It is true that when picking a credit card, we must consider our spending habits and the stores we love. In this case, if you are an avid Best Buy shopper, you might want to consider the credit cards being offered by this retailer: the My Best Buy Credit Card and My Best Buy Visa. While the two Citibank-issued cards look exactly the same, they differ significantly.
You can easily spot the differences between the two cards depending on using them. My Best Buy Credit Card can only be used at Best Buy stores and BestBuy.com. This means if you are planning to just literally use it for this particular store, it will be a good option. On the other hand, My Best Buy Visa is a credit card that provides you with perks and rewards by using it mainly on Best Buy purchases. You can also use it anywhere where Visa is accepted, and you can earn rewards in various categories. Given this fact, My Best Buy Visa can also work like a regular credit card for your other purchases. However, unlike the My Best Buy Credit Card that offers a $0 annual fee, the My Best Buy Visa has a variable annual fee depending on your creditworthiness.
In that case, it is best to be aware that My Best Buy Visa comes in two forms: the My Best Buy Platinum Visa and My Best Buy Gold Visa. The credit card that will be approved to you depends on your credit, and in case you fail to meet the cut, you could end up having a $59 annual fee to deal with. Thankfully, you can cancel your new card within 30 days to avoid this fee. Apparently, this will affect your credit score, but it is alright if you think it is much better than paying $59 yearly. Also, if you are an annual fee-averse individual, there are many free credit cards available now that offer hefty rewards without requiring you to pay a single cent for a fee. Some even offer bonuses as high as $200 or more once you have reached a certain spending quota within a particular period.
The reward systems of the two Best Buy cards are just the same. Any user of the two cards can enjoy up to 5% back in rewards. That is 2.5 points per $1 spent on qualifying Best Buy purchases. When you reach your My Best Buy Elite Plus status, you’ll start earning a 3-point bonus per $1 spent or a total of 6% back in rewards. To do this, you must first make $3,500 in purchases in a calendar year with your Best Buy credit cards.
Both cards also offer a total of 10% back in rewards as an introductory bonus offer. However, it is essential to note that this bonus is only limited to your first day of purchases. Also, this bonus is only valid within the first 14 days of account opening.
Moreover, while the My Best Buy Credit Card and My Best Buy Visa are obviously valid in Best Buy stores anywhere, the reward you can get from the former is minimal. Keep in mind that it is only applicable for Best Buy stores, so if you are looking for a flexible credit card, you might need to consider other options.
On the other hand, My Best Buy Visa comes with a relatively decent reward structure. Besides the 5% back in rewards you can receive by shopping at Best Buy, you also have a 5% back or 2.5 points per $1 spent on future net travel purchases. It is only valid from 10/1/21 to 12/31/21 and would be awarded within 45 days after the promotion ends. Further, My Best Buy Visa also provides 3% back in rewards on purchases made at gas stations; 2% back in rewards on purchases made at restaurants, bars, and grocery stores; and 1% back or 1 point per $2 spent on net purchases outside Best Buy or Pacific Sales Kitchen & Home Stores.
Another thing about getting these Best Buy Credit cards is the financing options you can enjoy when paying for expensive purchases. This is offered when you use any of the two Best Buy cards at Best Buy stores to purchase their products. This is where a red flag starts, as often experienced by most Best Buy credit card users.
Initially, you will be offered to choose between the standard credit or the deferred financing options when you reach a certain amount. It is good in terms of the payment flexibility of the card as you will have the opportunity to pay for your purchases for a longer time. The length of the payment period depends on the amount of the item and the product itself:
These Best Buy Deferred Interest promotional offers will let you pay the purchase price without interest once you have paid in full before your selected promotional period ends. It sounds enticing and straightforward, but a few mistakes can lead to hefty interest. Besides the risk of high interest by not finishing the payment before the end of the promotional period, missing a monthly due date will immediately trigger the charging of interest on your entire balance for the whole loan term. The problem is that Best Buy credit cards have a high-interest charge of 25.24%. With this, you might end up paying a lot. To better explain this, here is a scenario from Best Buy where a buyer applied for a deferred interest financing loan after buying a $1,500 laptop:
Here, the payer only pays the minimum every month. This kind of arrangement will prevent him from fully paying the entirety of the promotional balance before the end of the 24-month period. This causes the $607 accrued interest charged for Regular Purchases from the date of purchase.
You can prevent problems with your deferred financing plans by paying more than the minimum required monthly payment on your statement. Doing otherwise will not help you reach and pay off your balance by the end of the loan term. In the scenario presented above, the payer pays more than the indicated monthly minimum on the report, allowing him to pay everything before the promotional financing term ends.
You can also prevent missing the due dates by using autopay systems, but unexpected cases can still delay your payment. That being said, it is truly a risky way to choose deferred financing options.
If you think the mentioned APR is too high for a deferred financing plan, Best Buy offers an alternative in the form of a reduced rate credit plan. In this option, the APR that will be implemented will be lowered, and you will be asked to pay fixed monthly payments. However, while the APR here is dramatically reduced, this option will make the payment of interest mandatory in your monthly payments even if you have reached the end of the loan period.
Here is an illustration from Best Buy:
In this scenario, the Best Buy credit card user opts for a reduced rate credit plan with a 24-month paying period. The payments per month are fixed, and the APR is lower. However, despite paying on time, the interest is still applied.
The APRs of the reduced rate credit plan options vary depending on the length of the payment period you want to have. There is a choice for 11.90% for 48 months, 0% to 11.99% for 24 months, and 8.99% to 12.99% for 36 months. The reduced rate credit plans are applicable for both Best Buy credit cards and only for select purchases.
Are the Best Buy Credit Cards worth it?
Each of the two Best Buy credit cards has its own specific purposes. If you are just looking for a credit card aimed to get rewards in each of your Best Buy products, the My Best Buy Credit Card is the best choice. It has a $0 annual fee, but you can still get a good amount of rewards in every dollar you will spend at Best Buy. On the other hand, My Best Buy Visa is a good pick for you if you also need a CC that you can use in different stores and purchases besides your frequent Best Buy purchases. The reward structure is reasonably good, and consumers who love to spend on electronics will benefit significantly from this credit card.
Also, you might want to stop and think hundreds of times before using the cards’ financing options. Deferred interest financing is a risky way of paying your purchase, leading to overwhelming interest. You must always be aware of your monthly statements, and in case you choose to have this financing option, be sure to pay more than the minimum. On the other hand, it is best to select the 5% back over the deferred interest financing options since it will benefit you more.
The $59 annual fee of My Best Buy Visa will not impress anyone since the reward categories are a bit limiting. Many other free credit cards won’t require you to pay annual fees but can still offer you a good deal of rewards. Some include the Chase Freedom Flex and Wells Fargo Active Cash Card with 0% intro APR for the first 15 months of account opening and $200 intro bonuses. Considering them is recommended if you are looking for credit cards with flexible reward systems and uses.