Barnes & Noble Mastercard review |

Barnes & Noble Mastercard® review – May 2019

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Barnes & Noble Mastercard®
  • Get this card if… you love shopping at Barnes & Noble.
  • Pick something else if…you want general rewards like cash back or travel miles.
  • Recommended good to excellent credit score of 670 to 850.
Product NameBarnes & Noble Mastercard®
Card TypeMastercard
Annual Fee$0
Purchase APR16.24% to 27.24% variable
Intro Purchase APR


Balance Transfer APR16.24% to 27.24% variable
Intro Balance Transfer APR 0% for the first fifteen billing cycles (then 16.24% to 27.24% variable)
Balance Transfer Fee$5 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater
Cash Advance Rate27.49% 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 23 days
Late Payment Fee$37
Returned Payment Fee$37
Additional Cardholder Fee$0
Minimum Age18 years of age
RewardsEarn x points on all Barnes & Noble purchases. Earn 2x points at restaurants and 1x points for all other purchases (excluding Barnes & Noble purchases).
Base Rewards1% cash back
Rewards Points ExpiryNever

The basics

Barnes & Noble Mastercard® issued by Barclaycard, rewards booklovers for what they do best: shopping for books. You’ll get 5% cash back on all purchases with Barnes & Noble Mastercard®, with your cash applied to your monthly statement.

Earn points for Barnes & Noble gift cards, with 2% for restaurants and 1% for everything else. It’s a very strong rewards rate tailor-made for book lovers and foodies.

What can I do with my points?

You can use your points for one thing: earning Barnes & Noble gift cards. Whenever you earn 2,500 points, the card automatically cashes in your points and sends you a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card. Your points are worth 1%, standard in the credit card industry.

Is the card worth getting?

The card is an enticing pick with a $0 annual fee. Before you get it, however, consider how much you value B&N perks. You’ll enjoy the card if you regularly shop at B&N or want to save your points for a spending spree at the retailer. But if you prefer to buy used books or support local retailers, you likely won’t get the most out of this card.

You’ll get a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card for signing up. You can find better bonuses with other cards like the no-annual-fee U.S. Pride® BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Visa® Card (it offers a $150 bounty).

The card’s other selling point — a free 12-month B&N membership after you spend $7,500 in an account year. However, it’s nothing to go crazy over, as a B&N membership costs only $25 a year.

Bottom line: If you often find yourself buying from Barnes & Noble Mastercard®, the 5% cash back option is this card’s best selling point. Look into cash back cards like the solid U.S. Pride® BankAmericard Cash Rewards™ Visa® Card or the superb Citi® Double Cash Card.

The perks

  • SIGNUP BONUS: $25 gift card. When you make your first purchase, you’ll earn a $25 Barnes & Noble Gift card.
  • CASH BACK: 5% back on Barnes & Noble Mastercard® purchases. Whenever you use your card at Barnes & Noble Mastercard® — whether in store or online — you’ll receive 5% back. You’ll see this as a credit on your card statement.
  • POINTS: Earn points on all purchases, and more at restaurants. You’ll earn 1x points on everything you buy, excluding Barnes & Noble Mastercard® purchases.
    When you use your card at restaurants, you’ll earn x points (except at Barnes & Noble Cafés).

What can I do with my points?

If you like simple points redemption, you might like the Barnes & Noble Mastercard®. After you earn 2,500 points, Barclaycard will cash in your points automatically and send you a $25 Barnes & Noble gift card.

You’ll also like …

  • 12 months of Barnes & Noble membership. Each year you spend at least $7,500 on your card by your account anniversary, you’ll earn a 12-month Barnes & Noble membership.
  • Check your FICO score for free. Get complimentary access to your credit score and be alerted when your score changes.

What to watch out for

  • Potentially high APR. Depending on your credit, you could have a purchase and balance transfer APR as high as 16.24% or 27.24% variable.
  • Higher APR for cash advances. Cash advances come with a 27.49% variable APR.
  • Other fees. The card has balance transfer fees, cash advance fees and foreign transaction fees.
  • Penalty fees. Late and returned payments can hurt: You’ll pay up to $37.

What should I know before I apply?

To apply for the Barnes & Noble Mastercard®, you must be at least 18 years old and a US resident. Residents of Puerto Rico and US territories are not eligible.

Information you’ll need

  • Full name and contact information
  • Residential status
  • Annual income and employment information
  • Social Security number, date of birth and mother’s maiden name

What credit score do I need?

You’ll have a better chance of approval for the Barnes & Noble Mastercard® if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 670 or higher.

How to apply for the Barnes & Noble Mastercard®

1. Go to the Barclaycard website and click Apply Now.

Barnes & Noble Mastercard step 1

2. Complete the application with details like your name, contact information, employment information and Social Security number. Then click Apply to submit your application.

Barnes & Noble Mastercard step 2

How long will it take to be approved?

Typically, you’ll receive an immediate decision on your application. In rare cases, you may need to wait a few days to a few weeks until Barclaycard manually approves your application.

I got the card. Now what?

  • Make timely payments. Pay your bill online at the Barclaycard website, where you can also enroll in autopay.
  • Avoid interest. After the close of each billing cycle, you have a grace period of 23 days to pay your balance. If you do, you won’t pay interest on your purchases.
  • Avoid fees. Late and returned payments come with hefty fees of up to $37. Balance transfers, cash advances and foreign transactions also come with fees.
  • Customer service. If you have questions, contact Barclaycard customer service at 866-928-8598.

Bottom line

If you love buying books, you might not find a better pick than the Barnes & Noble Mastercard®. But, if you want a rewards credit card for a store you spend more often at — compare different retail cards.

Retail credit cards

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