Places that accept American Express?

American Express forum. Talk about AmEx credit cards like Blue, Gold, Platinum, Centurion, and more.
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Reclusive46
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Postby Reclusive46 » Mon Sep 30, 2013 1:49 pm

flan wrote:Something like 85% of places that take credit cards at all take amex. The places I shop that don't take amex are my gym, a couple small restaurants, and the grocery stores I usually shop at. (most of the big chains do, but lots smaller ones don't.)


Surely more than 85% of places? My Amex is more accepted that that here in the UK, other than very small shops (Who these days still often accept it) and shoe shops (For some reason I don't think any shoe shop in the UK takes Amex). Even most of the local councils take it for council tax these days. For most bills Amex is not really accepted, but neither is MasterCard or Visa credit cards. You generally have to pay by debit card or by direct debit (A bit like an autopay bank transfer that comes out of your account automatically).

I live in the US for about 6 months every year and a half for work and I've never once had it declined but then to be fair I'm normally in NYC and since my employer pays for pretty much everything I don't go to many cheap places haha. I do remember one or two restaurants that only took Amex though!

For the OP though, unless your travelling outside of the US, Canada, The UK or Australia I don't imagine you'll have any major problems. Just use your debit card or other credit card on the odd occasion its not accepted.
Amex UK Platinum Charge Card
Amex Blue Cash USA
Amex US Gold Corporate Card
World MasterCard Capital One UK (Free abroad + Cashback + Free Cash Withdrawals with no interest)


SuperKirby
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Postby SuperKirby » Mon Sep 30, 2013 3:03 pm

Reclusive46 wrote:I live in the US for about 6 months every year and a half for work and I've never once had it declined but then to be fair I'm normally in NYC and since my employer pays for pretty much everything I don't go to many cheap places haha.


Lol. This is really the key here. A lot of smaller 'cheap' places won't take Amex. Overall though I agree, about 85% of places take Amex. Also, I like to shop & eat in China/Asian towns and they tend to not take Amex. I would guess this is true to many small ethnic shopping/eating areas.

The only biggest issues I have with Amex is for online bill payment(s). For instance, one of my rental places only accept Visa/MC, and OG&E (utilities) only take Visa/MC.

Userofcards
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Postby Userofcards » Mon Sep 30, 2013 6:20 pm

Amex definitely isn't just for the rich (my parents both had modest incomes as educators and they've both had AMEX since the 1980s). More and more places accept it. I just got my first Amex this July and had very few problems.

There is one parking garage that I often need to park in: it only takes VISA or Mastercard. No Amex or discover. I think both AMEX and Discover are very good for merchant acceptance, but its wise to have cash, a Visa or a Mastercard with you, just in case.

fantasy86dj
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Postby fantasy86dj » Tue Oct 15, 2013 2:35 am

ivotedale wrote:Love this attitude, forward-thinking for a top-performer if you ask me.

Amex or I'm GTFO


LOVING IT !

takeshi
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Postby takeshi » Tue Oct 15, 2013 10:05 am

Tinabeij wrote:Tell me, on average how likely is it that a place takes American Express for payment

On average probably doesn't really matter. Pay attention at the places you go to and see who accepts AmEx and who doesn't. Or you can be like others in this thread and refuse to use merchants that don't accept AmEx. Or you can carry multiple cards and use whatever is appropriate for a given merchant. There are plenty of options and you need to find what works for you versus relying on generalizations.

Tinabeij wrote:To me I get the impression that there cards are mostly for the rich and buying clothes and jewelry. Can you use it somewhere like Walmart or a diner or a gas station. What places accept American Express that are not fancy or for rich people.

Stop relying on stereotypes in your head and get out there and observe the real world. The "regular" grocery stores that I use accept AmEx. Plenty of "not fancy or for rich people stores" (whatever that means) accept AmEx.

whit
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Postby whit » Tue Oct 15, 2013 10:30 am

It's a matter of preference and perspective

Amex has a really good marketing team and have built this image but when you break it down they're just another company wanting to make money--why else have products like bluebird channeled via Walmart?

