American Express’ SimplyCash Preferred is one of only a handful of premium rewards credit cards that charges an annual fee of $99 rather than the $120 to $150 typically charged by most others. Even better, you can add up to nine additional users for no extra fee—an effective, no-cost way to harness other household members’ spends to boost your cash back—which helps make up for the fact that the welcome bonus doesn’t include a first-year fee waiver. In comparison, some premium cards charge an extra annual fee of $29 or $50 for every authorized user you add. The lower annual fee and free authorized users don’t come at the expense of perks or benefits, either.
4. Side perks
SimplyCash Preferred comes with some American Express benefits, including Invites with Front of The Line, which lets you access pre-sale tickets to major live events like concerts and plays, and Amex Offers, which provide exclusive discounts on certain purchases. You can even refer friends and family to sign up for the card, and you can earn $100 for each one who’s approved, up to $1,500.
5. Travel insurance
Included travel insurance is a hot benefit for many credit card shoppers, but not all policies are created equal. The good news here is that the SimplyCash Preferred comes with a package that rivals the insurance offerings of most full-fledged travel credit cards. The SimplyCash Preferred covers you for up to $5 million in travel emergency medical insurance for 15 days, up to $500 in lost or delayed baggage insurance, car rental theft and damage insurance for vehicles up to MSRP of $85K (a full $20,000 more than most cards offer), and hotel motel burglary insurance.
6. What you need to know about American Express
American Express has made a name for itself as an issuer of charge cards—but that’s not all they offer. The SimplyCash Preferred is a credit card just like any other, with a credit limit and a regular interest rate of 19.99% on unpaid balances. Of course, it’s always recommended to pay off your balance in full every month but the SimplyCash Preferred does not require full payment, as charge cards do.
American Express is accepted at tens of thousands of locations across Canada, including most major retail chains and dining establishments. It is important to note, though, that American Express is not as widely accepted as Visa or Mastercard. In addition to not being accepted at some mom-and-pop stores, American Express can’t be used at retailers under the Loblaws banner (except for Shoppers Drug Mart) or at Costco.