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Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Credit Card Review: A retired coffee shop staple exchanged for a rewards-earning powerhouse

A card made specially for Starbucks enthusiasts might fall flat (white) compared to more flexible rewards cards

 /  7 min
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Snapshot

Bottom line

The discontinued Starbucks Rewards Visa seems like an ideal option for the avid Starbucks drinker, but it’s important to keep in mind that its perks aren’t nearly as far-reaching as the popular chain’s beverage selection. An annual fee and low earning rates limited to only Starbucks purchases mean this card may be worth it for just a small segment of people.

Image of Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Card

Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Card

*
Excellent (740 – 850)
Info
Recommended Credit

4,500 Bonus

Intro offer

Info

1X - 3X

Rewards rate

Info

$49

Annual fee

15.99% to 22.99% Variable

Regular APR

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Bankrate Insight

As of July 20, 2023, Chase discontinued the Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Credit Card. Former cardholders had their cards changed to the original Chase Freedom® or the Chase Freedom Unlimited®, which some might consider a substantial upgrade due to its elevated rewards rates and more flexible earning structure.

Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Credit Card overview

The Starbucks Rewards Visa card is a unique rewards credit card. First, the rewards you earn are called “stars,” which you can only redeem at Starbucks. Second, the earning rate is a disappointing 1 star per $4 spent on non-bonus purchases. This rate might make it difficult for people who want to use this card for everyday spending to rack up rewards. However, some benefits of the card, such as a sign-up bonus and consumer protection offers, might outweigh the costs for Starbucks lovers looking to get their hands on Starbucks-specific rewards.

  • Credit Card Cash Back

    Rewards

    • Earn up to 3 stars per $1 at Starbucks stores when you digitally load your Starbucks Card with your Starbucks Rewards Visa Card
    • 1 star per $2 spent at grocery stores, on local transit and commuting and on internet, cable and phone services 
    • 1 star per $4 you spend on other purchases

    Expert Appraisal: Unimpressive

  • Credit Card Search

    Rates and fees

    • $0 intro annual fee; $49 annual fee after first year
    • 15.99 percent to 22.99 percent variable

    Expert Appraisal: Unimpressive

  • Congrats

    Other cardholder perks

    • Consumer protections 
    • Monthly coupon

    Expert Appraisal: Good

Alternatives to the Starbucks Rewards Visa

The Starbucks Rewards Visa may have been discontinued, but you can find potentially more valuable cards that are available to replace it. 

Image of Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Card

Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Card

Annual fee

$49

Intro offer

4,500 Bonus
Info

Rewards rate

1X - 3X
Info

Recommended Credit Score

Excellent (740 – 850)
Info
Image of Prime Visa
Bankrate Score
Apply now Lock
on Amazon's secure site

Annual fee

$0

Intro offer

Get a $100 Amazon Gift Card
Info

Rewards rate

1% - 5%
Info

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent (670 – 850)
Info
Image of Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Bankrate Score
Apply now Lock
on Chase's secure site

Annual fee

$0

Intro offer

Up to $300 cash back
Info

Rewards rate

1.5% - 5%
Info

Recommended Credit Score

Good to Excellent (670 – 850)
Info

Starbucks Rewards Visa Card pros and cons

Pros

  • Checkmark

    You qualify for various consumer protections and insurances.

  • Checkmark

    If you frequent Starbucks, then you would benefit a lot from the card's only redemption option: Starbucks food and drinks.

Cons

  • The “stars” you earn are only good for Starbucks food, drinks and in-store merchandise, which makes them inflexible.

  • This card has a $49 annual fee after the first year, which may only be worth it for a select few who could easily offset it.

  • Earning rates are meager — especially for non-bonus purchases.

Bankrate’s Take — Is the Starbucks® Rewards Visa® Card worth keeping?

You may no longer get Starbucks-specific rewards from the retired Starbucks Rewards Visa, but plenty of cards available today could earn you lucrative rates for your Starbucks purchases. And since your earnings wouldn’t be tied to one store, you have much more versatility when it comes to where you redeem your earnings.

If Chase changed your product to the Chase Freedom Unlimited, you may end up with a much more valuable rewards card overall, thanks to its generous and versatile bonus categories, intro APR offers and top-of-the-line travel protection — all for no annual fee.

How we rated this card

Document
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50+
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We rate credit cards using a proprietary card scoring system that ranks each card’s estimated average rewards rate, estimated annual earnings, welcome bonus value, APR, fees, perks and more against those of other cards in its primary category.

Each card feature is assigned a weighting based on how important it is to people looking for a card in a given category. These features are then scored based on how they rank relative to the features on other cards in the category. Based on these calculations, each card receives an overall rating of 1-5 stars (with 5 being the highest possible score and 1 being the lowest). 

We analyzed over 150 of the most popular rewards and cash back cards to determine where each stacked up based on their value, cost, benefits and more. Here are some of the key factors that influenced this card’s overall score and how the score influenced our review:

Frequently asked questions

Written by
Ashley Parks
Former Editor, Credit cards
As a Bankrate credit cards editor, Ashley Parks is fascinated by the ways people can make credit cards work for them when armed with the right knowledge.
Edited by Editor II, Credit Cards

* See the online application for details about terms and conditions for these offers. Every reasonable effort has been made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. After you click on the offer you desire you will be directed to the credit card issuer's web site where you can review the terms and conditions for your selected offer.

Editorial Disclosure: Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, is accurate as of the publish date. All products or services are presented without warranty. Check the bank’s website for the most current information.