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Just like eBay fraud protection — see Book I, Chapter 5 —the credit card Visa has the new Verified by Visa acceptance, which takes buyers to a Visa. With generous cash-back opportunities and benefits, the new cards enable cardmembers to earn cash-back rewards on all purchases. Today also. Bank better with Coastal Credit Union in North Carolina. Enjoy a variety of personal and business accounts, loans, mortgages, HELOCs and more. Join today.
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American Express

American multinational financial services corporation

"Amex" redirects here. For other uses, see AMEX.

The American Express Company (AmEx) is a multinational corporation specialized in payment card services headquartered at 200 Vesey Street in the Battery Park City neighborhood of Lower Manhattan in New York City. The company was founded in 1850 and is one of the 30 components of the Dow Jones Industrial Average.[5] The company's logo, adopted in 1958, is a gladiator or centurion[6] whose image appears on the company's well-known traveler's cheques, charge cards, and credit cards.

During the 1980s, Amex invested in the brokerage industry, acquiring what became, in increments, Shearson Lehman Hutton and then divesting these into what became Smith Barney Shearson (owned by Primerica) and a revived Lehman Brothers. By 2008 neither the Shearson nor the Lehman name existed.[7]

In 2016, credit cards using the American Express network accounted for 22.9% of the total dollar volume of credit card transactions in the United States.[8] As of December 31, 2019[update], the company had 114.4 million cards in force, including 54.7 million cards in force in the United States, each with an average annual spending of $19,972.[4]

In 2017, Forbes named American Express as the 23rd most valuable brand in the world (and the highest within financial services), estimating the brand to be worth US$24.5 billion.[9] In 2020, Fortune magazine ranked American Express at number 9 on their Fortune List of the Top 100 Companies to Work For in 2020 based on an employee survey of satisfaction.[10]

Early history[edit]

American Express Co. early shipping receipts(1853, 1869)
Share of the American Express Company, issued 13. October 1865; signed by William G. Fargo as Secretary and Henry Wells as President

In 1850, American Express was started as an express mail business in Buffalo, New York.[11] It was founded as a joint-stock corporation by the merger of the express companies owned by Henry Wells (Wells & Company), William G. Fargo (Livingston, Fargo & Company), and John Warren Butterfield (Wells, Butterfield & Company, the successor earlier in 1850 of Butterfield, Wasson & Company).[2][3] Wells and Fargo also started Wells Fargo & Co. in 1852 when Butterfield and other directors objected to the proposal that American Express extend its operations to California.

American Express initially established its headquarters in a building at the intersection of Jay Street and Hudson Street in what was later called the Tribeca section of Manhattan. For years it enjoyed a virtual monopoly on the movement of express shipments (goods, securities, currency, etc.) throughout New York State. In 1874, American Express moved its headquarters to 65 Broadway in what was becoming the Financial District of Manhattan, a location it was to retain through two buildings.[12]

American Express buildings[edit]

In 1854, the American Express Co. purchased a lot on Vesey Street in New York City as the site for its stables. The company's first New York headquarters was an 1858 marble Italianate palazzo at 55–61 Hudson Street, which had a busy freight depot on the ground story with a spur line from the Hudson River Railroad. A stable was constructed in 1867, five blocks north at 4–8 Hubert Street.

The company prospered sufficiently that headquarters were moved in 1874 from the wholesale shipping district to the budding Financial District and into rented offices in two five-story brownstone commercial buildings at 63 and 65 Broadway that were owned by the Harmony family.[13]

In 1880, American Express built a new warehouse behind the Broadway Building at 46 Trinity Place. The designer is unknown, but it has a façade of brick arches that are reminiscent of pre-skyscraper New York. American Express has long been out of this building, but it still bears a terracotta seal with the American Express Eagle.[14] In 1890–91 the company constructed a new ten-story building by Edward H. Kendall on the site of its former headquarters on Hudson Street.

By 1903, the company had assets of some $28 million, second only to the National City Bank of New York among financial institutions in the city. To reflect this, the company purchased the Broadway buildings and site.[13]

At the end of the Wells-Fargo reign in 1914, an aggressive new president, George Chadbourne Taylor (1868–1923), who had worked his way up through the company over the previous thirty years, decided to build a new headquarters. The old buildings, dubbed by The New York Times as "among the ancient landmarks" of lower Broadway, were inadequate for such a rapidly expanding concern.

After some delays due to the First World War, the 21-story neo-classicalAmerican Express Co. Building was constructed in 1916–17 to the design of James L. Aspinwall, of the firm of Renwick, Aspinwall & Tucker, the successor to the architectural practice of the eminent James Renwick Jr.. The building consolidated the two lots of the former buildings with a single address: 65 Broadway. This building was part of the "Express Row" section of lower Broadway at the time. The building completed the continuous masonry wall of its block-front and assisted in transforming Broadway into the "canyon" of neo-classical masonry office towers familiar to this day.[15] American Express sold this building in 1975, but retained travel services there. The building was also the headquarters over the years of other prominent firms, including investment bankers J.& W. Seligman & Co. (1940–74), the American Bureau of Shipping, a maritime concern (1977–86), and later J.J. Kenny, and Standard & Poor's, the latter of which renamed the building for itself.[13][15]

Nationwide expansion[edit]

American Express extended its reach nationwide by arranging affiliations with other express companies (including Wells Fargo – the replacement for the two former companies that merged to form American Express), railroads, and steamship companies.[12]

Financial services[edit]

In 1857, American Express started its expansion in the area of financial services by launching a money order business[12] to compete with the United States Post Office's money orders.

The American Express logo in 1890 depicting a watchdog lying on top of a shipping trunk to symbolize trust and security

Sometime between 1888 and 1890, J. C. Fargo took a trip to Europe and returned frustrated and infuriated. Despite the fact that he was president of American Express and that he carried with him traditional letters of credit, he found it difficult to obtain cash anywhere except in major cities. Fargo went to Marcellus Flemming Berry and asked him to create a better solution than the letter of credit. Berry introduced the American Express Traveler's Cheque which was launched in 1891 in denominations of $10, $20, $50, and $100.[16]

Traveler's cheques established American Express as a truly international company. In 1914, at the onset of World War I, American Express in Europe was among the few companies to honor the letters of credit (issued by various banks) held by Americans in Europe, because other financial institutions refused to assist these stranded travelers.

The British government appointed American Express its official agent at the beginning of World War I. They were to deliver letters, money, and relief parcels to British prisoners of war. Their employees went into camps to cash drafts for both British and French prisoners and arranged for them to receive money from home.

By the end of the war they were delivering 150 tonnes of parcels per day to prisoners in six countries.[17]

Loss of railroad express business[edit]

American Express was one of the monopolies that President Theodore Roosevelt had the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) investigate during his administration. The interest of the ICC was drawn to its strict control of the railroad express business. However, the solution did not come immediately to hand.[12] The solution to this problem came as a coincidence to other problems during World War I.

During the winter of 1917, the United States suffered a severe coal shortage and on December 26 PresidentWoodrow Wilson commandeered the railroads on behalf of the United States government to move federal troops, their supplies, and coal. Treasury Secretary William Gibbs McAdoo was assigned the task of consolidating the railway lines for the war effort. All contracts between express companies and railroads were nullified and McAdoo proposed that all existing express companies be consolidated into a single company to serve the country's needs. This ended American Express's express business and removed them from the ICC's interest. The result was that a new company called the American Railway Express Agency formed in July 1918. The new entity took custody of all the pooled equipment and property of existing express companies (the largest share of which, 40%, came from American Express, who had owned the rights to the express business over 71,280 miles (114,710 km) of railroad lines, and had 10,000 offices, with over 30,000 employees).

