My Best Buy Visa card offers a variety of rewards, including 5% back on Best Buy purchases (6% for Elite Plus members) and limited-time bonus rewards categories. It also provides 2% back on dining and grocery purchases and 1% back on everyday purchases. However, the application process and reward structure can be somewhat perplexing.
My Best Buy Credit Card
Citibank provides the My Best Buy store credit card, and its utility is limited to purchases made exclusively at Best Buy stores and their website. Consequently, it is not a general-purpose credit card suitable for other retailers such as Amazon or Walmart.
This card provides a notable advantage by offering regular cardholders 5% back in rewards, with Elite Plus members enjoying an even higher reward rate of 6%.
In the past, Best Buy has extended special financing options, such as six-month financing for purchases exceeding $199, 12-month financing for purchases exceeding $399, 18-month financing for significant appliance purchases totaling $599 or more, and 24-month financing for home theatre purchases totaling $799 and above.
During the promotional period for special financing offers, Best Buy credit cardholders are exempt from paying interest if they meet their fixed monthly payment obligations and settle their balances by the end of the promotional period.
Moreover, in 2017, Best Buy introduced enticing offers to cardholders, featuring 10% back in rewards on their initial purchases.
Elite Plus customers who are Best Buy credit cardholders qualify for additional rewards. Attaining Elite Plus status involves spending $3,500 at Best Buy or an affiliated store in a single calendar year. Once this status is achieved, cardholders benefit from an elevated cash-back rate of 6% on all Best Buy purchases.
Pros and Cons
- At least 5% back in rewards on Best Buy purchases or flexible financing: When you shop at Best Buy and use your card’s standard financing option, you’ll earn 5% back in rewards (6% for Elite Plus members). Alternatively, you can opt for flexible financing options on Best Buy purchases of $299 or more.
- 10% back on your first day of Best Buy purchases: Opt for the standard credit option on your first day of Best Buy purchases made within 14 days of opening your account, and you can earn 10% back in rewards. Please note that some products may not qualify for My Best Buy Rewards.
- Other bonus categories are sometimes available: You can earn additional rewards, such as 3% back on gas purchases, 2% back on dining, grocery, and bar purchases, and 1% back on all other purchases.
However, it’s essential to know that Best Buy specifies that the 3% bonus category can be changed or withdrawn at any time. Many other cards with limited-time offers for bonus rewards often offer higher earning rates, up to 5% back.
- The confusing application process considers you for several reasons: When you apply for a My Best Buy Visa card, you’re essentially applying for up to four different credit cards.
Unfortunately, this information isn’t prominently displayed and is buried in the terms and conditions of the offer. You’ll first be considered for the My Best Buy Visa Platinum card, which does not have an annual fee.
If you don’t qualify for this card, you may be considered for a My Best Buy Visa Gold card, which can be used anywhere Visa cards are accepted but comes with a $59 annual fee.
Additionally, you may be considered for two closed-loop Best Buy credit cards, usable exclusively at Best Buy.
- Potentially misleading rewards rates: While the advertised rewards rate of 5% back (or 6% with full membership) may seem attractive, it’s important to note that the card itself does not provide all these rewards.
A free My Best Buy rewards program offers purchase points without requiring a specific credit card. The advertised rewards rates represent the combined rewards from the free rewards program and the credit card.
- Many limited-time offers add unpredictability: Limited-time bonus rewards categories are undoubtedly appealing, but there’s a lack of predictability regarding what you might earn in the future.
The 3% gas purchases category, available for a limited time, can be modified or withdrawn without prior notice.
Read more: Kohl’s Credit Card
Who This Card Is Best For?
The My Best Buy Visa card is tailored to frequent Best Buy shoppers with good to excellent credit. This card is designed for individuals who aim to earn rewards that can be redeemed for additional Best Buy merchandise.
The 5% rewards rate for Best Buy purchases (or 6% for Elite Plus members) is particularly attractive if you regularly make substantial expenditures at Best Buy.
However, these rewards might not justify the expense if you only qualify for the Best Buy Visa Gold card, which carries a $59 annual fee. To offset the annual fee, you’d need to spend at least $1,200 on qualifying Best Buy purchases to earn $60 in reward certificates.
