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Teachers Federal Credit Union Review: Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market and IRA Accounts

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

Teachers Federal Credit Union checking account options

Personal checking

This is a free account that offers some discounts.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.05%
$2,500
  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: None
  • ATM fee: $1.75 for out-of-network ATMs (if you maintain a minimum of $2,500 in combined account balances)
  • ATM fee refund: None (exceptions apply)
  • Overdraft fee: $30 (other options available)

Teachers Federal Credit Union’s checking account is a simple checking account that’s best for those looking for a way use their funds quickly. Account holders get free online banking, bill pay and a free Visa debit card that offers worldwide ATM access. The checking account can also be linked to a savings or money market account for overdraft protection, which will only set you back $8 per transfer if and when it occurs.

This account also offers you additional discounts if you can maintain a minimum of $2,500 in combined balances across your deposit accounts. Teachers Federal Credit Union offers the Educated Choice Program, which gives you the opportunity to save on fees such as ATM surcharges, traveler’s checks, money orders, paper checks and overdraft transfer fees. However, if you enroll in this program and fall below the minimum balance requirements, you will need to pay a monthly fee — $8 for the gold level and $10 for the platinum level.

College students can choose to open a specialty checking account — the Young Professional Checking Account — which has the same features and benefits mentioned above, plus you’ll get your first box of checks and traveler’s checks for free without needing to opt into the Educated Choice Program. To qualify for this account, you’ll need to be enrolled in a qualifying college in Nassau or in certain parts of Suffolk.

How to get Teachers Federal Credit Union’s checking account

You can open an account by filling out a membership application form online. You’ll be asked to select how you qualify for membership, then choose the accounts you intend to open; all members must a share savings account to establish membership. Then, fill out the rest of the form by providing personal details such as your name, address, Social Security number and government-issued ID information. Afterward, fund the account.

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How Teachers Federal Credit Union’s checking accounts compare

Even with the free perks and discounts available, we’re not terribly impressed with Teachers Federal Credit Union’s checking account. The APY rate is extremely low compared with other competitors found on our list of the best online checking accounts. Some of these competitors even offer ATM refunds without needing to meet minimum balance account requirements.

Considering there are also pretty strict requirements to establish membership at this credit union, we’re convinced you’re better off looking elsewhere.

Teachers Federal Credit Union savings account options

Share savings

All members need to open this account to establish membership.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.10%
$50
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $50
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

There’s not much going on with this account other than the fact that all members need to maintain this account to qualify for membership. Knowing that, it’s great that it doesn’t require a monthly maintenance fee, although the APY offered isn’t that stellar. There isn’t any ATM access or check-writing capabilities unless you link it to a checking account.

The Federal Reserve’s Regulation D limits you up to six certain debits a month from your savings account. If you try to go over that amount, your transaction will be denied by the credit union.

How to get the Share savings account

You can open a Share savings account via Teachers Federal Credit Union’s online application form. You’ll be asked how you qualify for membership and to provide personal details such as your address, Social Security number and government-issued ID information. Then you’ll be able to transfer money into the account.

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Holiday and Vacation Club

You can use this account for your short-term savings.
  • Minimum opening deposit: None
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: None
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

The Holiday and Vacation Club account is meant to help you set aside money for your short-term savings goal, whether it be for the holiday or summer season. You deposit money as often as you want, even setting up automatic transfers from your paycheck. At a specified time, those savings will be automatically transferred to your main account for you to spend.

You can open an account anytime of the year for a Holiday Club account, or in June for the Vacation Club account. The funds will be left to accumulate until around Oct. 15 for the Holiday Club and around June 4 for the Vacation Club account. After these dates, the money in either of these accounts will then be transferred to your savings or checking account.

While there are technically no penalties for withdrawing your funds early, you’re still limited up to six certain debits a month because of Regulation D. If you try to go over that amount, your transaction will be denied by the credit union.