History post-1980[edit]

Investment banking (Shearson Lehman Hutton, IDS): 1981-1994[edit]

During the 1980s, American Express embarked on an effort to become a financial services supercompany, and made a number of acquisitions, creating an investment banking arm. In mid-1981 it purchased Sanford I. Weill's Shearson Loeb Rhoades, the second-largest securities firm in the United States to form Shearson/American Express.

Shearson Loeb Rhoades itself was the culmination of several mergers in the 1970s as Weill's Hayden, Stone & Co. merged with Shearson, Hammill & Co. in 1974,[18] to form Shearson Hayden Stone. Shearson Hayden Stone then merged with Loeb, Rhoades, Hornblower & Co. (formerly Loeb, Rhoades & Co.) to form Shearson Loeb Rhoades in 1979. With capital totaling $250 million at the time of its acquisition, Shearson Loeb Rhoades trailed only Merrill Lynch as the securities industry's largest brokerage firm.

After the purchase of Shearson, Weill was given the position of president of American Express in 1983. Weill grew increasingly unhappy with responsibilities within American Express and his conflicts with American Express' CEO James D. Robinson III. Weill soon realized that he was not positioned to be named CEO and left in August 1985.

In 1984, American Express acquired the investment banking and trading firm Lehman Brothers Kuhn Loeb, and added it to the Shearson family, creating Shearson Lehman/American Express. It was Lehman's CEO and former trader Lewis Glucksman who would next lead Shearson Lehman/American Express.[19]

Shearson/American Express logo c. 1982

In 1984, Shearson/American Express also purchased the 90-year-old Investors Diversified Services (IDS), bringing with it a fleet of financial advisors and investment products.

In 1988, Shearson Lehman acquired the brokerage firm E.F. Hutton & Co.. E.F. Hutton was merged with the investment banking business and the investment banking arm was renamed Shearson Lehman Hutton, Inc.[20]

TDB American Express Bank, Switzerland[edit]

In 1983, Edmond Safra, the owner of Trade Development Bank in Geneva, sold his bank for US$550 million to American Express. Safra was inducted to the board of American Express. The acquisition of TDB by American Express was part of James D. Robinson III's plan to break into the private depositor banking industry. TDB American Express was intended to be the third arm of American Express's financial empire which would reach wealthy private depositors internationally.[21]

TDB quickly realized after the acquisition that American Express was not able to uphold promises with which they used to court them at the time of acquisition, as TDB executives were excluded from important company decisions. Edmond Safra, an executive at TDB, tried to separate from the mother company. After failed attempts to get American Express to accept his offers to buy TDB back, Safra opened a competing bank. In response, American Express launched an international smear campaign against Safra by inaccurately reporting to news and media outlets in that Safra was being investigated by the FBI for being involved in the Iran–Contra affair, along with drug trafficking and the mafia.[22]

All of the accusations were confirmed to be false, and led to the resignation of Harry L. Freeman, James D. Robinson III's right-hand man and public relations chief in American Express, after admitting to the entire scandal. In July 1989, American Express publicly apologized to Edmond Safra and donated US$8 million to the charity of his choice.[23]

In 1990, American Express sold its Swiss banking operations to Compagnie de Banque et d’Investissements, which led to the creation of Union Bancaire Privée (UBP).[24]


When Harvey Golub became CEO of American Express in 1993, American Express decided to get out of the investment banking business and negotiated the sale of Shearson's retail brokerage and asset management business to Primerica. The Shearson business was merged with Primerica's Smith Barney to create Smith Barney Shearson. Ultimately, the Shearson name was dropped in 1994.[25]

In 1994, American Express spun off of the remaining investment banking and institutional businesses as Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc, ending what The New York Times called "a nettlesome foray into the brokerage business."[26] After almost fifteen years of independence, Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy protection in 2008 as part of the financial crisis of 2007–08.

Sales practices[edit]

In January 2021, the Wall Street Journal reported that the Department of the Treasury, the FDIC, and the Federal Reserve had launched an investigation into whether the company had misled potential corporate customers and used aggressive tactics while selling American Express cards.[27] After the announcement, shares of the company fell in price.[28] The period in question was between 2015 and 2016.[27]

List of CEOs[edit]

  1. Henry Wells (1850–1866) [29]
  2. William Fargo (1866–1881) [29]
  3. J. C. Fargo (1881–1914) [30]
  4. George C. Taylor (1914–1923) [29]
  5. Frederick P. Small (1923–1944) [29]
  6. Ralph Reed (1944–1960) [31]
  7. Howard L. Clark Sr. (1960–1977) [32]
  8. James D. Robinson III (1977–1993) [33]
  9. Harvey Golub (1993–2001) [34]
  10. Kenneth Chenaul (2001–2018) [35]
  11. Stephen Squeri (2018–present) [36]

Charge card services[edit]

American Express executives discussed the possibility of launching a travel charge card as early as 1946, but it was not until Diners Club launched a card in March 1950, that American Express began to seriously consider the possibility. At the end of 1957, American Express CEO Ralph Reed decided to get into the card business, and by the launch date of October 1, 1958, public interest had become so significant that 250,000 cards were issued prior to the official launch date. The card was launched with an annual fee of $6, $1 higher than Diners Club, to be seen as a premium product. The first cards were made of paper, with the account number and cardmember's name typed. In 1959, American Express began issuing embossed ISO/IEC 7810 plastic cards, an industry first.[37]

History of card types[edit]

In 1966, American Express introduced the Gold Card.[37] In 1984, the company launched the Platinum Card, clearly defining different market segments within its own business, a practice that has proliferated across a broad array of industries.[38] The Platinum Card was billed as super-exclusive and had a $250 annual fee (as of October 2021[update], the fee is $695[39]). It was offered by invitation only to American Express customers with at least two years of tenure, significant spending, and excellent payment history; as of 2019[update], it is open to applicants on request. In 1987, American Express introduced the Optima card, its first credit card product that did not have to be paid in full at the end of the month.

American Express formed a venture with Warner Communications in 1979, called Warner-Amex Satellite Entertainment, which created MTV, Nickelodeon, and The Movie Channel. The partnership lasted only until 1984. The properties were sold to Viacom soon after.

In April 1992, American Express spun off its former subsidiary, First Data Corp., in an initial public offering.[40]

In 1994, the Optima True Grace card was introduced. The card was unique in that it offered a grace period on all purchases whether a balance was carried on the card or not (as opposed to traditional revolving credit cards which charge interest on new purchases if so much as $1 was carried over).[41] The card was discontinued a few years later.

The ONE card, introduced in 2005 but since discontinued, innovated in cash back rewards (described then as "have become staples of credit card reward programs") which are "deposited in an interest bearing savings account"[42] The rewards account was a high-yield FDIC-insured savings account. The ONE from American Express card offered a feature similar to Optima True Grace which it called "Interest Protection."


"Boston Fee Party"[edit]

From the early 1980s until the early 1990s, American Express was known for cutting its interchange fee (also known as a "discount rate") to merchants and restaurants if they accepted only American Express and no other credit or charge cards. This prompted competitors such as Visa and Mastercard to cry foul for a while as the tactics "locked" restaurants into American Express. Capitalizing on this elitist image, American Express frequently mentioned such exclusive partnerships in its advertising.[43]

Aside from some holdouts including Neiman Marcus (which continued exclusivity until 2011), the practice largely ended in 1991.[44] A group of restaurants in Boston stopped accepting American Express while accepting and encouraging the use of Visa and Mastercard, including some that were exclusive to American Express. The rationale was due to far lower fees as compared with American Express' fees at the time (which were about 4% for each transaction versus around 1.2% at the time for Visa and Mastercard). The revolt, known as the "Boston Fee Party" (alluding to the Boston Tea Party), spread to over 250 restaurants across the United States, including restaurants in other cities such as New York City, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Visa offered to pay the Fee Party's legal bills, and Discover Card was able to increase their acceptance among Boston restaurants by 375%. Kenneth Chenault then heads of Travel Related Services prior to becoming American Express CEO, cut fees to bring these restaurants back into the fold.[45] American Express then shifted its focus from exclusivity to broadening acceptance, adding mainstream merchants like Walmart to the American Express network.

