American Express Credit Cards

American Express is a provider of credit cards, charge cards, life insurance, personal accident insurance, travel insurance, and business insurance products.

American Express CSR“Realise the potential.” (American Express)

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If you’re considering an American Express card, then check out what’s available for Rewards cards in our comparison table below, based on a monthly spend of $5,000 and sorted by our Star Ratings (Highest-lowest).

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Types of American Express Australia credit cards

American Express has 11 credit cards available in Australia at the time of writing:

  1. American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card
  2. American Express Explorer Credit Card
  3. American Express Essential Credit Card
  4. Qantas American Express Discovery Card
  5. Qantas American Express Ultimate Card
  6. Qantas American Express Premium Card
  7. American Express Velocity Escape Card
  8. American Express Velocity Platinum Card
  9. David Jones American Express Card
  10. David Jones American Express Platinum Card
  11. American Express Low Rate Credit Card

All of these cards from American Express offer the following benefits:

  • Online and Mobile: Credit cards and bank accounts can be managed through the AMEX AU app available on Apple and Android products or online.
  • Contactless: You can use AMEX cards to make contactless payments less than $100 without a PIN and over $100 with a PIN. You can also use your smartphone to make contactless payments using the digital wallets Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay.
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee means they will notify you if there is unauthorised spending in your account, and its intelligent security systems aim to keep your card safe 24/7.
  • Rewards: Some American Express cards with built-in rewards let you accumulate points with every purchase you make.
  • Emergency card replacement: American Express Australia says they can get a replacement card to you within 48 hours virtually anywhere in the world.

Source: American Express Australia

The inclusions mentioned represent a selection of what is covered at the time of writing. Additional terms and conditions may apply to different features. Additional fees may apply to the product. Canstar is not making any suggestion or recommendation to you about this product. Please ensure that you read the product disclosure statement to determine all the current options and inclusions for the product you are considering.

American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card

American Express Platinum Edge Credit Card

Features

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $3,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $50,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $65,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn up to 3 Membership Rewards  Ascent points per $1 spent at supermarkets, department stores and petrol stations

If you’re considering an American Express credit card, then check out what’s available for premium cards in our comparison table below, based on a monthly spend of $2,000 sorted by Annual fee (lowest-highest).

 

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American Express Explorer Credit Card

American Express Explorer Credit Card

Features

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $3,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $50,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $65,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn 2 Membership Rewards Gateway points per $1 spent on most payments, except for payments to government bodies in Australia (earn 0.5 points per $1 spent)

Source: American Express Australia

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American Express Essential Credit CardAmerican Express Essential Credit Card

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $2,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $25,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $40,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn up to 1 Membership Rewards Gateway point per $1 spent

Source: American Express Australia

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Qantas American Express Discovery Card

Qantas American Express Discovery CardFeatures

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $2,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $25,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $35,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Rewards program: You’ll receive up to 2 Qantas Points per $1 spent at eligible stores

If you’re considering an American Express credit card, then check out what’s available for Frequent Flyer cards in our comparison table below, based on a monthly spend of $5,000 sorted by Annual fee (lowest-highest).

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Qantas American Express Ultimate Card

Qantas American Express Ultimate CardFeatures

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $3,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $50,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $65,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn 1.5 Qantas Points per $1 spent

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Qantas American Express Premium Card

Qantas American Express Premium CardFeatures

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $2,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $25,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $40,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn 1.25 Qantas Points per $1 spent

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American Express Velocity Escape Card

American Express Velocity Escape CardFeatures

  • Card type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $2,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $25,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $40,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn 2 Velocity Points per $1 spent with Virgin Australia, and 1 Velocity Point per $1 spent on all other payments

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American Express Velocity Platinum Card

  • American Express Velocity Platinum CardCard type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $3,000
  • Maximum credit limit: $50,000
  • Minimum income requirement: $65,000/year
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: Earn 1.5 Velocity Points per $1 spent, except government bodies in Australia where you will earn 0.5 Velocity Points per $1 spent. Earn 1 additional Velocity Point per $1 spent with Virgin Australia.

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David Jones American Express Card

We’ve already written about the David Jones American Express credit cards, and you can learn more about them here.

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American Express Low Rate Credit Card

Features

  • American Express Low Rate Credit CardCard type: American Express credit card
  • Minimum credit limit: $1,000
  • Online and mobile: Credit cards can be managed through the online banking app (AMEX AU) or on the website
  • Digital wallet: Digital wallet and smartphone payments are available through Apple Pay, Android Pay, and Samsung Pay
  • Insurance: Certain complimentary insurances are available (see here)
  • Security: American Express’s fraud protection guarantee
  • Rewards program: n/a

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Eligibility criteria to apply for American Express credit cards

To apply for any of the American Express credit cards, you must be able to satisfy the following criteria:

  • You must be over 18 years of age.
  • You must be a permanent resident or citizen of Australia, or hold a current Business Long Stay Visa.
  • You must meet the minimum income criteria for the card of your choice (see above for details).

A good credit rating will also help.

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How to apply for an American Express credit card

First, you’ll need to check the above eligibility criteria to see if you qualify to apply for an American Express credit card.

