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Credit Card Review - SimplyCash Card from American Express

April 13, 2018
5 mins
A couple laugh together as they shop online

Among the ever-popular lineup of cash back credit cards, American Express offers two competitive daily spending-focused options. The SimplyCash™ Cards from American Express come with an intro bonus and rewards structure that rivals market leaders, but with a few key differences (think greater flexibility and plusher perks) that make it a unique option. Available in both a no-fee and Preferred version, consumers can choose between pure cash earnings, or pay a fee for additional features.

Card Details

SimplyCash™ Card from American Express SimplyCash™ Preferred Card from American Express
Annual fee $0 $99
Interest rate 19.99% 19.99%
Balance transfer rate N/A N/A
Cash advance rate 21.99% 21.99%
Supplementary card fee $0 $0

Earning Potential: Good

During the Welcome Rate period, both iterations of the SimplyCash™ card offer one of the highest reward earning rates on the market, and include insurance and customer service features not usually offered in the cash back category.

Reward Breakdown:

SimplyCash™ Card from American Express SimplyCash™ Preferred Card from American Express
Earn 2.5% cash back on purchases (up to $150 cash back) for the first 3 months of Cardmembership. Earn 1.25% cash back on purchases when your Welcome Rate ends. No limit to the amount of cash back you can earn after your Welcome Rate ends. Earn 5% cash back on all eligible purchases (up to $300 cash back) for the first 6 months of Cardmembership. Earn 2.0% cash back when your Welcome Rate ends. No limit to the amount of cash back you can earn after your Welcome Rate ends.

It’s also worth noting that both cards come with access to American Express Front Of the Line entertainment perks as well as American Express 24/7 helpline and Emergency Card Replacement.

Point Redemption: Average

Cash back is awarded on an annual basis and applied as a credit directly to your credit card balance.

This is a less flexible model than provided by similar cards on the market, which awards monthly or provides actual cash payouts on a regular basis. 

Insurance Features: Great

Cash back card features tend to be on the utilitarian side, forgoing plush perks to focus on earning potential. But this is an area where American Express, which has a reputation for pushing the customer service envelope, stands out with its travel insurance and purchase protection options.

SimplyCash™ Card from American Express SimplyCash™ Preferred Card from American Express
Purchase Protection and Extended Warranty x x
Travel Medical Insurance (out-of-country and province) N/A x
Travel Accident Insurance up to $100,000 x x
Flight Delay Insurance N/A x
Baggage Delay Insurance N/A x
Lost or Stolen Baggage Insurance N/A x
Hotel/ Motel Burglary Insurance N/A x
Car Rental Theft and Damage Insurance x x

So… which one should you choose?

The insurance features are likely the culprit when it comes to the Preferred card’s $99 annual, making it a good hybrid option for those who travel often. For pure cash rewards, however, greater value is provided over time by the no-fee option, assuming all purchases are made at eligible retailers.

This post has been updated.

RATESDOTCA Team

The RATESDOTCA editorial team are experienced writers focused on sharing stories and bringing you the latest news in insurance and personal finance. Our goal is to provide Canadians with the information and resources they need to make better insurance and financial decisions.

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