American Express is accepted at 10.6 million merchant locations in the U.S. and in 160+ countries and territories abroad. But you’ll find some stores that have exclusive deals with the more popular networks, Visa and Mastercard. For example, Costco only accepts Visa cards now, after switching from Amex only in 2016. And despite the good number of foreign countries where you can use American Express cards, acceptance is on a merchant-by-merchant basis. So, coverage in a lot of countries is hit or miss.
Here’s where American Express is accepted:
Where American Express is Accepted in the U.S.: 10.6 million merchants
Where American Express is Accepted Internationally: 160+ countries and territories
Countries Where American Express is Accepted Most: Canada, Australia, UK, India, Mexico
Places Where American Express is Not Accepted: Cuba, Sudan, South Sudan, Iran, Syria
Major Retailers That Accept American Express: Amazon, IKEA, Sears, Target, Walmart, Lowe’s, Apple, Best Buy, Staples, CVS
Major Retailers That Don’t Accept American Express: Costco, small non-chain stores/restaurants
So, an American Express card is enough for your shopping within the U.S. Though you may find some stores that don’t take it, the majority will. But you’ll probably want to have a no foreign transaction feeVisa or Mastercard when you go abroad. Those networks guarantee you worldwide coverage, with acceptance in over 200 countries and territories. And Mastercard and Visa cards are accepted just about universally within those regions. Amex cards still have hit-or-miss acceptance in many.
It's not great, really. You've got very good coverage in the US, but overseas it can get pretty tricky trying to find a place that takes them. Visa and Mastercard are the best overall. In any case, I think Discover cards are even worse in this aspect.
The difference between Visa and American Express is that American Express is both a card issuer and a payment network, while Visa is only a payment network. Visa is also more widely accepted than Amex, as Visa cards work in over 200 countries and territories, compared to 160+ for American Express cards.… read full answer
Differences Between American Express and Visa
Point of Comparison
Credit Card Issuer?
Accepted in 160+ countries and territories
Accepted in 200+ countries and territories
Accepted at 10.6 million U.S. locations
Accepted at 10.7 million U.S. locations
Cards in Circulation
$0 Fraud Liability Guarantee
Merchant Processing Fees
$0 Liability Guarantee?
For merchants, the biggest difference between American Express and Visa is how much they charge a merchant for processing payments. Amex processing fees are on the higher end, while Visa’s fees are on the lower end.
Although there are a handful of big differences between American Express and Visa, most people will not be affected unless they travel abroad, as Amex has less acceptance outside of the U.S. than Visa. Otherwise, for the average cardholder, there are far more similarities between the two payment networks than differences.
Yes. Walmart does accept American Express credit cards, debit cards and gift cards. In addition to American Express cards, Walmart accepts cards from the 3 other major card networks – Mastercard, Visa and Discover. And they accept their own store credit card that’s issued by Capital One and can only be used at Walmart.… read full answer
If you have an American Express card that earns Membership Rewards points, you can also use those points directly on Walmart.com during checkout. You will have the full purchase amount charged to your card, but will then receive a statement credit for the points used in 2 to 4 business days. That being said, points are only worth 0.7 cents each when used this way, so it’s not the best redemption option.
Walmart.com is compatible with Amex Express Checkout, too. This tool, which is built into the website’s checkout screen, allows customers to simply enter their Amex login info, which will then autofill their card details at checkout, which saves time. It also uses a virtual card number for extra security.
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