Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
Post Reply
eltron
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:25 pm

Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by eltron » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:12 am

Hi all,

I've been using AMEX Blue Cash Preferred mainly for gas for my wife (I use my business card to pay for my gas) and groceries. With the AMEX BCP it's 6% back on groceries (up to $6k, then 1% after) and 3% back on gas.

We've just been made aware that as an Amazon Prime member we get free online ordering/delivery (albeit a 10% tip for delivery) with groceries plus we get 5% back using our Amazon card.

I'm considering discontinuing the annual membership with AMEX BCP ($95/year) and going strictly with the Whole Foods online ordering since I'm a Prime member so I can better utilize what I'm already paying for. The tip for delivery kinda hurts the value of this, but can easily be offset with us picking up the groceries ourselves (which they offer) and this Whole Foods might be a mile and a half from our house.

I think in the end, the savings might be a push but the Whole Foods route offers more convenience and it's a no capped limit, whereas AMEX BCP has that $6k limit. Slightly annoyed at myself because I just noticed I'm at $7,2000 on grocery bills for 2018, so for the past $1,200 I've been getting 1% back rather than 6% - different topic.

Anyways, if I downgrade to the next card down I believe it's 3% on groceries (irrelevant at this point), 2% on gas and 1% everything else. I would probably just switch over to my Fidelity 2% card at that point for gas for my wife. I was wondering if there was a better gas card out there or would going with the Fidelity 2% be good enough?

Appreciate any input.

pmj78910
Posts: 14
Joined: Thu Oct 16, 2014 10:58 am

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by pmj78910 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:50 am

I'm assuming you're talking about the Amazon Prime Visa Signature card. I have this card and have been quite happy with it. 5% back at Whole Foods as well as 5% back on all Amazon prime website purchases with no annual fee. (I haven't tried the delivery yet).

As far as dropping the Amex Blue Cash Preferred card, I think you should look at your total yearly grocery spend and where you spend it. In our case, we spend about 12K per year on groceries and about half of that is at Whole Foods. So we use the Amazon Prime Visa card for Whole Foods (5% back on roughly 6k) and the Amex Blue Cash Preferred for all other groceries (6% back on roughly 6k). It works out in our case, but certainly not for everyone.

fareastwarriors
Posts: 912
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:31 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by fareastwarriors » Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:52 am

You can use you BCP to buy Amazon gift cards to maximize your 6% cashback and then use your Prime Store card for your Amazon/Whole Foods purchases.

eltron
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:25 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by eltron » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:22 pm

fareastwarriors wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:52 am
You can use you BCP to buy Amazon gift cards to maximize your 6% cashback and then use your Prime Store card for your Amazon/Whole Foods purchases.
I like this idea. Now I'm assuming I'd have to buy these gift cards in the grocery store so that it counts as a 'grocery store purchase', correct?

eltron
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:25 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by eltron » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:44 pm

Doing some math real quick. And assuming my wife spends $100/month in gas.

Scenario 1 (keeping AMEX card and using just for the 6% on 6k cap and 3% at gas): $360 in grocery cash back + $36 gas cash back - $95 annual fee = $301 yearly savings.

Scenario 2 (going with just Amazon Prime card 5% cash back and Fidelity 2% card for gas). For simplicity sake I will use the same 6k cap and the annual fee Amazon charges is irrelevant as we're Prime members regardless of the grocery situation: $300 in grocery cash back + $24 in gas cash back = $324.

Seems that keeping the AMEX, even using it for just the 6% on 6k cap, is actually losing me money.

The obvious outlier is if Whole Foods is just more expensive to shop at. I know in the past they have been, but since Amazon has taken over, it seems most of the products are more reasonable. My wife priced out what we spend at Harris Teeter (our usual go to) and what we would spend at Whole Foods and she said more times than not, Whole Foods was actually cheaper. Since I've maxed my AMEX limit for 2018, we're going to take the next 3 months and shop Whole Foods and see if those price reductions translate.

Tell me if I've omitted something that has skewed these answers. If not, I think the AMEX has to go.

mnnice
Posts: 348
Joined: Sat Aug 11, 2012 5:48 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by mnnice » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:48 pm

You need to figure in the $119 for prime in there somewhere or the Chase Amazon card is only 3% back.

eltron
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:25 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by eltron » Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:52 pm

mnnice wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:48 pm
You need to figure in the $119 for prime in there somewhere or the Chase Amazon card is only 3% back.
This whole setup is void if I'm not a prime member. And I'm a prime member regardless if I'm shopping at Whole Foods or not as I use prime for the quicker shipping alone. Therefore, the annual membership is irrelevant.

