American Express credit card

Everybody's heard of the American Express credit card and its slogan "that'll do nicely", but the firm built its reputation on debit, not credit, cards. However, the current range of credit cards offers some useful features - but interest rates aren't as competitive as they could be.

The American Express credit card is world famous, but can it still compete with younger upstarts such as Egg? Um, not really: interest rates are a little on the high side (14.9% APR for the Blue and Platinum cards, 12.9% for the gold card) and the rate you get on balance transfers depends on the card: 0% for the first six months on a Gold card, 2.9% on a Blue card and 4.9% on a Platinum card. You'll also get up to 2% cashback on purchases for the first three months.

One of the main attractions of an American Express credit card is its insurance. As standard, cards come with £50,000 of travel accident insurance, rising to £150,000 with the Gold and Platinum cards. You also get purchase protection insurance which can cover you for theft or damage, but it only kicks in where any existing insurance ends. Inevitably, there's lots of small print that you need to take a good look at.

To qualify for an American Express credit card you'll need a minimum income of £12,000 (Blue) or £20,000 (Gold and Platinum), and the maximum credit limit is £8,000 for a Blue card and £10,000 for Gold and Platinum.

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