Conversion to bank holding company[edit]

On November 10, 2008, during the financial crisis of 2007–2008, the company won Federal Reserve System approval to convert to a bank holding company, making it eligible for government help under the Troubled Asset Relief Program.[46][47] At that time, American Express had total consolidated assets of about $127 billion.[47] In June 2009, $3.39 billion in TARP funds were repaid plus $74.4 million in dividend payments. In July 2009, the company ended its obligations under TARP by buying back $340 million in Treasury warrants.[48][49][50]

Charging order controversy in the UK[edit]

In November 2010, the UK division of American Express was cautioned by the Office of Fair Trading for the use of controversial charging orders against those in debt.[51] The regulator said that the company was one of four companies who were encouraging customers to turn their unsecured credit card debts into a form of secured debt.

CFPB enforcement action[edit]

In October 2012, The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced an enforcement action with orders requiring three American Express subsidiaries to refund an estimated $85 million to approximately 250,000 customers for illegal card practices between 2003 and 2012. Allegations included that American Express made misleading statements regarding signup bonuses, charged unlawful late fees, discriminated against applicants due to age, and failed to report consumer complaints to regulators.[52]

Costco exclusivity arrangement (2004–2016)[edit]

Beginning in 2004, Costco issued co-branded American Express cards which also doubled as a membership card. Costco ended this arrangement in 2016 in the United States, and in 2015 in Canada. The cards did not have annual fees and offered cash back in form of in-store rebates on certain tiers of purchases. The TrueEarnings cards issued by Costco in the United States were an extension of an exclusive credit card network deal between Costco and American Express dating from 1999. Costco was the last major U.S. merchant that accepted American Express cards exclusively. In November 2011, Neiman Marcus, which gave similar general-purpose card exclusivity to American Express since the 1980s, began accepting Visa and Mastercard.[53]

Costco's Canadian stores ended its exclusive deal with American Express in January 2015, in favor of one with Capital One and Mastercard.[54] Capital One did not buy accounts and balances from American Express, which required Costco Canada members to apply for the new cards instead of automatically qualifying.[55]

On February 12, 2015, it was announced that the partnership between American Express and Costco in the United States would dissolve March 31, 2016, which was later extended to June 19, 2016. By March 2, 2015, Costco announced that Citigroup would become the exclusive issuer of Costco's credit cards and that Visa Inc. would replace American Express as the exclusive credit card network accepted at Costco's stores in the United States. The Costco deal with Visa began on June 20, 2016, and in addition to the new Citi card, Costco accepted all other Visa cards.[56][57] All TrueEarnings card accounts and balances held by American Express were sold to Citigroup, and new Costco Anywhere Visa cards were sent to Costco members prior to the switch date. Concurrent with the switch to Visa, Costco no longer accepts American Express in stores, at, or through Costco Travel.

The Costco partnership represented 8%, or $80 billion, of American Express' billed business and about 20%, or about $14 billion, of its interest-bearing credit portfolio, according to Richard Shane of JPMorgan Chase & Co.[57] The impact of losing the Costco card accounts was significant; in the first quarter without Costco cards, company profit dropped 10% and revenue dropped 5% compared to the previous year.[58]

Airport Lounges[edit]

American Express operates a network of Centurion Lounges at major airports which are available to their Platinum and Centurion card members.[59] The first lounge opened in 2013, at McCarran Airport and the network has expanded ever since.[60] American Express also has agreements with other airport lounges to offer access to their Platinum and Centurion card members as part of the Global Lounge Collection.[61] These lounge networks include:

In 2019, American Express acquired LoungeBuddy,[62] a provider which offers pay-per-use access to select airport lounges worldwide.

Centurion Lounges[edit]

As of October 2021, there are fifteen Centurion Lounges in operation, all located in the United States with the exception of lounges in Hong Kong and London.[63]

American Express plans to open an 11,500 sq ft (1,070 m2) lounge at Washington-Reagan in 2022.[64]


For the fiscal year 2017, American Express reported earnings of US$2.634 billion, with an annual revenue of US$35.583 billion, an increase of 5.2% over the previous fiscal cycle. Its shares traded at over $83 per share, and its market capitalization was valued at over US$86.5 billion in October 2018.[65] American Express ranked #86 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue.[66]

Card products[edit]

As of 31 December 2019[update], the company had 114.4 million cards in force, including 54.7 million cards in force in the United States, each with average annual spending of $19,972.[4] These include consumer, small business and corporate cards issued by American Express themselves and cards issued by its Global Service Network partners that run on its network (such as Commonwealth Bank, Westpac, and NAB in Australia and Lloyds Bank and Barclays Bank in the UK). On March 1, 2017, Australia's fourth-largest bank ANZ announced that it was no longer issuing American Express cards, with the support phased out entirely by August 5, 2017.[67]

American Express is the fourth largest general-purpose card network on a global basis based on purchase volume, behind China UnionPay, Visa and MasterCard.[68] It is the 4th largest card network in the world, based on the number of cards it has in circulation.[69]

American Express is one of the partner banks to both Google and Apple's mobile wallet systems (Google Pay and Apple Pay, respectively) meaning that cardholders can use their American Express-issued cards to pay at establishments where NFC payments are accepted. American Express offers various contactless credit cards.[70][71]

Consumer cards[edit]

An advertisement for the American Express Platinum Credit Card in Hong Kong

See also: Centurion Card and Accolades Card

American Express is best known for its Green, Gold, and Platinum charge cards. The Gold Card was converted to a credit card for U.K. residents in 2018, but remains a charge card in the U.S.[72][73]

In 1958, American Express issued its first charge card, which required payment at the end of every month.[74] In 1966, the company issued its first gold card, in an effort to cater to the upper echelon of business travel.[75] Its platinum card debuted in 1984.[76]

In 1999, American Express introduced the Centurion Card, often referred to as the "black card," which caters to an even more affluent customer segment. The card was initially available only to select users of the Platinum card. The annual fee for the card in the United States is $5,000 (up from $1,000 at introduction) with an additional one-time initiation fee of $10,000. American Express created the card line amid rumors and urban legends in the 1980s that it produced an ultra-exclusive black card for elite users who could purchase anything with it.[77]

American Express cards publicly issued in the United States range in cost between no annual fee (for Blue and many other consumer and business cards) and a $695 annual fee (for the Platinum card).[78] Annual fees for the Green card start at $150, while Gold card annual fees start at $250.[79][80]

American Express has several co-branded credit cards, with most falling into one of three categories:

  • Airlines: Aerolineas Argentinas, Aeroméxico, Air Canada, Air France, Alitalia, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, Delta Air Lines, Icelandair, KLM, Qantas, Scandinavian Airlines, Singapore Airlines, SriLankan Airlines, Thai Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia, among others.
  • Hotels: Best Western, Hilton Hotels, Marriott International, and The Peninsula Hotels
  • Retailers: David Jones, Holt Renfrew, Harrods, Macy's, Bloomingdales, Lowe's, Mercedes Benz, Dillard's and others.

