member-only events for entertainment experiences like concerts, culinary experiences, and sports. 

      It’s also possible to enjoy complimentary ShopRunner membership which provides free two-day shipping and returns at participating merchants.

      Redeeming American Express Green Card Points

      Award flights and select gift cards have the highest redemption value at 1 cent each. The redemption options are similar to other Amex credit cards earning Membership Rewards points.

      Other travel redemptions through and non-travel redemptions are typically worth less than 1 cent and should be avoided when possible.

      In addition, you can transfer points at a 1:1 ratio to participating airlines and hotels. Delta Air Lines is one of the best for domestic award flights but most transfer opportunities are for international flights. 

      If you have multiple American Express credit cards, you can also combine your points balances to book award trips sooner. 


      The fees are reasonable for a travel rewards credit card with semi-premium benefits. Its annual fee is the most notable.

      • Annual Fee: $150 (Free secondary cards)

      American Express Green Card Compared to Similar Cards

      You may prefer these Amex Green Card alternatives that may offer more benefits with a similar annual fee. Further, American Express offers two better-known products with more perks, albeit accompanied by a pricier annual fee.

      American Express® Gold Card

      Consider the American Express® Gold Card for maximizing restaurant and supermarket purchases as you can earn up to 4x Membership Rewards. Additionally, flights booked directly from the airline or through American Express Travel earn three points per $1. Here are the earning levels.

      • 4x points per dollar spent at Restaurants, plus takeout and delivery in the United States.
      • 4x points per dollar spent at United States Supermarkets, on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X
      • 3x points per dollar spent on flights booked directly from the airline or through American Express Travel
      • 1x points per dollar spent on other eligible purchases

      Annual benefits include up to $120 in Uber Cash ($10 monthly) for rides in the United States or Uber Eats orders (you must add your Gold Card to the Uber app to receive this benefit), up to $120 in dining credits at participating brands (up to $10 monthly statement credits), and up to a $100 experience credit on eligible stays (minimum two nights) through The Hotel Collection with American Express Travel (the experience credit varies by property).

      Current Welcome Bonus Offer: Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $6,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership.

      The annual fee is $250 and is better if you prefer dining credits to the Green Card’s airport benefits. 

      Further Reading: American Express Gold Card Benefits

      The Platinum Card® from American Express

      The Platinum Card® from American Expressee benefits is the best option for luxury seekers as it offers a substantial amount of travel and lifestyle benefits.

      Featured travel perks include the following:

      • Complimentary airport lounge access (including Centurion Lounges) to several networks,
      • Up to $200 in annual airline fee statement credits for incidentals (at one selected airline)
      • Up to $200 in Uber Cash annually on rides or Uber Eats orders in the United States
      • Luxury hotel and resort statement credits
      • Elite travel privileges.

      A few of the lifestyle benefits available include up to $100 in Saks Fifth Avenue statement credits ($50 semi-annually), $240 digital entertainment credit – *Enrollment Required (up to $20 in statement credits each month), and up to $300 in statement credits with Equinox per calendar year *Enrollment Required.

      Current Welcome Bonus Offer:Earn 80,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $8,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership.

      The annual fee is $595 and our American Express Platinum Card benefits guide takes a deeper look at every available perk.

      The Vacationer Tip

      If you’re undecided, our American Express Platinum vs. American Express Gold comparison can make it easier to choose the best American Express credit card for travel and dining.

      Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

      If you’re not loyal to American Express, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card packs plenty of features with a budget-friendly $95 annual fee. 

      You can earn up to 5x points per dollar spent on travel purchased through Chase. These points are worth 1.25 cents when booking award travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards and 1 cent for cash back or gift cards. Further, 1:1 point transfer partners include United Airlines and Southwest Airlines.

      Other travel benefits include an anniversary bonus worth 10% of the total points earned during the card anniversary year, an annual $50 hotel statement credit, and extensive trip insurance coverages.

      Current Bonus: Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $750 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

      Further Reading: Chase Sapphire Preferred Benefits

      The Vacationer Tip

      This card is subject to the Chase 5/24 application guidelines. Find out how to qualify for the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

      Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

      The Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card is another affordable way to get cheap airport lounge access. Primary cardholders receive two free visits per year to Capital One Lounges or one of the 100+ partner lounges in the Plaza Premium Group.