Olemiss540
Posts: 583
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 8:46 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Olemiss540 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 2:40 pm

You are worried about percentage points on groceries but ignoring a 10% fee (tip) for delivery? Why is delivery even an option if you are worried about an extra 40 dollars in rewards spend each year?
I hold index funds because I do not overestimate my ability to pick stocks OR stock pickers.

eltron
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:25 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by eltron » Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:00 pm

Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 2:40 pm
You are worried about percentage points on groceries but ignoring a 10% fee (tip) for delivery? Why is delivery even an option if you are worried about an extra 40 dollars in rewards spend each year?
I included delivery as a convenience and an unnecessary one at that. We live under 2 miles away and could still pick it up, that fee is avoidable. I'm speaking on fees that aren't.

Jags4186
Posts: 2536
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm

Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.

Olemiss540
Posts: 583
Joined: Fri Aug 18, 2017 8:46 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Olemiss540 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm

Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm
Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.
Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
I hold index funds because I do not overestimate my ability to pick stocks OR stock pickers.

Jags4186
Posts: 2536
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Jags4186 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm

Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm
Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.
Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

frugalecon
Posts: 295
Joined: Fri Dec 05, 2014 12:39 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by frugalecon » Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:42 pm

I would be curious if others also perceive value in the various offers that Amex pushes that are tied to the card. I frequently get offers of the “spend $75 get $25 statement credit” variety at restaurants I regularly patronize. Others too. I find that I easily average $150 to $200 a year back on those. With the 6% grocery rebate, it is worth it to keep in my wallet.

User avatar
Doom&Gloom
Posts: 2286
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 3:36 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Doom&Gloom » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:30 pm

frugalecon wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:42 pm
I would be curious if others also perceive value in the various offers that Amex pushes that are tied to the card. I frequently get offers of the “spend $75 get $25 statement credit” variety at restaurants I regularly patronize. Others too. I find that I easily average $150 to $200 a year back on those. With the 6% grocery rebate, it is worth it to keep in my wallet.
I found quite a bit of value in those offers early on in my tenure with the BCP. However, those offers steadily became less relevent to me as time went on. I suspect that AMEX became familiar with my patterns of spending and was trying to guide me into areas I did not normally tread.

Nevertheless, I still have the card and find it convenient for myself, DW, and DS, and it is very easy to recoup the $95 annual fee. One benefit for us is that our pharmacy is inside one of our primary grocery stores, so we receive the 6% CB on prescriptions as well as on groceries. We do put some grocery spending on the Amazon Prime card at Whole Foods as well as use the 5% grocery category on Chase Freedom, Discover, etc when it is offered.

SelfEmployed123
Posts: 182
Joined: Sun Apr 15, 2018 8:57 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by SelfEmployed123 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:34 pm

eltron wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:44 pm
Tell me if I've omitted something that has skewed these answers. If not, I think the AMEX has to go.
This whole analysis breaks down if you go out and spend more than you would have otherwise, which is what the credit card companies and Amazon are banking on. Can you make the changes and actually keep your spending the same as before? On average most people don't. Whole Foods prices may be low now that Amazon just bought them. I doubt that will always be the case. Amazon has yet to actually turn a profit. Also, if the difference in your two credit card options only comes down to you saving $20 per year I'm not sure this is going to make much of a difference.

Have you taken the same detail oriented approach to your overall finances in general? I only ask because just this year after spending many hours over something like this I discovered my spouse has access to a 457 plan through her employer. Neither of us had known about it before. Just like that I discovered we have access to an additional $18.5k in tax deferred savings per year. That's probably the most productive hour I ever spent.
"Get what you can, and what you get hold, 'Tis the stone that will turn all your lead into gold." | -Benjamin Franklin

remomnyc
Posts: 590
Joined: Mon Jan 04, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by remomnyc » Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:46 pm

I just looked at this today. I decided against the Amazon Prime card because I do the majority of my food shopping outside of Whole Foods and the balance of my Amazon shopping isn't sufficient to warrant getting another card. I use Amex for up to $6k of groceries. Chase Sapphire for travel and entertainment and Citi Double Cash for everything else. You may save more $ by not shopping at Whole Foods than you will save by getting 5% back on the Amazon Prime card.

edit: changed Amex to Amazon

rj49
Posts: 444
Joined: Wed Feb 23, 2011 12:22 am

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by rj49 » Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:53 pm

I usually save $300 or so a year with AMEX cruise savings. I also use the BCP to save about 10% or so on gas, by getting Arco gift cards at Safeway, so I get 6% plus the gift cards get the cash price for Arco gas, saving more money, and an Arco station a few miles away usually has some of the cheapest gas prices in town. So it could be worth using the Amazon card for Whole Foods groceries but then using the AMEX card to get 6% back on anything you can get a gift card for, up to $6000 of course--I use it for ebay, Carnival cruise cards, and Amazon gift cards.