A credit card aimed at young adults is called Blue, which has no annual fee and a loyalty program. A television media campaign for Blue adopted the 1979 UK Synthpop hit "Cars" by Gary Numan as its theme music. A cashback reward program version, "Blue Cash", quickly followed. American Express also targeted young adults with City Reward Cards that earn INSIDE Rewards points to eat, drink, and play in New York, Chicago, and LA hot spots. American Express began phasing out the INSIDE cards in mid-2008, with no new applications being taken as of July 2008.

In 2002, American Express introduced Clear, advertised as the first credit card with no fees of any kind. Other cards introduced in 2005, included "The Knot" and "The Nest" Credit Cards from American Express, co-branded cards developed with the wedding planning website

In 2006, the UK division of American Express joined the Product Red coalition and issued a Red Card, donating with each purchase through The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria to help African women and children suffering from HIV/AIDS, malaria, and other diseases.[81]

In 2009, American Express introduced the ZYNC charge card. White in color, this card was created for people aged 20–40.[82] The Zync charge card has since been discontinued with the exception of current cardholders who are grandfathered into the ZYNC.

In late 2012, American Express and Walmart announced the launch of Bluebird, a prepaid debit card similar to that of Green Dot.[83] Bluebird is being touted as having some of the benefits of traditional American Express cards, such as roadside assistance and identity theft protection. The card can also be used as a substitute for a traditional checking account. Unlike other such cards, Bluebird is FDIC-insured.[84] Bluebird accounts have standard FDIC deposit insurance and check writing capabilities, and as of March 2013 customers can have Social Security payments, military pay, Tax Return, paycheck, and other government benefits deposited directly into their accounts.[84]


American Express credit cards are noted by travel guides, including Rough Guides and Lonely Planet, as being less commonly accepted in Europe than Visa or Mastercard.[85][86][87][88]

Card design[edit]

The company logo, a gladiator or centurion, appears at the center of the iconic Zync, Cobalt, Blue Business, Plum, Green, Gold, Platinum, and Centurion cards. The figure and his pose evoke classical antiquity. These cards also feature intricate border and background designs that read "American Express." The designs on these cards, especially the Green card, bear resemblance to those on the United States Federal Reserve Notes.



In 2005, American Express introduced ExpressPay, similar to Mastercard Contactless and Visa payWave, all of which use the symbol appearing on the right. It is a contactless payment system based on wireless RFID, where transactions are completed by holding the credit card near a receiver at which point the debt is immediately added to the account. All three contactless systems use the same logo. The card is not swiped or inserted into a smart card reader and no PIN is entered.

Many merchants, in the U.S. and globally, offer American Express contactless payment, including Meijer, Walgreens, Best Buy, Chevron Corporation, Starbucks, and McDonald's.

American Express OPEN[edit]

American Express OPEN, the small-business branch of American Express, offers various types of charge cards for small businesses to manage their expenses.

In late 2007, the company announced the new Plum Card as the latest addition to their card line for small business owners.[89] The card provides a 1.5% early pay discount or up to two months to defer payment on purchases. The 1.5% discount is available for billing periods where the cardmember spends at least $5,000. The first 10,000 cards were issued to members on December 16, 2007.[90]

In 2008, American Express closed all Business Line of Credit accounts. This decision was reached in tandem with the Federal Reserve's approval of American Express's request to become a commercial bank.[91]

As of July 2016[update], American Express has several credit cards designed for small businesses. These include SimplyCash Plus Business Credit Card. Cashback earned is automatically credited to the cardholder's statement and other benefits are included. Other cards include the Business Platinum Card from American Express OPEN, the Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN, the Blue for Business Credit Card from American Express, Business Green Rewards Card from American Express OPEN, the Business Green Rewards Card from American Express OPEN and the Plum Card from American Express OPEN. These cards have return protection, year-end summaries and other tools to help with the business accounting and control.[92]

Commercial cards and services[edit]

In 2008, American Express acquired the Corporate Payment Services business of GE, which primarily focused on providing Purchasing Card solutions for large global clients.[93] As part of the $1b+ transaction, American Express also added a new product, called V-Payment, to its product portfolio. V-Payment is unique in that it enables a tightly controlled, single-use card number for increased control.

As of July 2016[update], American Express offered several business, corporate and travel credit and charge cards and services and data and information services related to their use in the competitive markets for these cards.[94]

The online "American Express @ Work" function gives corporations a site on which to apply for, cancel or suspend cards, monitor policy compliance and track expenses. The cardholder company can create and generate reports for a corporate expense account program, including analytics and data consolidation or integration.[95] Reports can be tailored for various sized companies. Through a Standard Expense Reporting feature in its "Manage Your Card Account site", American Express corporate cards provide cardholders access to pre-populated expense reports. The cardholder needs to annotate expenses and add out-of-pocket charges upon completion of which the report can be downloaded in electronic or paper format.[95]

American Express Corporate Card program can be used with a third-party on-demand expense management tool by Concur, a provider of integrated travel and expense management services. This tool simplifies the creation of expense account reports and the corporate approval process. Corporate card activity, including viewing statements, making payments, setting up alerts and making inquiries and disputing charges, can be managed through an account online or via a mobile device through this service.[95]

The corporate cards have benefits including discounts and rebates for travel and transportation, travel and emergency help, travel insurance and baggage protection.[95] Upgrades from the Corporate "Green" Card to the Corporate Gold Card or Corporate Platinum Card, although subject to fees and terms and conditions, have several additional benefits at each card level, such as free breakfast or late checkout at many hotels.[95] The American Express/Business Extra Corporate Credit Card is affiliated with American Airlines and provides a 4% rebate on eligible American Airlines travel purchased with the card.[95]

American Express has a specialized corporate meeting credit card.[96] Another specialized American Express business card is the American Express Corporate Purchasing Card, which can be assigned to individual employees or departments. Reconciliation and accounting services are available to make these functions easier for the corporation.[97]

Non-proprietary cards[edit]

In December 2000, American Express agreed to acquire the US$226 million credit card portfolio of Bank of Hawaii, then a division of Pacific Century Financial Corp.[98] In January 2006, American Express sold its Bank of Hawaii card portfolio to Bank of America (MBNA). Bank of America will issue Visa and American Express cards under the Bank of Hawaii name.

Until 2004, Visa and Mastercard rules prohibited issuers of their cards from issuing American Express cards in the United States. This meant, as a practical matter, that U.S. banks could not issue American Express cards. These rules were struck down as a result of antitrust litigation brought by the U.S. Department of Justice, and are no longer in effect.[99] In January 2004, American Express reached a deal to have its cards issued by a U.S. bank, MBNA America.[100] Initially decried by Mastercard executives as nothing but an "experiment", these cards were released in October 2004.[101] Some said that the relationship was going to be threatened by MBNA's merger with Bank of America, a major Visa issuer and original developer of Visa (and its predecessor, BankAmericard). However, an agreement was reached between American Express and Bank of America on December 21, 2005.[102] Under the terms of the agreement, Bank of America will own the customer loans and American Express will process the transactions. Also, American Express will dismiss Bank of America from its antitrust litigation against Visa, Mastercard, and a number of U.S. banks. Finally, both Bank of America and American Express also said an existing card-issuing partnership between MBNA and American Express will continue after the Bank of America-MBNA merger. The first card from the partnership, the no-annual-fee Bank of America Rewards American Express card, was released on June 30, 2006.

