BankAmericard Cash Rewards credit card review | finder.com

Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card review – December 2018

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Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

An excellent cashback card with no annual fee.

30-second take

  • Get this card if you want easy cash back — especially on gas and groceries — without an annual fee.
  • Pick something else if you spend heavily on gas and groceries or want travel rewards.
  • Apply with a good to excellent credit score of 720 to 850.
Product NameBank of America® Cash Rewards credit card
Card TypeMastercard
Annual Fee$0
APR (Annual Percentage Rate) for Purchases15.24% to 25.24% variable
Introductory Purchase APR0% for the first 12 statement closing dates (then 15.24% to 25.24% variable)
Introductory Balance Transfer APR 0% for the first 12 statement closing dates (then 15.24% to 25.24% variable)
Balance Transfer Fee$10 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater
Cash Advance Rate18.24% to 27.24% variable
Foreign Transaction Fee3% of the transaction value
Cash Advance Fee$10 or 5% of the cash advance amount, whichever is greater
Interest Free PeriodUp to 25 days
Late Payment Fee$38
Returned Payment Fee$27
Additional Cardholder Fee$0
Minimum Age18 years of age
Welcome OfferOnline $200 cash rewards bonus after making at least $500 in purchases in the first 90 days of your account opening.
Reward Value per Dollar1% cash back
Rewards Points ExpiryNever

The basics

The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card has a reputation as a solid, reliable cashback rewards card.

A $0 annual fee is a great start: It means you won’t feel pressured to use your card. The cash back you earn is a bonus, rather than an obligation to get your money’s worth. You can earn it at your own pace.

Luckily, the cashback earnings are pretty good too. You’ll earn 3% cash back on gas and 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs for the first $2,500 in combined purchases each quarter — and then 1% after. All other purchases earn you a consistent 1% cash back. This makes for a good mix of earnings for everyday spending.

What’s more, it doesn’t hurt to get a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 statement closing dates. An APR of 15.24% to 25.24% variable applies after.

If your current card charges a high annual fee — or you’re sick of trying to understand the conversion rate for travel points and miles — switching to the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card could be a good option. However, if you’re looking for travel rewards, you may want to check out its sister card, the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card.

A cashback card with similar categories

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

  • $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%).
  • 2% cash back at U.S. gas stations and at select U.S. department stores, 1% back on other purchases.
  • Low intro APR: 0% for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers, then a variable rate, currently 14.99% to 25.99%.
  • Over 1.5 million more places in the U.S. started accepting American Express® Cards in 2017.
  • Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be easily redeemed for statement credits, gift cards, and merchandise.
  • No annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
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See Rates & Fees
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Compare Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card vs. Barclaycard Arrival® Plus World Elite Mastercard®

An excellent '1 2 3 cash back credit card'

You may have seen this term before; it’s shorthand for a card that offers 3%, 2% and 1% cash back. The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is an excellent example — perhaps one of the best you’ll find.

The perks

  • Annual fee: $0.

    A $0 annual fee means your cash back is all a plus. You won’t feel pressured to use the card to make it worth paying for.

  • Signup bonus: Online cash.

    After you spend $500 on purchases in the first 90 days your account is open, you receive a $200 online cash bonus.

  • Cash back: More for gas and groceries.

    Earn 3% cash back on gas and 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs on your first $2,500 in combined purchases each quarter, reverting to 1% cash back after. You’ll also earn 1% cash back on everything else you buy.

  • Intro APR: Purchases and balance transfers.

    Get a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 statement closing dates, reverting to 15.24% to 25.24% variable APR after. Make balance transfers within the first 60 days to qualify.

How much cashback rewards can I earn with the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card?

The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is effective if you typically spend around $800 a month in combined gas, grocery and wholesale-club purchases. This helps you maximize your elevated rewards.

Here’s how much you might earn based on this hypothetical monthly budget:

  • $250/month on gas x 3% = $90 cash back a year
  • $500/month on groceries and wholesale-club purchases x 2% = $120 cash back a year
  • $400/month in other purchases x 1% = $48 cash back a year

In total, you’d earn $258 cash back over a year.

You’ll also like …

  • A cashback bonus for Bank of America customers.

    When you redeem your cash back into a Bank of America checking or savings account, you’ll get a 10% bonus on your earnings. Existing qualified clients of Bank of America Preferred Rewards could see a bonus of 25% and 75%.

What to watch out for

  • It hurts to pay late.

    Making late or returned payments could result in fees as high as $38.

  • Expiration on intro APRs.

    You’ll accrue no interest on your initial purchases and balance transfers for 12 statement closing dates. After, they’re subject to an APR of 15.24% to 25.24% variable .

  • No interest grace period on cash advances.

    Any cash withdrawals accrue interest immediately. Balance transfers initiated outside the first 60 days your account is open also accrue interest right away.

  • Bank of America Cash Rewards foreign transaction fee.

    Though the card offers strong cash back, you might want to avoid using it when you travel abroad. That’s because you’ll pay a 3% fee each time you use your card in a foreign country or for a foreign-currency transaction.

Consider other cards if …

  • You spend a lot on gas and groceries.

