Santander Bravo Credit Card review | finder.com

Bravo® Credit Card review – March 2019

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Bravo® Credit Card

Rewards for everyday purchases and an excellent balance transfer promotion.

30-second take

  • Get this card if you want excellent rewards in everyday-spending categories.
  • Pick something else if you want flat rewards or don’t want to pay an annual fee.
  • Apply with a good to excellent credit score of 670 or higher.
Product NameBravo® Credit Card
Card TypeMastercard
Annual Fee$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($49 thereafter)
APR (Annual Percentage Rate) for Purchases16.74% to 25.74% variable
Introductory Purchase APRfor the first 90 days (then 16.74% to 25.74% variable)
Balance Transfer APR17.49% to 24.49% variable
Intro Balance Transfer APR 0% for the first 18 billing cycles (then 17.49% to 24.49% variable)
Balance Transfer Fee$10 or 3% of the transaction, whichever is greater
Cash Advance Rate27.24% 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 21 days
Late Payment FeeUp to $35
Returned Payment FeeUp to $35
Additional Cardholder Fee$0
Minimum Age18 years of age
Welcome OfferEarn $100 cash back after you spend $1,000 on purchases in your first 90 days of opening your account
RewardsEarn 3x rewards points on supermarket, gas station and restaurant purchases up to 15,000 points per calendar quarter. Then earn 1x points
Base Rewards1x points
Rewards Points ExpiryNever

The basics

The Bravo® Credit Card is a strong product for everyday purchases, offering rewards on gas, groceries and dining. If you spend $5,000 or less in these categories each quarter, you’ll consistently benefit from the card’s accelerated rewards.

You’ll also appreciate this card if you’re looking for a strong balance transfer promotion. With a 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 18 billing cycles, the Bravo® Credit Card offers a powerful incentive to switch to Santander. After that period is up, your APR will be between 17.49% to 24.49% variable.

The perks

  • Rewards: More for everyday purchases.

    Earn 3x rewards points on gas, groceries and dining, for a total of 15,000 points per calendar quarter. Earn 1x points on all other purchases.

    The card is most useful if you’re a moderate spender, as you’ll earn accelerated rewards on up to $5,000 in gas, grocery and dining purchases per quarter.

    You can redeem points for a variety of rewards, such as cash back, charitable donations, travel, gift cards and merchandise.

  • Intro APR: 0% on balance transfers for 18 billing cycles.

    After that, your balance transfer APR will be 17.49% to 24.49% variable. The intro APR applies to balance transfers you make within the first 90 days of opening your account.

    This is an excellent intro APR for balance transfers and one of the longest promotions you’ll find.

You’ll also like…

  • Santander Instant Card Hold.

    If you misplace your card, you can freeze your account with Santander Instant Card Hold. This prevents unauthorized transactions on your card while you locate it.

What to watch out for

  • Annual fee.

    Starting the second year, you’ll pay a $49 annual fee. It’s a lower annual fee than you’ll pay with similar cards. Still, consider whether you’ll earn enough rewards points to make the fee worth paying.

  • Penalty APR.

    If you make a late or returned payment, Santander may apply a steep 31.99% variable APR to all of your balances. This rate will apply indefinitely until you make six consecutive months of on-time payments.