Since then, Citibank, Wells Fargo, First National Bank of Omaha, USAA, Navy Federal, Synchrony Financial, and US Bancorp have started issuing American Express cards. Citi issues the Macy's and Bloomingdale's American Express cards along with Citi-branded cards. Wells Fargo issues American Express cards under their own brand and for Dillard's. US Bancorp issues American Express-branded cards for US Bank along with Elan Card Services, a subsidiary that issues credit cards on behalf of small to midsize banks. Some credit unions, including PenFed, also issue American Express cards. JPMorgan Chase is the largest bank and the only Big Four bank in the US that does not partner with American Express. Instead, JPMorgan made the decision in 2013, to partner with Visa on the ChaseNet closed-loop network that is similar in terms of functionality to the American Express network.

Merchant account[edit]

Many retailers do not accept American Express cards.[103][specify] American Express charges merchants significantly higher fees than other credit card providers.[104] In a court case Ohio v. American Express Co., merchants filed a class action lawsuit against American Express and claimed that charging high fees is a violation of the Sherman Antitrust Act.[105][106] According to the lawsuit, accepting American Express cards costs merchants the most.[107] In January 2017, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed a lower court ruling that American Express could block merchants that accept its cards from steering customers to other cards, like those offered by Visa and Mastercard.[108] In June 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court affirmed the 2nd Circuit Court's ruling.[109]

Non-card products[edit]

Traveller's cheques[edit]

American Express is the largest provider of traveller's cheques in the world.[110]

In 2005, American Express released the American Express Travelers Cheque Card,[111] a stored-value card that serves the same purposes as a traveller's cheque, but can be used in stores like a credit card. Amex discontinued the card in October 2007, due to "changing market conditions" and issued refund checks to cardholders for the remaining balances.

Financial advisors[edit]

On September 30, 2005, American Express spun-off its American Express Financial Advisors unit, Ameriprise Financial, to its shareholders. On September 30, 2005, RSM McGladrey acquired American Express Tax & Business Services (TBS).[112]

International bank[edit]

In 2008, Standard Chartered Bank acquired American Express Bank Ltd, the international banking subsidiary of American Express for US$823 million.[113][114][115][116][117]


American Express established a Travel Division in 1915, that tied together all earlier efforts at making travel easier, and soon established its first travel agencies. In the 1930s, the Travel Division had grown widely. Albert K. Dawson was instrumental in expanding business operations overseas, even investing in tourist relations with the Soviet Union. During World War I, Dawson was a photographer and film correspondent with the German army.

In March 2014, American Express announced that it signed an agreement to create a joint venture for business travel and spun off its corporate travel business as American Express Global Business Travel.[118]


The American Express Publishing Corporation published the Travel + Leisure,Food & Wine,Executive Travel, Black Ink, and Departures magazines until October 1, 2013, when it sold those titles to Time Inc.[119] It publishes American Express Skyguide and is based in New York City.[120] As of February 2014[update], Time Inc. is restructuring the portfolio of publications.[121]

Individual banking[edit]

American Express FSB (federal savings bank) is a direct bank offering a standard savings account to individuals.[122] The names used are Centurion Bank and American Express Bank; both are Utah-based and TRS (Travel Related Services).[123]

Checking account services are not provided.

Small business banking[edit]

On October 16, 2020, Kabbage was acquired by American Express.[124] In June 2021, the company's first checking account for small businesses, Kabbage Checking, was launched. American Express also offers credit lines of US$1,000 to US$150,000 for small businesses, using Kabbage's automated underwriting software.[125]

Advertising campaigns[edit]

Don't Leave Home Without Them[edit]

In 1975, David Ogilvy of Ogilvy & Mather developed the highly successful "Don't Leave Home Without Them" ad campaign for American Express Traveler's Cheques, featuring Oscar-award-winning actor Karl Malden. Malden served as the public face of American Express Travelers Cheques for 25 years. In the UK, the spokesman was the television personalityAlan Whicker.[126]

After Malden's departure, and as the card assumed importance over the traveler's cheques, American Express continued to use celebrities, such as Mel Blanc and ballerina Cynthia Gregory.[127][128] A typical ad for the American Express Card began with a celebrity asking viewers: "Do you know me?" Although he/she gave hints to his/her identity, the star's name was never mentioned except as imprinted on an American Express Card, after which announcer Peter Thomas told viewers how to apply for it.[129] Each ad concluded with the celebrity reminding viewers: "Don't Leave Home Without It." The "Don't Leave Home Without It" slogan was revived in 2005.[130]

The Adventures of Seinfeld & Superman[edit]

American Express continues to use celebrities in their ads. Some notable examples include a late 1990s ad campaign with comedian Jerry Seinfeld, including the two 2004 webisodes in a series entitled "The Adventures of Seinfeld & Superman".[131]

My life. My card. / Are You a Cardmember?[edit]

In late 2004, American Express launched the "My life. My card." brand campaign, and later the "Are You a Cardmember?" brand campaign in 2007, (both by Ogilvy & Mather), featuring famous American Express cardmembers talking about their lives.[132] The ads have featured actors/actresses Kate Winslet,[133]Robert De Niro,[134]Ken Watanabe,[133] and Tina Fey;[135]Duke University basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski;[136] fashion designers Collette Dinnigan and Diane von Fürstenberg;[137][138] comedian and talk show hostess Ellen DeGeneres;[139] golfer Tiger Woods;[140] professional snowboarder Shaun White;[141] tennis pros Venus Williams, Andy Roddick, and Andre Agassi;[142][143][144] surfer Laird Hamilton[133] Manchester United manager José Mourinho;[145] film directors Martin Scorsese,[146]Wes Anderson,[147] and M. Night Shyamalan;[148] singers Sheryl Crow, Alicia Keys and Beyoncé.[144][149]


In 2007, a two-minute black-and-white ad, entitled "Animals" and starring Ellen DeGeneres, won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Commercial.[150][151]

C. F. Frost[edit]

Many American Express credit card ads feature a sample American Express Card with the name "C. F. Frost" on the front. This is not a fabricated name; Charles F. Frost was an advertising executive at Ogilvy & Mather.[152]

Cause marketing[edit]

American Express was one of the earliest users of cause marketing, to great success.[153] A 1983 promotion advertised that for each purchase made with an American Express Card, American Express would contribute one penny to the renovation of the Statue of Liberty. The campaign generated contributions of $1.7 million to the Statue of Liberty restoration project. What would soon capture the attention of marketing departments of major corporations was that the promotion generated approximately a 28% increase in American Express card usage by consumers.

In May 2007, American Express launched an initiative called the Members Project.[154][155] Cardholders were invited to submit ideas for projects, and were told American Express was funding the winning project.

Cultural projects[edit]

American Express supports initiatives to enhance the architectural and cultural heritage, with the aim of raising awareness on the importance of historical and environmental conservation, through the restoration of historical monuments. American Express is a founder sponsor of the global program "World Monuments Watch", launched in 1995, by World Monuments Fund. During the first edition of Corporate Art Awards, in 2016, American Express received by pptArt the Corporate Art Award for its international restoration program.[156]



American Express Italyformer HQ in Rome
An American Express regional HQ in Sunrise, Florida.

In April 1986, American Express moved its headquarters to the 51-story Three World Financial Center in New York City. After the events of September 11, 2001, American Express had to leave its headquarters temporarily because it was located directly opposite the World Trade Center and was damaged during the fall of the towers. The company began gradually moving back into its rehabilitated building in 2002.

The company maintains major offices in Sunrise, Florida, Salt Lake City, and Phoenix, Arizona, with its main data centers in North Carolina and Phoenix.

