Key takeaways

  • Credit card price protection is a benefit that will reimburse you for the price difference if you find the same product you bought advertised for a lower price within a specified time period.
  • Since Amazon Prime Day promotes a variety of sales, keep an eye out for deals and take advantage of your card’s price protection feature if any of your purchases qualify.
  • Price protection has become a less common benefit, and there are a variety of conditions your purchase has to meet to use it.

Amazon Prime Day typically brings a variety of deals, and this year is no exception. There are many ways to use your credit card to benefit from this sale (which fell on July 11-12 this year). Prime Big Deal Days, which is similar to Prime Day, falls on October 10-11 this year.

With inflation weighing on many people’s minds, you may be less inclined to spend money on such deals. But, you can still benefit from lower prices. One often overlooked way is to use your card’s price protection feature to take advantage of the lower prices and merchant discounts accompanying the sale.

Credit card price protection benefit

Given that the smartphone era has spawned a variety of price-tracking capabilities, card issuers have cut back on their price protection offerings to a significant extent. For instance, American Express and Discover no longer offer price protection on any of their cards. Although credit card price protection is becoming less common, there are still a sizable number of cards that offer this feature.

Price protection means that if you buy an item and then see it advertised at a lower price within a specified period, you can put in a claim with your card issuer to reimburse you the difference between the higher price you paid and the lower advertised price.

Considering that a variety of retailers will typically run their own sales around Amazon Prime Day, you could keep an eye out for lower prices on any items you bought, both on Amazon and from other retailers, so you can put in a claim for price protection if you qualify.

Restrictions on price protection benefits

Although the basic benefit is simple enough, you might find it’s not easy to qualify for credit card price protection. And card network Visa specifies that price protection only applies to a print advertisement citing a lower price.

However, Mastercard, the other major card network, only rules out internet advertisements from auction sites. For instance, you cannot put in for a price protection claim based on an advertisement from a site such as eBay or uBid or any other public or private auctions.

There are other restrictions that typically apply. For instance, Mastercard specifies:

  • Price protection applies if you see an advertisement for the same product (with the advertisement specifying the same manufacturer and model number) at a lower price within 60 days of the date of purchase shown on your product receipt.
  • This protection only applies after insurance or coverage provided by a retailer kicks in. For instance, if the seller offers you a refund or store credit for the price differential, price protection will not apply.
  • There is a limit to the number of times per year you can put in for this protection.
  • In case you purchase an item from an internet site that is not mainly involved in the sale of that particular product, or similar products, coverage for that product will not apply.
  • Coverage won’t apply to products bought for resale, rent or other professional or commercial purposes.
  • Purchases of jewelry, art, recycled or refurbished items, collectibles and previously owned items aren’t covered.
  • If an advertisement specifies a “going-out-of-business” sale or a “discontinued” sale, that is also a disqualifier.
  • Professional services and technical support services are not covered.
  • Price protection doesn’t apply to purchases of pets or plants and anything that you consume or is perishable.
  • Another exception applies to purchases of motorized vehicles, such as cars and boats.

Putting in for price protection

Considering there are a variety of retailers offering various deals around Amazon Prime Day, if you do find you qualify for price protection, even with all the exemptions, you should take advantage of this benefit.

To do so, contact your card issuer to find out what its procedure is for putting in a price protection claim. Typically, you will have to send in a copy of the advertisement with the lower price (or a link to an online advertisement) and a receipt for your original purchase. Your issuer might need other documentation too.

The bottom line

With inflation weighing on consumers’ finances, you may be less inclined to open your wallet this year for Amazon Prime Day. But if you do, using the best credit cards for shopping on Amazon can help you save — and so can taking advantage of various deals around this event to benefit from your card’s price protection feature. Although fewer card issuers offer this feature nowadays, it is by no means extinct and a sizable number of cards still offer price protection.