American Express Explorer Credit Card – Rates and Fees

With 50,000 bonus points, a $400 Travel Credit and two complimentary airline lounge passes, the superior features of the American Express Explorer Credit Card outweigh the cost.

The American Express Explorer Credit Card is catered to premium cardholders, frequent flyers and big spenders who want to be rewarded for using their credit card. Whether you’re looking at the 50,000 bonus Membership Rewards points, the $400 Travel Credit, lounge passes or complimentary insurances, there are plenty of ways to get extra value from the card that justify the $395 annual fee if you take advantage.

Product NameAmerican Express Explorer Credit Card
Rewards ProgramMembership Rewards Gateway
Balance transfer rate (p.a.)0% p.a. for 12 months with 1% balance transfer fee
Balance Transfer Limit70% of available credit limit
Maximum Balance Transfer Amount$10,000
Purchase rate (p.a.)20.74% p.a.
Annual fee$395 p.a.
Interest Free Period
The interest-free period on purchases is the period or number of days you do not have to pay interest on your card purchases. You will be charged interest either from the day you make a purchase or from the statement date, unless you pay the closing balance in full by the due date (or within the interest-free period) on your statement.
Up to 55 days on purchases
Min credit limit
This is the lowest credit card limit that you can request. It is possible to apply for a higher credit card limit but not a lower one than this figure.
$3,000
Max credit limit
This credit limit may not be issued to you immediately on application. This is the maximum credit limit for this card which must be applied for or offered to you after you are approved and have already opened the account.
$25,000
Card TypeAmerican Express
Foreign Currency Conversion Fee (AMEX)
Foreign currency conversion fees are charged when you make a transaction that is converted by a credit card network, such as MasterCard, Visa or American Express, from Australian dollars to a foreign currency. You’ll also incur a currency conversion fee if you make a purchase or obtain a cash advance in Australian dollars while overseas or shopping online with a foreign merchant or financial institution.
3% of transaction value
Complimentary Travel InsuranceYes
Minimum Income$65,000
Minimum Age18 years of age
Available To Temporary ResidentsYes - Conditions apply
Joint ApplicationNo
Annual fee$395 p.a.
Minimum Monthly Repayment2.5% or $30, whichever is greater
Late Payment Fee$30
Cash Advance Fee$2.50 or 2% of the cash advance amount (whichever is greater)
Foreign Currency Conversion Fee
Foreign currency conversion fees are charged when you make a transaction that is converted by a credit card network, such as MasterCard, Visa or American Express, from Australian dollars to a foreign currency. You'll also incur a currency conversion fee if you make a purchase or obtain a cash advance in Australian dollars while overseas or shopping online with a foreign merchant or financial institution.
3%
of transaction value
Additional Cardholder Fee$0
Number of Additional Cardholders4

Pros

  • Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you apply online, are approved and spend $3,000 on your card within the first 3 months of card membership.
  • Enjoy 0% p.a. for 12 months on balance transfers.
  • Receive a $400 Travel Credit every year.
  • Get up to 55 days interest-free on purchases.

Cons

  • A one-time 1% balance transfer fee applies.
  • The standard purchase rate of 20.74% p.a. is relatively high.
Rewards ProgramMembership Rewards Gateway
Bonus Points50,000 bonus points
Rewards Points per $ spent (AMEX)2
Rewards Points per $ (AMEX) CapUncapped

American Express Explorer Credit Card review

If you apply online, are approved and spend at least $3,000 in the first three months, you can bolster your points balance with 50,000 Membership Rewards points on signup.

For the life of the card, you’ll also earn 2 points per dollar spent on eligible purchases. Plus, new cardholders will also receive a $400 Travel Credit to redeem for anything from flights to car rentals with American Express Travel. Other perks include two airline lounge passes each year, complimentary insurances and a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 12 months. With an annual fee of $395 and an ongoing interest rate of 20.74% p.a., you’ll want to make sure the value of the perks outweigh the costs.