AMEX Bank of Canada was founded in 1853, in Toronto. It has around 1,700 employees as of December 2020 in its head office at Sheppard,[157] east of Highway 404 in Toronto (relocated from Markham, Ontario, a northern suburb of Toronto where it resided from 1985 to 2015), as well as an office in Hamilton, Ontario. The company began operations as a bank on July 1, 1990, following an order-in-council made by the Brian Mulroney government on November 21, 1988. This decision was not without controversy as federal banking policy at the time would not ordinarily have permitted American Express to operate as a bank.[158] It is a member of the Canadian Bankers Association (CBA) and a registered member of the Canada Deposit Insurance Corporation (CDIC), the federal agency insuring deposits at all of Canada's chartered banks.

American Express has several offices in the UK, including a European Service Center in the Carlton Hill area of Brighton, England. The building was completed in 2012. It replaced American Express's former building, Amex House, a large white tower block built in 1977 and surrounded by several other smaller offices around the city.[159] The American Express European Service Center deals with card servicing, sales, fraud and merchant servicing. Official Europe, Middle East, and Africa HQ is located in the Belgravia district of Westminster, in central London, at Belgrave House on Buckingham Palace Road, SW1; other UK offices are based in Sussex at Burgess Hill and Manchester.[160] In November 2009, Brighton and Hove City Council granted planning permission for American Express to redevelop the Amex House site.

Japan, Asia-Pacific, and Australian Headquarters is co-located in Singapore, at 16 Collyer Quay, and in Sydney's King Street Wharf area.

The headquarters of Latin America and Caribbean division is in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

American Express also has a significant presence in India. Its two centers are located at Gurgaon, Haryana and on Mathura Road in New Delhi. The Indian operations of American Express revolve around the back office customer services operations apart from the credit card business for the domestic Indian Economy, arguably the American Express campus in Gurgaon is the largest employee location by headcount for Amex and supports business continuity objectives of Amex including during Hurricane Sandy, the center works 24/7 and includes a co-located second building which was recently[when?] transferred to a third party service provider but does much work for Amex.

Job satisfaction[edit]

In 2008, American Express was named the 62nd best company to work for in the United States by Fortune, ranking it number one for bank card companies.[161] In October 2008, Amex Canada Inc. was named one of Greater Toronto's Top Employers by Mediacorp Canada Inc., which was announced by the Toronto Star newspaper.[162] In 2018, Fortune ranked it the 23rd best company to work for.[163] In 2019, Fortune ranked it the 9th best company to work for.[163]

Management, corporate governance, ownership[edit]

Officers of the company are listed on the company's website.[164]

As of 2017[update], American Express shares are mainly held by institutional investors (Berkshire Hathaway, Vanguard group, BlackRock, State Street Corporation and others).[165]

In Popular Culture[edit]

The "Don't Leave Home Without It" campaign was parodied by the U.S. game showPress Your Luck in 1984, with the show's mascot, the "whammy", showing the viewers an "American Xcess" card, using the introduction of "Hello, do you know me?" The name "W-H-A-M-M-Y" is then revealed to the audience before taking all of the player's earnings to that point.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ abcdef"American Express Company 2020 Annual Report (Form 10-K)"(PDF). U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. February 2021.
  2. ^ abPeter Z. Grossman. American Express: The Unofficial History of the People Who Built the Great Financial Empire. New York: Crown Publishers, 1987. (reprint: Beard Books 2006; ISBN 1-58798-283-8; Chapter 2.)
  3. ^ abNoel M. Loomis, Wells Fargo. New York: Clarkson N. Potter, Inc., 1968
  4. ^ abc"US SEC: Form 10-K American Express Company". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Archived from the original on February 15, 2020. Retrieved February 15, 2020.
  5. ^"Dow Jones Industrial Average". CNN Money. Archived from the original on October 14, 2013. Retrieved October 20, 2013.
  6. ^"American Express Logo Review". Company Logos. 2008. Archived from the original on September 20, 2010. Retrieved June 25, 2011.
  7. ^"American Express Finishes Lehman Brothers spinoff". The New York Times.
  8. ^Comoreanu, Alina (March 7, 2017). "Market Share by Credit Card Network". Wallet Hub. Archived from the original on April 8, 2017. Retrieved April 8, 2017.
  9. ^"Forbes 2017 Rankings - The World's Most Valuable Brands". Forbes. Archived from the original on March 8, 2018.
  10. ^Jessica Snouwaert. "The 25 best companies to work for, based on employee satisfaction". Business Insider. Retrieved April 1, 2020.
  11. ^"Recognizing Responsibility: American Express Company 2007/2008 Corporate Citizenship Report"(PDF). American Express Co. p. 8. Archived from the original(PDF) on November 16, 2011. Retrieved July 25, 2012.
  12. ^ abcdKenneth T. Jackson. The Encyclopedia of New York City. The New York Historical Society: Yale University Press, 1995. P. 23.
  13. ^ abcNew York City Landmarks Preservation Commission; December 12, 1995, Designation List 269; LP-1932Archived October 20, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^White, Norval & Willensky, Elliot; AIA Guide to New York City, 4th Edition; New York Chapter, American Institute of Architects; Crown Publishers/Random House. 2000. ISBN 0-8129-3106-8; ISBN 0-8129-3107-6. p.23.
  15. ^ abWhite, Norval; Willensky, Elliot & Leadon, Fran (2010). AIA Guide to New York City (5th ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. p. 22. ISBN .
  16. ^Host With The MostArchived June 16, 2010, at the Wayback Machine, Time, April 9, 1956 issue
  17. ^Barham, Peter (January 2016). "The impact of the Great War in 1916". Great Eastern Journal (165): 14.
  18. ^Kilborn, Peter (May 29, 1974). "Merger of Hayden Stone And Shearson Discussed". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved October 26, 2021.
  19. ^Cole, Robert J. (April 11, 1984). "SHEARSON TO PAY $360 MILLION TO ACQUIRE LEHMAN BROTHERS". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved October 26, 2021.
  20. ^Cole, Robert J. (December 3, 1987). "Shearson Reported To Acquire Hutton In a $1 Billion Deal". The New York Times. Archived from the original on November 10, 2016. Retrieved February 5, 2017.
  21. ^Evans, Richard (February 1, 1988). "Safra's Private War with Amexco". Euromoney.
  22. ^Burrough, Bryan (1992). Vendetta: American Express and the Smearing of Edmond Safra. New York, NY: Harper Collins Publishers. p. 101. ISBN .
  23. ^Shapiro, T. Rees (June 18, 2011). "Harry L. Freeman, American Express executive embroiled in unsavory investigation, dies at 79". Washington Post.
  24. ^"History". UBP.
  25. ^"Shearson Name may Disappear". The New York Times. Bloomberg News. November 10, 1993. Archived from the original on November 10, 2016. Retrieved February 5, 2017.
  26. ^Alison Leigh Cowan (April 6, 1994). "American Express Decides To Cut Ties With Lehman". The New York Times.
  27. ^ abAndriotis, AnnaMaria (January 7, 2021). "Federal Investigators Probing AmEx Card Sales Practices". Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones. Retrieved January 9, 2021.
  28. ^Son, Hugh (January 7, 2021). "American Express shares dip on report that federal investigators are probing sales practices". CNBC. CNBC. Retrieved January 9, 2021.
  29. ^ abcd"American Express Company".
  30. ^"A SUCCESSOR TO W. G. FARGO"(PDF). New York Times. August 19, 1881. Retrieved October 23, 2021.
  31. ^"Ralph Reed, 77, Retired Head Of American Express, Is Dead". The New York Times. January 23, 1968. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved September 27, 2021.
  32. ^Zuckerman, Laurence (February 7, 2001). "Howard L. Clark Dead at 84; Ex-Chief at American Express". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved September 27, 2021.
  33. ^"James D. Robinson III". Retrieved September 27, 2021.
  34. ^"American Express reshuffles its business". The New York Times. June 28, 2000.
  35. ^"American Express reshuffles its business". The New York Times. June 28, 2000.
  36. ^"Stephen Joseph Squeri, American Express Co". Bloomberg News.
  37. ^ ab"Our Story"(PDF). American Express. Archived from the original(PDF) on March 3, 2016. Retrieved September 8, 2015.
  38. ^"American Express Platinum Card Packs on the Perks for International Travelers" (Press release). American Express. April 5, 2011. Archived from the original on May 20, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  39. ^"The Platinum Card". American Express. Archived from the original on October 16, 2019. Retrieved December 1, 2019.
  40. ^"First Data History". First Data. Archived from the original on March 17, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  41. ^Kristof, Kathy M. (September 7, 1994). "American Express Launches New Credit Card". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on April 13, 2017. Retrieved April 12, 2017.
  42. ^Ben Woolsey (December 3, 2005). "Become one with the American Express One Card".
  43. ^American Express Super Bowl XXV ad feat. Dana Carvey & Jon Lovitz - Travelling (1991). YouTube. April 16, 2016. Archived from the original on March 23, 2019. Retrieved September 28, 2016.
  44. ^Leonard Sloane (April 13, 1991). "More Restaurants Are Just Saying No to American Express". The New York Times.
  45. ^Leonard, Devin; Dexheimer, Elizabeth (October 15, 2015). "How Bad Will It Get for American Express?". Bloomberg L.P.Archived from the original on April 13, 2017. Retrieved March 5, 2017.
  46. ^"American Express, Form 8-K, Current Report, Filing Date Dec 23, 2008"(PDF). Securities and Exchange Commission. Archived(PDF) from the original on May 12, 2013. Retrieved January 6, 2013.
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5 key things to know about the Costco Anywhere Visa Card

