U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card review
Why you can trust Bankrate
At Bankrate, we have a mission to demystify the credit cards industry — regardless or where you are in your journey — and make it one you can navigate with confidence. Our team is full of a diverse range of experts from credit card pros to data analysts and, most importantly, people who shop for credit cards just like you. With this combination of expertise and perspectives, we keep close tabs on the credit card industry year-round to:
- Meet you wherever you are in your credit card journey to guide your information search and help you understand your options.
- Consistently provide up-to-date, reliable market information so you\'re well-equipped to make confident decisions.
- Reduce industry jargon so you get the clearest form of information possible, so you can make the right decision for you.
At Bankrate, we focus on the points consumers care about most: rewards, welcome offers and bonuses, APR, and overall customer experience. Any issuers discussed on our site are vetted based on the value they provide to consumers at each of these levels. At each step of the way, we fact-check ourselves to prioritize accuracy so we can continue to be here for your every next.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that we’re putting your interests first. Our award-winning editors and reporters create honest and accurate content to help you make the right financial decisions.
We value your trust. Our mission is to provide readers with accurate and unbiased information, and we have editorial standards in place to ensure that happens. Our editors and reporters thoroughly fact-check editorial content to ensure the information you’re reading is accurate. We maintain a firewall between our advertisers and our editorial team. Our editorial team does not receive direct compensation from our advertisers.
Bankrate’s editorial team writes on behalf of YOU – the reader. Our goal is to give you the best advice to help you make smart personal finance decisions. We follow strict guidelines to ensure that our editorial content is not influenced by advertisers. Our editorial team receives no direct compensation from advertisers, and our content is thoroughly fact-checked to ensure accuracy. So, whether you’re reading an article or a review, you can trust that you’re getting credible and dependable information.
How We Make Money
You have money questions. Bankrate has answers. Our experts have been helping you master your money for over four decades. We continually strive to provide consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout life’s financial journey.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that our content is honest and accurate. Our award-winning editors and reporters create honest and accurate content to help you make the right financial decisions. The content created by our editorial staff is objective, factual, and not influenced by our advertisers.
We’re transparent about how we are able to bring quality content, competitive rates, and useful tools to you by explaining how we make money.
Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. We are compensated in exchange for placement of sponsored products and, services, or by you clicking on certain links posted on our site. Therefore, this compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear within listing categories. Other factors, such as our own proprietary website rules and whether a product is offered in your area or at your self-selected credit score range can also impact how and where products appear on this site. While we strive to provide a wide range offers, Bankrate does not include information about every financial or credit product or service.
This content is powered by HomeInsurance.com, a licensed insurance producer (NPN: 8781838) and a corporate affiliate of Bankrate.com. HomeInsurance.com LLC services are only available in states were it is licensed and insurance coverage through HomeInsurance.com may not be available in all states. All insurance products are governed by the terms in the applicable insurance policy, and all related decisions (such as approval for coverage, premiums, commissions and fees) and policy obligations are the sole responsibility of the underwriting insurer. The information on this site does not modify any insurance policy terms in any way.
U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card Overview
Getting a head start on your debt can be easier with a lengthy introductory APR period, and the U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card is a prime choice if you need as much breathing room as possible while paying off your existing balance and upcoming expenses.
The Visa Platinum card offers one of the best zero-interest intro periods for both purchases and balance transfers available, plus the peace of mind its extra cellphone protection perk can offer. Although the battle for the best balance transfer credit card is raging with a host of newly introduced and updated card offers, U.S. Bank’s Visa Platinum is one of the safest picks if you have big purchases around the corner.
However, like other cards designed mainly for balance transfers, the Visa Platinum doesn’t provide much ongoing value after you’ve settled your balance. Before you make your decision, you should consider competing cards and even rewards cards with shorter intro APR offers to see which option will be more worthwhile in the long run.
What are the pros and cons?
- No rewards programs or reward-based sign-up bonus limits long-term value
- Barebones benefits—not much value after paying off your balance
- 3 percent balance transfer fee ($5 minimum; balance transfers must be within the first 60 days)
- 3 percent foreign transaction fee (2 percent if transaction abroad is in U.S. dollars)
A deeper look into the current card offer
- Rewards rate: N/A
- Welcome offer: N/A
- Annual fee: $0
- Purchase intro APR: 0 percent APR for 20 billing cycles
- Balance transfer intro APR: 0 percent APR for 20 billing cycles (must be within first 60 days)
- Regular APR: 15.24 percent to 25.24 percent (variable)
Current intro APR offer
Rather than offer a welcome bonus incentive like the BankAmericard® credit card, the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum entirely focuses on its intro APR offer. Both purchases and balance transfers, as long as your transfers are within the first 60 days, are shielded from interest for 20 billing cycles.
This was previously perhaps the longest period for both purchases and balance transfers on the market, but the Wells Fargo Reflect℠ Card surpasses it with up to 21 months of 0 percent intro purchase and qualifying balance transfer APR from account opening by completing each minimum payment on time during the intro and extension periods (balance transfers must be within the first 120 days). Regular APR: 13.74%-25.74% variable APR.