How to get the Holiday or Vacation Club savings account

You can open an account online by filling out a membership application form. You’ll be asked to indicate how you qualify for membership and agree to open a share savings account. Once you enter in your personal details such as your address and Social Security number, you can fund both accounts.

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Youth Savings

Earn a high APY for your first $1,000, plus there are no monthly maintenance fees.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
3.00%
$0.01
0.10%
$1,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

The Youth Savings account is for those 18 years and younger, though an adult (who is a member of the credit union) will need to be the joint owner. The APYs you see above are for new accounts only. There is no ATM access so the only way to access funds is in-person transactions or transfers from another account.

Kids 10 years and younger will open what’s called a Cub Account, which also provides kids with a Berenstain Bears book, membership card and bookmark. Both types of accounts are limited up to six certain debits a month because of Regulation D, and your transaction may be denied if you go other that amount. Once the child turns 18, the account will automatically be converted to a regular savings account.

How to get the Youth Savings account

You’ll need to head to the nearest branch to open an account. You’ll need to bring your government-issued ID, plus your and your Social Security number, as well as your child’s. For more information, you can call Teacher Federal Credit Union at 1-800-341-4333.

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How Teachers Federal Credit Union’s savings accounts compare

We like the high APY for the youth account even though it’s only for the first $1,000. However, the other savings accounts leave more to be desired.

Looking at other competitors on our list of the best online savings accounts, Teachers Federal Credit Union has low APYs in comparison. Considering a savings account is meant to help you maximize your savings, you may be better off doing some shopping around for better rates.

Teachers Federal Credit Union CD rates

Certificate of Deposit

Some of these rates are pretty competitive.
Regular CD (minimum $1,000 opening deposit)
TermAPY
3 months0.50%
6 months1.00%
12 months1.70%
15 months2.50%
18 months1.90%
24 months2.15%
30 months2.55%
36 months2.10%
48 months2.20%
60 months2.30%
Jumbo CD (minimum $100,000 opening deposit)
TermAPY
1 month0.30%
2 months0.30%
3 months0.50%
6 months1.00%
12 months1.70%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000 or $100,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000 or $100,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term.
    • One year or less: 180 days’ interest or all interest earned since account opening, whichever is less
    • More than one year: 270 days’ interest or all interest earned since account opening, whichever is less

Both the regular and jumbo CDs have fixed rates, meaning you’re guaranteed the specified rate of return assuming you’ll leave all funds in the account until maturity. Interest earned is compounded daily and credited either monthly or quarterly. However, for the 3 month regular CD, interest earned will be credited when it matures.

Your account will automatically renew for the same term unless you decide to make changes. There is a seven-day grace period in which to do so, whether it’s making withdrawals, additional deposits or renewing for another term.

How to get Teachers Federal Credit Union’s CDs

You can either call customer service at 631-698-7000 (ext. 6780) or show up at a local branch to open a CD. You may be asked to provide your name, address, Social Security number and government-issued ID.

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How Teachers Federal Credit Union’s CD rates compare

Some of the CD rates are on par with the best CD accounts out there. It depends on the term, so it’s always a good idea to do some shopping around and compare.

However, a big disadvantage to this account is that you are required to become a member to open a CD, and the requirements seem pretty restrictive. If you qualify, great, otherwise you’ll have to go elsewhere.

Teachers Federal Credit Union money market account options

Money market account

The highest APY is pretty comparable to other places, but it does require a high minimum balance.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.50%
$2,500
1.00%
$25,000
1.30%
$50,000
1.40%
$100,000
1.60%
$250,000
1.80%
$500,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $2,500
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $2,500
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $5 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

With the credit union’s money market account, you can earn a higher rate than the checking or savings account, but you are required to have a higher minimum balance amount and there’s a monthly maintenance fee. However, you can get that waived if you can maintain a $500 minimum balance.