For those looking to earn versatile rewards that can be used outside of Best Buy, the other reward categories, including the limited-time non-Best Buy categories, can typically outperform other no-annual-fee rewards credit cards.
In this case, you might consider a general cash-back credit card instead.
My Best Buy Credit Card Terms
In addition to its promotional financing offerings, the My Best Buy store credit card applies an interest rate equal to the prime rate plus 21.99% to its customers. The card also imposes a late payment penalty of up to $40, with Citibank requiring a minimum interest charge of $2.
Besides the My Best Buy store card, Best Buy collaborates with Visa to issue a co-branded credit card that is universally accepted. Both types of cards continue to provide Best Buy shoppers with 5% cash back on their purchases.
The My Best Buy Visa typically offers cardholders 3% back on gas purchases, 2% cash back on groceries and dining at restaurants, and 1% cash back on all other expenditures. However, special financing offers do not earn cash-back rewards.
My Best Buy Visa Card Bonus
While not particularly impressive, the My Best Buy Visa card bonus is better than nothing. On your first day of Best Buy purchases made within 14 days of opening your account, you can earn an additional 5% back in rewards, boosting your total earnings to 10%.
To qualify for this bonus, you must opt for the standard credit option instead of flexible financing. However, it’s worth noting that not all products qualify for earning My Best Buy Rewards, and certain purchases at Pacific Sales Kitchen & Home Stores may be excluded.
Online purchases may also be ineligible for this offer if you apply for the credit card in a physical store.
Rewards and Earning Details
Earning rewards with the Best Buy Visa card can be somewhat perplexing due to several factors:
- While the card’s marketing emphasizes percentage-based rewards, you’ll actually earn rewards in the form of points, each worth $0.02. Earning 5% back translates to 2.5 points per dollar spent.
- At Best Buy (or three points per dollar for Elite Plus members), you can earn 2.5 points per dollar. To accumulate points, you must select standard financing. Gas purchases typically yield 1.5 points per dollar spent unless the offer is withdrawn at some point in the future.
- Dining, groceries, and bar purchases provide one point per dollar spent, while all other purchases earn half a point per dollar.
The method of calculating rewards can create the perception of higher value than you’re actually receiving. This is because Best Buy combines the points earned through its free My Best Buy rewards program with those acquired using your credit card.
If you join the My Best Buy rewards program without a credit card, you’ll earn the following points per dollar spent based on your membership status:
- Core members: 0.5 points per dollar spent on qualifying purchases
- Elite members: One point per dollar spent on qualifying purchases
- Elite Plus members: 1.25 points per dollar spent on qualifying purchases
Consequently, the actual rewards rate you obtain by using your credit card depends on your My Best Buy rewards program status and would work out as follows:
- Core members: One point per dollar spent on qualifying purchases
- Elite members: 1.5 points per dollar spent on qualifying purchases
- Elite Plus members: 1.75 points per dollar spent on qualifying purchases
Numerous products purchased at stand-alone Pacific Sales Kitchen and Bath Centres or Pacific Sales locations within Best Buy stores do not qualify for points. Reward certificates cannot be used for these purchases either.
A lengthy list of other exclusions that do not earn points includes Student Deals, leased products, instant rebates, purchases for resale, purchases paid with a reward certificate, purchases using any promotional financing, sales tax, and service charges.
Your rewards may be automatically issued in 250-point increments, and any remaining points could be forfeited if your account remains inactive for 12 consecutive months. If your My Best Buy account is inactive for 24 months, it may be terminated.
Can the My Best Buy Credit Card Be Used Anywhere?
The My Best Buy credit card is a store-specific credit card, and as such, it is only accepted for transactions within Best Buy stores and when making purchases through the Best Buy website.
This card is not affiliated with significant financial card networks like MasterCard, Visa, American Express, or Discover, so it cannot be used for transactions outside Best Buy.
However, Best Buy offers an alternative in the form of the Best Buy Mastercard or Visa credit card, which is accepted wherever MasterCard-branded cards are recognized.