Benefits of the American Express Explorer Credit Card

  • Bonus points. If you apply online, are approved and spend an eligible $3,000 within the first three months of card membership, you will earn a bonus 50,000 Membership Rewards points. These points can be transferred to eight airline partner programs, including Velocity. If you prefer to transfer your points, these 50,000 Membership Rewards points are worth 37,500 Velocity Points. This offer is available to new card members, as well as bank-issued American Express companion cardholders.
  • $400 Travel Credit. Cardholders will receive a $400 Travel Credit every year to redeem anything from flights and travel agency gift vouchers to accommodation, car hire and more through American Express Travel. Taking advantage of the $400 Travel Credit every year means the $395 annual fee is covered.
  • Membership rewards program. Cardholders will earn 2 Membership Rewards points per $1 spent on eligible purchases and 0.5 points per $1 spent on government purchases. These points can be redeemed for a variety of options under Membership Rewards or for travel perks with American Express’ eight partner airline programs; Asia Miles, Emirates Skywards, Etihad Guest, Malaysian Airlines Enrich, Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer, THAI Royal Orchid Plus, Velocity Frequent Flyer and Air New Zealand Airpoints.
  • Complimentary airport lounge passes. Cardholders will receive two complimentary passes to American Express Lounge at Sydney International (Kingsford Smith) Airport T1 or Melbourne International Airport T2 each year. Relax before your flight with free wi-fi, food and drink, barista-made coffee and comfortable seats.
  • Complimentary travel insurances. If you meet the eligibility requirements, you can save on insurance costs with Medical Emergency Expenses Cover, Travel Cancellation Cover, Baggage, Money and Documentation Cover and Travel Inconvenience Insurance.
  • Smartphone screen insurance. You’ll receive up to $500 for screen repairs if you accidentally break your Smartphone screen. A 10% excess applies per claim with a maximum of two claims every 12 months.
  • Mobile contactless payments. Whether you have an Android, Apple or Samsung device, you can save time at the cash register and pay with the convenience of your smartphone with Google Pay, Apple Pay or Samsung Pay.
  • Balance transfer offer. New applicants can consolidate their debts with a promotional balance transfer rate of 0% p.a. for 12 months. A one-time 1% balance transfer fee applies. You can transfer up to 70% of your approved credit limit to a maximum of $10,000.

Features of the American Express Explorer Credit Card

  • Annual fee. The card charges an annual fee of $395.
  • Interest rate. All purchases will collect interest at 20.74% p.a.
  • Interest-free days. If you pay your balance in full, you can enjoy up to 55 interest-free days on purchases.
  • Additional cardholder. You can request a supplementary cardholder to accumulate more points for $0, though they must be at least 18 years of age. Please note that you’ll be liable for all spending and charges on the supplementary card.
  • Purchase protections. You can shop with peace of mind with Purchase Protection, Refund Protection, Online Fraud Protection Guarantee and Buyers Advantage that extends the manufacturer’s warranty by up to 12 months.

How to apply for the American Express Explorer Credit Card

If you’ve compared your options and decided you want to apply for the American Express Explorer Credit Card, click on the ‘Go to Site’ button to be taken to a secure online application.

Eligibility requirements

Before you apply, make sure you meet the following eligibility requirements and have the necessary documents on hand:

  • Age. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age.
  • Residency. You must be an Australian citizen, permanent resident or hold a current Business Long Stay Visa (subclass 457).
  • Minimum income. You must have a personal gross (pre-tax) annual income of $65,000 or more.
  • Credit history. Applicants need no history of bad debt or payment default.

Required documents

  • Personal details. You’ll need to provide personal details such as your full name and address.
  • Identification. You might need to provide proof of identity such as your driver’s licence or birth certificate.
  • Proof of income. You’ll be asked to provide proof of income and employment (such as recent pay slips).

The American Express Explorer Credit Card is a premium card designed for cardholders who want to get more from their spending. As it’s not the only premium frequent flyer card on the market, it’s important to compare your options and make sure you meet the eligibility requirements before applying.

Back to top
Was this content helpful to you? No  Yes

Ask an Expert

You are about to post a question on finder.com.au:

  • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
  • finder.com.au is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
  • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
  • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked

Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, read the PDS or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.

93 Responses

  1. Default Gravatar
    AdamApril 5, 2018

    Hi,
    If I’am a supplementary holder of an American Express Explorer card, will I be eligible for the 100 thousand points bonus if I apply for this card as a sole applicant?

    • Staff
      NikkiApril 5, 2018Staff

      Hi Adam!

      Thanks for your message and for visiting finder – the leading comparison website & general information service built to give you advice in your buying decision needs. How are you doing today?

