It’s no surprise that cards like the Chase Sapphire or Citi AAdvantage get a disproportionate amount of coverage given the lucrative sign-up bonuses and marketing muscle in support of them. But there are plenty of equally lucrative cards out there which fly below the radar for various reasons. One area worth your consideration is retailer credit cards.
BEST BUY: I’ve written about the Best Buy credit card a few times before. It’s been a great card for lately, and I say that despite having only used the card twice all year. You get 5% back on your Best Buy purchases, plus an additional half percent if you’re Silver Elite, and the rewards are given for all purchases at Best Buy.
Additionally, the Best Buy rewards are somewhat fungible since they can be used to purchase Kindle gift certificates. And the part that’s made this so great for me this year is that Best Buy occasionally runs smoking hot promos where you get triple your base reward points, which means you get 9% rewards instead of 5%. They haven’t run such a promo in several months, however, though there is a double points event on December 8 from 8 pm to 10 pm. The bullet points say gift cards are excluded from the bonus points, though it’s anybody’s guess as to whether that refers only to Best Buy gift cards or is more inclusive.
TARGET REDCARD: It’s a flat 5% off everything in the store, except for gift cards and the like. But if you’re in the habit of shopping regularly at Target, this is a no-brainer.
BANANA REPUBLIC: Milesabound just had an eye-opening post about the Banana Republic card, which apparently runs some quite generous marketing programs:
However the reason I absolutely love this card is the ridiculous promos they run. For the past couple of years they have run targeted promos in the last two months of the year where they offered 200 bonus points (worth $2 in voucher) for each transactionduring a two month period. I got targeted last year and I distinctly remember getting the flyer in the mail and scouring the fine print to see some minimum transaction size or upper limit on the number of points you could earn, but those terms just weren’t there. A little trial and error and SlickDeals interaction quickly taught me you could do 20 transactions a day before your card locked out.
And the bottom line:
So overall we bought nearly $5k worth of clothes at Banana Republic, Gap and Athleta in 2013 that actually cost us maybe around $50. It was without a doubt the best deal of 2012!
If you’re at all interested, the post is most definitely worth reading. I decided to go ahead and get a Banana Republic card for Mrs. PFD and a Brooks Brothers card for myself so we could give GE Money a try–I’ll let you know about our experiences.
KOHL’S: Frequent Miler is a fan of the Kohl’s credit card:
Even though Kohl’s tends to have fairly high prices, they are one of the most dependable stores that I have found for stacking multiple discount and point earning opportunities. Unlike most other stores, when Kohl’s coupons say you get X% off everything, they mean nearly everything including electronics and clearance items. Plus, it is often possible to buy Kohl’s gift cards at a heavy discount (but not through the aforementioned coupons). Plus, Kohl’s frequently offers “Kohl’s bucks” for additional future savings. And, finally, Kohl’s has consistently offered 10 points per dollar through the Ultimate Rewards Mall for the past two years or so. In my experience, all of these discounts and point earnings can be combined (except when using Kohl’s bucks, but that’s another story…). In the end, these combined discounts usually add up to almost 50% in savings!
So back to the charge card. While Kohl’s regularly offers 20% off coupons to the general public, they often offer 30% off coupons for cardholders only.
Those are the best retail credit cards I’m aware of. Any good ones I’m missing?