Rewards Redemption Details
Redeeming your rewards is a more straightforward process compared to earning them. Here’s how it works:
- For every 250 My Best Buy points you accumulate, you can obtain a $5 reward certificate. These certificates can be redeemed for discounts on purchases of equal or more excellent value (excluding sales tax).
- You can set your certificate preferences, allowing automatic issuance at as low as 250 points for a $5 certificate or as high as 1,000 points for a $20 certificate.
- Should you wish to have certificates issued manually and have enough points to do so, that’s an option as well.
- Your reward certificates are delivered via email, but it’s crucial to note that they expire 60 days after issuance. Therefore, they must be used within this timeframe.
- There are certain limitations to the use of reward certificates. They cannot be redeemed for prior purchases, leased products, or some purchases at Pacific Sales Kitchen and Bath stores or Pacific Sales locations within Best Buy stores.
Additionally, they cannot be used for Best Buy or Magnolia gift cards, point-of-sale activation cards, or purchases intended for resale.
How to Maximize Your Rewards
The potential to maximize rewards within this program is somewhat limited. To make the most of your rewards, consider these strategies:
- Place all your Best Buy purchases on the My Best Buy Visa card, opting for standard financing.
However, be aware that bonus categories on the card may change, so periodically compare them with those of other cards you hold to determine which offers the highest reward value for a particular category.
- If you possess a 1.5% cash-back credit card, assign any purchases with rewards rates lower than 1.5% to that card.
- Set your rewards auto-redemption preferences to your preferred limit, or choose to bank your rewards if you’re an Elite or Elite Plus member.
Note that reward certificates issued by email expire in just 60 days. Opting for a higher limit allows you to redeem points for more minor reward certificates whenever needed manually.
The My Best Buy Visa card was issued by Citi, which scored 808 out of 1,000 points in J.D. Power’s 2022 U.S. Credit Card Satisfaction Study. This score falls slightly below the national issuer average of 814. If you need assistance, customer service for this credit card can be at 888-574-1301.
The security features of this card adhere to industry standards.
Fees to Watch Out For
While the Platinum version of the My Best Buy Visa card does not impose an annual fee, the Gold version carries a $59 annual fee.
Furthermore, several other fees and rates associated with this card, including balance transfer fees, cash advance fees, cash advance APRs, purchase APRs, and balance transfer APRs, are relatively high.
Both versions of this card charge a balance transfer fee of $15 or 5% of the amount of each balance transfer, whichever is greater. You can find cards that offer introductory no-fee balance transfers within the first 60 days of opening an account.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
How does My Best Buy Visa card work?
The My Best Buy Visa card allows cardholders to earn rewards for Best Buy merchandise when they make specific purchases using the card. You can receive 5% to 6% in rewards depending on the card type and membership level.
Where can I use the My Best Buy Visa card?
The My Best Buy Visa card can be used wherever Visa cards are accepted. It is not limited to making purchases solely at Best Buy. However, knowing the specific card you are applying for is essential, as two “closed-loop” Best Buy credit cards can only be used for transactions at Best Buy stores.
What is the difference between the Best Buy Card and the Best Buy Visa?
The My Best Buy Visa card is accepted at any location that takes Visa cards, providing rewards for purchases made anywhere. The Best Buy store card is solely for in-store purchases at Best Buy and offers rewards exclusively for transactions within the store.
What is the interest rate on the My Best Buy Visa card?
As of August 9, 2023, the My Best Buy Visa card features a variable interest rate ranging from 15.49% to 31.49%. There is also a non-variable APR range of 9.99% to 20.49%. Your rate will depend on your creditworthiness and various other factors.
The Best Buy Visa card is noteworthy for its attractive rewards rate on purchases at Best Buy. However, its other limited-time and bonus categories might not provide significant value since they can be unpredictable and potentially outperformed by other rewards cards.
It’s essential to note that the rewards earned can only be redeemed as Best Buy rewards certificates, and these certificates have a short 60-day expiration period after issuance. You can forgo the typical rewards points to take advantage of this card’s special financing options available for Best Buy purchases.
Occasionally, individuals who shop at Best Buy might discover that a traditional cash-back credit card, offering 1.5% or higher cash back on all purchases, suits their needs better.
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