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American Express Checking Account
American Express Checking Account
American Express is best known for its credit cards, but the brand has expanded into banking products in recent years. A checking account is one of the most recent additions to the Amex product line. This account has been designed to provide day-to-day banking services for its existing customers.
However, this account is not available for anyone. You need to have held a personal American Express credit card for at least three months to be eligible for the account.
Features of the Amex Rewards Checking Account
The Amex Rewards checking account has no monthly fees and it is supplied with a debit card. However, that makes this account stand out is that you can earn Amex rewards when you make eligible purchases with your debit card. You can earn one reward point for every $2 and there is no rewards cap.
Here are the main features:
- Potential to Earn Rewards Points: If you’re an existing Amex customer, you are likely to be familiar with Amex rewards points. However, you can combine the rewards points you earn with your Amex checking account with your credit card points and then redeem them for travel, gift cards or other rewards.
- Earn Interest on Your Balance: The Amex checking account is one of the top interest bearing accounts. In addition to earning rewards, you can earn a decent APY on the balance in your account. This is quite an unusual feature, as many checking accounts have an either/or approach to rewards or interest.
- No Minimums: No minimum deposit requirements exist to open your Amex checking account or qualify to receive interest on your balance.
- No Monthly Fees: The account also has no monthly maintenance fees to worry about. While it is often possible to have monthly fees waived, you often have to meet at least one requirement from a list of waiver criteria, which can be a pain. With this account, you can forget all about it.
- Mobile Check Deposit: While this is an online account, you can still deposit checks into your account via the mobile check deposit feature. This involves using the app and it will prompt you to enter a few check details and snap a picture of the check. After you click submit, the check will be deposited into your account.
- Purchase Protection: This account also offers purchase protection for eligible items when you use your debit card. You’ll have 90 days of protection against accidental damage or theft. The coverage does have a cap of $1,000 per claim, with a maximum of $50,000 in claims per calendar year.
- User Friendly App: You can manage all aspects of your account via the Amex app. This app is very easy to use and it allows you to manage transactions, check your balance and even redeem rewards on the go.
Is the Amex Checking Account Good?
No financial product is perfect, and the Amex checking account is no exception. There are both pros and cons associated with this account that you should be aware of before you decide if you want to open an account.
Earn Interest on Your Balance
No Cash Deposit
Large ATM Network
No Incentives for Maintaining a Higher Balance
No Welcome Bonus
Potential to Transfer Reward Points to Travel Partners
Not Available to Everyone
The Amex rewards checking account currently offers 1.00% APY on balances, which is impressive, particularly for a checking account.
This means that you can manage your day to day expenses and earn interest without needing to transfer funds between your checking account and Amex savings account.
As an Amex customer, you can access a large ATM network with more than 37,000 machines.
This makes it more likely that you will have an ATM in your local area. If you’re not sure where your nearest machine is, you can use the ATM locator within the app.
The account has no minimum balance requirements or monthly maintenance fees to worry about.
We’ve already discussed that you can earn rewards points with your Amex checking debit card. However, you can transfer your accumulated points to Amex travel partners to get the maximum bang for your buck.
While you can deposit checks using the app, the Amex checking account has no facility to deposit cash.
So, if you do need to deposit cash via ATM into your account, you’ll need to pay it into another bank and then initiate a transfer or issue a check.
While this can be done quite simply, it does add another layer of complexity to managing your account.
Although earning interest on your balance is great, there is no incentive with this account to maintain a higher balance in the account. Regardless of whether you have $1 or $10,000 in the account, you will earn the same APY.
American Express is well known for its generous welcome bonuses on its credit card accounts, but this account does not have any welcome bonus.
You need to be an existing Amex customer to be able to open an account. You will need to have held an Amex credit card for at least three months before you can qualify for this checking account.
Which Type of Customer is Best Suited to the Amex Rewards Checking Account?
The Amex Checking account is exclusively a product for existing customers, but there are a few types of customer who are likely to get the most out of this account.
- You need to boost your Rewards Points balance: If you are looking to boost your rewards points balance for a specific reward, this account can be a great option. Since you’ll earn rewards points on your debit card purchases and credit card purchases, you can achieve rewards at an even faster rate.
- You want to earn interest on your checking account balance: If you like the idea of money sitting in your checking account, the Amex checking account offers a decent APY on any remaining funds.
You don’t want to pay monthly maintenance fees: Finally, if you’re looking for a checking account with no monthly fees, this account is worthy of consideration.
Is Amex A Good Bank to Work With?
As with most banks, American Express does not have a particularly great reputation on consumer websites. On Trustpilot, Amex’s current rating is just 1.6 out of 5. However, the Amex app is quite highly regarded. The app is available on Google Play and in the Apple Store, with a rating of 4.1/5 and 4.9/5 respectively.
Many of the consumer complaints relate to issues with not being issued with higher credit limits and card suspensions. Since the Amex checking account is such a new product, there are no specific reviews relating to this product.
So, if you’ve had a good experience with American Express as your credit card company, you are likely to find them a good bank to work with as your checking account provider.
How to Open an Amex Checking Account
The Amex rewards checking account is an online account, so you’ll need to complete your application online. However, you must hold a personal Amex credit card for at least three months before applying. You can start the process on the Amex website if this applies to you.
- Click Apply: On the Amex website, look for the checking account product page. This will detail all the information about the account and at the bottom of the page, you’ll see an “Apply” button.
- Log In: After you click apply, you’ll be prompted to log into your Amex dashboard.
- Complete the Application: Once you log in, you’ll be directed to an application form. Many of the fields will be prefilled according to your Amex profile, but you will need to check if the information is correct and complete any remaining mandatory fields.
- Await Approval: After you submit your application, you just need to wait for an approval decision. Fortunately, in most cases, American Express will let you know in a matter of minutes.
Yes, Amex is a good bank. In addition to checking accounts, it offers ompetitive savings accounts and CDs. However, it's always a good idea to check out the pros and cons before opening an account.
Yes, you’ll earn interest on any balance in your Amex checking account. The current rate is 1.00% APY.
The account does not have any promotions for new account holders, but you can earn rewards on your debit card purchases.
To close your account, you’ll need to call the Amex customer support phone line. An Amex rep can guide you through the closure process and let you know what you’ll need to do to initiate a closure request.
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