      Hotels and car rentals booked through Capital One Travel earn 5x miles and all remaining purchases earn 2x miles. You can redeem your purchase rewards as travel statement credits for recent itineraries or upcoming trips. Several international airlines and two hotels are 1:1 point transfers.

      The annual fee is $95. Further, additional cards are free but don’t receive their lounge passes. 

      Further Reading: Capital One Venture Rewards Benefits


      What travel purchases earn 3x Membership Rewards?

      Flights, hotels, vacation rentals, car rentals, cruises, campgrounds, and online travel agencies are some of the ways to earn bonus points. Typically, American Express travel credit cards only earn bonus Membership Rewards on select travel expenses like flights or hotels.  

      What transit purchases earn 3x Membership Rewards?

      Eligible transit purchases include rideshare services, taxis, trains, ferries, tolls, parking, buses, and subways. 

      Which dining purchases earn 3x Membership Rewards?

      Restaurant spending anywhere in the world that accepts American Express earns triple points. Within the United States only, takeout and food delivery app orders earn bonus rewards.

      How does the American Express Green Card lounge access work?

      The first $100 in LoungeBuddy reservations are reimbursed as a statement credit each year. This platform doesn’t require a paid membership and can help you get complimentary access to a variety of networks. In comparison, most credit cards only partner with select networks that may not operate at the airports you use.  

      How do you qualify for the American Express Green Card?

      American Express recommends a good or excellent credit score higher than 700 (FICO) to have better approval odds. Other minimum qualifications include being at least 18 years old, living in the United States, and earning a consistent income.

      How long does it take to get approved for the American Express Green Card?

      Most applicants receive an application decision within 30 seconds. If approved, an instant card number is available immediately and a physical card arrives within 7-10 business days.   

      The Vacationer’s Final Thoughts

      The most compelling reasons to apply for the American Express® Green Card are its flexible 3x rewards categories, free CLEAR® Plus membership, and $100 LoungeBuddy credit. Consistently using these benefits helps you easily offset the $150 annual fee.

      While the Green Card has unique travel benefits, it’s a semi-premium card with a relatively high annual fee that might only appeal to a select set of travelers. 

      Consider comparing this product to other travel credit cards with different benefits and fees. Casual travelers can be better off with a cheaper rewards card as it’s easier to offset the perks. On the other hand, frequent travelers have more to gain from premium credit cards that are more likely to offer more travel-related statement credits and unlimited airport lounge benefits.

      Editorial Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

      For Capital One products listed on this page, some of the above benefits are provided by Visa® or Mastercard® and may vary by product. See the respective Guide to Benefits for details, as terms and exclusions apply

      American Express Insurance Benefits Information:

      Baggage Insurance Plan – Baggage Insurance Plan coverage can be in effect for Eligible Persons for eligible lost, damaged, or stolen Baggage during their travel on a Common Carrier (e.g. plane, train, ship, or bus) when the entire fare for a Common Carrier Vehicle ticket for the trip (one-way or round-trip) is charged to an eligible Account. Coverage can be provided for up to $1,250 for carry-on Baggage and up to $500 for checked Baggage, in excess of coverage provided by the Common Carrier (e.g. plane, train, ship, or bus). For New York State residents, there is a $10,000 aggregate maximum limit for all Covered Persons per Covered Trip. Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. Please visit for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

      Car Rental Loss & 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 for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company. Car Rental Loss or Damage Coverage is offered through American Express Travel Related Services Company, Inc.

      Global Assist Hotline – You can rely on Global Assist Hotline 24 hours a day / 7 days a week for medical, legal, financial or other select emergency coordination and assistance services while traveling more than 100 miles away from your home. Third-party service costs may be your responsibility. Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. Please visit for more details. Card Members are responsible for the costs charged by third-party service providers.

      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 for more details. Underwritten by AMEX Assurance Company.

      Trip Delay Insurance – Up to $300 per Covered Trip that is delayed for more than 12 hours; and 2 claims per Eligible Card per 12 consecutive month period. Eligibility and Benefit level varies by Card. Terms, Conditions and Limitations Apply. Please visit for more details. Underwritten by New Hampshire Insurance Company, an AIG Company.

      Josh Patoka The Vacationer Bio

      By Josh Patoka

      Josh Patoka writes about maximizing travel rewards for The Vacationer. As well, he contributes to several personal finance sites specializing in making money, paying off debt, and investing.