Sadly, there isn’t any ATM access — unless you link it to a checking account — but there are limited check-writing capabilities. Just remember that you’re limited up to six certain debits a month due to Regulation D, or else the credit union will charge a $10 excessive draft fee for each debit.

If all you’re looking for is a place to park short-term savings, this isn’t a terrible choice. However, if you want more frequent access to your cash, the checking account may be better, plus you could qualify for free benefits from the Educated Choice Program.

How to get Teachers Federal Credit Union’s money market account

To open a Teachers Federal Credit Union money market account, you can either head to the nearest branch or filling out an online membership application form. You’ll be required to establish membership by opening a share savings account in addition to the money market one. First, indicate how you qualify for membership, then provide your personal details such as name, address and Social Security number. The last part of the application will ask you to provide details on how you’ll fund the account.

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How Teachers Federal Credit Union’s money market accounts compare

If you’re only looking at the rates, this money market is comparable to what else is being offered out there, including the ones on our list of the best money market accounts. What we’re not a fan of is how high those minimum balance requirements are. There are quite a few competitors that have much lower ones and don’t have strict membership requirements.

If you don’t have a lot of cash laying around but still want to get the best bang for your buck, it may be a better idea to look at other money market accounts.

Teachers Federal Credit Union IRA account options

IRA CD rates

IRA certificate

There are only a few IRA CD terms worth looking into.
TermAPY
3 months0.50%
6 months1.00%
12 months1.70%
15 months2.50%
18 months1.90%
24 months2.15%
30 months2.55%
36 months2.10%
48 months2.20%
60 months 2.30%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term.
    • One year or less: 180 days’ interest or all interest earned since account opening, whichever is less
    • More than one year: 270 days’ interest or all interest earned since account opening, whichever is less

These IRA CDs do offer a higher rate of return than Teachers Federal Credit Union IRA savings account, so that’s something to consider as you’re shopping around. It may be a bit of a stretch for some since the minimum opening deposit is $1,000.

You can choose from a traditional or Roth IRA, depending on your needs. Interest you earn will be compounded daily and deposited into your account each month or quarter. The only exception is the 3 month IRA CD which only deposits interest earned when the account matures.

Upon maturity, you’ll get a seven-day grace period where you can make any necessary changes, such as withdrawals, additional deposits or renew for another term. Otherwise, the IRA CD will automatically be renewed.

How to get Teachers Federal Credit Union’s IRA CDs

To open an IRA CD with Teachers Federal Credit union, head to your nearest branch or call customer service at (631) 698-7000 ext. 6780. You’ll be asked to provide your full name, address and Social Security number.

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How Teachers Federal Credit Union’s IRA CD rates compare

Just like the regular CDs, the IRA CDs only have one or two terms that are worth looking into as there are higher rates offered by other competitors. These IRA CDs do have a lower minimum opening deposit than others on our list of the best IRA CD rates, but some also don’t have restrictive membership requirements. That means you’ll need to look around carefully to see what options there are before making a decision.

IRA savings account

Just a basic IRA savings account.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: None
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

There’s not much to say about this account except that you can either choose the traditional or Roth option; it’s a good idea to chat with a customer representative to see which is your better option. It’s nice in that there is a really low minimum opening deposit.

This IRA savings account could be a good place to park your retirement funds until you figure out what you want to do with your money, such as sticking it in a IRA CD that could give you a higher rate of return. Remember that Regulation D limits you up to six certain debits a month and if you try to go over that amount, your request will be denied.

How to get Teachers Federal Credit Union’s IRA savings account

You’ll need to either head to the nearest Teachers Federal Credit Union branch or call customer service at (631) 698-7000 ext. 6780. The credit union may ask you for information such as your address and Social Security number.

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Overall review of Teachers Federal Credit Union’s banking products

Restrictive membership requirements aside, some of the credit union’s rates aren’t too shabby. The money market rates are just a bit lower than what other competitors are offering, and the CD and IRA CD accounts have a few terms worth looking into.

