Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

AMEX spending pattern question


AMEX spending pattern question

Hi.  I have an AMEX Gold rewards card.  This was a Green Amex till last month when I upgraded.  I have only had this account since November, although my member since date is 1999.


The first month AMEX required me to make an $813 payment mid-cycle in order to avoid charge suspension.  So I made the payment.  My statement ending balance was $557, which I paid at statement.  So I had a total of almost $1400 for the first month in charges.


This month AMEX has not requested any mid-cycle payment and my current balance is about $2036.  My statement ending date is 14th, so just a couple days.


QUESTION:  What is a good rule of thumb for charging on AMEX?  I don't want to accelerate my charges faster than would be wise.  I don't want to trigger a financial review (only because I don't want the hassle).


I would like to get this account comfortable with around $5000 to $7500 per month so that I can use if for travel and recurring expenses.  How long and at what pace should I "walk up" to that level?  Should I do that over 12 to 18 months, just slightly increasing my spending each month, maybe even having similar spending for a couple months here and there?


Thanks in advance for any input.



Message 1 of 7
Epic Contributor

Re: AMEX spending pattern question

Your charging allowance should increase by 25% I think it is per month of on time payments.

You should have no problems being at the 5000+ level in under 6 months. 

Message 2 of 7

Re: AMEX spending pattern question

Thanks Creditaddict for the reply.


So, if I understand, I should increase my spending up to 25% from month to month.


So example is:


Mo. 1:  $1400
Mo. 2:  $2036  (25% of $2036 is $509)

Mo. 3:  $2545  (25% of $2545 is $636)

Mo. 4:  $3181  (25% of $3181 is $795)

Mo. 5:  $3976  (25% of $3976 is $994)

Mo. 6:  $4970


Is this correct?  Increasing 25% from the previous month, or should I only increase 25% based upon the first month?


This seems like it might be a little agressive, now that I look at the numbers this way.  As it stands, I had a CL of around $1000 month 1.  CLI to $5000 in 6 months might seem aggressive.  So I think I will double the time and go with a 10 to 12% increase just so it doesn't make AMEX look too hard at me.


Thanks for helping me work this out.



Message 3 of 7
Epic Contributor

Re: AMEX spending pattern question

Amex customer service is fantastic when it comes to the charge card, don't be afraid to call them and ask about your spending limits, about doing test charges for you with specific amounts and the increase you can expect to be able to charge to each month.
Message 4 of 7

Re: AMEX spending pattern question

I have to admit that their CS is really good.


I lost my wallet on New Year's day and called to report it on the 2nd when I realized what happened.  I had a card in my hand the next day.


I did call them last week to ask if I could charge a $1078 amount for something I was doing.  She told me that it would NOT be approved.  I thanked her and then used an alternate card.  My balance was higher than the previous month all ready and since they had required a mid cycle payment the month before, I didn't want to chance a declined charge.  She was really nice about it and I was glad I had called rather than try to use it and have it decline.


Thanks again.



Message 5 of 7
Epic Contributor

Re: AMEX spending pattern question

if you have a checking account on file and you call and they say a charge will not be approved you can ask them how much of a payment they would need to allow charges on your account and allow them to process on the spot and then they will unlock your account for the charge. When we first got our business charge, I had to do that a lot. but they won't make you wait for payment to clear.
Message 6 of 7
Moderator Emeritus

Re: AMEX spending pattern question

I'm a newbie Amex cardholder (Green) and asked the CSR on my first month after my first charge was denied. I received the Green and tried to purchase football season tickets with it in July for about $2500. The charge was denied and being uneducated in the finer points of Amex, I gave them a call. The CSR told me a little differently. She told me my magic limit started at $500 and that it would gradually increase on a basis of 50% based on my spending habits.


So in July-Aug. I spent $180. Then purchased around $547 for August-Sept.. $1387 for September-Oct.. It was this month they blocked the account. I had to call and make a payment in order to continue. I PIF and it was a day or two after the statement cut. $1486 for October-Nov. $1454 for Nov-Dec., and finally $3249 for Dec-Jan. My spending doubled for this month but used the card fine last weekend at a hotel while on business and had no issues. I made sure Sheraton charged the card first for the full weekend vs. waiting until the end of the stay. I didn't bring any CCs and didn't want to search for an ATM. So, as you can see, any % increase isn't set in stone, but I bet I'm in Amex's target site.  


Per payments, I PIF the entire balance (not just of what was due) at the time the payment was made. Also have been paying the balance the within a day or two of the statement. This month, the full payment goes out this week in advance of the statement.

Message 7 of 7