A few other prominent cards carry up to 21-month intro APRs as well, but the longest intro period doesn’t necessarily translate into the most valuable offer. For instance, the newly updated Citi Simplicity® Card and Citi® Diamond Preferred® Card both offer a 21-month 0 percent intro balance transfer APR and 12-month 0 percent intro purchase APR, but the Visa Platinum’s eight extra months of intro purchase APR greatly outweigh the Citi cards’ extra month for transfers (then a variable APR of 15.49 percent to 25.49 percent for the Simplicity, and 14.49 percent to 24.49 percent for the Diamond Preferred).
You may also find a no annual fee cash back card with a solid zero-interest period could recoup more long-term value in rewards than the extra few intro APR months would in interest, depending on your balance.
Other cardholder perks
The lengthy intro APR is the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum card’s main selling point, but cellphone protection is its only other notable additional perk outside its basic Visa account monitoring features. Like other cards invested wholeheartedly into zero-interest, the Visa Platinum’s barebones benefits don’t make a convincing case to hold onto it after your balance is clear.
By paying your cellphone bill each month with your card, the associated phones on it are covered for up to $600 per eligible damage or loss claim—minus a $25 out-of-pocket deductible. You may be reimbursed or receive equivalent replacement phones from two possible claims each year for up to $1,200 in annual coverage.
That’s the same level of coverage that you’d receive with the Wells Fargo Reflect, making it and the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum two of the best balance transfer cards for cellphone insurance available.
Rates and Fees
A good to excellent credit score (a 670+ FICO score) could net you the 20-billing cycle intro purchase and balance transfer APR plus a variable APR afterward as low as 15.24 percent, or up to 25.24 percent. The low end of this range is below the current average credit card interest rate, but not by enough to justify keeping this card for. Just be sure to transfer your balances during your first 60 days to qualify, and to never miss a payment due date. Otherwise, you may lose your zero-interest offers and experience an up to $40 late payment fee—but no penalty APR, fortunately.
Still, coupled with no annual fee, this rate makes it a relatively low-cost card. You should also be aware of its 3 percent ($5 minimum) balance transfer fee, which is on the lower end of the typical 3 to 5 percent range, and 3 percent foreign transaction fee. The foreign transaction fee drops to 2 percent for purchases you make abroad in U.S. dollars, but keep in mind the additional currency conversion fee will probably end up being more expensive than the foreign currency 3 percent fee.
How the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card compares to other balance transfer cards
The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum card has one of the longest intro APR periods on both purchases and balance transfers out there, but it may not be the best option for you depending on your long-term needs.
U.S. Bank Visa Platinum vs. Wells Fargo Reflect℠ Card
As the only credit card from a major issuer to deliver a longer intro APR on both purchases and balance transfers than the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum, the Wells Fargo Reflect card seems like a no-brainer initially. Both cards offer a 3 percent balance transfer fee with a $5 minimum (the Reflect card’s increases to 5 percent and disqualifies transfers for the intro APR after the first 120 days) and the same level of cellphone protection without many other benefits, so the comparison comes down to the intro APR.
The Reflect offers up to 21 months of 0 percent intro APR on both purchases and qualifying balance transfers from account opening, extended from the base 18-month period for as long as you keep making on-time minimum payments during the intro and extension periods . After that, the ongoing APR can be legitimately classified as low-interest at 13.74 percent to 25.74 percent (variable). If you want a longer intro APR upfront without feeling like you have to “work toward it,” the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum may be the easier option. However, the Reflect card will be the stronger option for many cardholders considering its potentially better intro APR, ongoing APR and the minor savings from the My Wells Fargo Deals program.
U.S. Bank Visa Platinum vs. Citi® Double Cash Card
By using a balance transfer calculator beforehand, many cardholders may discover that a card that trades intro APR length for a rewards program is more valuable both upfront and over time.
Paying off your balance with 21 $150 monthly payments wouldn’t charge any interest with the Visa Platinum, but although the Double Cash card would incur $5.35 in interest since it only provides 0 percent intro balance transfer APR for 18 months (variable 14.74 percent to 24.74 percent thereafter), you’d actually come out ahead thanks to its unlimited up to 2 percent cash back on all purchases (1 percent back when you buy, plus 1 another percent when you pay). Spending $300 in groceries per month, for instance, would earn $126 cash back by the end of 21 months—enough to cover your balance transfer fee and put $36 extra into your pocket.
Best cards to pair the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card with
If you need one of the longest intro APR periods available to pay off debt, focusing your efforts on whittling away your balance before applying for more cards will be more rewarding in the long run.
When the time comes, you’ll have an easier time choosing a rewards card tailored to your biggest expenses.
Bankrate’s Take: Is the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card worth it?
The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum is certainly worth it if you need to keep interest at bay for an exceptionally long time while you pay off your balance and upcoming purchases. It doesn’t carry the longest intro APR, lowest ongoing APR or best long-term value after you settle your balance, but the Visa Platinum is a solid option if you just need an above-average timeframe to finish off your card debt.
Its cellphone protection and relatively low balance transfer fee give it an edge over other balance transfer cards, but a rewards card with a solid intro APR and sign-up bonus could be much more rewarding upfront and down the road.