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There are dozens of reasons to pay for your purchases with a credit card instead of a debit card or cash, including the prospect of earning rewards. After all, the best rewards credit cards let consumers earn cash back, flexible points or travel rewards for each dollar they spend, and many offer a large initial sign-up bonus as well.
Not only that, but paying with plastic is easily more secure than other payment methods since most credit cards come with zero liability for fraudulent purchases. Further, many credit cards come with added consumer protections and insurance products that can help you save money or avoid financial losses in specific situations.
Purchase protection is one such benefit, and some Bank of America credit cards offer this perk through Visa. This guide goes over Bank of America purchase protection, how it works and how you can file a claim if you need to.
What is purchase protection on Bank of America cards?
Purchase protection is a credit card perk that can provide you with reimbursement or the repair of an item that is damaged or stolen within a specific period after you buy it. You have to pay for the item with a credit card that offers this coverage for it to apply.
As an issuer, Bank of America itself doesn’t offer purchase protection. However, Visa provides this benefit on Bank of America cards on the Visa network.
On eligible Bank of America Visa cards, purchase protection is good for 90 days from an item’s date of purchase. Coverage limits vary by card.
How does purchase protection work on Bank of America cards?
For your Bank of America purchase protection to come into play, you need to be a cardholder of a Bank of America Visa Signature credit card that offers this perk. If the item you purchase is lost or damaged during the coverage period of 90 days from the date of purchase, then you can apply for reimbursement or repair coverage with Visa.
As an example of how purchase protection works, imagine you purchased a new tablet from Best Buy and paid with an eligible Bank of America Visa credit card that offers purchase protection. If your tablet stopped working 30 days after you bought it, you would probably be pretty miffed, yet you wouldn’t be able to return your tablet to Best Buy since they have a strict 15-day return period in most cases.
With purchase protection from your Visa credit card, however, you could apply for repair or replacement of your tablet regardless of Best Buy’s policy.
What kind of purchases does purchase protection cover on Bank of America cards?
Purchase protection can cover almost any purchase you make with your eligible Visa credit card ranging from a new laptop computer to a sweater or a kitchen full of appliances. However, this is only true provided damage or theft occurs within the 90-day window from the date of purchase.
What does purchase protection on Bank of America cards not cover?
Purchase protection on Bank of America cards does come with a standard set of exclusions. Items that will not receive purchase protection, even if you pay with your credit card, include (but are not limited to):
- Animals and live plants
- Antiques and collectibles
- Boats and watercraft
- Computer software
- Items purchased for resale
- Items that mysteriously disappear
- Purchases in the care of a common carrier (e.g. airline, cruise line, etc.)
- Medical equipment
- Real estate
- Rented or leased items
- Purchases that are used or pre-owned
Which Bank of America credit cards are eligible for purchase protection?
Visa Signature offers purchase protection on the following Bank of America Visa Signature cards:
- Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card
- Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
- Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card
There are also a few co-branded Bank of America Visa Signature cards that come with this perk.
Purchase protection on Bank of America Visa Signature cards
|Card||Purchase protection limits|
|Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card||$500 per claim, $50,000 per calendar year|
|Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card||$500 per claim, $50,000 per calendar year|
|Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card||$10,000 per claim, $50,000 per cardholder|
|Co-branded Bank of America cards||$500 per claim, $50,000 per calendar year|
As you can see, most of these cards offer up to $500 per claim in purchase protection, except for the Premium Rewards with a generous limit of $10,000 per claim. If you are eager to gain this important protection for items you buy, the Premium Rewards card should be on your radar.
Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card
The Bank of America Premium Rewards card starts you off with 50,000 points worth $500 when you spend $3,000 on your card within 90 days of account opening. You can also earn unlimited 2X points on travel and dining purchases and 1.5X points on everything else. A $95 annual fee applies, but you’ll qualify for perks like up to $100 airline incidental statement credits annually, up to $100 toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck membership every four years and no foreign transaction fees.
Consumer protections you’ll receive with the Bank of America Premium Rewards card include purchase protection, trip delay reimbursement, trip interruption and cancellation insurance, coverage for lost and delayed baggage, emergency evacuation and transportation coverage, return protection, extended warranty on eligible items, roadside dispatch and more.
Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card
The Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card is a flexible rewards card that earns 3 percent cash back in your category of choice, including gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drugstores or home improvement or furnishing purchases, plus 2 percent at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 of combined purchases each quarter in both bonus categories, then 1 percent). All other purchases earn 1 percent back.
As a welcome offer, you can get $200 cash back by spending at least $1,000 in combined purchases during your first 90 days.
You’ll also get Visa Signature perks, including extended warranty coverage, Visa Signature® Concierge, roadside dispatch and travel and emergency assistance.
Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
With the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card, you can earn 1.5 points per dollar on all qualifying purchases. Despite being a travel card, the Travel Rewards works more like a cash back card, allowing you to redeem rewards toward statement credits on travel or dining purchases.
Unlike many other travel credit cards, the Bank of America Travel Rewards doesn’t have much to offer when it comes to additional perks. Besides basic benefits, like free access to your credit score and overdraft protection, you’ll get Visa Signature perks and access to BankAmeriDeals.
Currently, the card is offering 25,000 bonus points after you spend at least $1,000 in qualifying purchases within 90 days of opening the account.
Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card information last updated on 10.22.2021
How to file a claim with purchase protection on Bank of America cards
If you want to file a purchase protection claim, you can start the process by calling 1-800-VISA-911 or the number on the back of your credit card within 60 days of the damage or theft. From there, the benefits administrator will ask you some basic questions about your claim and send you a claim form to fill out.
At this point, you’ll need to complete your claim form and return it to Bank of America within 90 days of the damage or theft. The documentation you’ll need to provide includes:
- Your completed and signed claim form
- The receipt for your purchase
- A police report filed within 48 hours of the incident in the case of theft
- A copy of your primary insurance policy’s declarations page to determine your deductible
- Documentation of any other settlement regarding the damage or theft
- Any other documentation needed to prove your claim
The bottom line
Purchase protection may not seem as important as rewards and other cardholder perks, but this coverage can come in handy if you need it. This is especially true for pricey purchases you might pay for with your credit card, and it’s nice to know that Bank of America purchase protection can keep you covered.