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American Express Essential

American Express Essential

2.5 from 115 reviews · View Statistics

Pros

  • $0 Annual Fee & Low Interest Rate of 14.99% p.a. on purchases

  • Earn up to 1.25 Membership Rewards Points per $1

  • 0% p.a. on Balance Transfers for the first 12 months

  • Smartphone Screen Insurance

  • Add up to 4 Additional Cards at no extra cost

Cons

  • 3% Balance Transfer Fee

  • 3% Currency Conversion Fee

Details

CategoryLow Rate Credit Cards, No Annual Fee Credit Cards and Rewards Credit Cards
Card TypeAmerican Express
Minimum Credit Limit A$2,000
Maximum Credit Limit A$25,000
Minimum Income A$40,000
Additional Cardholders 4
Additional Cardholder Fee A$0 p.a.
Minimum Repayments2.5%
Rewards ProgramAmerican Express Membership Rewards
Points Earn Rate 1.25 points per $1
Points Conditions
  • 1.25 points per $1 spent on purchases excluding government bodies in Australia

  • 1 point for every $1 spent at government bodies in Australia

Contactless PaymentsApple Pay, Fitbit Pay, Google Pay and Samsung Pay
Rates & Fees
Purchase Rate14.99% p.a.
Late Payment FeeA$30
Annual FeeA$0 p.a.
Foreign Transaction Fee 3%
Overseas ATM Withdrawal FeeA$3
Interest Free Period 55 days
Release dateMay 2007

Visit official website

Reviews

  • Transparency
    3.6 (50)
  • Customer Service
    3.7 (50)
  • Rates and Fees
    3.5 (48)
  • Rewards
    3.6 (43)
  • Online Experience
    3.5 (47)
  • Application Process
    4.0 (40)
Previous
Next

Great Credit Card

published

I recently had my phone screen repaired and was delighted to know my AMEX Essential card had screen cover insurance. The claim was completed in such a short time. I even had a disputed transaction sorted out within 24 hours
I'm really impressed with the prompt service.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Incentivised ReviewNo
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Special Purchases
See all answers
Analyst

AnalystSydney, NSW

  • 2 reviews
  • 5 likes

A Joke

published
Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Online Experience
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateMay 2000
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
  • Online Shopping
  • Overseas/Travel
  • Special Purchases
See all answers
Alan

AlanLaunceston, TAS

A deceptive culture ingrained at every touchpoint.

published

AMEX people are trained to frustrate and stonewall. Very little transparency or accountability. It is a culture thing. They should take some lessons from great companies like Citibank. They think they are a big company but have no idea they have lost it and offer a crap product that no one wants. No comparison. I have paid out and moved all my cards (over $100k limit) and moved on.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateOctober 2013
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers
Low Rate Credit Cards

Find out how American Express Essential compares to other Low Rate Credit Cards

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Harry S.

Harry S.Greater Melbourne (Inner), VIC

  • 6 reviews
  • 1 like

Useless

published

Closed account - 1 Year later I find that there has been an additional charge of $200 after the account closed. Have a debt collector chasing me, never heard from them - useless as a bag of tits.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Incentivised ReviewNo
Main Point of ContactOnline
See all answers

Bonus points with credit card not fulfilled

published

I carefully and thoroughly read the T&C's for an offer. When the offer wasn't filled by Amex they made up all these extra conditions that weren't in the T&C's. When I asked to speak to the supervisor (online chat), Dave just said "Hi" then sent me a feedback form where you rate things but can't put in comments, and disconnected the chat. Really poor customer service and willingness to help/listen.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateJanuary 2020
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers
seb

sebSydney, NSW

  • 4 reviews
  • 2 likes

Avoid At All Costs !

published

Will go out of their way to make sure that you regret ever having an Amex Card ! If you ever get an Amex , you will regret it ...I guarantee it!

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers
Adam00043

Adam00043Greater Melbourne (Outer), VIC

Terrible JUST TERRIBLE

published
Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Incentivised ReviewNo
See all answers
ramj

ramjGold Coast

  • 6 reviews
  • 8 likes

Not Happy - serious back end issues!!!

published
Incentivised ReviewNo

INCOMPITENT AT BEST

published
Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateFebruary 2020
Main Point of ContactPhone
See all answers
Low Rate Credit Cards

Find out how American Express Essential compares to other Low Rate Credit Cards

Know better, choose better.

Compare all
Prashant H.

Prashant H.Greater Melbourne (Metropolitan), VIC

  • 2 reviews

Was sceptical of Amex but I just love it now.

published

Why I love this card :
1. Free
2. Decent Rewards
3. Rewards can be converted to cash.
4. Smart Phone Screen insurance
5. Great customer care.