However, the rest of Teachers Federal Credit Union’s offerings aren’t that good as the advertised APYs are really low. If you can qualify for membership, some of these accounts may be worth it. If not, there are plenty of competitors that will be happy to take your money.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Sarah Li Cain
Sarah Li Cain |

Sarah Li Cain is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Sarah Li here

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Reviews

American Express Green Card Review

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

The iconic American Express® Green Card has undergone a fresh makeover. Thanks to a revamp that rolled out in October 2019, the American Express® Green Card is now a compelling choice for those who want rewards and perks for travel, but aren’t ready to shell out for a premium travel card with an annual fee in the $500 range. This card does charge a $150 annual fee, but if you take full advantage of the annual credits you get for having it, you can mitigate the cost of the annual fee.

Plus, the new card is made mostly out of plastic reclaimed from beaches, islands, and coastal communities — so it can be considered “green” both in color and environmentally.

Where the American Express® Green Card stands out

American Express® Green Card

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American Express® Green Card

Annual fee
$150
Rewards Rate
Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on all eligible travel, from subway swipes and window seats to hotel stays and city tours.
Credit required
excellent-credit
Excellent/Good

Rewards. Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on all eligible travel, from subway swipes and window seats to hotel stays and city tours. This is an inclusive travel category, which gives you the chance to earn rewards in a lot of different ways.

CLEAR annual credit. CLEAR uses your eyes and fingerprints to confirm your identity. It can be used at a variety of airports, stadiums, and other venues. When you use this card to pay for your CLEAR membership, you can get up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year. However, because a CLEAR membership costs $179 a year (or $15 a month), note that you’ll still have to pay a portion of your membership costs out of pocket each year.

LoungeBuddy annual credit. When you use this card to purchase airport lounge access via LoungeBuddy, you can get up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year.

Additional benefits

Welcome offer. Earn 30,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $2,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. If you use your points for flights through American Express Travel (a value of 1 cent per point), that’s worth $300.

Away credit. New cardmembers who apply by Jan. 15, 2020, can earn statement credits of up to $100 after making a purchase such as a suitcase or weekender bag from Away — a company that sells its travel gear online directly to consumers and aims to offer better prices than you might be able to find when shopping big-name brands in retail stores.

Baggage insurance plan. When you buy your ticket using this card, you can get coverage of up to $1,250 for carry-on baggage and up to $500 for checked baggage. Terms apply.

Where the American Express® Green Card falls short

Annual fee. The American Express® Green Card has an annual fee of $150. This is a bit more than many mid-level travel cards, which tend to charge annual fees of around $95. However, it’s worth noting that $150 annual fee for the American Express® Green Card is less expensive than premium travel cards such as The Platinum Card® from American Express, which charges an annual fee of $550.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

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The Platinum Card® from American Express

Annual fee
$550
Rewards Rate
5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5X Membership Rewards® points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
Credit required
excellent-credit

Excellent

Compare it with the American Express® Gold Card

Another American Express card that serves consumers who like to travel and dine out is the American Express® Gold Card. While the annual fee of $250 is a bit more costly than the American Express® Green Card, some cardholders might find the rewards and annual credits worth the expense. Here’s how the cards compare:

 American Express® Green CardAmerican Express® Gold Card
Welcome offerEarn 30,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $2,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.35,000 Membership Rewards® Points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
RewardsEarn 3X Membership Rewards® points on all eligible travel, from subway swipes and window seats to hotel stays and city tours.3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).
Regular purchase APRSee Rates & FeesSee Rates & Fees
Annual fee$150$250
Foreign transaction feeNoneNone

For annual statement credits, the American Express® Gold Card offers the following:

Airline fee credit of up to $100. You can choose one qualifying airline per calendar year and receive up to $100 in statement credits to go toward incidental fees.

Dining credit of up to $120. You can earn up to $10 in statement credits each month for an annual savings of up to $120 when you pay with this card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations.

