When you open a new American Express credit card it is backdated to the age of your oldest Amex credit card account. This means that you can open a new card and it will be reported to your credit score as having an account age of your oldest Amex account. 

Why is this important?

The average age of your credit card accounts is an important factor in your credit score. It is the average age of all your accounts from the date they were each opened.

By adding a new account that is backdated to your oldest account, you can potentially increase the average account age (or at least not shorten it).

Basically, if you add another account that dates back to your oldest Amex account, it could increase your average account age (depending on what your average age is). For example, if you have an Amex account that dates back to 2001, then when you open up a new account today, it will also be dated back to 2001.

Normally, when you add a new account or remove an old one, your average account length will be shortened. Sometimes this can negatively impact your credit score, so knowing that opening up a new Amex account won’t shorten your average account age is a huge plus.

This is a great tip that will help improve your credit score and average age of accounts. It is always a good idea to keep an older no annual fee credit card open to improve the length of your accounts reflected on your credit score.

This could be incredibly useful if you keep a no annual fee card such as the Amex Blue Cash card open for a long time and have every new card backdated to the card’s age.

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7 Comments

  • I’m definitely not an expert on all the details of how long Amex backdates. I’d assume they backdate that long unless they drop older closed accounts after a certain age. I’d also say that building a long relationship with Amex could help getting approved if it comes down to the line, but I’m not sure it’s as useful as with Chase.

  • Does this apply to closed credit cards? For example, if I have a Platinum card that I closed a while ago, and I open a Blue Cash card now, would I have the Blue Cash card backdated to the opening date of my Platinum?

    • I’m almost certain that the new card will only be backdated to the oldest current/active account. If anyone else has had a different experience please comment.

      • I had a Green card that I opened in 2011. I cancelled it after a year before the annual fee hit. At that point, I had no AMEX cards. In late 2013, I got 3 AMEX cards and they are all backdated to 2011 because of my closed green card account. Definitely helps!

  • The same happens if you use the “transfer abroad” option for those moving countries. At least it did for me from England the USA. Helped avoid the need to have a secured credit card for a while first 🙂

    • Great info, thanks for sharing. That saves a lot of hassle from having to start from scratch when moving overseas.