Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards Benefits Guide
If you’re looking for a low-maintenance, flat-rate cash back credit card, the Bank of America® Unlimited Cash Rewards credit card is undoubtedly on your radar. Whether you’re new to credit card rewards or you just prefer the simplicity of a flat-rate rewards card, the Unlimited Cash Rewards card could have some benefits.
This guide breaks down the benefits of the Unlimited Cash Rewards card and who could benefit the most. Although you may get this card because it is easy to use, you will definitely settle for a lower cashback rate. The long and short history of this card is that members of the Bank of America Preferred Rewards program will earn the most from this card. Here’s what else you need to know about applying for the Unlimited Cash Rewards card.
Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards Card Benefits
- reward rate: Unlimited 1.5 percent cashback on all purchases
- welcome offer: $200 online bonus cash rewards after you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first 90 days
- Annual fee: $0
- Introducing APRs: 0 percent introductory APR for 15 billing cycles on purchases and balance transfers made within the first 60 days
- Variable APR: 14.24 percent to 24.24 percent
Let’s start with the obvious – this card offers 1.5% cashback on all your purchases. This is a rather low bonus rate, especially since many flat-rate cards now offer 2 percent cashback. But there are still some who can benefit from this card.
As a member of Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards program, you’ll receive an increased amount of cash back—up to 2.62 percent, depending on your checking, savings, and investment account balances. We’ll talk more about the different tiers and how to qualify below, but it’s good to know what you’re getting with this card ahead of time.
No matter how much you earn with this card, your redemption options for earned cashback are pretty simple:
- A direct deposit into your Bank of America checking or savings account
- A credit to an eligible Merrill account, including 529 accounts
- A statement credit on your card
Another standout card feature is the welcome offer of $200 cashback after you spend $1,000 or more on purchases within the first 90 days of opening your account. This breaks down to just over $330 in spend per month, which is a reasonable requirement that most will easily meet.
0% introductory APR
Then there’s the introductory APR of 0 percent on both purchases and transfers. This makes the card ideal for a major purchase that you can pay off with interest payments over time. Also, if you have high-interest debt that you want to pay off, the offer to transfer the balance could be of great help.
Bank of America Preferred Rewards program
By maintaining a certain minimum three-month average balance in your Bank of America accounts, you can qualify for one of three status levels, which give you access to a range of banking benefits, including a 25% to 75% rewards bonus on your card:
As you can see, in the Platinum Honors tier you can earn back 3.5 percent with your Unlimited Cash Rewards. You can earn quite a bit more if you can hold higher balances in a qualifying account.
Benefits of Visa Signature
The Unlimited Cash Rewards card is a Visa signature card, so it comes with a few benefits. As a Visa Signature cardholder, you get benefits like purchase security, extended warranty coverage, 24/7 roadside assistance, travel and emergency assistance. You also get ID Navigator’s credit monitoring through NortonLifeLock.
The full list of Visa Signature benefits includes special privileges and discounts at a variety of select merchants, but it’s best to contact Bank of America to confirm what benefits your card is eligible for.
BankAmeri offers and museums with us
These two benefits are included with all Bank of America credit cards and are exclusive to Bank of America. BankAmeriDeals is the issuer’s limited-time offers program, similar to Amex Offers or Chase Offers, that allows you to activate promotional offers in your account to receive an additional 5 to 15 percent cashback at participating merchants, including select retailers, restaurants and more.
Museums on Us, also available to Bank of America debit cardholders, gives you free access to over 225 “Cultural Institutions” across the country. Simply present your Bank of America card and valid photo ID on the first weekend of each month to unlock this benefit.
Maximizing the Bank of America Unlimited Cash Rewards card
Essentially, as a Preferred Rewards member, you get the best cashback rate. If you don’t qualify for this program, you have little choice but to swipe and enjoy the convenience of earning cashback hassle-free. You don’t have to keep up with rotating bonus tiers or special spending tiers to earn your money back with your Unlimited Cash Rewards card.
You can take your cashback earnings and deposit them into a Bank of America account of your choice to qualify as a Preferred Rewards member. But even if you spend a significant amount on your card each year, it can take a long time to accumulate enough money to qualify for a tier in the program.
Another idea might be to pair your card with another cashback card that earns more in categories where you spend the most. You could stay in the Bank of America family of cards with the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card, which offers a higher cashback rate for more frequent spending categories like restaurants and grocery stores. If you don’t mind paying a small annual fee, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card offers similar categories of cashback at much higher rates than Unlimited Cash’s 1.5 percent rate.
The final result
The Unlimited Cash Rewards card doesn’t offer the best cash back credit card pricing. However, for the right person (namely, Preferred Rewards members), it can be a convenient way to earn credit card rewards. For higher rewards, either add another higher-earning card to your wallet or try to move up the preferred reward tiers.