The brand new model of the Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card is lastly right here, and it gives much more flexibility than its predecessor.
The $Zero-annual-fee cash-back card, launched on Jan. 14, 2019, now permits you to select your personal three% cash-back bonus class from a listing of choices. The change will have an effect on each new and present cardholders.
That’s not the one factor concerning the card that modified, although. The cardboard’s redemption choices, buyer perks and sign-up bonus additionally modified. That raises the query: Is the brand new model really an enchancment over the previous?
The quick reply: Sure — however there are some catches.
» MORE: NerdWallet’s full overview of the Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card
Capability to decide on your personal three% class
By far, essentially the most useful characteristic of the Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card is the choice to decide on your personal three% cash-back class. Each new and present cardholders can choose from a listing of six choices, and alter that choice as much as as soon as a month:
Dwelling enchancment and furnishings.
For those who don’t choose a class, it is going to routinely be set to three% money again on gasoline. When you set a class, it stays the identical, till you modify it once more.
The previous model of this card supplied three% money again on gasoline and a pair of% money again at grocery shops and wholesale golf equipment, as much as a mixed $2,500 in gasoline / grocery retailer / wholesale membership purchases. However gasoline is a tough class to maximise, until you occur to be a super-commuter with an SUV that will get horrible mileage. American households spent lower than $2,000 every on gasoline, different fuels and motor oil in 2017 on common, in keeping with information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Now that you may select your personal three% cash-back possibility, it’s simpler to squeeze extra worth out of the cardboard. You’ll nonetheless earn 2% money again at grocery shops and wholesale golf equipment, and also you’ll nonetheless get bonus rewards on the primary $2,500 in quarterly mixed purchases on class / grocery retailer / wholesale membership spending. After that, you’ll earn 1% money again on these purchases.
Extra redemption flexibility
With the previous model of the Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card, you all the time wanted to have at the very least $25 in money again earlier than redeeming, regardless of the way you redeemed rewards.
With the brand new model, that’s now not the case. There’s no minimal redemption requirement when doing a one-time redemption of money rewards into your Financial institution of America® account or assertion credit score. There’s nonetheless a $25 minimal redemption requirement for different redemption choices, nevertheless. This alteration makes it simpler to entry and use each penny of rewards you earn everytime you want it — even if you wish to use it prior to anticipated.
Decrease sign-up bonus
Final 12 months, Financial institution of America® hiked the sign-up bonus on the Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card to $200 from $150. Now, with the brand new adjustments, that bonus is coming again down once more. The new provide: $150 on-line money rewards bonus after you spend at the very least $500 on purchases within the first 90 days of account opening.
Whereas a decrease sign-up bonus is unquestionably a unfavorable change, it’s additionally not precisely a deal-breaker. A $150 sign-up bonus continues to be a good provide — particularly when you’re primarily on this card for its ongoing rewards.
No extra 10% buyer bonus for brand new cardholders
The previous model of the Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card supplied a pleasant perk for Financial institution of America® account holders: While you deposited your rewards in an eligible checking or financial savings account, you’d get 10% extra worth. For instance, when you deposited $30 of money again right into a Financial institution of America® checking account, you’d get an additional $three, for a complete of $33.
That perk continues to be accessible for present cardholders. However for brand new cardholders, it’s now not supplied. That’s a bummer, particularly for individuals who have an interest within the card particularly as a result of they wish to maintain their bank card and financial institution accounts with the identical financial institution.
Nevertheless, cardholders who qualify for the Financial institution of America® Most popular Rewards program — that’s, those that maintain some huge cash with Financial institution of America® or Merrill Lynch — will nonetheless have the ability to earn bonuses of 25% to 75% on their rewards. That might make the cardboard’s rewards rather more interesting. On this model of the cardboard, you’ll additionally get these bonuses as quickly as you earn the rewards; with the previous model, you needed to wait till redeeming the rewards to obtain the bonuses.
Total, excellent news for cardholders
Regardless of some unfavorable tweaks, the brand new Financial institution of America® Money Rewards bank card is an enormous enchancment over the previous model. To make sure, the cardboard’s spending caps on the bonus classes nonetheless make it a lackluster selection for giant spenders. However for frugal cardholders who worth selection, the cardboard gives glorious worth.