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Wells Fargo Platinum vs. Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa

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If you were approved for the *Wells Fargo Platinum card (This card is no longer available) when it was accepting new applicants, you probably chose the card for its incredible introductory APR offer. Now, you may be wondering whether it’s worthwhile to keep the Wells Fargo Platinum or switch to another card like the *Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card (This card is no longer available), which boasts a 0 percent intro APR offer of its own, a modest welcome bonus and a no-fuss cash rewards program.

To help you decide, we’ll take a closer look at these cards and explore some of the main perks of each one.

Main card details

Wells Fargo Platinum Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa
Welcome bonus N/A Earn a $150 cash bonus after spending $500 on purchases in the first 3 months
Rewards rate N/A
  • 1.8% cash rewards on digital wallet purchases during the first 12 months after account opening
  • 1.5% cash rewards on all other purchases
Intro APR 0% APR for 18 months after account opening on purchases and qualifying balance transfers 0% APR for 15 months after account opening on purchases and qualifying balance transfers
Regular APR 16.49% to 24.49% (variable) 14.49% to 24.99% (variable)
Annual fee $0 $0

Wells Fargo Platinum vs. Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa highlights

Let’s take a look at how these cards stack up across a few major categories.

Welcome bonus winner: Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa offers a $150 bonus if you spend $500 within three months of opening the account. In comparison, the Wells Fargo Platinum didn’t offer a welcome bonus when it was accepting new cardmembers.

Rewards rate winner: Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa offers an unlimited 1.5 percent cash back on purchases. And for the first 12 months, it offers 1.8 percent cash back on digital wallet purchases, including purchases through Google Pay and Apple Pay. Given that the Wells Fargo Platinum doesn’t provide cardmembers with any rewards, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa is the clear winner in this category.

Annual fee winner: Tie

Neither card charges an annual fee, so this won’t be the deciding factor between the two cards.

Intro APR winner: Wells Fargo Platinum

The Wells Fargo Platinum offered a 0 percent intro APR on purchases and qualifying balance transfers for 18 months after account opening, while the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa offers a 0 percent intro APR for only 15 months. Thus, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa doesn’t provide as much time as the Wells Fargo Platinum to pay off those big purchases or balance transfers interest-free.

Which card earns the most?

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa offers a welcome bonus and unlimited cash rewards. When it was accepting new cardmembers, the Wells Fargo Platinum didn’t offer a welcome bonus or rewards. Therefore, in terms of earnings, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa beats the Wells Fargo Platinum every time.

To see how much you can earn with the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa, let’s look at an example.

Wells Fargo Platinum vs. Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa spending example

Suppose you get the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa and spend $300 each month, for a total of $3,600 in spending for the year. And let’s say that $700 of that spending is through digital wallets (which means $2,900 of that spending is for all other purchases). The rewards rate for digital wallet spending is 1.8 percent, whereas the rewards rate for all other spending is 1.5 percent. For the first year, that means you’ll earn:

  • $150 welcome bonus
  • $12.60 for digital wallet spending
  • $43.50 for all other spending

When you add up your bonus and cash rewards, you’ll earn $206.10 in your first year.

On the other hand, if you’d put that same spending on the Wells Fargo Platinum instead, you’d get $0 in rewards. So if you want to earn anything at all on your credit card purchases, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa is the better option.

Should you keep the Wells Fargo Platinum?

When it was accepting new cardmembers, the main draw of the Wells Fargo Platinum was its long intro APR offer. Once that intro APR period is up, the card doesn’t have much to offer. However, given that the Wells Fargo Platinum has no annual fee, it doesn’t hurt to keep it in your wallet if you’re enjoying its limited benefits.

The fact that the Wells Fargo Platinum doesn’t reward you for spending could be an advantage if you’re trying to keep your credit card bills low. If you chose the Wells Fargo Platinum because you wanted to transfer a large balance and reduce debt, it may be a plus that the card doesn’t include a rewards program that will entice you to spend more money.

Additional benefits

In the event that your cellphone is stolen or damaged, the Wells Fargo Platinum has you covered. You can file up to two claims within a 12-month period, and each claim can go up to $600 after you’ve exhausted your other insurance options. However, you’ll pay a $25 deductible for each claim you file.

You’ll get some other travel perks, too, such as emergency assistance services, access to a pay-per-use roadside dispatch service and travel accident insurance.

The Wells Fargo Platinum also allows you to track your FICO score for free, and it offers alerts via text or email if any suspicious transactions are detected on your account.

Recommended credit score

It’s no longer possible to apply for the Wells Fargo Platinum, but existing cardmembers likely had good to excellent credit scores when they were approved. Typically, that means a FICO score of 670 to 850.

Should you switch to the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa?

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa offers a $150 welcome bonus and unlimited cash rewards that won’t expire as long as your account is open. That’s a big step up from the Wells Fargo Platinum, which lacks a rewards program. On top of that, the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa offers some other perks.

Additional benefits

If you use the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa to pay your cellphone bill, you’ll get up to $600 in protection if your cellphone is stolen or damaged. However, that coverage kicks in after a $25 deductible, and it’s secondary to any other applicable cellphone insurance.

The Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa is also one of the cards that’s eligible for Wells Fargo’s Go Far Rewards loyalty program. If you enroll, you can shop through the Wells Fargo Earn More Mall and earn extra rewards.

And as with the Wells Fargo Platinum, you can check your FICO score for free.

Redemption options

There are several ways to redeem your rewards earnings. For example, you can:

  • Withdraw earnings from a Wells Fargo ATM ($20 at a time)
  • Deposit earnings into a Wells Fargo checking or savings account
  • Receive a credit applied to your mortgage principal if you have an eligible Wells Fargo mortgage
  • Redeem rewards through Wells Fargo’s Go Far Rewards program

Wells Fargo’s Go Far Rewards program provides more choices for how to redeem your earnings. Once you enroll, you can cash in your rewards for travel and experiences, such as airfare, car rentals, hotel stays and tickets to sporting events. You can also redeem rewards for merchandise, gift cards or donations to charity. Alternatively, you could transfer your rewards to someone else who owns a card in the Go Far Rewards program or else pool your earnings and redeem them together.

Recommended credit score

The recommended credit score for approval is in the good to excellent range, which typically means a FICO score between 670 and 850.

The bottom line

When it was accepting new cardmembers, the Wells Fargo Platinum included a generous intro APR offer that made it a great choice for balance transfers. Once the 0 percent intro APR period is up, there’s no harm in keeping the card thanks to its $0 annual fee, but the card’s perks are minimal. If you’d like to start earning rewards for your spending, it would make sense to switch to the Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa or another Wells Fargo card. Otherwise, you may want to do some research to see if there is a different rewards card or balance transfer card that works better for you.

*The information about Wells Fargo Platinum card and Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer. Wells Fargo Platinum card and Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® card are no longer available. 

Written by
Sarah Brodsky
Personal Finance Expert Contributor
Sarah Brodsky is a freelance writer specializing in personal finance and economics. She has more than 12 years of experience writing about credit, consumer banking and investing. Sarah writes for Credit Karma and Impactivate, and her clients have included Glassdoor and the Institute for Humane Studies. Her articles have been published by Haven Life, KeyBank, Investopedia, First Citizens Bank of Raleigh, North Carolina and the Coosa Valley Credit Union.
Edited by
Associate Editor