Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card
Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card last updated on 09.03.2019
Bank of America has a rewards structure that allows cardholders to decide how they want to earn rewards. This, paired with their modestly boosted sign-up bonus value, was enough reason to move this card from a “no thanks” to a “sure.” Plus, if you are a Preferred Rewards client with Bank of America, you can really boost the value of this card.
You’ll earn $200 in online cash rewards after you make just $1,000 in purchases during the first 90 days of account opening. That spending requirement is fairly low – even for a rewards card that carries no annual fee.
As of January of 2019, cardholders can choose from six different categories to earn 3 percent cash back from – travel, gas, online shopping, dining, drug stores and home improvement/furnishings on the first $2,500 in combined purchases each quarter, and an unlimited 1% cashback on every other purchase. If you’re enrolled in the Preferred Rewards program, the 25 to 75 percent bonus on purchases means your 3 percent category choice could be bumped up to 5.25 percent.
You’ll still receive 2 percent cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and an unlimited 1 percent on everything else. Plus, you have the option to change your 3 percent cash back category once every month via Bank of America’s Mobile Banking app or Online Banking.
If you purchase much of your household’s groceries, there’s a better card for you.
Who should get this card
This card is good for someone who wants an easy-to-follow cash-back card that rewards them for typical household spending. There are no rotating categories to keep track of and if you have a bank account or brokerage account with Bank of America or Merrill Lynch, the rewards value starts to exponentially increase.
This card also may be good for anyone looking to make a big purchase who wants the flexibility to pay it off over time. Cash Rewards comes with an introductory 0% intro APR offer for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days (15.99% – 25.99% variable APR applies afterward). A 3% fee (min $10) applies to all balance transfers
Fees and APR
- O% intro APR for 15 billing cycles on purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days (15.99% – 25.99% variable APR thereafter)
- There is no annual fee.
- You’ll pay a 3% foreign transaction fee on all purchases made outside the United States.
- You’ll pay a 3% fee (minimum $10) on all balance transfers.
Extras, perks and using rewards
Cash-back rewards can be redeemed at any time in any amount as either a statement credit, deposited to your Bank of America bank account, or used to buy gift cards through Bank of America’s online shopping portal.
Preferred Rewards clients can get a bonus ranging from 25% to 75% depending on your Preferred Rewards status.
You have to maintain a combined balance of at least $20,000 with either Bank of America, Merrill Lynch or Merrill Edge to get these increased rewards, but if you do, the cash-back rewards go from good to outstanding.
For example, if you have the highest status of Platinum Honors with Bank of America, which comes with a hefty $100,000 minimum account balance requirement, you can earn a bonus on your cash-back rewards of up 75%.
If you have just the Bank of America Cash Rewards card and spend $1,000 in three months on gas (if gas is your chosen 3% category), you earn $30 back. But if you have the highest Platinum Honors Preferred status, that additional 75% back means you get a total of $52.50 on the $1,000 spent at the pump.