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Nestled right in the middle of the line, you may find this to be the Goldilocks card in the American Express Business Charge Card line-up. It offers a fuller package than the basic card, with a payment period of up to 54 days on purchases, a quarterly bonus offer, the Membership Rewards program, travel insurance, purchase protection, and refund protection. However, you have to be willing and able to pay for these benefits in the form of a £175 annual fee and (should you use it abroad) a 2.99% non-sterling transaction fee.
Credit Rating Requirement: Good/Excellent
What I like
Although the American Express Gold Business Charge Card does carry an annual fee of £175, this opens up a host of additional offers that could really reward you for your business spending.
- Welcome offer – American Express is offering 20,000 Membership Rewards points if you are approved for the card and spend £3,000 in the first three months of card membership. This is a decent sign-up bonus. Since the card is designed for businesses, £3,000 is likely to be an achievable amount to spend.
- Quarterly bonus – It’s not just a welcome offer that you can benefit from. American Express is also offering 10,000 extra Membership Reward points if you spend £20,000 per quarter. This equates to a potential 40,000 bonus points per year.
- Rewards program – One of the main benefits of this card is access to the American Express Membership Rewards program. The Gold Charge Card enables users to earn one membership point for every full £1 spent. There is no limit to the number of points you can earn, and points do not expire as long as the account is open and in good order. In addition to this, users can earn one additional point for every £1 spent when booking flights, hotels, car hire or experiences through American Express Travel. It’s all well and good earning points, but what do you actually get in exchange for them? The program allows you to use the points for rewards from brands such as House of Fraser, M&’S, Laithwaite’s, Apple, and PC World. You can also redeem your points for a statement credit to support your business. Or alternatively, the scheme enables you to transfer your points to one of the provider’s frequent traveler programs.
- Discounts – Just to help sweeten the deal a little further, American Express is offering access to over £500 of discounts on business essentials. You can also receive up to £100 in statement credit annually on your card for purchases made with Dell Technologies.
- Payment period – As this card is a charge card, you will be required to pay your statement balance in full each month. However, the card does offer a little grace period of up to 54 days until the payment is due on purchases, enabling your business to have slightly more flexibility.
- Protection – One of the big advantages of this card is the inclusion of purchasing and refund protection. Purchases made on business cards are not covered under Section 75 of the Consumer Credit Act. However, the American Express Gold Business Charge Card offers purchase protection on eligible items lost or damaged within 90 days, promising to repair, replace or refund up to £2,500 per item. Similarly, if a UK retailer does not allow you to return an item, if it is within 90 days of purchase, American Express will refund you up to a maximum of £300.
- Other benefits – Travel is a key aspect of the membership program, and the card also offers travel accident insurance of up to £250,000 and travel inconvenience insurance up to £200. You will also get up to 99 free supplementary cards with your account.
- Worth knowing – You are not eligible for the welcome bonus if you hold or have held an American Express card with Membership Rewards in the past six months.
What could be improved?
While this card has a range of attractive offers, nothing is perfect and there are a few downsides.
- Annual fee – There is no getting around it, the rewards aren’t free. A £175 annual fee is a cost that you will need to budget for when applying for the card. It is useful that the fee for the first year is waived, but make sure you are prepared for and can afford the subsequent annual fee payments.
- Overseas usage – Strange for a card that offers additional rewards for booking travel and provides travel insurance and the option to redeem rewards for travel programs, but it has a 2.99% non-sterling transaction fee. So be prepared and watch out for this fee if you do plan for this card to be used abroad.
How does it stack up?
If you are willing to pay the annual fee attached to this card (which at £175 is definitely at the top end), and the 2.99% non-sterling transaction fee (if you plan to use it abroad) then the American Express Gold Business Charge Card has a package full of features to help you make the most out of your business spending. Its sign-up bonus points, quarterly bonus offer, and Membership Rewards scheme set it apart from more basic offerings, and the added bonus of purchase and refund protection gives it a unique selling point for a card of its type.
In order to be eligible to apply for this card, your business must have a UK bank or building society account. Additionally, you and the business must not have any county court judgments (CCJs) for non-payment of debt. You, the applicant, must also be aged 18 or over and a UK resident.
How do you apply?
Applications can be made through the American Express website. As part of the application process, you will be required to provide personal details as well as details about your business and your company structure.
Is the American Express Gold Business Charge Card a good choice for you?
If you are looking for a card that could potentially offer rewards for your business and are happy with and capable of paying an annual fee of £175, the American Express Gold Business Charge Card may be an attractive option. With no limit on the quantity of rewards you can earn, plus a 20,000-point sign-up bonus (dependent on a spend of £3,000 in the first three months) and a possible quarterly bonus of 10,000 points (dependent on a spend of £20k per quarter), you are looking at getting something back for your business expenditure while also making sure that what you buy with your card is protected.
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