Review of the One from American Express

The One from American Express was last reviewed on 15th January 2006.

Summary - The One from American Express (SM) is a financial savings credit card that puts 1% of what you spend on your card into a high yield FDIC insured account with American Express Bank. This card will appeal to those who want to have some sort of "forced savings" they can get from their credit card spending as the "savings" are deposited into the account automatically. Let's find out more about the card.

Savings Formula - For every dollar you spend, the One from American Express puts 1% into a high yield savings account at American Express Bank. This account is FDIC insured for up to $100,000. As a bonus, you will receive $25.00 in your account after your first purchase. You can earn unlimited "savings".

Interest Protection Plan - The One from American Express offers an "interest protection plan". This is basically what it is. If you carry a balance, you will be charged interest from the day you make any new purchase (ie you have no grace period). It is only when you have no outstanding balance that you get either 20 or 25 days of grace period from the day of purchase. However, the One from American Express allows you to carry a balance and yet get a grace period for new purchases.

Fees - The One from American Express has an annual fee of $35.00, which is waived during the first year. There are no additional cardholders fee. The apr is either prime rate plus 5.99%, 6.99% or 7.99%. The average daily balance method (including new purchases) is used to calculate monthly balances.

Other Benefits - With this card, you also get typical Amex shopping features like Buyers Assurance program (extended warranty), online fraud protection plan, return protection plan and purchase protection plan.

Comparion with cash back credit cards - The One from American Express is esentially a cash back credit card. Most cash rebate credit cards either pay you an annual rebate check or require you to call the issuer once you have earned a certain amount. Hence in this respect, the One from American Express offers more convenience as your "savings" are automatically debited into a high yield account.

However, cash rebate credit cards have the following advantage. Firstly, most have no annual fee (in fact, I have not come across a cash back credit card with an annual fee). Secondly, some cash rebate credit cards like the Blue Cash® allow you to earn 5% rebates on purchases at standalone supermarkets, gas stations and drugstores.

Verdict - Those who want to earn maximum cash rebates or savings would be better off getting a no annual fee cash back credit card that pays 5% rebates on supermarket, gasoline and drugstore purchases and 1% on other regular purchases. However, those who just want the convenience of earning rebates that are automatically debited into a high yielding account would find the One from American Express (SM) very practical and convenient.

  • Automatically puts 1% of dollars spent into a FDIC insured high yield account
  • Interest protection plan which extends a grace period on new purchases even if you carry a balance

  • Annual Fee

One from American Express
Savings Formula
Savings Formula Save 1% for every dollar you spend
Savings are deposited into a FDIC insured high yield account
Cost/Fees/Interest rates
Annual Fee $35.00 - first year fee waived
Purchase APR Prime Rate plus 5.99%, 6.99% or 7.99%
Cash Advance APR Prime Rate plus 14.99%
Penalty/Default Rate APR Prime Rate plus 12.99% or 21.99%
Min Finance Charge $0.50
Grace Period 20 days
Balance Calculation Method Average Daily Balance (including new purchases)
Cash Advance fee 3%, min $5.00
Over-the-credit-limit fee $35.00
Late Payment fee $15.00 - less than $100
$29.00 - between $100.00 to $1000.00
$35.00 - greater than $1000.00

Apply for the One from American Express

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