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is only offered to current Costco members. If you cancel your Costco membership, your Costco Anywhere Visa® Card will also be canceled. Though it's a store card, Costco members can use the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card wherever Visa cards are accepted and earn rewards towards everyday purchases like gas, travel, and dining.

If you aren't a current Costco member, should you pay for the membership to get access to the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card? And if you are a Costco member, do the benefits and perks offered outweigh other rewards cards? Before you apply for this store card, here are some important things to know about the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card.

Important things to know about the Costco Anywhere Visa Card

1. You must be a Costco member to apply

Before you can apply for the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card, you must be a current member of Costco warehouse. When you apply for the store card, the first piece of information you must enter is your Costco membership number.

The annual cost is $60 for a Gold Star membership or $120 for a Gold Star Executive membership, plus sales tax, where applicable. Gold Star members get more discounts and perks on Costco services and a 2% annual reward up to $1,000 on eligible purchases at Costco and Costco Travel. These perks are in addition to any cashback rewards you earn by making purchases using the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card.

With no annual fee outside the cost of Costco membership, the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card could be a great option. But if you are already a warehouse member at BJ's or Sam's Club, you have to decide if the additional membership cost is worth it.

2. Earn rewards on more than Costco purchases

Unlike other store cards, the rewards program is not limited to Costco purchases. The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi's rewards program offers a tiered cashback incentive based on the type of purchase you make:

  • 4% cashback on the first $7,000 per year and 1% after that

  • 3% cashback on dining and eligible travel

  • 2% cashback on Costco and purchases

  • 1% cashback on all other purchases

3. Costco purchases are a lower-tiered reward

Though the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card is exclusive to Costco members, you won't earn the most cash back on Costco purchases. While gas, dining, and travel earn 3% - 4% cashback, Costco and purchases are only eligible for 2% cashback rewards.

While that may be disappointing, most cash back credit cards restrict reward eligibility on warehouse purchases. If you are a frequent Costco shopper, 2% cashback with no limit can add up, making the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card a worthwhile card to have in your wallet.

4. Rewards certificates are issued once per year

If you've used other cashback credit cards before, you may be used to redeeming your rewards for purchases or cashback as soon as they show in your statement. But with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card, you only get your cashback rewards once per year in February for the previous year. You can also only redeem it for merchandise or cash in person at a Costco warehouse. 

Learn more about how to redeem Costco credit card rewards.

5. There are more benefits than just cashback rewards

The Costco Anywhere Visa® Card has a solid cash back rewards program, but those aren't the only benefits you get with this store card. Cardholders also have access to travel and shopping benefits when the card is used to make purchases.

Costco Anywhere Visa Card travel benefits

When you pay for your rental car with the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card, you can save money by waiving the rental car company's collision damage insurance because the card offers up to $50,000 to fix or replace the car if it's damaged in an accident, stolen, vandalized or damaged by a natural disaster. 

You, your family members, and travel companions are also covered for travel and emergency assistance coverage. This includes help to make emergency travel arrangements, getting referrals, coordinating care, and getting consultations if you are hurt outside the U.S. Emergency, and professional service costs are not covered. The card also provides worldwide travel accident insurance, covering each qualified person up to $250,000 while traveling.

You can also use the roadside assistance dispatch service in any car wherever you need it in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. You only pay for service if you use the coverage.

Another travel perk is no foreign transaction fees, no matter where you are in the world. Other cards can charge up to 3% for foreign transaction fees, which can be a surprise for cardholders once they review their statement after a vacation abroad. 

Costco Anywhere Visa Card shopping benefits

Suppose you use your Costco Anywhere Visa® Card or Costco reward certificate to make an eligible purchase. In that case, the damage and theft purchase protection covers you for 120 days (90 days for residents of New York) for up to $1,000 per item or the amount charged to the card or certificate, whichever is less. You can get up to $50,000 in coverage per year and are required to make a police report if the item is stolen.

Those same purchases are also covered by the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card extended warranty. After the manufacturer warranty and customer purchased warranty expires, Citi provides 24 months of extended warranty coverage, up to $10,000 per item.

Costco Anywhere Visa Card FAQ

Is there an alternative to the Costco Anywhere Visa Card?

The Costco Anywhere Visa Business Card is virtually the same as the Costco Anywhere Visa Card, but it doesn't allow transfers. Depending on your needs for a business credit card, there may be other options out there that better fit your criteria

What bank issues the Costco card?

The Costco Anywhere Visa Card is issued by Citibank. The card has no annual membership fee, but you have to be a current and active Costco member to apply for and keep the Costco Anywhere Visa Card.

What types of payments does Costco accept?

The types of payments Costco accepts as cash, checks, EBT and Costco Shop Cards. Visa credit and debit cards are also accepted, along with Mastercard debit cards only. Mastercard and American Express credit cards are not accepted at Costco,, Costco gas stations or Costco car washes.

How many guests can I bring to Costco?

Costco's policy allows members to bring children and up to two guests each time they visit a warehouse. However, Costco members are the only ones who can make purchases. So, if you bring a guest to buy merchandise at Costco, you must pay for it and be reimbursed by the guest. This could be an advantage if you want to increase your rewards using the Costco Anywhere Visa Card.

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Powering exceptional experiences

1 - $500 statement credit offer details 

Promotion valid on all newly boarded merchant accounts (MIDs) that sign up from November 1, 2021 through December 31, 2021. New accounts must activate by December 31, 2021 to qualify. Merchant accounts (MIDs) have to be activated and actively processing payment transactions for a minimum costco citi card login visa one week and be in an open status at the time of the incentive credit. A one-time $500 credit will be applied to your Elavon statement within 30-60 days after the first deposit date. Cannot be combined with another offer. Elavon reserves the right in its sole costco citi card login visa to modify, suspend or terminate the promotion at any time without additional notice. Restrictions may apply. Services provided by Elavon.