If you do, then you can apply online by clicking on the American Express card of your choice in Canstar’s comparison tables:

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If you need help to apply, you can call American Express on 1300 557 743 during business hours (open Mon-Fri).

When applying, you will be asked for the following information:

  • The usual personal information, such as your address and previous addresses
  • A copy of your current driver’s license
  • A current email address and a mobile or landline contact telephone number
  • Details of any existing credit cards and loans you hold
  • Employment details
  • Financial information, including annual household income and monthly living expenses

Having all of this on hand will significantly speed up the process. The average application takes about 10 minutes according to American Express, and you can expect a response within 60 seconds if you are having difficulties.

For more information on how to apply for a credit card, consult our checklist for the credit card application process here.

If you’re considering an American Express Low Rate credit card, then check out what’s available for Low Rate cards in our comparison table below, based on a monthly spend of $2,000 sorted by our Star Ratings (highest – lowest).

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American Express credit card FAQs

You will need to activate your new American Express credit card before you can use it. To activate your American Express card, visit americanexpress.com/activate and follow the prompts.

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You can manage any of your American Express credit cards through either online banking or the mobile app, available for both Apple and Android devices. American Express online banking and the mobile app both allow you to check your spend and transaction history, activate and deactivate your cards, spend and manage your points, receive notifications, and more.

You can also make the most of your American Express credit card through Apple Pay. Apple Pay allows cardholders to make payments that charge the Amex card and therefore earn rewards if applicable, but it’s fast, convenient, contactless, and doesn’t need your wallet – just your smartphone. To authorise Apple Pay payments, you’ll need activate Touch ID, which scans your fingerprint through the key or touch pad of your smartphone.

Discover more about how the Apple Pay and American Express partnership works here.

Source: American Express Australia

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When interest is charged:

You will be charged interest on any purchase you make with an American Express card unless you repay the full balance within the specified period. The amount of interest that you’re charged depends on:

  • The interest rate on your credit card
  • The amount you spent and when you spent it
  • When you pay your credit card bill

When interest is not charged:

Interest is not charged on interest-free days. Interest-free days refer to the time from when you buy something with your card to when interest is applied. To make the most of these interest-free days, cardholders can make a purchase the day a new payment period begins and pay it off as soon as possible before the due date comes. For more information, read this article:

The credit limit on your credit card is the maximum balance that you can have on your card at any time, and it is determined based on the financial information you provide in your application.

When applying for an American Express credit card, it will ask you to set a preferred maximum credit limit. You should make sure that this limit matches your current financial circumstances. Your credit limit is at the discretion of American Express and there is no guarantee that you will be granted your preferred credit limit.

For more information on how credit card limits work, you can read our article on the subject.

If you want to cancel an American Express credit card, you can call the customer service helpline number on the back of your card. Your card balance will need to be repaid in full, even after the card is closed, and you will continue to receive monthly statements until your card balance is fully repaid.

If you’re cancelling your American Express credit card because you aren’t satisfied with it, then it might be worth your while to consider other options available to you. Click the button below to compare credit cards using the Canstar website:

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The AMEX Black Card (a.k.a. the Centurion Card) is a special credit card made of titanium that offers exclusive privileges to holders. It is one of the world’s most famous credit cards and is only available by invitation to those who meet certain criteria.

You can find out more about the American Express Black Card here or compare other premium credit cards using the Canstar website:

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Wondering which card is better, American Express or another credit card? Find out with our handy guides:

As of July 1, new reforms have been made to credit card interchange fees and this has affected credit card rewards programs, including for some Amex cards. These interchange fees are the main way for banks to fund their rewards programs, and many of these programs – particularly the big 4 banks – are less rewarding as a result.

Despite the new reforms, American Express Australia is confident that it still offers superb rewards and benefits to cardholders. American Express is now the only place that offers a Qantas or Velocity branded card with a point earn rate of more than 1.5 points per $1 spent.

All Amex rewards cards will continue to:

  • Have no cap to the amount of points you can earn
  • Have no points expiry
  • Offer points on payments made to the Australian tax office

There are 5 key rewards credit cards on offer from American Express, and to learn what rewards they offer post-reform, read our article on listing what each card offers here.

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American Express is a global financial services company founded in 1850 in America (hence the name). It has since become a worldwide organisation, offering services in approximately 100 countries around the globe, and its credit cards account for 23% of the total dollar volume of credit card transactions in the United States as of 2017. It was recently ranked by Interbrand as the 25th most valuable brand in the world.

American Express Australia strives to create a great place to work for its employees, with benefits including healthy living initiatives, the opportunity to work from home or work compressed weeks, and up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave. American Express believes in diversity and inclusion, and employees can join networks including Women’s Interest Network, Parents@Amex, and Globe (LGBTI).

In addition to fostering a healthy workplace, American Express Australia supports the Australian community by providing funding for two not-for-profit organisations: OzHarvest and the Australian Business Community Network. The company has donated over 500 hours of volunteer work by 380 employees during the last 12 months to these and other non-profit organisations.

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Essential Credit Card

Canstar Research
Rating:
Award: Outstanding Value Rewards Credit Card

Rewards $12,000 Annual Spend

View the 2017 Credit Cards Star Ratings Report

Written by: William Jolly | Last updated: July 13, 2017