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Here's how these 5 new credit card welcome bonuses from American Express, Capital One and Chase compare

American Express, Capital One and Chase are all offering industry-leading welcome bonuses on new credit cards. Here's how they compare.

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Some of the offers mentioned below are no longer available.

Many card issuers have been busy releasing new limited-time promotions. Rewards cards from American Express, Capital One and Chase have seen record-setting welcome bonus offers worth up to $1,250, depending on the card.

If you're looking to maximize credit card rewards, earning a welcome bonus is a great perk on top of the rewards you already earn by using your card.

Select breaks down the welcome bonuses for these five cards and what they're worth:

Amex, Capital One and Chase welcome bonus comparison

Credit card Welcome Bonus Spending requirement Time frame Offer expiration Approximate value of welcome bonus*
American Express® Gold Card60,000 points$4,0006 monthsTBA$600
Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express$300 statement credit$3,0006 monthsTBA$300
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card60,000 points$3,0003 monthsTBA$600
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card100,000 points$4,0003 monthsTBA$1250
Chase Freedom Flex℠$200 cash back$5003 monthsTBA$200

*See our methodology.

If $4,000 is too much to spend, the Blue Cash Preferred card has a slightly lower $3,000 minimum spend, but the welcome bonus is worth less than the Gold card. However, this isn’t unusual since cash-back cards typically offer lower welcome bonuses than rewards cards that earn points.

The Blue Cash Preferred comes with a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95 (see rates and fees). But even with the fee, this card is cheaper than the Amex Gold card’s $250 annual fee (see rates and fees).

Since spending thousands of dollars on a welcome bonus may not be reasonable for everyone, you can also consider the Chase Freedom Flex. This no-annual-fee cash-back card is offering a $200 bonus that’s easy to earn with its $500 spending requirement over three months.

When determining the best welcome bonus, consider how you can redeem each offer for maximum value, which we explain below.

What Amex, Capital One and Chase welcome bonuses are worth

American Express® Gold Card

On the American Express secure site
  • Rewards

    4X Membership Rewards® points on restaurants (including takeout and delivery, plus, Uber Eats purchases) and at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per calendar year in purchases, then 1X), 3X points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com, 1X points on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases within the first 6 months from account opening

  • Annual fee

    $250

  • Intro APR

    Not applicable

  • Regular APR

    See Pay Over Time APR

  • Balance transfer fee

    N/A

  • Foreign transaction fee

    None

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

See rates and fees, terms apply.

 

The Amex Gold card's 60,000-point bonus can be worth up to $600 when you redeem points for flights and gift cards. But since the value of points varies based on redemption method, other redemption options can be worth less. Statement credit redemptions are worth $360, while booking prepaid hotels through Amex Travel is worth $420.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

On the American Express secure site
  • Rewards

    6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%), 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions, 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations, 3% cash back on transit including taxis/rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses and more and 1% cash back on other purchases. Cash Back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.

  • Welcome bonus

    Earn a $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months.

  • Annual fee

    $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95

  • Intro APR

    0% for the first 12 months on purchases, N/A for balance transfers

  • Regular APR

    13.99% to 23.99% variable

  • Balance transfer fee

    N/A

  • Foreign transaction fee

    2.7%

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

See rates and fees, terms apply.

 

Blue Cash Preferred card members receive cash back in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed for statement credits. The welcome bonus is a $300 statement credit after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new card within the first six months.

Venture cardholders can redeem 60,000 bonus points for $600 in statement credits.

The Sapphire Preferred card's 100,000-point bonus can be worth up to $1,250 thanks to the added value points receive on eligible redemptions. When you redeem points for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards® or grocery store, dining, home improvement store and eligible charity statement credits with Pay Yourself Back, points are worth 25% more.

Other cash-back redemptions are worth up to $1,000 and redeeming for gift cards can be worth $1,000 or more if there's a gift card sale.

Chase Freedom Flex℠

On Chase's secure site
  • Rewards

    Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year, 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate (then 1%), 5% cash back on travel booked through the Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3% on drugstore purchases and on dining (including takeout and eligible delivery services), 1% cash back on all other purchases

  • Welcome bonus

    $200 cash back after you spend $500 on purchases in your first three months from account opening

  • Annual fee

    $0

  • Intro APR

    0% for the first 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers

  • Regular APR

    14.99% to 24.74% variable

  • Balance transfer fee

    Intro fee of either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater, on transfers made within 60 days of account opening. After that, either $5 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.

  • Foreign transaction fee

    3%

  • Credit needed

    Excellent/Good

Terms apply.

Since Freedom Flex cardholders receive cash back in the form of Ultimate Rewards points, the $200 bonus is equal to 20,000 points. Points are worth up to $200 in statement credits or more than $200 when Chase is running a gift card sale. You can even transfer points between other Chase cards that earn Ultimate Rewards, like the Chase Sapphire Preferred.

Bottom line

Overall, the best welcome bonus depends on how much money you can reasonably afford to spend with a new card. Consider the spending requirements and time frame for each offer to narrow down your options. You should also review the annual fee and rewards rates to make sure the card is worthwhile.

If you're looking to maximize rewards and spending thousands of dollars to earn a bonus is within your means, consider the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Capital One Venture.

If you need more time to earn a bonus that has typical spending requirements of $3,000 or $4,000, the Amex Gold and Blue Cash Preferred are good options with six-month time periods.

And if you want a bonus that's easy to earn and doesn't require much spending, the Chase Freedom Flex is your best choice.

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Our methodology

To determine which credit cards offer the best value, Select analyzed popular credit cards available in the U.S. We compared each card on a range of features, including rewards, welcome bonus, introductory and standard APR, balance transfer fee and foreign transaction fees, as well as factors such as required credit and customer reviews when available. We also considered additional perks, the application process and how easy it is for the consumer to redeem points.

Select teamed up with location intelligence firm Esri. The company's data development team provided the most up-to-date and comprehensive consumer spending data based on the 2019 Consumer Expenditure Surveys from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. You can read more about their methodology here.

Esri's data team created a sample annual budget of approximately $22,126 in retail spending. The budget includes six main categories: groceries ($5,174), gas ($2,218), dining out ($3,675), travel ($2,244), utilities ($4,862) and general purchases ($3,953). General purchases include items such as housekeeping supplies, clothing, personal care products, prescription drugs and vitamins, and other vehicle expenses.

Select used this budget to estimate how much the average consumer would save over the course of a year, two years and five years, assuming they would attempt to maximize their rewards potential by earning all welcome bonuses offered and using the card for all applicable purchases. All rewards total estimations are net the annual fee.

While the five-year estimates we've included are derived from a budget similar to the average American's spending, you may earn a higher or lower return depending on your shopping habits.

For rates and fees of the American Express® Gold Card, click here.

For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, click here.

Information about the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card has been collected independently by Select and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer prior to publication

Editorial Note: Opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Select editorial staff’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any third party.