My complement card to that is the Uber VISA, which gives 4% back on dining, 3% back on airfare/hotels, and 2% back on all other online shopping, with no annual fee. It could also give a credit of $50 of Amazon Prime or any other online service (I use it for Netflix), which you get after $5,000 in yearly spending, and if you have an expensive phone, the Uber card gives phone insurance if you pay your bill with it.

In my experience, the 5% Amazon card and the Prime fee was easily dwarfed by all the unnecessary spending I did on Amazon, as well as time and energy wasted with returns, dealing with boxes, worries about box theft (particularly when I'm on vacation), and time wasted looking for decent 'free' books to read and decent movies to watch through Prime. My former brother-in-law was a complete Amazon shopping addict, with a constant stream of boxes, and then my sister became the same. I've cut down my Amazon shopping by at least 50% since I stopped Prime, and the $25 threshold for free shipping makes me a little more mindful about using them (plus I find I get better deals and free shipping on ebay for many things, especially with the 10% Amazon WA sales tax that I can usually avoid on ebay).

fareastwarriors
Posts: 912
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:31 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by fareastwarriors » Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:55 am

Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm
Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm
Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.
Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

I think 4.4% is pretty good. What do you recommend for grocery spend?

fareastwarriors
Posts: 912
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:31 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by fareastwarriors » Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:56 am

eltron wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:22 pm
fareastwarriors wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 11:52 am
You can use you BCP to buy Amazon gift cards to maximize your 6% cashback and then use your Prime Store card for your Amazon/Whole Foods purchases.
I like this idea. Now I'm assuming I'd have to buy these gift cards in the grocery store so that it counts as a 'grocery store purchase', correct?

Yes buy the Amazon card in your grocery store. I do that all the time for years. My grocery store also give me gas rewards so win, win.

Jags4186
Posts: 2536
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Jags4186 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:46 am

fareastwarriors wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:55 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm
Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm
Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.
Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

I think 4.4% is pretty good. What do you recommend for grocery spend?
It’s 4.4% if you spend exactly $6000. It is worse if you spend more or less than $6000.

I just don’t like having a $95 annual fee that I use at only 1 place and I have to manage it and the sign up bonus stinks.

craimund
Posts: 68
Joined: Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:39 pm
Location: Virginia

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by craimund » Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:00 am

Jags4186 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:46 am
fareastwarriors wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:55 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm
Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm
Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.
Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

I think 4.4% is pretty good. What do you recommend for grocery spend?
It’s 4.4% if you spend exactly $6000. It is worse if you spend more or less than $6000.

I just don’t like having a $95 annual fee that I use at only 1 place and I have to manage it and the sign up bonus stinks.
You also get 3% on gasoline. No limit on spending.
"When you ain't got nothing, you got nothing to lose"-Bob Dylan 1965. "When you think that you've lost everything, you find out you can always lose a little more"-Dylan 1997

Carl53
Posts: 1607
Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2010 8:26 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Carl53 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:03 am

Jags4186 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:46 am
fareastwarriors wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:55 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm
Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:05 pm
Personally I think the AMEX BCP is a garbage card. The absolute best you can do is 4.4% cash back on groceries if you spend exactly $6000/yr after subtracting the $95 annual fee. Too much work for too little reward. Of course this is what AMEX wants.
Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

I think 4.4% is pretty good. What do you recommend for grocery spend?
It’s 4.4% if you spend exactly $6000. It is worse if you spend more or less than $6000.

I just don’t like having a $95 annual fee that I use at only 1 place and I have to manage it and the sign up bonus stinks.
I took Amex repeated threats to disallow the 6% rebate on gift cards seriously and dropped it for the no fee card after they raised the annual fee to $95. Too much hassle to try to get the maximum value out of the card now that the limit is but $6k grocery per year.

eltron
Posts: 92
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:25 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by eltron » Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:46 am

SelfEmployed123 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:34 pm
eltron wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 12:44 pm
Tell me if I've omitted something that has skewed these answers. If not, I think the AMEX has to go.
This whole analysis breaks down if you go out and spend more than you would have otherwise, which is what the credit card companies and Amazon are banking on. Can you make the changes and actually keep your spending the same as before? On average most people don't. Whole Foods prices may be low now that Amazon just bought them. I doubt that will always be the case. Amazon has yet to actually turn a profit. Also, if the difference in your two credit card options only comes down to you saving $20 per year I'm not sure this is going to make much of a difference.