Compare rewards credit cards

Name Product Welcome Offer Rewards Annual Fee
60,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months
2x points on travel and dining. 1x points on all other purchases
$95
Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
50,000 points after spending $4,000 in the first 3 months
3x points on dining and travel after earning your $300 travel credit. 1x points on all other purchases
$450
Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months.
$150 cash back after spending $500 in the first 3 months
5% back in rotating categories up to $1,500 combined each activated quarter, then 1% after that and on all other purchases
$0
0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers.
$150 cash back after spending $500 in the first 3 months
1.5% cash back for each dollar spent
$0
0% intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases and balance transfers.
$150 statement credit after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
3% at US supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year, then 1%. 2% at US gas stations and select US department stores and 1% on all other purchases
$0
Earn a $150 bonus statement credit after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & Fees
$200 statement credit after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
6% at US supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year, then 1%. 3% at US gas stations and select US department stores and 1% on all other purchases
$95
Earn $200 bonus cash back after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Rates & Fees
$150 after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on your purchases
$0
Earn a $150 statement credit after you spend $1,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & Fees
35,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
3x points on airfare booked directly with airlines; 4x points at US restaurants; 4x points at US supermarkets on up to $25,000 per year in purchases (then 1x points)
$250
35,000 bonus Membership Rewards® Points when you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months Rates & Fees
$150 after spending $500 in the first 90 days
5% on up to $2,000 each activated quarter on two categories combined (1% after), 2% on one everyday category and 1% on all other purchases
$0
When you spend $500 on your card within the first 90 days, you’ll receive a $150 cash back bonus.
70,000 miles after spending $5,000 in the first 90 days
2x miles on all purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($89 thereafter)
Enjoy 70,000 bonus miles after spending $5,000 on purchases in the first 90 days.
125,000 points after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months
12x points on Hilton Portfolio spending, 6x at US restaurants, US supermarkets and US gas stations, 3x on all other purchases
$95
Earn 125,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 or more in purchases with your new card within the first 3 months of card membership. Rates & Fees
75,000 points after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months
7x points on Hilton Honors purchases, 5x at US restaurants, US supermarkets and US gas stations, 3x on all other purchases
$0
Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors™ Bonus Points after you spend $1,000 in purchases on the card within your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & Fees
$150 after spending $2,500 in the first 3 months. 10% annual rewards bonus
1.5% cash rewards on all purchases
$0
Earn unlimited 1.5% cash rewards on purchases. See Rates and Fees.
10,000 miles after spending $500 in the first 3 months
2x miles at US restaurants and on purchases made directly with Delta and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0
Earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new card in your first 3 months of card membership. Rates & Fees
60,000 miles after spending $2,000 in the first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months
2x miles on Delta purchases and 1x miles on all other purchases
$0 intro annual fee for the first year ($95 thereafter)
60,000 bonus miles after you use your new card to make $2,000 on purchases within the first 3 months and a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase in the first 3 months. Rates & Fees
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare and 1.5% for cash back
$495
Receive an annual $100 air travel credit toward flight-related purchases including airline tickets, baggage fees, upgrades and more.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare and 1% for cash back
$195
Enjoy unique excursions, privileged access to exclusive events and insider opportunities.
N/A
1x points on all purchases with 2% point value when you redeem for airfare or cash back
$995
Earn 2% point value when redeemed for airfare or cash back through the Luxury rewards program.
Earn $150 statement credit after you spend $1,200 on purchases within the first 90 days from account opening
Earn 1x rewards points on all purchases and 5x points in quarterly rotating categories on up to $1,500 each quarter you activate, then 1x points
$0
Earn $150 in statement credit after you spend $1,200 on purchases within the first 90 days from account opening.
Earn 25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
Earn 3x points on travel — or 4x points if you’re a PenFed Honors Advantage member — and 1.5x points on all other purchases
$0
Earn 25,000 bonus points when you spend $2,500 in the first 90 days from account opening.
$100 bonus after spending $1,500 in the first 90 days
2% cash back for all PenFed Honors Advantage members and 1.5% cash back on all purchases
$0
2% cash back for all PenFed Honors Advantage members and 1.5% cash back on all purchases made with your card.
Earn a $100 bonus after spending $1,500 on purchases in the first 90 days from account opening.
Earn 5x points on gas at the pump and 3x points on groceries. Earn 1x points on all other purchases.
$0
Earn 5x points on gas at the pump and 3x points on groceries. Earn 1x points on all other purchases.
N/A
1% cash back on all purchases or in categories based on Credit One Bank’s discretion
$0 to $99
Get 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchases.
$0 to $99
Seeing if you pre-qualify is fast, easy and secure.
Get 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchases and double cash back rewards at the NASCAR.com Superstore
$0 to $99
Get 1% cash back rewards on eligible purchases and double cash back rewards at the NASCAR.com Superstore.

Compare up to 4 providers

Discover it® Cash Back review – March 2019

How does a balance transfer work with this card?

What should I know before I apply?

To apply for the Bravo® Credit Card, you must be at least 18 years old. The card is only available to customers in these states:

  • Connecticut
  • District of Columbia
  • Delaware
  • Maine
  • Maryland
  • Massachusetts
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • Vermont

Information you’ll need

  • Full name and contact information
  • Residential status
  • Annual income, source of income and employment information
  • Social Security number

What credit score do I need?

You’ll have a better chance of being approved for this card if you apply with a good to excellent credit score of 670 to 850.
Here are a few other factors that might affect your odds of approval:

  • Hard pulls on your credit report. If you have several hard inquiries — or hard pulls — on your report, it could imply you’re having trouble managing your debt. Santander might think you’re desperate for credit and may be less likely to take you on as a customer.
  • Factors that tie into your credit score. Your credit utilization is a major factor that Santander considers. The bank prefers a customer with low balances relative to their credit limit. Having many new card accounts may be a red flag, too, as it could indicate you’re desperate for credit.

What’s a good credit score?

What do customers say about the Bravo Credit Card?

Santander Bank is not accredited with the Better Business Bureau, but it earns an A rating from the agency. As of August 2018, nearly 90% of its reviews are negative and it has over 200 customer complaints. Santander customers report difficulty opening accounts, signup bonuses that aren’t honored and unresponsive customer support.

The company earns a Trustpilot score of 1.4 out of 10. Many negative reviews cite extremely slow customer service, difficulty getting fees reversed and inflexible company policies.

How to apply for the Bravo Credit Card

  1. On the Santander website, click Apply now.
  2. Select your state and enter your ZIP code.
  3. Complete the application with details like your name, address, annual income and Social Security number.
  4. Review and submit your application.

How long will it take to get my Bravo Credit Card?

Since conditional credit card approval is automated on the website, you may get a decision immediately. If there are issues with your application, it may take a few days to a few weeks to hear back. After you’re approved, you’ll typically receive your card within seven to 10 business days.

I got the card. Now what?

  • Make on-time payments.
    Register for an account on the Santander website to pay your balance online. You can also enroll in autopay.
  • Avoid the penalty APR.
    If you make a late or returned payment, Santander may assess a penalty APR of 31.99% variable to all of your balances.
  • Avoid fees.
    For each late or returned payment, you’ll incur a fee of up to $35.
  • Contact customer service.
    If you have questions about your account, call the number on the back of your card. Alternatively, call 877-768-2265 to speak with a representative.

Bottom line

The Bravo® Credit Card offers competitive rewards in everyday categories. It’s an optimal pick if you spend less than $5,000 on gas, groceries and dining each quarter.

If you’re not sure the Bravo Credit Card is right for you, compare the best credit cards on the market.

Frequently asked questions

Images: santanderbank.com

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