AmEx Blue Cash Preferred categories changes

AmEx Blue Cash Preferred categories changes
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Chatted with CSR today, and discovered these changes for AmEx BCP:

Effective 8/01/19, department stores will no longer earn 3%.

Effective 5/09/19, the following new bonus categories are added:

  • Select U.S. streaming subscriptions: 6% (no cap)
  • Transit: 3%

Streaming services included are listed here:
https://www.americanexpress.com/us/rewards-info/retail.html

Transit: “Transit covers everyday, local, travel expenses on a range of public transport. For example: trains, taxicabs, ride share services, ferries, tolls, parking, subways, and more.”

I see that department stores have been removed from the 3% cash back small print on the web site, but see no mention of the new streaming and transit categories for BCP anywhere.

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Thanks for the heads-up, I switched my streaming subscription payments to this card (would be nice if it included PBS, too).

I almost never used the department store option and will almost never use transit, either. But I won’t complain about another 6% option even if there are limited opportunities for MS…

Received an email today stating the same. Don’t mind losing the department stores really, for the low volume I used it there, 3% vs. 2% (via other cards) is not a big deal. Not surprised there is no cap on streaming, how much do most spend on streaming a month? $100 seems like it would be alot, and that’s only $6.

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I can’t wait for Netflix to start selling gift cards. :wink:

Got an email about these changes. I guess it depends how much you stream. Definitely worth the switch if you’re having several subs to YouTube TV, Spotify Family, etc…

The 3% transit could add up for people who use a lot of ride-shares, parking or tolls. But still it’s only 1% above and beyond the basic double-cash level so not much to be excited about for a card with a $95 annual fee.

Either way, not a big loss for me since I was almost never using it at dept. stores since it’s usually better to use store cards themselves for discounts.

I recently upgraded from BCE to BCP with a $250 upgrade offer. Before the upgrade, I already had about $2000 grocery spending on the BCE card this year. Do I get 6% for $6000 grocery spending on the BCP card for the rest of this year, or just $4000?

That sounds like a good question for Amex, but I would assume they treat is as a fresh start so you could get all $6k. Let us know what Amex tells you.

I believe when I upgraded my card a couple years ago for the same bonus, the grocery spending did not reset, but the annual fee was prorated for the amount of time till the anniversary date. This was a few years ago, so whether the policy is the same now, only AMEX can tell you.

Yeah, if the annual fee is pro-rated, I would expect that the rewards would be as well.

Thanks for the replies. I have made large purchases in the past 2 weeks, so I don’t want unnecessary attention to my account at this time. I’ll check the rewards when I cross the $6000 limit.

It does reset the $6k. I took the same upgrade offer as you after already maxing the BCE for 2019 and cashed out my $360 for BCP last week. You can max the BCP for this year and 2020, then downgrade to BCE and they’ll probably send you another BCP offer (this is the third time I have done the upgrade bonus).

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Thanks for the response. I have 2 Blue Cash cards:

Card #1. BCE upgraded to BCP: I just passed the combined BCE+BCP $6K mark, so I’ll know in a few days if I’m still getting 6%. Based on your experience, I should.

Card #2. BCP, spent almost $6K and downgraded to BCE: My small purchase a few days ago passing the $6K mark earned the full 3%, so it looks like the downgrade reset the $6K limit as well.

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I have a BCP card and a BCE card. I was planning on downgrading the BCP card and closing the BCE card and transferring the prior BCE credit line to the downgraded card. Then I’m hoping to get a bonus offer to upgrade the BCE to BCP within a year or two. Think that’ll work?

Unless you have a good reason to close the BCE card, why not just leave it open? Having more cards should give you more opportunities to get upgrade offers and various Amex Offers.

The BCE card is just 6 months old and removing it from the active list might increase the age of accounts. Also, an upgrade offer on two BCE cards seems unlikely.

Not at the same time. I upgraded card #1 just 3 weeks after I downgraded card #2.

Have you gotten upgrade offers on two different BCE cards, the second after having upgraded one already?

No, the only time I’ve had 2 BCE cards at the same time was the 3 weeks after I downgraded card #2.

Thanks for the info.

Update:

  1. I transferred the credit limit from BCE to BCP, but had to leave $1K so they could close the card.
  1. Closed the BCE card.

  2. Downgraded the BCP card to BCE and got the annual fee reimbursement the same day.

  3. I received a $1K limit increase on the card without a hard inquiry.

  4. I received a 3% reduction in the APR.