Bank of America credit card offers
You may think about credit cards when you think about Bank of America, but the bank has been around long before their were credit cards. In fact, the company has a 240-year history and can trace its roots to some of the earliest banks in the nation. That said, it didn't start off being called Bank of America. It began as Massachusetts Bank in 1784. Read more
Then, you know how it is. Bank buys another bank and becomes bigger. Then that bank buys another bank. We're simplifying things, to keep your eyes from glazing over. But it really is a fun and rich (no pun intended) banking history. In fact, here's a fun fact - at one point in its long history, Bank of America was called the Bank of Italy of San Francisco. Yes, there were a lot of name changes throughout the years. In 1930, it was renamed the Bank of America National Trust and Savings Association and later dropped some of those excess words.
In 1958, Bank of America has expanded its business to include the first nationally licensed credit card program, BankAmericard. That card would go on to become what is known today as Visa. Bank of America now offers its customers bank accounts, credit cards, loans and investment products.
The company has approximately 66 million consumer and small business clients. While its headquarters is in Charlotte, N.C., it maintains thousands of locations across the globe. In recent years, Bank of America has received numerous accolades, including having several cards that routinely make CardRatings' best credit cards list in a variety of categories.
It is a top issuer of Visa and MasterCard credit cards and prepaid cards and is often named the best bank for college students by publications like MONEY. It has also been lauded as a top investment firm and consistency receives high ratings for its customer satisfaction in retail banking advice.
Bank of America has a variety of credit cards available to meet the needs of diverse customers. There are rewards cards, low-interest cards, student cards and credit cards for those who need to rebuild credit. The company's My Rewards program makes it easy to track Bank of America rewards from credit card, banking and investment products in one place. Furthermore, the bank seeks to reward its customers' loyalty with the Preferred Rewards program through clients qualifying for the program enjoy discounts and bonuses for a variety of bank products and services.
When it comes to credit cards, for instance, Preferred Rewards clients can earn bonus rewards on every purchase. That's something to keep in mind if you're a Preferred Rewards client and are interested in a Bank of America credit card.
But before you call Bank of America to join the Preferred Rewards program, it's worth noting that one of the requirements is a three-month combined average daily balance of $20,000 or more in qualifying Bank of America deposit accounts and/or Merrill investment accounts. (Merrill is an investment management company owned by Bank of America.)
CardRatings has named several Bank of America credit cards to its best credit cards of 2021 lists, including:
- Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card - Best for Cash Back
- Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card - Best Travel Card
- Bank of America® Premium Rewards® credit card - Best Rewards Card
- BankAmericard® credit card - Best Balance Transfer
What Are Bank of America Credit Card Benefits?
There are numerous advantages. We'll lay some of them out for you.
There's a welcome offer. Well, of course, there's a welcome offer; most good credit cards have some sort of welcome offer. Still, BofA - that's what people tend to call Bank of America for short - has some pretty solid welcome offers. For instance, Bank of America Cash Rewards Credit Card has a welcome offer where if you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days, you'll get a $200 online cash back bonus.
Rewards. Every card is different, but the cards tend to have a robust rewards program. For instance, the aforementioned Bank of America Cash Rewards credit card has a really strong rewards program. You'll receive 3% cash back in the category of your choice, 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs and an unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. Be sure to read the terms and conditions. (3% and 2% cash back is on the first $2,500 spent quarterly in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club spending.)
Preferred Rewards members earn more cash back off. If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you'll receive 25% to 75% more cash back on every purchase, and so you could be, for instance, earning 5.25% off on the choice category and 3.5% off at the grocery stores and wholesale clubs.
The museum benefit. It's kind of an obscure perk but worth knowing about. During the first full weekend of every month, you can show your Bank of America credit card and photo ID at a participating museum (the list is plentiful and long), and you'll get a free admission. If you have a spouse and kids, no such luck on the free tickets. But at least the visit will be a little cheaper.
