It’s that time again, where we take a hard look at a specific credit card to see if it’s any good.
Today we’ll review the “American Express Blue Sky,” which is Amex’s answer to a no annual fee travel rewards credit card.
So, what does it come with?
Well, the main draw of the American Express Blue Sky is the fact that you get a $100 statement credit toward any airline ticket, cruise ticket, hotel stay, or car rental when you accrue 7,500 points.
This makes the travel rewards worth up to 33% more than other comparable travel rewards.
You earn 1 point for every dollar you spend with the Blue Sky card and can book travel anywhere, without jumping through hoops and diluting your miles.
To get your $100 statement credit, so-called “travel reward redemption requests” must be made within 60 days from the date the travel purchase appears on your billing statement.
In other words, you can book your flight/hotel/cruise/car rental on a site like Priceline or Kayak and then get $100 off your credit card statement as opposed to redeeming your miles and being forced to book your travel via the credit card issuer at possibly unfavorable terms and prices.
Not only that, but the Blue Sky points have no expiration date, no limit to how many you can receive, and no seat restrictions or blackout dates.
Nor is there any need for advanced planning, so you can book on the fly. Apologies for the bad pun.
What Are the Extras?
First off, the Amex Blue Sky comes with a welcome bonus of 7,500 points if you spend $1,000 during the first three months of cardmembership.
As noted earlier, that’s good for a $100 statement credit when you book travel using the card.
Assuming travel isn’t your thing, you can redeem the points for cash back or gift cards as well, so you’re not restricted in that sense.
The downside is that the value of the points drops when redeeming them for cash or gift cards, so it’s really best to use the points for travel rewards if and when possible.
If you need to rent a car, you can get up to 20% off at Hertz and a free upgrade when using your Blue Sky credit card for purchase.
You also get Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance at no additional charge, along with up to $100,000 in Travel Accident Insurance coverage.
Hotel rooms booked with the American Express Blue Sky are also guaranteed, meaning no surprises if you arrive late.
And if you stay at a JW Marriott or Renaissance Hotels and Resorts anywhere in the world on a weekend, you also get a free breakfast and $100 off your next stay. Not too shabby.
Let’s Talk Numbers
There is no annual fee ($0) with Amex Blue Sky and you have the flexibility to pay over time, unlike most of American Express’s charge cards, which require payment in full each month.
All in all, the American Express Blue Sky Credit Card is a good deal if you travel a lot, as your points go a bit further and redemption is a snap.
If you’re not a frequent flyer, you might be better off with the American Express Blue Cash Everyday credit card, which rewards you with cash for everyday purchases.
You can get a decision in 60 seconds, so no waiting to get approved.