American Express® Gold Card

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American Express® Gold Card

Annual fee
$250
Rewards Rate
3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).
Credit required
good-credit
Excellent/Good

Before factoring in the cards’ annual fees, you can save up to $220 each year from the American Express® Gold Card’s statement credits and up to $200 each year from the American Express® Green Card’s statement credits. Which one is better just depends whether you value credits that go toward incidental airline fees and dining purchases or credits that go toward airport security and airport lounge access. The statement credits effectively reduce the American Express® Gold Card’s annual fee to $30, while the American Express® Green Card’s statement credits can more than recoup the cost of the card’s annual fee, but leaves you to pay $79 a year to make up the yearly price of a CLEAR membership.

Read: Best Travel Credit Cards

When it comes to rewards, the American Express® Gold Card has a higher earning rate per $1 spent on dining than the American Express® Green Card. It also offers U.S. supermarkets as a rewards category, which the American Express® Green Card does not. However, the American Express® Green Card rewards a much broader category of travel purchases than the American Express® Gold Card.

The bottom line

So, is it worth having the American Express® Green Card? If you travel and dine out frequently, it’s a good choice. The annual fee is slightly more expensive than cards such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (with an annual fee of $95) and the Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card (with an annual fee of $0 intro for first year; $95 after that), but it offers strong value in its ongoing rewards and in its annual credits.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Glen Luke Flanagan
Glen Luke Flanagan |

Glen Luke Flanagan is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Glen Luke here

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Credit Cards, Reviews

American Express Gold Card: Good Travel Rewards for a Fee

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners. This site may be compensated through a credit card partnership.

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The American Express® Gold Card is an upgraded American Express charge card without a pre-set spending limit. It’s also a card that rewards cardholders with American Express Membership Rewards® Points for airfare, dining, gas, and grocery spending.

A charge card is one that you need to pay off completely each billing cycle, so there’s no interest. However, since there’s no pre-set spending limit either, you need to keep an eagle eye on spending activity to make sure you can pay off the statement in full at month’s end. Making a late payment can cause you to forfeit Membership Reward points earned during that billing cycle.

In this post, we’ll discuss the American Express® Gold Card terms and how to redeem points. Keep reading for an overview on:

  • American Express® Gold Card basics
  • How to redeem Membership Rewards points earned
  • The fine print details
  • The benefits and protections
  • The pros and cons

The basics of the American Express® Gold Card

3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).

$100 airline fee credit.

You can get up to $100 airline fee credit on your statement each calendar year to cover incidentals charged by an airline of your choosing. Qualifying incidentals are charges separate from your airline ticket like baggage fees and not ticket upgrades.

American Express® Gold Card

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American Express® Gold Card

Annual fee
$250
Rewards Rate
3X Membership Rewards® points for flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com and 4X points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X).
Credit required
good-credit
Excellent/Good

How to redeem Membership Rewards® Points earned

Through Membership Rewards®, cardholders can transfer points to participating travel and lodging loyalty programs or redeem points for travel bookings, gift cards, statement credits, and other rewards. The value of your points varies depending on how you choose to use them.

Flights, hotels, and vacations

You can pay with points for flights, hotels, and vacations on the American Express Travel site. Using points for flights offers excellent value.

Here’s the point value breakdown on travel and accommodations:

  • Flights: $10 per 1,000 points
  • Hotels, cruises, and vacation packages: $7 per 1,000 points

Transferring your Membership Rewards® Points

If you choose to transfer your points to another program, generally, 1,000 Membership Rewards® Points will transfer as 1,000 miles, points, or credits.