Auto rental collision damage waiver. All Bank of America credit cards have this. If your rental car is stolen or you crash into something, after all of your other car insurance and any other car insurance coverage is exhausted, your Bank of America credit card will cover the rest. As long as you rented the car with your Bank of America credit card, of course.
Flexible rewards redemption options. On some cards, you can do different things with your cash back, like send your cash back to a qualifying 529 account with Merrill.
Free credit score. Bank of America consumer cards offer access to your monthly FICO® Score from TransUnion®.
Bank of America Credit Card Approval Odds
As with just about any credit card, whether it's hard to get the card or not depends on your credit score and credit history. For instance, it shouldn't be too difficult for anyone to get the BankAmericard Secured Credit Card, which can be used to rebuild your credit.
On the other hand, if you have bad credit, you may find it very challenging to get a Bank of America Premium Rewards Credit Card, whereas somebody with excellent credit may find out very quickly that they've been accepted.
What Is the Best Bank of America Credit Card?
The best of them include…
The cash back is the main draw here. You'll get 3% cash back on a category that you get to choose from the following categories: gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drugstores and home improvement and furnishings.
You can change each category each month - or set it and forget it. If you never select a category - you forget, you don't feel like selecting one and so on - you'll get 3% cash back on gas.
Meanwhile, cardholders also receive 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs for the first $2,500 of combined bonus category/grocery store/wholesale club spending per quarter. After hitting that $2,500 mark, you'll get 1% cash back.
For anything else you spend money on, you'll receive 1% cash back.
There are other things the card can brag about, like no annual fee and a 0% intro APR for your first 15 billing cycles for purchases, then (13.99% - 23.99% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers), but again, the cash back is what gets this card noticed.
The rewards are plentiful - and it isn't a complicated card. So congratulations are apparently in order to the people who came up with this card - and the cardholders who get it.
A few highlights:- The welcome bonus. You'll receive 25,000 points (worth $250 in travel), provided you spend $1,000 with the card in the first 90 days.
- The rewards program. You'll get 1.5 points for every dollar spent. Generally, that translates into receiving $15 for travel for every $1,000 you spend. If you're spending money, anyway, at some point, you're going to realize that you've accumulated a lot of points to redeem for travel. If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you'll get even more points.
- No foreign transaction fee. If there was one, we wouldn't be saying it was the best Bank of America card for travel, that's for sure.
- No annual fee. That's always a plus.
If it's the best Bank of America card for rewards, doesn't that really mean that it's the best Bank of America card? And the other BofA cards can go home and call it a day?
Yeah, we suppose, but don't tell the other Bank of America cards we said that. We don't want to hurt their feelings.
Look, this is a really good Bank of America credit card. We'll spell out why.- Lots of rewards. You'll earn unlimited 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and 1.5 points for every $1 spent on all other purchases. And there is no limit to the points you can earn. Plus, the points never expire.
- A very generous welcome offer. You'll receive 50,000 online bonus points after you make at least $3,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening. Those 50,000 points are worth $500.
- Travel perks. You'll get up to $200 in travel statement credit rewards, and up to $100 in Airline Incidental Statement Credits annually for qualifying purchases such as seat upgrades, baggage fees, in-flight services, and airline lounge fees. They'll be automatically applied to your card statement. You also will get up to $100 in Airport Security Statement Credits toward TSA PreCheck® or Global Entry Application fees, every four years. And there is no foreign transaction fee.
All of the excitement aside, there is a $95 annual fee, and so you'll want to consider that.
What's to like about this card? Well, the 0% intro APR for 18 billing cycles on purchases and for balance transfers made in the first 60 days of opening the account (then, 12.99% - 22.99% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers) should be a big help. There is the balance transfer fee of Either $10 or 3% of the amount of each transaction, whichever is greater.
If you don't have debt, you can probably do better. There's no sign-up bonus and no rewards. But, hey, also no annual fee. It's a fine card, just not a flashy one.