Overview of MBNA Home Advantage AMEX, Bank of America Pet Rewards Visa
There’s a couple of new threads on FatWallet about these cards. The cards themselves aren’t new, but it’s worth pointing them out, as they potentially have their niche uses:
- No Annual Fee
- Introductory 0% APR for Cash Advance Checks and Balance Transfers through your first twelve billing cycles.*
- Earn one Point for every $1 in net retail purchases
- Earn five Points for every $1 in net retail purchases at select home-product merchants, such as The Home Depot®, Linens ‘n Things, Pier 1®, and theKitchenStore.com®
- Redeem Points for payments toward your mortgage- at a rate of 1% of every net retail purchase
- Redeem Points for air travel, name-brand merchandise, gift certificates at popular retailers, and cash
Unfortunately, the five Points for every $1 is only offered for your first six months. As FW notes:
…Unlike the 5% gas station, supermarket, and Drugstore cards out there which are dependent on Visa, Mastercard, or AMEX coding this card actually determines the 5X points based on the merchants MBNA decides are eligable to participate. It could be a good card though for at least 6 months for those who make a lot of purchases from Home Depot. Since if you were to spend $10,000 on a home improvement project you would net 50,000 points which pretty much is a ticket to Europe or $500 CashBack or $500 towards your mortgage. Also the interest rate is reasonable at 7.9% Fixed.
- Put your pet’s picture on your card or choose from one of three adorable designs
- Low introductory annual percentage rate (APR) on all purchases and balance transfers for the first six billing cycles1
- Earn 500 bonus PetRewards Points after your first purchase
- No annual fee
- Earn two PetRewards Points for each dollar you spend at participating veterinary clinics, pet retailers, farm and feed and neighborhood pet specialty stores.
- Earn one point for each net retail dollar you spend on all other everyday purchases using your PetRewards Card.
- Redeem PetRewards points for pet food discounts, veterinary care savings and animal shelter donations.
As pointed out by this thread at FW:
It is a 2% card or 4% depending on the purchases. You earn 1 point for regular purchases and 2 points at participating pet food stores, vetinary clinics, and certain other locations. The redemption schedule though is 1,000 points = $20 for vetinary care.
The bottom line? This only seems like a useful card if you either 1) really want a credit card with your dog’s picture on it, or 2) you spend a lot on your pet. Since many pet purchases can be made at supermarkets where you can earn 5% with many cards, it severely reduces the utility of the card.