U.S. Bank FlexPerks® Gold American Express® Card review

Bankrate Staff  in  Good Credit How we rate our cards  | 

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Recommended Credit Score

Excellent (740 - 850)

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Annual Fee:
$85
Purchase Intro APR:
N/A
Regular APR:
14.49% to 24.49% (Variable)
Terms and Restrictions Apply | Rates and Fees

Bankrate Rating

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Best for people who want travel rewards

  • Rewards rate: 5X the points on prepaid hotel stays and car rentals booked directly through the Rewards Center, 3X points at restaurants, 2X points at gas stations and airlines and 1 point per dollar spent on everything else.
  • Welcome offer: 30,000 FlexPoints when you spend $2,000 in the first four months of account opening.
  • Annual fee: $85
  • Purchase intro APR: None
  • Balance transfer intro APR: None
  • Regular APR: 14.49 to 24.49 percent

The U.S. Bank FlexPerks® Gold American Express® Card rewards travelers with an array of bonus categories and attractive travel perks for a reasonable annual fee. It also has an enticing welcome offer. Just be sure to consider all the pros and cons of this U.S. Bank credit card to see if it’s a good fit for your wallet.

U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express current welcome bonus

When you sign up for this card, you’ll get 30,000 FlexPoints when you spend $2,000 in the first four months after opening the account. These extra points are worth approximately $450 when you spend them on travel. This is a solid offer, and the spending threshold is relatively easy to meet. But to get the most value from the sign-up bonus, you’ll have to put those points toward travel through the FlexPerks Rewards Center, which can be a cumbersome process.

Rewards

With the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express, you’ll earn FlexPoints with every purchase you make.

Earning rewards

The U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express has a revamped suite of bonus categories to help you earn FlexPoints faster. You’ll get 5X points on prepaid hotel stays and car rentals booked directly through the Rewards Center, 3X points per dollar spent at restaurants, 2X points at gas stations and when spending directly with airlines, and 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.

Most of the card’s bonus categories focus on travel, so earning points with this card could be a breeze for frequent flyers.

Redeeming rewards

When you go to redeem your FlexPoints, you have a variety of options. You can get cash back (as a statement credit), trade your points in for gift cards, merchandise, prepaid cards (U.S. Bank Rewards Cards), travel or even to cover the cost of your annual fee. All of your redemptions will go through the FlexPerks Rewards Center.

How much are points worth?

It takes 5,000 points to cover the $85 annual fee, meaning each FlexPoint is worth approximately 1.65 cents, depending on the redemption. This makes FlexPoints comparable in value to many other points and miles, though they may be more difficult to redeem for travel.

U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express: Benefits

The U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express has a lot of additional travel benefits, including those you’ll find with more well-known premium travel rewards credit cards. Typically, these perks come with cards that charge a much higher annual fee.

TSA Precheck or Global Entry

When you apply for either TSA PreCheck or Global Entry, you’ll get a statement credit covering the application fee (up to $100 value when used for Global Entry), which could offset the cost of your annual fee once every four years when you need to renew the application.

Complimentary Boingo Wi-Fi

You can connect to more than one million Boingo Wi-Fi hotspots for free. Typically, a monthly plan for unlimited connection with Boingo costs $14.99. If you travel often and rely on Wi-Fi airport access, this perk could be a big money saver.

Travel discounts

You can get between 2 and 10 percent off certain Delta Air Lines flights across the U.S. and Canada when you use this card to book, as well as up to 25 percent off select car rentals.

Travel insurance and protections

When you use this card for travel, you’ll have access to a bevy of built-in protections through American Express. You’ll have roadside assistance, lost luggage insurance, car rental loss and damage coverage and a 24-hour hotline if you need help on the go.

No foreign transaction fees

You’ll never get hit with foreign transaction fees when you swipe this card abroad—a must-have perk for frequent international flyers.

Rates and fees

With an $85 annual fee and no foreign transaction fees, the rates and fees with this U.S. Bank credit card are competitive with many travel rewards credit cards. There’s no intro APR; the standard purchase and balance transfer APR is between 14.49 and 24.49 percent variable.

How the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express compares to other travel rewards cards

Compared to other travel rewards cards, the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express offers valuable benefits for a relatively low annual fee—but making use of your FlexPoints may be more difficult than redeeming points from other cards.

Two other cards to consider are the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and the Discover it® Miles card. The Sapphire Preferred Card’s annual fee is only incrementally higher, and it has a much larger welcome offer with more transferable points that can be easier to redeem for travel.

The Discover it Miles card earns unlimited 1.5 miles on all purchases, has an unlimited bonus (matching the miles you earned with the card at the end of the first year) and has no annual fee, making it a no-nonsense and inexpensive alternative for people who want to take the guesswork out of earning and redeeming.

Card Rewards rate Annual fee Welcome bonus
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants
  • 5X points on Lyft rides (through March 2022)
  • 1X points on all other purchases
$95 80,000 points after spending $4,000 on purchases within the first three months. Plus, earn up to $50 in statement credits towards grocery store purchases within your first year of account opening.
Discover it® Miles
  • Unlimited 1.5X miles on all purchases
$0 Discover matches all miles earned at the end of the first 12 months

Best cards to pair with the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express

Consider pairing the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express with a Visa or Mastercard, such as the Chase Sapphire Preferred, as American Express credit cards can still be more difficult to use especially overseas.

You’d also want to pair this card with a cash back credit card, or a card that earns you bonus points on other types of purchases. Choosing a card with transferable points, such as Chase Ultimate Rewards points, can also give you more flexibility when it comes to redeeming your points.

Bankrate’s Take—Is the U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express worth it?

The U.S. Bank FlexPerks Gold American Express is best for frequent travelers who can take advantage of all the card’s travel perks (such as the TSA PreCheck or Global Entry credit and free Boingo Wi-Fi) and who spend frequently in travel categories such as flights, car rentals, hotels and gas. If you’re willing to go through the FlexPerks Rewards Center to redeem points for travel, you’ll be rewarded for the effort—otherwise, you won’t see a return on those points.

Pros

  • Annual fee that’s slightly lower than some competitive cards
  • Great rewards rates on travel purchases (including gas) and dining
  • Solid welcome offer
  • Statement credit for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application

Cons

  • No introductory APR offer
  • American Express can still be harder to use than Visa or Mastercard
  • FlexPoints can only be redeemed through the FlexPerks Rewards Center

All information about the U.S. Bank FlexPerks® Gold American Express® Card has been collected independently by Bankrate and has not been reviewed or approved by the issuer.