Small business owners don't want Amex? Not true, again preference, you'd find a majority of them being Asian in places like Chinatown? Remind me to take a picture of a Chinese restaurant in Chinatown that does take Amex, they do exist, just like these Thai restaurants in downtown SF that do not accept any credit cards much less Amex. He owns four of them, operating solely on cash, and walks around in a LV leather briefcase, gorgeous, the briefcase that is.. Modeled much like their luggage.. Old school style

Anyways, the reason being is the fees cost a lot, thousands a month. Some business owners see it as a cost of doing business much like how if you deposit excess cash in a business banking acct some banks will charge you for that (shocker I know, charge you for depositing cash)

But others won't accept it, just like some don't mind AF some say they can find similar benefits with a non-AF card or do not see it being worth it in the long run

But yeah, any college student, any ol' janitor or bus driver can afford Amex..haven't you heard, average wage for janitor working at Bart doing OT makes well over 100k a year

scoleman
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Postby scoleman » Sun Dec 08, 2013 12:30 am

What about bill paying, say ones insurance company, phone cos., etc. Yes, I know I can ask and will, but right now looking for a general answer while trying to decide whether to go for one of the excellent American Express Blue Cash cards and need to be assured of making the $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.

We've been paying for virtually everything with CCs in order to get the benefits of bonuses, to keep track of expenses, and leaving us with only having to make a couple monthly payments instead of one for each merchant or service we use. We don't ever carry any balance so interest and fees aren't an issue.

The problem I see is we seldom eat out, or spend a ton on stuff we don't need, and we don't need a lot.

We do purchase frequently from Amazon, and a lot of online stuff, some which may take AE but others not so much.

If I understand correctly WalMart does accept AE and if so that'll likely make it happen since having to live relatively frugal begets having to deal with them regardless of ones opinion of their corporate policies and sorry arse service.

TIA,

Steve

samhradh
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Postby samhradh » Sun Dec 08, 2013 8:53 pm

Steve, there's no such thing as a general answer in this case.

We don't know what bills you pay online and what they accept. I actually find it doesn't make sense to pay utilities online as they often charge a fee for doing so. I pay directly from my bank.

If you don't anticipate putting $1000 in spend on your card in three months but really want the card, try the Vanilla Rewards > Bluebird > AmEx payment work around.

Every major retailer and big box store will accept AmEx. Almost all gas stations will accept AmEx. I have more trouble getting my Discover accepted than my AmEx..
Citi Forward ($10.1K), AmEx Blue Cash Everyday ($30K), Chase Freedom ($12.4K), Discover it ($5.5K), Barclaycard Arrival ($12.5K), L.L. Bean Visa ($5K). FICO 806 (TU), 812 (EQ), 806 (EX).

scoleman
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Postby scoleman » Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:59 pm

samhradh wrote:Steve, there's no such thing as a general answer in this case.

Of course, but I appreciate the response nonetheless.

We don't know what bills you pay online and what they accept. I actually find it doesn't make sense to pay utilities online as they often charge a fee for doing so. I pay directly from my bank.

We presently handle non-comm utilities with bank bill pay. Auto in most cases, manual with ones that vary.

If you don't anticipate putting $1000 in spend on your card in three months but really want the card, try the Vanilla Rewards > Bluebird > AmEx payment work around.

Definitely not a problem as we've determined our auto ins. will accept AE and that right there's ~$700, so no sweat covering the $1000.

Every major retailer and big box store will accept AmEx. Almost all gas stations will accept AmEx. I have more trouble getting my Discover accepted than my AmEx..

Which is good news and what's being consistently reported by others.

Long story short. Applied for Blue Cash Preferred and got accepted immediately. A big shout out to Michael Dolen and his excellent article American Express Blue Cash Review where he astutely noted 'Blue Cash Preferred is the way to go. Even if you're a light spender, given the high bonus offer right now on Blue Cash Preferred, it makes more sense to start with that and downgrade after the first year if needed.' Pretty easy to figure it out from there. First years AF will only amount to $25 when offset by the extra $50 bonus, not to mention the 1-1/2x to 2x extra cash back on gas and grocs.

Have already signed up for the Amazon Prime deal which was one of the reasons we wanted the AE Blue Cash deal as we buy a LOT of stuff there; they make WM look like a bunch of pikers AND deliver right to ones door, no TAXES. Now we'll get our stuff twice as fast with no minimum required.

Have already added the new card to several bill pay sites.

So in the future it'll be AE BCP wherever accepted for grocs and gas, excepting typically every other Qtr. when it'll be Chase Freedom for gas at 5%, and like this Qtr. on Amazon with 5% from CF.

Thanks again,

Steve



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