Bank Of America Premium Rewards Credit Card
After months of speculation and waiting Bank Of America has finally released their new Premium Rewards credit card. It comes with a nice sign up bonus and a reasonable annual fee. But it comes with underwhelming perks and earning structure for a “premium” card.
Details on the Bonus
50,000 bonus points – a $500 value – after you make at least $3,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening. The 50,000 points can be redeemed in the following ways:
- Redeem for cash back as a statement credit.
- Redeem into your eligible Bank of America or Merrill Lynch accounts including checking, savings and 529.
- Use to purchase travel (air, car, and hotel) through the Bank of America Travel Center.
- Redeem for gift cards.
Remember Bank Of America has instituted new rules for applications.
The Bank Of America Premium Rewards credit card has the following earning structure:
- 2 points per dollar on travel purchases
- 2 points per dollar on dining purchases
- 1.5 points per dollar on all other purchases
The Bank Of America Premium Rewards credit card comes with the following perks:
- $100 Airline Incidental Statement Credit annually (calendar year – YES!!!) for qualifying purchases such as seat upgrades, baggage fees, in-flight services, and airline lounge fees – automatically applied to your card statement. Only applies to domestic-originated flights on certain U.S. Domestic airline carriers.
- $100 Airport Security Statement Credit towards TSA Pre✓ ® or Global Entry Application fee, every four years
- No foreign transaction fees
- Eligible for Bank Of America Preferred Rewards. Enjoy 25% – 75% rewards bonus on every purchase. That means you could earn up to 3.5 points per $1 on travel and dining purchases and up to 2.62 points per $1 on all other purchases.
- Access to BankAmeriDeals (similar to Amex Offers)
Sign Up Bonus Value $500 (net $405)
Each point is worth 1 cent a piece so 50,000 points is worth $500. After you pay the $95 annual fee you are left with a net of $405. This does not take into account the $100 (x2) in incidentals you get which should help offset the annual fee.
While it is nice to see Bank Of America release a new product I don’t know that I can call it a “premium” product. I think most of us would have liked to see some transfer partners involved (Hello Alaska Airlines!!!). The lack of transfer partners or any other meaningful perks make the offer underwhelming. If this was supposed to compete with the CSR they had a large miscalculation. It doesn’t even really compete will with the CSP.
The sign up bonus on the other hand is pretty generous. $500 cash bonuses are becoming a rare sight these days. The fact that the $100 incidental credit is per calendar year is also good news. This allows you to get $200 in credits for the first $95 annual fee. It will be interesting to see if gift cards trigger the incidental credit like with some other credit card providers, even if not technically a qualifying purchase.
The new Bank Of America Premium Rewards credit card is definitely worth getting for the sign up bonus. $500 in cash is a pretty substantial bonus. The $95 annual fee is offset by the $200 in incidental credits that you will receive in the first cardmember year.
As far as for everyday spend, the card is not all that enticing unless you are a BOA preferred client. Even then the no annual fee version will get you the 2.62% earning rate as well, if redeemed for travel credits. 3.5% earning on dining and travel is decent but it is beat out by a few different premium cards.
I plan on signing up for the card and then downgrading it to the free version after 12 months. I just don’t think the earning structure is worth the annual fee even with the yearly incidental reimbursement.
Are you planning on applying? Let us know how the application goes in the comments!