      If you apply online by 9 April 2018, are approved and spend at least $3,000 in the first three months, you can bolster your points balance with 100,000 Membership Rewards points on signup.

      For the life of the card, you’ll also earn 2 points per dollar spent on eligible purchases. Plus, new cardholders will also receive a $400 Travel Credit to redeem for anything from flights to car rentals with American Express Travel. Other perks include two airline lounge passes each year, complimentary insurances and a 0% p.a. balance transfer offer for 12 months. With an annual fee of $395 and an ongoing interest rate of 20.74% p.a., you’ll want to make sure the value of the perks outweigh the costs.

      Please note that we’re a product comparison website and we hold no affiliation with any company we feature on our site. We provide general information on products to assist you in your buying decision process hence we cannot recommend product / service that is rightfully fit for you.

      Hope this helps! Feel free to message us anytime should you have further questions.

      Cheers,
      Nikki

  2. Default Gravatar
    NormaDecember 11, 2017

    I have just received a 457 visa and arrived in Australia. Can I apply for this card straight away? I meet the other criteria on income etc.
    Many thanks

    • Staff
      MayDecember 12, 2017Staff

      Hi Norma,

      Thank you for your inquiry.

      Yes, the American Express Explorer Credit Card is available to people who hold Business Long Stay Visa (subclass 457). If you think you are able to meet all the eligibility requirements and if the card’s features meet your needs/preferences, then you can go ahead and apply. If still unsure and would need confirmation about your approval, you can also contact AMEX first to discuss your eligibility. This way you can also avoid enquiry on your credit file.

      Cheers,
      May

  3. Default Gravatar
    PeterSeptember 3, 2017

    I have a Qantas Gold Card, if I swap from the Gold to the Explorer, do I still qualify for the points, or must i close my gold card first?

    • Staff
      RenchSeptember 5, 2017Staff

      Hi Peter,

      Thanks for reaching out to us. Please note that we are not affiliated with American Express or any company we feature on our site and so we can only offer you general advice.

      I’m afraid you would not be eligible for the 100,000 bonus points. This offer is only available to new card members, as well as bank-issued American Express companion cardholders.

      To be seen as a new card member, you must not have held a credit card issued by Amex in the preceding 18 months. The Qantas Gold Card is issued by Amex, you would not be eligible for the bonus points.

      Hope this information helped.

      Best regards,

      Rench

  4. Default Gravatar
    RobAugust 1, 2017

    Hi, Will I have to pay the annual fee upfront?

    • Staff
      LiezlAugust 1, 2017Staff

      Hi Rob,

      Thanks for your question. Usually, annual fees will be charged on your first bill. Just to make sure of this, I suggest you call AMEX directly.

      Cheers,
      Liezl

  5. Default Gravatar
    AlanAugust 1, 2017

    I have an ANZ Frequent Flyer Black Amex for Qantas points which is expiring at ANZ by Aug.5. If I applied for Amex Explorer card would I still be entitled for the 100,000 Bonus points? The answer to this would be the major factor in my final decision.
    Thank you.

    • Staff
      RenchAugust 1, 2017Staff

      Hi Alan,

      Thanks for your inquiry. Please note that we are not affiliated with American Express or any company we feature on our site and so we can only offer you general advice.

      Yes, you can receive 100,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you apply online by 2 October 2017, are approved and spend $1,500 on your new Card within the first 3 months. This offer is available to new Card Members, as well as Bank-issued American Express companion cardholders.

      You may confirm this info directly from American Express.

      Cheers,
      Rench

  6. Default Gravatar
    SamJuly 25, 2017

    Hi, What are the international fees on this card if I wanted to use it in the U.S for a holiday?

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJuly 25, 2017

      Hello Sam,

      Foreign Currency Conversion Fee of 3% of transaction value and foreign ATM withdrawal fee applies, if you will be making a cash advance transaction outside.

      Please take note that the fees should be disclosed to you by the machine or the merchant where you’re using the card prior the transaction. So please confirm this to have an informed decision.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

  7. Default Gravatar
    ModiJuly 13, 2017

    Hi, I am an ANZ Bank black card holder with a limit of $ 50,000. I wanted to get (converted) this card to American Express Explorer Credit Card. Is it possible that I get the same credit limit?

