BankAmericard® vs. BankAmericard Cash Rewards™
Bank of America is one of the largest retail banks in the United States and a major issuer of credit cards. Like other card issuers, it offers a wide range of products including those that feature cash rewards, travel rewards, and others with competitive interest rates.
Two of its most popular cards are the BankAmericard® Credit Card with its promotional balance transfer offer and low interest rates, and the BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Credit Card which features cash back on all purchases. Let’s take a look at these two cards and see which one is right for you.
The BankAmericard® Credit Card is the flagship card from Bank of America and it it features its lowest interest rates and best promotional financing offer. New applicants receive 18 billing cycles of 0% APR promotional financing on balance transfers made within 60 days of account opening, with a 3% balance transfer fee. After this promotional financing offer expires, the remaining balance will be subject to standard rate, which is 11.24% to 21.24% APR, depending on your creditworthiness when you applied. This is the lowest standard interest rate of any BankAmericard® credit card, although it does have a penalty interest rate of up to 29.99% that will apply if you make a late payment.
Cardholder benefits include online banking, account alerts, and optional overdraft protection that helps prevent declined purchases, returned checks or other overdrafts when you link an eligible Bank of America checking account to your credit card, although transfer fees may apply.
Customers can also receive their monthly FICO credit score when they enroll in online banking. This card has no rewards program and there is no annual fee, but there is a 3% foreign transaction fee imposed on all charges processed outside of the United States.
The BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ card offers cash back at the expense of slightly higher interest rates and a less generous promotional financing offer than the BankAmericard®. Cardholders earn 2% cash back from purchases at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, and 3% cash back on gas, on the first $2,500 spent in combined grocery/wholesale club/gas purchases each quarter. 1% cash back is offered for all other purchases. In addition, cardholders receive a 10% relationship bonus on cash back earned if they redeem the cash back rewards into a Bank of America checking or savings account.
New accounts receive 12 billing cycles of 0% APR promotional financing on both new purchases and balance transfers. Qualifying balance transfers must be completed within 60 days of account opening, and a 3% balance transfer fee applies. After the promotional interest rate expires, the standard rate of 13.24% to 23.24%, based on your creditworthiness at the time of your application. The rate you receive will be a variable rate and can change based on the movement of the Prime Rate.
New cardholders can earn a $100 sign-up bonus after making at least $500 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening. Other benefits include online banking, account alerts, and Digital Wallet technology that allows you to use your mobile device, and then shop in-store or in-app using Apple Pay™, Android Pay® or Samsung® Pay. Cardholders can also enable optional overdraft protection to help prevent declined purchases, returned checks or other overdrafts, by linking your eligible Bank of America checking account to your credit card, although transfer fees may apply. Bank of America also offers cardholders their monthly FICO credit score when they enroll in online banking. This card has no annual fee, but there is a 3% foreign transaction fee imposed on all charges processed outside of the United States.
Which card is right for you?
Approximately half of all American credit card users will regularly carry a balance throughout the year on at least one of their cards. These cardholders should be focused on minimizing their interest costs by finding a card with the lowest possible interest rate, and possibly a promotional financing offer. The BankAmericard® Credit Card is an ideal card for these users as it features a strong 18 billing cycles of promotional financing on balance transfers, and a low standard interest rate.
On the other hand, those who are always able to avoid interest charges by paying each month’s statement balance in full and on-time could earn generous cash rewards from using the BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ card, while still receiving 12 billing cycles of interest-free financing on both new purchases and balance transfers. In addition, the sign-up bonus of $100 is also a strong incentive to consider this card. And BankAmericard Cash Rewards customers receive a 10% relationship bonus on cash back earned if they redeem the cash back rewards into a Bank of America checking or savings account.
Ultimately, your choice comes down to how you will be using the card. If you use your credit card as a method of financing purchases, you will likely want the BankAmericard®. But if your credit card is simply a method of payment, you should be earning rewards with a card like the Bank of America Cash Rewards™ card.