However, transfers that have a different value include (as of the publication date of this article):

  • British Airways and Iberia: 250 Membership Rewards points = 200 Avios
  • El AL Israel Airlines: 1,000 Membership Rewards points = 20 Matmid points
  • Hilton: 1,000 Membership Rewards points = 1,500 HHonors points
  • JetBlue Airways: 250 Membership Rewards points = 200 JetBlue TrueBlue points
  • Starwood Preferred Guest: 1,000 Membership Rewards points = 333 Starpoints
  • Virgin America: 200 Membership Rewards points = 100 Elevate points

Occasionally, there are transfer specials for participating loyalty programs.

Statement credit and gift cards

Using points to put a dent in your credit card bill won’t be the best use of your points. 1,000 points equals just $6 in a statement credit.

Several of the gift cards through Membership Rewards® will give you more in cash value. For example, 1,000 points can get you a $10 gift card at restaurants, retail stores, and hotels including:

  • Hyatt Hotels and Resorts
  • Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino
  • Maggiano’s Little Italy
  • Seasons 52
  • Banana Republic
  • Crate and Barrel

There’s an entire list of the redemption values for gift cards on the Membership Rewards® site.

Other rewards

Using points for shopping, charitable donations, and entertainment are other redemption options. But, again, these options won’t give you as much value for your points as redeeming for flights and gift cards.

The value of 1,000 points ranges from $5 to $7 when shopping at retailers through Membership Rewards® or at Ticketmaster, Amazon.com, BestBuy.com, or Newegg.com.

The fine print

The American Express® Gold Card has an annual fee of $250. If you spend a lot of money on the card, the fee can be worthwhile. However, if you don’t spend a lot, you might want to consider a no fee option.

In addition – when you transfer points to a U.S. frequent flyer program, there’s a $0.0006 fee charged per point to compensate for the federal excise tax. Although this fee has a lot of zeros in it, the cost may still be impactful if you’re transferring a lot of points. For instance, 100,000 points transferred will cost you $60.

On the plus side, this card has no foreign transaction fee.

Benefits and protections

Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance

If you pay for a qualifying car rental with your American Express® Gold Card, the rental car is covered against damage and theft after declining the collision damage waiver. Rentals that won’t qualify for coverage are trucks, off-road vehicles, full-size sport vehicles, and exotic cars.

Purchase Protection

If an item you purchase is lost, stolen, or damaged within 90 days of purchase, you may be reimbursed for it.

Pros and cons

Pro: 3X points on travel. If you fly often for work or play, this card rewards you well each time you use it.

Con: The fee. The biggest con here is the annual fee. But, since there are several ways you can earn points in the 3X and 2X categories, you may be able to easily cover this fee throughout the year.

Pro: Membership Rewards. This card is enrolled in the Membership Rewards® Points program and gives you many options for point redemption. The Membership Rewards® site is also incredibly easy to navigate, and there’s no ambiguity in point value. The rewards portal shows examples of exactly what your points are worth for each redemption option.

Con: The fee to transfer points. The ability to transfer points to another program is a pro, but being charged for U.S. frequent flyer program transfers is a tiny gotcha in the fine print.

Pro: No foreign transaction fees. One area in the fees where you do catch a break is with foreign transaction fees. This aspect of the card is fitting since it’s one that rewards you for planning travel.

Who will benefit most from the American Express® Gold Card?

Your ability to earn enough points to surpass the fee will determine whether this is a good card for you.

And if you’re shopping around for a rewards program that will give you the most value for travel, Chase Ultimate Rewards® is an option you should compare to American Express Membership Rewards®.

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card*, in particular, is part of the Chase Ultimate Rewards® program and allows you to transfer points to other travel partners as well. Plus, it has an offer that gives 1.25 cents per point for travel. This is slightly more value than what you get for flights with American Express Membership Rewards® since 1,000 points per $10 works out to 1 cent per point.

Before signing up for any rewards card, you should do this type of comparison shopping to figure out which offer will give you the most value for your spending habits.

*The information related to Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card has been collected by MagnifyMoney and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

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Taylor Gordon
Taylor Gordon |

Taylor Gordon is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Taylor here