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJuly 15, 2017

      Hello Modi,

      Thank you for sending your inquiry today. :)

      Some banks may allow conversion of your card to another type, provided you meet their credit guidelines and requirements. But please take note that once converted, any unused reward points or miles may not be carried over to the new card.

      We recommend that you contact your card provider for a more detailed advice.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

  8. Default Gravatar
    JohnJuly 6, 2017

    Some banks offer AMEX cards as additional cards along with the Visa or MasterCard.

    If someone held a credit card with that bank or financial institution, does this make the person ineligible for 100,000 bonus points offer?

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJuly 6, 2017

      Hi John!

      Thanks for the comment! :)

      As per AMEX page, “Receive 100,000 Membership Rewards Bonus Points when you apply online by 2 October 2017, are approved and spend $1,500 on your new Card within the first 3 months. This offer is available to new Card Members, as well as Bank-issued American Express companion cardholders

      Any existing AMEX card with other banks, even if these are just additional cards will be considered as an existing AMEX customer thus ineligible.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

    • Default Gravatar
      SamJuly 25, 2017

      Does this mean if I had previous American express card closed and looked to apply for this card I would be ineligible?

    • Default Gravatar
      JonathanJuly 25, 2017

      Hello Sam,

      Thank you for your inquiry today. :)

      Card Members who currently hold or who have previously held any Card product issued by American Express Australia Limited in the preceding 18 month period are ineligible for this offer.

      Hope this helps.

      Cheers,
      Jonathan

  9. Default Gravatar
    StanJune 16, 2017

    Do you earn points on government transactions, like ATO rates etc?

    • Staff
      RenchJune 16, 2017Staff

      Hi Stan,

      Thanks for your question.

      Yes, you will earn 0.5 points per $1 spent on government transactions/purchases.

      Cheers,
      Rench

  10. Default Gravatar
    DGJune 9, 2017

    Does my platinum card have access to Virgin Lounges?

    • Staff
      RenchJune 9, 2017Staff

      Hi DG,

      Thank you for your inquiry. Please note that we are not affiliated with American Express or any company we feature on our site and so we can only offer you general advice.

      Yes, with your American Express Platinum Card you’ll have access to Virgin Australia lounges. Enjoy complimentary Priority Pass membership that gives you and a guest access to over 1,000 VIP lounges worldwide. You also receive complimentary access to luxurious Virgin Australia lounges, Delta Sky Club Lounges, and American Express lounges for you and a guest when traveling on eligible flights and present your Amex Platinum card and travel documents. Note that requirements vary between lounges, so refer to the terms and conditions on the American Express website for specific information. You can get more info on this page.

      Cheers,
      Rench

Credit Cards Comparison

Rates last updated May 22nd, 2018
Name Product Purchase rate (p.a.) Balance transfer rate (p.a.) Annual fee Product Description
Westpac Low Rate - Online Offer
13.49% p.a.
0% p.a. for 26 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($59 p.a. thereafter)
Take advantage of 0% p.a. for 26 months on balance transfers with a one-time 2% balance transfer fee and a $0 first year annual fee.
HSBC Platinum Credit Card
19.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 22 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$0 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($129 p.a. thereafter)
Offers a 0% p.a. for 22 months balance transfer, $0 annual fee for the first year and an annual fee refund each year when you spend $6,000.
NAB Low Fee Card
19.74% p.a.
0% p.a. for 18 months with 2% balance transfer fee
$30 p.a.
Receive complimentary purchase protection insurance, a 18 month balance transfer offer and special offers from Visa Entertainment.
Citi Platinum Credit Card - 100k Bonus Points
20.99% p.a.
0% p.a. for 15 months with 1% balance transfer fee
$49 p.a. annual fee for the first year ($149 p.a. thereafter)
Earn 100,000 reward Points, enjoy a long-term balance transfer offer, a discounted first year annual fee and complimentary travel insurance.

Compare up to 4 providers

* The credit card offers compared on this page are chosen from a range of credit cards finder.com.au has access to track details from and is not representative of all the products available in the market. Products are displayed in no particular order or ranking. The use of terms 'Best' and 'Top' are not product ratings and are subject to our disclaimer. You should consider seeking independent financial advice and consider your own personal financial circumstances when comparing cards.

Ask a question
Go to site