    The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express is a powerhouse for gas and grocery cash back. It offers 6% cash back — on up to $6,000 a year — at US supermarkets, reverting to 1% when you’ve hit the limit. You’ll also earn 3% cash back at US gas stations and some US department stores. Unfortunately, it comes with a $95 annual fee. That said, it’s better to get the card if you spend enough on gas and groceries to make the fee worth it.

Compare cash back credit cards

Updated December 19th, 2018
Name Product Filter values Annual Fee APR for Purchases (Purchase Rate) Intro APR for Balance Transfer
$0
16.99% to 25.74% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 16.99% to 25.74% variable)
0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers.
$0
16.99% to 25.74% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 16.99% to 25.74% variable)
0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers.
$95
14.99% to 25.99% variable
0% for the first 12 months (then 14.99% to 25.99% variable)
Earn $200 bonus cash back after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & Fees
$0
14.99% to 25.99% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.99% to 25.99% variable)
Earn a $150 bonus statement credit after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & Fees
$0
14.99% to 25.99% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.99% to 25.99% variable)
Earn up to $250 back. Earn $150 back after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Plus, earn an additional $100 back after you spend an additional $6,500 in purchases within your first 12 months. Rates & Fees
$0
14.99%, 18.99% or 24.99% variable
0% for the first 15 months (then 14.99%, 18.99% or 24.99% variable)
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases. See Rates and Fees.
$0 to $99
19.99% to 25.99% variable
Get 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchase, terms apply.
$0
15.49% to 25.49% variable
0% for the first 18 months (then 15.49% to 25.49% variable)
Earn 1% cash back when you pay off your card, on top of the 1% cash back you earn when you make purchases. No annual fee.

Compare up to 4 providers

Should I get the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express or the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card?

The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is similar to the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, although it offers less cash back on gas and groceries.

On the plus side, it doesn’t have an annual fee, so it can effectively net you more cash back than its counterpart. Pick the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card if you spend modestly on gas and groceries.

  • You spend a lot in different categories.
    The Citi® Double Cash Card may offer more consistent cash back. And it’s a customer favorite, because it’s incredibly flexible. You’ll earn 1% cash back on everything you buy and another 1% back when you pay off your purchases. It’s a smart pick if you spend widely across multiple categories.
  • You want travel rewards.
    Consider excellent travel cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card and Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card.

What should I know before I apply?

To apply for the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, you must be at least 18 years old (or at least 21 years old, if you live in Puerto Rico).

Information you’ll need

  • Your name, residential status and address
  • Your Social Security number and date of birth
  • Your email address and phone number
  • Financial information like your annual income, source of income and employment information

What credit score do I need?

You’ll have a better chance of approval for the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 720 to 850.

What do customers say about the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card?

Cardholders are generally pleased that the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card comes with no annual fee. Overall, they also like the card’s points structure. That said, some customers say they don’t get as much out of the card as they’d like, because they don’t spend much on gas or groceries.

Bank of America itself earns a Trustpilot score of 5.5 out of 10 at the time of this writing. Most negative reviews cite unhelpful customer support. Positive reviews often point to the bank’s easy-to-use website.

Bank of America also earns a B+ rating from the Better Business Bureau.

How to apply for the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card

  1. Go to the Bank of America website and click Apply now.
  2. Complete the application with details like your name, address, annual income and Social Security number.
  3. Review and submit your application.

BankAmericard Cash Rewards credit card screenshot 2

How long will it take to be approved?

Because conditional approval is automated on the Bank of America website, you’ll often get a decision within minutes. In some cases, you’ll need to wait a few business days to a few weeks to receive a response while Bank of America processes additional verification information.

I got the card. Now what?

  • Make timely payments. You can pay your card bill online and enroll in autopay at the Bank of America website.
  • Avoid interest payments. After the close of each billing cycle, you have a grace period of at least 25 days to pay your balance without being charged interest.
  • Avoid fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $38. Balance transfers, cash advances and foreign transactions also come with fees.
  • Customer service. Call Bank of America customer support at 1-800-432-1000 with any additional questions you might have. You can also email Bank of America using an online secure form or connect through social media on Twitter or Facebook @BankofAmerica.

How do I redeem rewards from Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card?

Log in to your Bank of America online account. You can redeem when your cash rewards balance is $25 or more.

Redeem for these rewards:

  • Statement credit, which reduces the amount you need to pay on your credit card bill.
  • A check.
  • An electronic deposit into a Bank of America savings or checking account.
  • A contribution to an eligible Cash Management Account with Merrill Edge or Merrill Lynch Wealth Management.

Bottom line

The Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is an excellent cashback card, and it gets even better with a $0 annual fee. It may be an especially good choice if you spend regularly on gas and groceries.

Before deciding, consider comparing other Bank of America cards or looking into other rewards cards.

Frequently asked questions

Kevin Joey Chen

Kevin Chen is a world-travelin', copy-writin', Game of Thrones-watchin' credit cards writer for finder.com. When he's not crunching the numbers on bonus points and comparing APRs, you can find him flying around the world in search of the perfect beer.

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