However amex cannot be the only card tou carry as it's not accepted every where so you will need an Amex + a Visa/Mastercard in your wallet.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateJanuary 2018
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers
Natalie

Natalie

  • 4 reviews

Terrible company

published

if i could give American Express 0 I would. The customer service is appalling. The verification process is absolutely terrible, at times I've been on the phone for an hour just to be verified then if it is incorrect I would have to hang up and call them back just to go through the same process over and over again. Details do not get passed to the next department, you must go through the verification with each an every department you speak to on the same phone call.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Incentivised ReviewNo
See all answers
Daniel H

Daniel HGreater Melbourne (Metropolitan), VIC

  • 8 reviews
  • Verified customer

Decent card for Beginners into the Credit Card World

published

The AMEX Essential card I'd say is a perfect card for people looking to get into the CC market, without going way over the top. The rewards for spending aren't the best, but the No Annual Fee and Lower rate is like I said, more suited to CC novices. You can exchange points to pay off transactions, or get a gift card. Also has bonus offers that appear in the App to save cash from certain retailers. Just remember to keep an eye out for them, as they don't really notify you if new offers come up. Had to use the Customer Service a couple times, and both (new CC inquiry and a doubled up transaction from a retailer) times they were A class.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateNovember 2017
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers
aussiewill

aussiewillQLD, 4350

  • 7 reviews
  • Verified customer

The perfect starter card

published

You get all of the AMEX value with no fees. Its great having this with all the AMEX offers and then the points you earn at servos and supermarkets. Then you add the great customer service!

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Card Start DateDecember 2016
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
  • Online Shopping
See all answers

The reviewer stated that an incentive was offered for this review

b19ckr9bb1t

b19ckr9bb1tAdelaide

  • 9 reviews
  • 1 like
  • Verified customer

No fee

published

Amex has a great rewards program. This card is their no-fee version. You don't get as many perks but it's still a great card. Good customer service as amex always does.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateJanuary 2017
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers
Ang C.

Ang C.Perth, WA

  • 4 reviews
  • 1 like

Great reward

published

For a credit card without annual fee, this credit card provide great member benefit and reward program. Not only that, I find the Amex phone app and website is easy to used compared to most the credit card app I used.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Card Start DateJuly 2015
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
  • Online Shopping
  • Special Purchases
See all answers

The reviewer stated that an incentive was offered for this review

Low Rate Credit Cards

Find out how American Express Essential compares to other Low Rate Credit Cards

Know better, choose better.

Compare all
Ava

AvaGreater Melbourne (Inner), VIC

No annual fee and lots of rewards!

published

Amex essential is perhaps the only credit card that I can find that has NO annual free but has a lot of rewards to offer.
This is the credit card that I use locally. I also link it with PayPal for payments. There are lots of cashbacks from well-known sellers throughout the year. Amex points are earned from every dollar I spent. These points can be simply turned into credit or any amex rewards I like.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
  • Online Shopping
See all answers
caio G.

caio G.Sydney, NSW

  • Verified customer

No annual fee and easy to apply

published

I am very happy with the essentials amex for a few reasons.
Number 1 - it has no annual fee
Number 2 - application and approval was super easy
Number 3 - it has a points referral system
Number 4 - you earn points on purchases and can redeem it for credit against your purchases
Number 5 - it often has good cashback offers
Number 6 - free insurance for smartphone screen repair (when you purchase the phone via the credit card)
Number 7- works with Apple Pay and it worked way before the major banks in Australia.
Number 8 - it normally has a generous limit and reward good payers with low purchase rates at 3.99% for 6 months

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateAugust 2016
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
  • Online Shopping
  • Overseas/Travel
  • Special Purchases
See all answers
jwhero

jwheroNSW, 2118

  • 9 reviews
  • 5 likes
  • Verified customer

Best rewards card with no annual fee

published

Great for taking advantage of Amex offers for cashbacks.
Never had to wait on the phone to speak to a rep.
Works with Apple Pay, and the app and website are easy to use.
Comes with smartphone screen and various other insurances. Note I haven't personally claimed on these yet.
Earns rewards points for no annual fee - great for me as otherwise I'd barely break even on cards with an annual fee, even if they do have higher earn rates.

Not the cheapest with overseas fees - I tend to use other cards for overseas spends.

Overall, this is the first card I reach for when making a purchase, although there can be an issue with acceptance of the card with smaller businesses.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Incentivised ReviewNo
Card Start DateJanuary 2019
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
  • Online Shopping
  • Special Purchases
See all answers
arob131

arob131Darling Downs, QLD

  • 2 reviews
  • Verified customer

Love it!

published

Great card, no fee. Rewards are best I can find without paying an annual fee. Easy to redeem rewards and often AMEX has offers to spend at certain businesses and you get a credit back which is great ie in November spend $20 at local businesses get $10 back up to 5 times.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Card Start DateJuly 2019
Main Point of ContactPhone
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers

The reviewer stated that an incentive was offered for this review

Joseph

JosephSydney, NSW

  • 4 reviews

Great no annual fee rewards card

published

Simply to apply for and good cash back and offers on the card. Not the best for carrying a balance, but you wouldn't do that on a rewards card anyway. I would recommend this for people who don't spend too much.

Transparency
Customer Service
Rates and Fees
Rewards
Online Experience
Application Process
Card Start DateJanuary 2018
Main Point of ContactOnline
Card / Account Used For
  • Everyday Expenses
See all answers

The reviewer stated that an incentive was offered for this review

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