MLB™ Cash Rewards Mastercard® from Bank of America review
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Baseball fans can have a field day with this card from Bank of America, which allows you to show your loyalty to any one of the 30 Major League Baseball teams every time you pay. In every other way, the MLB Cash Rewards card is identical to the standard Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, so if you’re not a baseball fan, you can enjoy the same rewards without the logo.
The MLB Cash Rewards Mastercard, like the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, stands out for the choice cardholders have in which category to earn its highest cash back reward rate. You can earn 3 percent cash back on your choice among gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drug stores or home improvement/furnishings; 2 percent back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (on the first $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club purchases each quarter, then 1 percent) and 1 percent back on all other purchases.
Purchases are categorized by merchant codes and you have the option to change your choice of category online or through the mobile app each calendar month, or make no change, in which case your previous choice will roll over.
This card also comes with an introductory APR offer on both purchases and balance transfers.
If you spend at least $1,000 in purchases within the first ninety days of account opening, you can earn a $200 cash rewards bonus. The high cash back rewards rate combined with the added perk of a welcome offer places this card among top-tier cash back cards with no annual fee, alongside other high-earning no annual fee cards like the Chase Freedom Unlimited® and Discover it® Cash Back.
Is this the right card for you?
This is a straightforward cash back credit card that can work well for your budget because you can earn cash back on the things you already spend money on most. You don’t have to track rotating categories or even worry about changing your choice category if you find one that works for you.
And Bank of America Preferred Rewards customers have the potential to save even more with Cash Rewards. If you are a Preferred Rewards client and have at least $20,000 in combined Bank of America or Merrill qualified accounts, you can earn a bonus between 25 and 75 percent on rewards. That boosts your 3 percent choice category as high as 5.25 percent, 2 percent rewards at grocery stores and wholesale clubs to 3.5 percent (on the first $2,500 spent in combined categories quarterly) and 1 percent on everything else to 1.75 percent.
The MLB Cash Rewards card’s introductory APR offer also makes it a solid option if you’re looking to make any big purchases that you want to pay off over time or you’re trying to pay off a balance that you’ve racked up on another card. Balance transfers made in the first 60 days carry a 3 percent or $10 fee (whichever is higher), but you’ll have 15 billing cycles to pay off the balance before it starts earning interest.
What are the rewards worth?
If you spend the maximum $2,500 in combined bonus categories each quarter, with $1,000 going towards your choice 3 percent category and the additional $1,500 at the 2 percent grocery store and wholesale club category, you’d earn $60 cash back each quarter, or $240 annually.
Spend an extra $1,000 in each month on any other purchases, and you’ll earn an additional $120 annually, bringing your total cash back up to $340. If you earn the $200 bonus after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days of account opening, you could bring your first year total earnings up to $540. That’s great value for a card with no annual fee.
How to maximize value with this card
Preferred Rewards clients are best placed to fully maximize the value of this card. Take the same example as above, but for someone with a $100,000 account balance with Bank of America or Merrill account. That would put you in the highest Preferred Rewards category and boost your rewards earnings by 75 percent.
Your $1,000 quarterly spend towards your choice 3 percent category (now boosted to 5.25 percent) combined with $1,500 towards the 2 percent grocery store and wholesale club category (boosted to 3.5 percent) would earn $105 each quarter or $420 annually.
Bank of America’s Cash Rewards credit card is a solid option for no-frills cash back in categories that reflect many people’s everyday spending. And the MLB version of the card is an added bonus for anyone who wants to show their love for their favorite team at the register. If your spending aligns with the card’s high-earning categories, this could make a great addition to your wallet.
The information about the MLB Cash Rewards Mastercard from Bank of America has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.