Have you taken the same detail oriented approach to your overall finances in general? I only ask because just this year after spending many hours over something like this I discovered my spouse has access to a 457 plan through her employer. Neither of us had known about it before. Just like that I discovered we have access to an additional $18.5k in tax deferred savings per year. That's probably the most productive hour I ever spent.
My retirement stuff is pretty straight forward. My wife is a stay at home mom and I'm self employed. I max my solo 401k every year. I max our HSA every year. I do a backdoor Roth for both myself and my wife.

Believe we have the retirement vehicles covered.

But thanks for pointing out.

Grogs
Posts: 436
Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:55 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Grogs » Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:56 am

Carl53 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:03 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:46 am
fareastwarriors wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:55 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm
Olemiss540 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:18 pm


Conveniently ignoring the $200 sign up bonus.
$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

I think 4.4% is pretty good. What do you recommend for grocery spend?
It’s 4.4% if you spend exactly $6000. It is worse if you spend more or less than $6000.

I just don’t like having a $95 annual fee that I use at only 1 place and I have to manage it and the sign up bonus stinks.
I took Amex repeated threats to disallow the 6% rebate on gift cards seriously and dropped it for the no fee card after they raised the annual fee to $95. Too much hassle to try to get the maximum value out of the card now that the limit is but $6k grocery per year.
Amex has never given me a problem on gift cards, but I normally just buy a $50 or $100 card once or twice a month during my normal grocery shopping. If I were to suddenly buy $1000 in gift cards with nothing else on the order, they might take notice.

Another item with the gift cards is that I normally get 2X or 4X fuel points fur buying them at Kroger. So for a $100 gift card, I get $6 in cash back, then probably about $0.40 X 15 gallons = $6 in gas savings for a total of 12% saved.

bloom2708
Posts: 4898
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 2:08 pm
Location: Fargo, ND

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by bloom2708 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 8:21 am

Throw the Costco Visa in the mix for gas purchases if you have one close by.

4% on gas up to $7,000 (Or is it $6,000?). That is on top of the fact that gas (in our area) is 20 cents less than other gas stations. I think you still get 2% on top with the Costco Executive membership that is 2% on all purchases.

We use the Amazon Prime Visa for Amazon purchases.

6% on Groceries is good for the AMEX Blue.

So many choices! :D :happy :wink: :shock:
"We are not here to please, but to provoke thoughtfulness." --Unknown Boglehead

fareastwarriors
Posts: 912
Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 12:31 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by fareastwarriors » Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:30 am

Grogs wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:56 am
Carl53 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:03 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 5:46 am
fareastwarriors wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 12:55 am
Jags4186 wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 7:23 pm


$200 is an awful sign up bonus for a card with a $95 annual fee...

I think 4.4% is pretty good. What do you recommend for grocery spend?
It’s 4.4% if you spend exactly $6000. It is worse if you spend more or less than $6000.

I just don’t like having a $95 annual fee that I use at only 1 place and I have to manage it and the sign up bonus stinks.
I took Amex repeated threats to disallow the 6% rebate on gift cards seriously and dropped it for the no fee card after they raised the annual fee to $95. Too much hassle to try to get the maximum value out of the card now that the limit is but $6k grocery per year.
Amex has never given me a problem on gift cards, but I normally just buy a $50 or $100 card once or twice a month during my normal grocery shopping. If I were to suddenly buy $1000 in gift cards with nothing else on the order, they might take notice.

Another item with the gift cards is that I normally get 2X or 4X fuel points fur buying them at Kroger. So for a $100 gift card, I get $6 in cash back, then probably about $0.40 X 15 gallons = $6 in gas savings for a total of 12% saved.
Same here. Amex has never given me a problem on gift cards either. I think you might get flagged for buy the general use Visa/Mastercard cards, not actual store gift cards.

I get the fuel points(rewards) from Safeway. It's awesome!

Carl53
Posts: 1607
Joined: Sun Mar 07, 2010 8:26 pm

Re: Amazon Prime/Whole Foods/AMEX Blue Cash Preferred dilemma

Post by Carl53 » Thu Oct 04, 2018 11:07 am

Mostly I bought visa/mc cards that I used to make online utility payments. They did not directly threaten me but seemed to change the terms and conditions to emphasize that they might. I also used them at Kroger for fuel points. Am doing this less frequently as our local Kroger charges more for premium gas (one vehicle) than other options, other Kroger stores in nearby large city are twenty cents high on even regular and the grocery no longer gives points on the $5.95 fee they want for the gift card. Btw I usually buy 35 gallon when I cash in fuel rewards.

Post Reply