American Express Personal Loans Review 2022

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American Express personal loan amounts and interest rates

American Express allows borrowers to take out personal loans between $3,500 and $40,000. You can get a personal loan in all 50 states and Washington, DC, and you must be an American Express card member to apply for a loan.

The APR on American Express’ loans starts at 5.98%, which is a lower starting point than with similar competitors. For example, Discover’s APR range is 6.99% to 24.99%, and Citibank’s APR range is 7.99 to 23.99%.

Pros and cons of American Express personal loans

Who is American Express best for?

American Express is best for borrowers who value a top-notch customer experience, as the company is ranked highly by JD Power and the Better Business Bureau. You will also be able to get your money fast with American Express, and you can explore what your rates would be without hurting your credit score.

However, American Express may not be the right choice if you want a longer repayment term length or if you only need to take out a small amount of money. You may find another lender that better suits your needs. 

How American Express personal loans compare

You could receive your money as soon as the next day with Discover, and you’ll almost always get your cash within two days from American Express. Citi has longer wait times — it can take up to five business days to receive your money.

You need to be a card member with American Express to apply for a loan, and you need to have had a deposit account with Citi for one year to qualify for a loan with that company. Discover doesn’t have any relationship requirements. 

None of the three lenders charge prepayment penalties or origination fees, but all of them charge late fees. American Express and Discover both hit borrowers with a $39 dollar late fee, while you’ll incur a $25 penalty with Citi. 

A unique feature of Discover is its 30-day money-back guarantee. If you decide within 30 days of getting your loan that you no longer want it, you can send back the funds via check and won’t be charged any interest. This perk may be helpful if you find a lender with a lower rate or if you end up not needing the loan amount you initially requested. 

How American Express personal loans work

American Express offers unsecured personal loans that borrowers can use for a variety of purposes, including home improvement projects, medical bills, and even vacations. Unsecured loans are loan that don’t require collateral — like a house or a car for a mortgage or auto loan — to obtain. 

You must be an American Express card member to apply for a personal loan. 

You’ll find the application online, and American Express will prepopulate your information with existing data on file, so it will only take a few minutes to complete. Choose between 12-month, 24-month, and 36-month repayment term lengths. 

You won’t pay any origination fees or prepayment penalties with the company, but you may be charged a $39 fee for late payment.  It will take about one to two business days to get your money once your loan is approved.

Customer support is available via phone from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET, Monday through Friday. Help is also available by online chat or through the Amex app. The app is well-reviewed on both the Google Play and Apple Stores.  

Is American Express trustworthy?

American Express has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, a nonprofit organization that focuses on consumer protection and trust. The BBB determines the ratings for a business by evaluating its responses to customer complaints, honesty in advertising, and truthfulness about business practices.

Keep in mind that you aren’t guaranteed to have a good relationship with a lender simply because it has a top-notch BBB rating. Talk to your friends and family about their experience with the company, or read online customer reviews.

However, the company has been at the center of a recent scandal. In March 2020, the Wall Street Journal reported that American Express employees deceived and pressured many small-business owners into signing up for cards. Former and current employees alleged that the company checked credit scores against people’s wishes, misrepresented fees, and even issued cards that customers didn’t ask for. 


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