2 - No fee processing offer details

  • The promotion is limited to businesses new to Elavon that process less than $25,000 a month in credit card volume that sign up for an Elavon merchant account through December 31, 2021. Schedule of all fees will be disclosed on the application and merchant agreement; however, collection of processing fees will not begin until February 1, 2022 and will be shown on the February 2022 monthly billing statement. Elavon reserves the right in its sole discretion to modify, suspend or terminate the promotion at any time without additional notice. Services provided by Elavon. See below for additional promotion terms:
  • The following fees will be waived through January: All card network interchange, debit fees, assessments, annual, application fee, chargeback (exclusive of chargeback amounts), voice authorization, reporting, monthly service or minimum monthly fees and other per transaction fees, SaaS/software monthly or service set-up fees including online ordering, PCI compliance program, Safe-T and Standard monthly fees, and monthly equipment rental fees.
  • Additional third party products outside of the described promotion are excluded from the promotion including, but not limited to, gift card or third party services. All products and services not billed during the promotion will be billed in the February 2022 month end statement.
  • Promotion is only available for businesses that rent equipment. It is not available for equipment purchases.
  • Accounts established on daily discount/billing are not eligible for this promotion.
  • Cannot be combined with another promotion.

TD Cash Credit Card


Earn $150 Cash Back when you spend $500 within 90 days after account opening 1

What you get

Offer and Rewards details:

Balance transfer offer: 0% introductory APR balance transfers for first 12 billing cycles after account opening. After that, 12.99%, 17.99% or 22.99% variable APR based on your credit worthiness*
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*Read terms and conditions for important information about APRs, fees, eligible purchases, balance transfers and program details.

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costco citi card login visa Annual Percentage Myat san md (APR) for Purchases

12.99%, 17.99% or 22.99% variable APR based on your creditworthiness. costco citi card login visa

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3% of each transaction in U.S. dollars

Late Payment

Up to $40

Return Payment

Up to $40

Everyday spending can add up to big rewards

What if you could turn your regular expenses into something fun?

Whether you're eating out, dining in, costco citi card login visa shopping, you can earn rewards just for using your card instead of cash.

Say you spend $2,000 a month:

  • $500 on dining
  • $500 at grocery stores2
  • $1,000 on all other eligible purchases*

With three different ways to earn Cash Back, you can earn $420 after 1 year – add the $150 special offer and that's $570!3 That's money in your pocket you can enjoy any way you want.

Start adding up your rewards today.

Note: Rewards are earned as points that can be redeemed for cash back.

TD Bank Visa® Credit Card Benefits

Every TD Bank Credit Card comes with added layer of protection such as emergency card replacement, roadside assistance and more.

Services with your TD Cash Card

Digital Wallet

Add your TD cards to your mobile device to simplify your online, in-store and in-app purchases

Find out how

Visa Zero Liability4

Enjoy Visa security on purchases, plus protection against unauthorized charges

Find out more5

Instant credit card replacement

If your card is lost or stolen, get an immediate replacement at a TD Bank

Find a TD Bank

Contactless Payments

Learn more about the convenience and security of contactless payments

Find out more

Already have a TD Credit Card?

Manage your card, pay your bill, set up alerts, view and redeem rewards, check your credit score and more. Get started

Apply for a TD Cash Credit Card


In person

Visit a TD Bank near you to apply

By phone

Talk to a Banking Specialist 24/7


View the Personal Credit Card Agreement for the TD Cash Credit Card.

*Read complete terms and conditions for details about APRs, fees, eligible purchases, balance transfers and program details.

1Eligible purchases do not include purchases of any cash equivalents, money orders, and/or gift cards or reloading of gift cards. For the TD Cash credit cards, maximum bonus accumulation for this promotional offer is 15,000 points which can be redeemed for $150 Cash Back rewards. Provided your TD Cash Credit Card account is open and in good standing, the $150 Cash Back Rewards will be reflected in the Points Summary of your Credit Card statement in 6 to 8 weeks after you spend $500 in total net purchases within the first 90 days of account opening. This offer only applies to new TD Cash Credit Card accounts during the promotional costco citi card login visa and is non-transferable. This online offer is not available if you open an account in response to a different offer that you may receive from us.

2Groceries purchased from superstores and/or warehouse clubs may only earn 1% Cash Back. Eligible purchases do not include purchases of any cash equivalents, money orders, and/or gift cards or reloading of gift cards.

3Potential Cash Back examples are for illustrative purposes only. Actual Cash Back rewards varies by your monthly spending. To calculate these Cash Back rewards, we great west trust $500/month spend on dinners out, $500/month spend at grocery stores, and $1,000/month spend on other purchases* resulting in a $24,000 spend/year.

4Visa’s Zero Liability Policy does not apply to certain commercial card and anonymous prepaid card transactions or transactions not processed by Visa. Cardholders must take care in protecting their card and notify TD Bank immediately of any unauthorized use.

5By clicking on this link you are leaving our website and entering a third-party website over which we costco citi card login visa no control.

Neither TD Bank US Holding Company, nor its subsidiaries or affiliates, is responsible for the content of third party sites hyper-linked from this page, nor do they guarantee or endorse the information, recommendations, products or services offered on third party sites.

Third party sites may costco citi card login visa different Privacy and Security policies than TD Bank US Holding Company. You should review the Privacy and Security policies of any third party website before you provide personal or confidential information.

The Contactless Symbol and Contactless Indicator are trademarks owned by and used with permission of EMVCo, LLC.

View the Personal Credit Card Agreement for the TD Cash Credit Card.

*Read complete terms and conditions for details about APRs, fees, eligible purchases, balance transfers and program details.

1Eligible purchases do not include purchases of any cash equivalents, money orders, and/or gift cards or reloading of gift cards. For the TD Cash credit cards, maximum bonus accumulation for this promotional offer is 15,000 points which can be redeemed for $150 Cash Back rewards. Provided your TD Cash Credit Card account is open and in good standing, the $150 Cash Back Rewards will be reflected in the Points Summary of your Credit Card statement in 6 to 8 weeks after you spend $500 in total net purchases within the first 90 days of account opening. This offer only applies to new TD Cash Credit Card accounts during the promotional period and is non-transferable. This online offer is not available if you open an account in response to a different offer that you may receive from us.

2Groceries purchased from superstores and/or warehouse clubs may only earn 1% Cash Back. Eligible purchases do not include purchases of any cash equivalents, money orders, and/or gift cards or reloading of gift cards.

3Potential Cash Back examples are for illustrative purposes only. Actual Cash Back rewards varies by your monthly spending. To calculate these Cash Back rewards, we assumed $500/month spend on dinners out, $500/month spend at grocery stores, and $1,000/month spend on other purchases* resulting in a $24,000 spend/year.

4Visa’s Zero Liability Policy does not apply to certain commercial card and anonymous prepaid card transactions or transactions not processed by Visa. Cardholders must take care in protecting their card and notify TD Bank immediately of any unauthorized use.

5By clicking on this link you are leaving our website and entering a third-party website over which we have no control.

Neither TD Bank US Holding Company, nor its subsidiaries or affiliates, is responsible for the content of third party sites hyper-linked from this page, nor do they guarantee or endorse the information, recommendations, products or services offered on third party sites.

Third party sites may have different Privacy and Security policies than TD Bank US Holding Company. You should review the Privacy and Security policies of any third party website before you provide personal or confidential information.

The Contactless Symbol and Contactless Indicator are trademarks owned by and used with permission of EMVCo, LLC.

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