Does Trader Joe’s Take American Express? (The Convenient Truth)

Many people dislike paying with cash. A credit card may be your only option in other circumstances, such as online shopping. It is also a temptation because card companies keep providing enticing promotions throughout the year.

American Express lags behind its competitors among major credit card companies. Supermarkets frequently reject American Express cards.

Many customers wonder – does Trader Joe’s take American Express. Knowing which payment options are accepted is essential when shopping at a grocery store like Trader Joe’s. Read on to find out if you can use your American Express at Trader Joe’s.

Does Trader Joe’s Take American Express in 2023?

does Trader Joe's take American Express

Trader Joe’s does accept American Express. Visa, MasterCard, Discover, even Apple Pay are also accepted in this widely popular grocery chain. In the US, most major food stores accept American Express credit cards. On the other hand, some smaller, independent grocery stores may not take American Express.

These stores accept American Express:

  • Trader Joe’s
  • Meijer
  • ShopRite
  • ALDI
  • Vons
  • Whole Foods
  • Winn-Dixie
  • Foodtown

If you want to know if a local grocery store accepts American Express or any other credit card you have, you can always call and ask a staff member. Most phone operators and store customer service will know which cards are accepted and which are not.

Why Doesn’t Every Grocery Store Take American Express?

Some merchants refuse to accept American Express because the fees for taking it are higher. American Express charges retailers 2.3 percent to 3.5 percent of the total purchase price, whereas Visa and MasterCard charge 1.5 percent to 2.5 percent.

The most prestigious credit card in the world is indeed American Express. It has millions of customers in the US and around the world. As a result, it’s strange that it is not embraced everywhere. Why? The answer comes back to how costly it is.

Small firms are usually the ones who refuse to accept it. They can’t afford the fees, and many of their clients don’t fit the demographic that most American Express cardholders do.

What Are Credit Card Fees Being Charged?

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Merchants are charged an “interchange fee” when credit card issuers such as American Express, Visa, MasterCard, and Discover process payments for them. Among these cards, American Express charges the most fees.

Given that these businesses have more affordable options, it comes naturally that they would prefer those over American Express.

Here is how the “interchange fee” works and how American Express compares to other major credit cards.

What American Express charges are not referred to as an “interchange fee.” It is termed a discount rate in technical terms. It is, however, essentially the same as an “interchange fee.” It consists of a percentage and a set transaction fee.

The rates differ based on the type of purchases made. American Express discount rates range from 2.3 percent to 3.5 percent, while Visa and MasterCard discount rates range from 1.5 percent to 2.5 percent.

The differences in rates may not appear significant at first look, but when multiplied by a thousand or a million transactions, it is simple to see how they might add up to be quite considerable. These differences have the potential to reduce a small business significantly.

It is also worth noting that Visa and MasterCard account for most cards in use. In effect, they are the most generally accepted, with Discover coming in second, and American Express coming in fourth.

What Stores Don’t Accept American Express?

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Loblaw’s Group and Costco Warehouses are the two big retailers that do not accept American Express cards. However, despite being part of the Loblaw’s Group, Shoppers Drug Mart accepts American Express Cards.

None of the other Loblaw’s brands do. Also worth noting is that Costco does not take Visa credit cards.

Fortunately, most big supermarket chains can afford the higher prices. Therefore American Express is accepted. Stores that do not accept American Express as a payment form are often smaller businesses with lower profit margins than big-name retailers.

Does American Express Count Trader Joe’s as A Supermarket?

When users use their cards to buy groceries, American Express offers cashback incentives. This can help reduce food expenditures while also developing credit by paying off minor expenses regularly.

The credit card provider will often classify different firms according to the type of business they have for these incentive programs. These categories decide which stores can be used to earn cashback rewards while shipping with your credit card.

Trader Joe’s is classified as a supermarket by American Express. This implies that you’ll get cashback if you use certain American Express cards at Trader Joe’s.

The Blue Cash Preferred Card, for example, is one of several American Express cards that can earn cashback at Trader Joe’s. It is critical to read the tiny print on each credit card since you may be missing out on cashback or other valuable benefits.

Why Is The Blue Cash Preferred Card The Best Cash Back Card For Groceries?

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The Blue Cash Preferred card gives users six percent cash back on up to $6,000 spent at US supermarkets per year, followed by one percent cashback. If you spend up to this limit – around $500 each month at the grocery – you’ll get $360 in cashback on food alone each year.

Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, ALDI, and Meijer, are some of the few grocery chains listed as supermarkets – the acceptable stores by American Express. Convenience stores, superstores like Walmart or Target, warehouse clubs like Costco, and meal kit delivery services are all ineligible.

However, most issuers have these restrictions, so if you do most of your grocery shopping at these businesses, you might want to seek a co-branded retail card or another non-grocery card with practical benefits.


It used to be challenging to be an American Express cardholder. It can be humiliating to be refused payment after buying. This was a common occurrence among American Express cardholders. As time passed, American Express officials and large retailers came to an agreement.

Go ahead and shop your hearts out now that you know Trader Joe’s accepts American Express.

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