When it comes to credit cards, most people look for a card that comes with great rates, rewards, and no annual fee. This is what the USAA Rewards Visa credit card promises. The variable rates are as low as 9.90% every year on the top three transactions: purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers. With no annual fee, it seems like this particular credit card has a lot to offer for the card members.
About the USAA Rewards Visa
This credit card is issued by USAA Savings Bank. In essence, it is a rewards credit card and is especially designed for people looking for benefits and travel services without paying for the card every year. It also comes with built-in protection so that unauthorized purchases and scams should no longer be an issue for the cardholder.
USAA offers credit cards to the Air Force, Navy, veterans, and US Army Forces. Anyone who wants to get the USAA Rewards Visa should know that they have to have excellent credit in order to get approved. Additionally, only US citizens or permanent US residents are allowed to apply for the card. Other requirements include:
- At least 18 years of age
- Honest about the personal information given to USAA
- Credit report check if necessary
- The applicants are also required to authorize USAA to give them another product from the bank in case they are not eligible for the USAA Rewards Visa credit card.
USAA Rewards Visa Highlights
If you are searching for a rewards credit card, you may want to take a look into this plastic. It comes with the following features:
- Low APR: The Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is lower than most of the credit cards in the market today. Since it requires the cardholder to have excellent credit, it makes sense that it offers low rates for the members.
- No Annual Fee: One of the reasons why this is an attractive credit card to those who want a rewards card is because it does not have an annual fee. The fact that it offers rewards without requiring you to pay for it yearly makes it rewarding already.
- Strong Protection: There have been many instances in the past where the card members get a call from their bank, saying that their card is being used for fraudulent purposes. The USAA Reward Visa Card guarantees that all cardholders will have zero liability whenever their plastic is used for unauthorized transactions. With the advancement in technology nowadays, tracking illegal use of cards has become much easier.
The Cost of the Card
You may say that sure, the card offers rewards, but does it cost too much that the rewards actually mean nothing? Here are the details regarding the fees, rates, and other costs associated with the USAA Rewards Visa credit card:
Regular APR: 9.9% up to 25.9% depending on your creditworthiness . Other factors may also affect your APR rate and since the APR is a variable rate, it will also be based on the market Prime Rate.
Penalty APR: If you ever forget to pay for your card, you may be required to pay up to $35. Returned payments are charged with also up to $35 while over the credit limit does not have penalty fees.
Interest: There is no minimum interest charge for the card on all transactions. You can refer to your regular APR whenever you use the card. You can avoid paying interest by simply paying for your entire balance before or on the due date. There is a grace period of 25 days and after that, the billing cycle will close. USAA will therefore start charging interest unless you pay for your balance on time.
Annual Fee: The beauty of this card is that it does not have an annual fee whether or not you use the card each year.
</li>Balance Transfer Fee: Aside from the balance transfer APR, you should know that you have to pay 3% of the amount you transferred. The maximum amount that you will pay for every transfer is $200.</li>
Cash Advance Fee: As with balance transfers, you have to pay 3% of the amount you withdrew from ATM machines. For convenience checks, the maximum amount for payment is $200. In order to waive the cash advance fee, you can transfer fund electronically to your deposit account with USAA.
Foreign Transaction Fee: If you will be traveling and you will use the card for purchases or other applicable transactions, you will have to pay 1% for each activity.
Cash advances and balance transfers do not have a grace period. In addition, the late payment fee and the returned payment fee will be $25 for the first offense. The second and the succeeding penalties will be $35.
For balance transfers, cardholders have the right to cancel the transfer in 10 days after the request. If not, it will be completed within two to three weeks.
Rewards and How to Claim Them
Since this is a rewards card, you can expect that you will earn points whenever you use your USAA Rewards Visa credit card.
- Bonus Points: When you make your first purchase with your card, you will automatically receive 2,500 rewards points.
- Rewards for Every Purchase: All cardholders who choose to purchase items with their cards will receive one point for every dollar spent. These points will not expire and do not have limits. This means that you can accumulate as many points as you want and you can claim them whenever you want.
- Redeem Points: If you have enough points or you want to redeem them and turn them into rewards, you only need to go to USAA’s website. The good news is that there are no redemption fees, unlike with other credit cards. Points can be converted into gift certificates, cash, charitable donations, air travel, and merchandise from well-known brands.
- Cash Back: Every purchase that you make for the year is recorded and you can get paid for them in cash every January. The cash rebates can go up to 1.25% for all the purchases you make for a particular year.
Although the USAA Rewards Visa credit card comes with great rewards, you should note that the reward points will no longer be usable if your account is delinquent or it is closed.
If you want to use your card for cash rewards, here are the important points that you should know:
- The more you use your card, the more rebates you earn.
- There is no limit to the amount of rebates you can earn every year.
- If you use your card and pay for a total of $5,000 purchases in one year, your cash rewards rebate can amount to 0.45%. For purchases over $5,000, you earn a minimum of $22.50 + additional 0.85% on all your net purchases for the previous 12 months.
When it comes to redeeming your rewards, USAA has made it much easier for the card members. As mentioned above, you can claim them by visiting USAA.com and go to the rewards section. Contact a USAA representative and you will receive instructions on how to transfer your rewards into something that you will enjoy.
Other pieces of information that you may want to be aware of about the rewards and how to claim them include the following:
- Hassle-Free Points Accumulation: USAA makes your life much simpler by allowing you to collect as many points as you want even if you are using other cards. This means that you can combine all your points regardless of the card type as long as they are from USAA.
- Freedom to Choose: USAA gives you to freedom to select the kind of rewards you want to receive.
- Exchanging Points for Cash: If you would like to get a cash rebate and you have 3,000 points already, you will automatically be entitled to receive $25 as reward. This is much easier since first time purchases are already awarded with 2,500 points. You just need 500 more to get $25. 6,000 points Will let you redeem $50 while 12,000 points will give you $100 and so on.
- Travel Discounts: You can also exchange your points into travel tickets or discounts for them. As an example, if you have 15,000 points, you can exchange them for a $150 price off on your next airline ticket. 22,500 points will give you a $225 discount on airfare and so on. Although the needed points here are much higher than cash redemption, they are more straightforward.
- Gift Cards: If you want to redeem your points to gift cards, you are more than welcome to do so. You can get gift cards for as low as 3,500 points, equivalent to $25. You will need 7,000 points to get a $50 gift card and 14,000 points for a $100 gift card.
- Merchandise: You can use your points to get cool merchandise including electronics (minimum of 1,400 points), sports and leisure (at least 2,100 points), health and beauty (2,700 points minimum), and home and garden (2,400 points minimum).
- These rewards are actually easy to understand, but you should be aware that USAA has given a statement to their card members that they have the right to eliminate the rewards or change the offers whenever needed. They may also add more points in order to claim the items or the cash back. Therefore, be sure that you have enough points before you convert them into any kind of prize.
Apart from the mentioned rewards above, the USAA Rewards Visa Credit Card still has some more to offer. These include the following:
- Insurance for auto rental collision damage
- Automatic travel accident insurance around the world
- Emergency services with just one touch of a button
- When used for purchases at MemberShop, users can also earn extra cash rewards.
If you are wondering if this is the card for you, then remember that USAA will interview all applicants first before they approve them as card members. With the perks and benefits offered by the card, USAA Rewards Visa credit card is appealing for people who want a straightforward, easy-to-use rewards card.