Amex Gold vs Amex Cobalt: Choosing the Right Card

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The American Express Cobalt and Gold Rewards cards offer distinct benefits tailored to different lifestyles.

The Cobalt card, with its $155.88 annual fee, emphasizes everyday spending with 5X points on eats and drinks and a diverse points redemption program, making it ideal for those who prioritize dining and entertainment.

Its travel benefits are bolstered by access to The Hotel Collection and comprehensive travel insurance coverage.

In contrast, the Gold Rewards card, at a $250 annual fee, is more travel-centric.

It offers a $100 travel credit, extensive access to airport lounges worldwide, and a $50 NEXUS credit, making it a superior choice for frequent travelers.

Its points structure favors broader spending categories, including gas and groceries.

Both cards provide exclusive access to American Express Experiences, enhancing their lifestyle appeal.

The choice between them hinges on individual spending habits and travel preferences.

American Express Cobalt American Express Gold Rewards
Annual Fee $155.88 (Monthly fee of $12.99), additional cards no fee​​ $250, 1 free additional card, $50 for additional cards​​
Interest Rate 20.99% on purchases; 21.99% on cash advances​​ 20.99% on purchases; 21.99% on funds advances​​
Points Earning Structure 5X on eats & drinks, 3X on streaming, 2X on transit & travel, 1X on all other purchases​​ 2X on gas, groceries, drugstores, and travel, 1X on all other Card purchases​​
Rewards Redemption Redeem for various purchases, transfer to loyalty programs​​ Redeem for statement credits, travel, merchandise, and gift cards​​
Travel Benefits Front Of The Line access, The Hotel Collection benefits​​ $100 Travel Credit, Priority Pass, Plaza Premium Lounge Visits, $50 NEXUS Card Statement Credit​​
Insurance Coverage Comprehensive travel and purchase protections​​ Extensive travel insurance coverage​​
Special Partnerships Benefits with The Hotel Collection; Front Of The Line access; Member extras​​​​​​ $50 NEXUS Credit, The Hotel Collection, Hertz benefits, American Express Experiences​​

Welcome Offer

  • Amex Cobalt: Up to 15,000 Membership Rewards points in the first year, earning 1,250 points per month with a $750 spend​​.

  • Amex Gold Rewards: Up to 60,000 Membership Rewards points in the first year, with a monthly spending target​​.

Annual Fee

  • Amex Cobalt: $155.88 annually, calculated as a monthly fee of $12.99. Additional cards come without a fee​​.

  • Amex Gold Rewards: $250 annual fee with the first additional Gold Rewards Card free and a $50 annual fee for subsequent additional cards​​.

Interest Rates

  • Amex Cobalt: 20.99% on purchases and 21.99% on cash advances​​.

  • Amex Gold Rewards: 20.99% on purchases and 21.99% on funds advances​​.

Points Earning Structure

Amex Cobalt:

  • 5X Points: On eligible eats & drinks purchases in Canada.
  • 3X Points: On eligible streaming subscriptions in Canada.
  • 2X Points: On eligible transit & gas purchases in Canada, and travel purchases.
  • 1X Points: On all other purchases.
  • Additional Point: For every $1 spent on eligible hotel or car rental bookings with American Express Travel​​.

Amex Gold Rewards:

  • 2 Points/ $1: At eligible gas stations, grocery stores, and drugstores in Canada; on eligible travel purchases including flights, hotels, car rentals.
  • 1 Additional Point/ $1: On eligible hotel or car rental bookings made with American Express Travel.
  • 1 Point/ $1: On all other Card purchases​​.

Rewards Redemption

Amex Cobalt:

  • Redeem points towards streaming subscriptions, movie tickets, dining, retail, and more.
  • Transfer points 1:1 to several frequent flyer and other loyalty programs.
  • Redeem for travel through American Express Travel Online, gift cards, merchandise, and Amazon.ca purchases​​.

Amex Gold Rewards:

  • Redeem points for statement credits, travel, merchandise, and gift cards.
  • Use points for the Flexible Points Travel Program and Pay with Points with Air Canada.
  • Transfer points to frequent flyer and loyalty programs.
  • Shop merchandise and gift cards, including Amazon Shop with Points​​.

Travel Benefits

Amex Cobalt:

  • Access to Front Of The Line presales and reserved tickets.
  • Benefits from The Hotel Collection, including hotel credits and room upgrades.
  • Mobile device insurance for purchases charged to the card​​​​.

Amex Gold Rewards:

  • $100 Annual Travel Credit through American Express Travel Online.
  • Access to over 1,200 airport lounges globally with Priority Pass.
  • Complimentary visits to Plaza Premium Lounges in Canada.
  • $50 NEXUS Card statement credit.
  • Benefits from The Hotel Collection, including hotel credits and room upgrades​​.

Insurance Coverage

Amex Cobalt:

  • Comprehensive travel insurance including emergency medical, flight delay, baggage delay, hotel burglary, lost/stolen baggage, travel accident.
  • Car rental theft and damage insurance.
  • Mobile device insurance up to $1,000 per insured person​​.

Amex Gold Rewards:

  • Extensive travel insurance coverage including emergency medical, trip cancellation/interruption, flight delay, baggage delay, hotel burglary, lost or stolen baggage, travel accident insurance.
  • $500,000 Travel Accident Insurance.
  • Car Rental Theft and Damage Insurance.
  • Travel Emergency Assistance services​​.

Both cards offer rich benefits, with Cobalt catering more towards everyday spending and lifestyle experiences, and Gold Rewards focusing on extensive travel benefits and insurance coverage.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is gold or cobalt Amex better?
  • Can you switch from Amex Cobalt to gold?