American Express cards in the EEA

I can imagine American Express cards to be an ideal contestant for banks which also includes Revolut because of the interbank exchange rate not being limited to 0.2% but to 2% as far as I know. (Someone confirm this please)
Unfortunately, there is news that American Express is not issuing new licences to banks in the EEA and that all licences will be terminated on the December of 2019.

I am interested if it would be possible to gain a bank license somewhere else such as the US, Signapor e.g. receive a American Express licence and have EEA customers?

If this were possible this would be an ideal business plan.

American Express is super un-popular in EU (at least in Latvia). I believe most merchants don’t accept it here, at least I dont see amex stickers frequently.

You can use it quite a bit in the UK but I couldn’t name another European country that takes it even semi-frequently, to be honest.

It would be very nice if we could get a Revolut branded American Express that gave some points with airlines (Miles & More / Avios) or some decent cashback though.

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Oh really? I wasn’t aware of that. Here in Croatia, quite a bit of shops support it.
Maybe it depends how popular the cards are, here in Croatia the largest bank issues them so quite a bit of merchants support them.

which is also a reason they are not commonly accepted

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All the people who want large cash back should think about who pays this. In the end it’s the same customer that gets it back. The merchant, which has to pay it in form of a more expensive interchange fee will increase prices of its goods to have this covered.

So please think twice, is it really worth it to have increasing prices only to get more cashback?

For me it’s clear, interchange fees should be as low as possible and covert the cost for the companies involved in the processing and settling steps. Chargeback should be outlawed.

It’s similar here in Switzerland because it’s one of the more expensive cards to accept. The merchant fees are too high compared to MasterCard and Visa. Therefore especially very competitive markets tend to ignore this card and not accept it.

they are also absurdly expensive to own

They are accepted almost everywhere in the Czech Republic.

What does that mean exactly ?
Just that my Bank ( I have an AMEX card) won’t issue it anymore, but I can get the Card from AMEX directly ? So just no Bank branding ? Not sure if I am reading the article correctly…

Any advice is much appreaciated

why would you get an AMEX and how much do you have to spend to make it worth it?

I have the AMEX Gold card, “just” need to spend 10k a year.
Regardless whether it sounds smart to you, or not, can you explain the article ?

In some markets, free Amex cards are available. Like the Payback and Blue card in Germany, for example.


Thanks! Just like the german Payback, I do have a AMEX card by UBS.
Do you know whether I can get the “normal” Payback card, Platinum, Gold, BMW, Sixt card in the future by AMEX directly or will they cease to issue them at all ?

it probably is related to this.

What I understand is that Amex won’t cooperate with partner banks anymore but won‘t change their strategy regarding cards issued directly. (This is most likely because of the EU interchange fee regulation, where Amex’s business model with directly issued / business cards is not currently affected.)

Payback is an alternative customer loyalty program owned by Amex, so it’s not comparable to a UBS Amex card.

In some markets like UK and Germany, the majority of Amex cards are issued directly, without a partner bank. So I don’t expect much change here. I have no idea how it will change in other markets, but I can’t imagine them abandoning Switzerland.

Thanks ! Alright, guess I have to ask UBS whether there will be a change for me and they will cancel the card soon-ish.

Are you based in germany ? what is the best card there ? besides :r: obviously :wink:

I would say DKB offers the best deal right now. Free current account, free Visa credit card, no foreign currency fees, free worldwide cash withdrawals.

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Sounds great. Will look into DKB. Many thanks @Frank

(But bad exchange rates of course)