How the average family can benefit from the updated Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card


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The Bank of America content in this post was last updated on August 7, 2019.

So, you and your partner are parents to a family of three. You work a full-time job and your time off the clock is spent driving kids to school, sports practices and more. You value your credit card points, but you wish you had more control over your rewards due to your busy, ever-changing lifestyle. Thankfully, there’s a card option for you.

This month, Bank of America launched an updated version of the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card that allows you to choose the category you earn 3% cash back in.

You can pick from gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores and home improvement/furnishings. The best part is that you have the option to change your choice 3% category once every month.

In addition to this 3% category, you’ll earn 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs and 1% unlimited on everything else. Your 3% and 2% categories only extend to the first $2,500 you spend combined each quarter — after you hit that spending cap, you’ll receive 1% cash back.

Say you choose gas stations as your 3% rewards category and stick with it for the whole year. With Bank of America’s updated Cash Rewards card, you can spend $300 a month on gas (or $900 per quarter) and receive $108 a year in cash back. You’ll still get 2% back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, meaning you could spend $1,600 per quarter on groceries and wholesale club purchases before hitting the $2,500 cap.

That means for one month, you could spend $1,000 on groceries and get $20 dollars back. You’d then have $600 left in quarterly spending to divvy up between gas, groceries or any category of your choosing. Once you hit your $2,500 spending cap for the quarter, you’ll receive 1% cash back on everything.

You can earn even more rewards by qualifying for the Bank of America® Preferred Rewards program. Balances between $20,000 and $49,999 in any Bank of America account (including investment accounts you may hold through Merrill Edge® and Merrill Lynch®) earn you a 25% bonus on your rewards.

That means if you have $20,000 in a Bank of America account or affiliated investment accounts and are enrolled in the Preferred Rewards program, you’ll end up scoring 3.25% at gas stations, 2.5% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs and 1.25% on everything else, earning you $117 in rewards at gas stations (rather than $108) from the 25% bonus.

Higher account ranges can get you even greater bonus rewards from the Preferred Rewards program. A balance of $50,000 to $99,999 earns you 50% more rewards, whereas $100,000 or more can earn you 75% more rewards. The Preferred Rewards program isn’t automatic, so make sure to enroll at Note: In order to enroll in the program, your account must have a qualifying balance of $20,000 for a three month calendar period.