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The Amazon Rewards Credit Card is a must-have for beginners who are getting into the points game. There are no annual and foreign transaction fees so it’s definitely a great addition to your wallet.
Getting the card is an easy call to make, especially if you’re an Amazon shopaholic. All you need is a basic Amazon membership so you can earn points and rewards every time you use your card on Amazon.com.
The Amazon Rewards Credit card is issued by Chase and it’s available in two types:
- Amazon Rewards Visa Signature
- Amazon Rewards Prime Visa Signature
These are the official names of the cards. Basically, you’ll get the first one if you just have a basic Amazon membership and you’ll get the second one if you have Prime membership.
We’ll break down all the details that you need to know about these two credit cards to help you decide.
Amazon Rewards Credit Card Key Features
The points earnings are almost the same between the two cards. However, the differences can be seen in the Whole Foods and Amazon.com category, where Prime members have 2% more cashback. Prime members will also have a $70 gift card as a sign-up bonus while non-Prime members will get a $50 gift card.
Your card will be automatically added to your Amazon account upon approval. This means that you can use the bonuses and start shopping right away even before you get the physical card.
Cashback rewards are not earned as cash but as points. Every 1¢ earned on any cashback category is equivalent to 1 point ( $1 = 100 points). For example, if you’re a non-Prime cardholder and spend $200 worth of purchases on Amazon.com, you’ll get a cashback of $6 or 600 points.
You can use these points directly at the checkout section on Amazon.com or redeem them as gift cards, cashback, and travel on Chase.
Advantages Of Having Prime Membership
While it’s not necessary to have Prime Membership to have the card, there are advantages if you are one. Apart from the 5% cashback, you’ll get more member benefits in these categories:
- Delivery – Get free and fast delivery on millions of products. You’ll also get early-release date delivery on books, movies, music, and more.
- Streaming and Digital – Stream thousands of movies, TV shows, music, photos, and more in the Amazon Prime library.
- Shopping – Member exclusive discounts and early access.
- Reading – Unlimited access to thousands of e-books, magazines, and comics. You’ll also get early access and discounts on other Prime reading products.
Amazon Prime membership costs $119 per year. If you do get the membership and Amazon Rewards Prime Visa Signature card, the sign-up bonus will cut the annual fee down to $49 in your first year.
This gives you enough time to decide if you should renew your Prime membership for the following year. Your Chase Visa account won’t close and you can still use the card if you decide to let your membership expire. There will be changes like the points earnings going back to 3% cashback on Amazon and Wholefoods.
Additional Benefits of the Amazon Rewards Credit Card
Both cards have added additional benefits which you can use for travel or shopping. You can view the full details here, but here’s a quick rundown of the benefits:
- No foreign transaction fees
- Travel Accident Insurance
- Lost Luggage Insurance
- Baggage Delay Insurance
- Travel and Emergency Assistance
- Zero Fraud Liability
- Car Rental Collision Damage Waiver
- Roadside Dispatch
- Extended Warranty
- Purchase Protection
- Visa Signature® Luxury Hotel Collection
- Visa Signature® Concierge Service
Drawbacks Of The Card
Both the Prime and non-Prime versions are issued by Chase but it appears that you cannot transfer your Amazon points to Chase Ultimate Rewards.
You can try calling Chase customer service and try your luck if you have lots of Amazon points. Chase has a lot of valuable products in its rewards program so it might be worth a shot.
Setting aside the non-transferrable points, the card is pretty much valuable for beginners. However, the card may not be for you if you’re not a frequent Amazon shopper. There are other cashback cards that offer 5% back like the Discover It and the Chase Freedom. The cashback categories rotate every quarter on groceries, gas, restaurants, and more.
Credit card applicants don’t have to be U.S citizens but they must be qualified for the following requirements:
- Must be aU.S. resident
- At least 18 years old (19 years old for Alabama or Nebraska)
- Have a U.S Social Security Number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
According to Amazon website, the minimum credit quality to get approved are as follows:
- Excellent: Credit score above 720
- Good: Credit score above 680
- Fair: Credit score above 640
However, having a high credit score is not a 100% guarantee that you’ll get approved for the card because issuers also look at income. This means that people with fair credit scores but have high incomes can get approved.
How To Use The Amazon Rewards Credit Card
The Amazon Rewards Credit Card’s 3% and 5% cashback is a great feature, but there are other cards that offer better cashback. What we’re trying to say is don’t make the Amazon Rewards Credit Card as your primary card.
Get another cashback card such as the Chase Freedom or Discover It and use them alternately. As we mentioned above, these two cards offer 5% cashback on rotating categories like grocery stores, Lyft, Uber, pharmacies, gas stations, and even Amazon.
What you can do is to use the Chase Freedom or Discover It card on a quarter where the rotating categories are 5% cashback on restaurants and gas stations. Once categories change at the end of the quarter, restaurant and gas purchases will only earn 1% cashback.
Now, this is the time to use your Amazon Visa Rewards Credit Card on restaurant and gas purchases to get 2% cashback. It not that complicated but you just need to put in some extra effort to keep track of the rotating categories
Bonus Tip :
A common mistake that cardholders do is they don’t use their card to charge the full amount on Amazon purchases. They tend to use their points during the checkout process to either waive the cost of the product or at least make it cheaper.
While it may seem like you’re getting a discount, you’re actually losing points if you redeem your points this way.
Here’s an example:
Let’s say you want to make a $200 purchase on Amazon.com using your Amazon Rewards Prime Visa Signature. Plus, you also have 5,000 Amazon points in your account which are worth $50.
Once you make the purchase, you will have the option of using your points at checkout which will cut down the total price to $150. Since you have the Prime version of the card, you’ll be earning $7.5 or 750 points ($150 x 5%).
However, if you used your card to pay the $200 in full, you’re cashback earnings would be at $10 or 1,000 points ($200 x .5%). You just earned $2.5 or 250 points more since you paid the price in full.
Basically, you will earn more points if you use your card to pay the full amount. Those little differences in points can add up in the long run. Once you’ve accumulated enough points, you can redeem them for statement credits and make your credit card bills cheaper.