Banana Republic Visa Card
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If you spend a lot of dough at Banana Republic and its sister brands Gap, Old Navy and Athleta, this card can save you some money and score you some valuable perks. Outside of the stores, this card has just-OK rewards and a high APR so it’s best for someone who can juggle multiple cards and pay their bill in full and on time every month.
The Banana Republic Visa Card is for diehard lovers of the Gap Inc. family of brands who are partial to Banana Republic. The card comes with an introductory offer of 20 percent off your purchase when you open the card at the point of sale.
With this card, you’ll earn 5 points for every $1 spent at any Banana Republic, Gap, Old Navy, or Athleta stores, and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. You’ll also get a $5 reward for every 500 points, which can be used as a discount towards more merchandise.
The Banana Republic Visa Card comes with perks specific to the brand, which include free standard shipping on all online orders, card member-only offers and discounts, double-points shopping days, a birthday gift, and no receipt required for returns.
If you make a purchase outside of the Gap Inc. family brands within the first 30 days of opening your account, you’ll also receive 3,000 bonus reward points.
Like most store cards, this card comes with a higher-than-average APR of 25.99 percent. If you tend to carry a balance, the benefits and discounts you get from the card will likely be outweighed by what you’ll pay in interest charges.
If you earn 5,000 or more points on the card in a calendar year, you’ll be upgraded to Luxe status, which comes with even more money-savings perks and discounts. You’ll earn a 20 percent points bonus based on what you earn every 3 months, free basic alterations on all Banana Republic merchandise, free shipping on all online purchases within the family of brands, exclusive triple-points days, and one all-day savings pass on the day of your choice.
If you only occasionally shop at Banana Republic, it’s not worth it to get this card, because the most lucrative benefit is the one-time opening offer of 20 percent off. And the rewards can only be used to purchase more merchandise, which could be limiting.
Over the long term you’d probably be better off with a card that offers more consistent savings. A cash-back card that pays more than 1 percent back, like the Citi Double Cash Card for example, gives you greater flexibility in how you can use your rewards. If you’re just looking to get the best discount for shopping, the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card gives you a 5 percent discount on everything they sell.
Who should get this card
Someone who frequently shops at Banana Republic stores and rarely carries a balance.
Fees and APR
- No annual fee.
- This card has a variable APR of 25.99 percent.
- There’s a 3 percent foreign transaction fee.
- Late payments won’t affect your APR but you may be subject to a late payment fee of up to $37.
Extras, perks and using points
Earn Luxe status if you earn 5,000 points in a calendar year. Luxe status comes with additional money-saving perks and benefits.
Earn 500 bonus points when you enroll in paperless billing and another 500 bonus points if you provide your email address for your account.
If your account is in good standing, and you’ve made at least one purchase within the previous 12 months, you’ll receive a gift on your birthday.
How this card compares
When it comes to rewards value, the Citi Double Cash Card ranks among the very best cash-back credit cards that charge no annual fee. Why doesn’t this card receive a higher score from Bankrate? Because Citi Double Cash offers no sign-up bonus, it struggles to compete with many cards in this category.
In the long term, the Citi Double Cash Card may earn you more rewards. The card earns an unlimited 1 percent cash back when you make a purchase and another 1 percent back when you pay for those purchases. Big spenders may find this nets more cash-back overall as there’s no ceiling on what you can earn back.
Depending on your spending habits, the no-annual-fee Blue Cash Everyday Card from American Express may ultimately give you better cash-back earnings with a rate of 3 percent at U.S. supermarkets, 2 percent at U.S. gas stations and select U.S. department stores, and 1 percent on all other spending.
If you’re looking to earn maximum rewards back on your everyday shopping, you may want to consider the Amazon Prime Rewards Visa Signature Card. The card is free with a $99 Amazon Prime membership and the card pays 5 percent back on all Amazon.com purchases. Depending on how you spend, this card may result in greater net earnings.
Most rewards cards exclude the big warehouse clubs, but the Costco Anywhere Visa Card by Citi pays 2 percent back for every $1 spent at the shopping behemoth. You also can earn fat rewards on everyday spending in other places like 4 percent back on gas up to $7,000 a year (then 1 percent), 3 percent back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases, and 1 percent on all other spending.