February 17th, 2014
At 2.22 percent this is one of the best cashback cards out there.
There are no foreign transaction fees.
This card will only require 1 hard pull as opposed to cards from Capital One which cost 3 hard pulls. Best of all Barclay will typically pull from your Transunion credit report. Most banks pull from Experian though this does vary by state. If you are NJ or NY based you shouldn’t have almost any credit pulls on your Transunion report if you don’t have Barclays bank cards.
If you are denied you can call reconsideration at 866-408-4064.
By having this card you will also get your real FICO score for free every month!
The card gives 2 “miles” for every dollar you spend on anything plus a 10% refund when you redeem miles so that you effectively earn 2.2 “miles” per dollar spent. The 10% refund means that the 40,000 points signup bonus is really 44,000 points as you’ll get 4,000 of those points back after you redeem the points for a cash refund. Of course when you redeem those 4,000 points you’ll also get a 400 point refund, etc. The 10% refund posts within 1-2 weeks of making a redemption.
Miles is a misnomer, really they just mean cents with each mile being worth 1 cent. The way it works is you book travel via any booking site and then you can just go online to your Barclays account and request that the purchase be refunded using your points. You can refund any purchase that is categorized as “Airlines, Travel Agencies & Tour Operators, Hotels, Motels & Resorts, Cruise Lines, Passenger Railways and Car Rental Agencies.”
If you want to convert your points into cash you could just book a refundable ticket like a Southwest Anytime airfare, select to redeem points to give you a check equal to that purchase, and then just refund the Southwest ticket. All of your points can be redeemed for 2.2% cash back that way.
If you spend $420 on a plane ticket and have 42,000 points from opening the card and spending $1,000 you’ll get a $420 cash refund.
2.2% cash back on all of your spending is excellent, but still I personally prefer real airline miles over bank miles due to their versatility. However this card is probably the best you’ll get for bank miles and it can make sense for people who don’t travel or who redeem for coach tickets that are purchased in advance.
-The no annual fee version of the BarclayCard Arrival World Mastercard also has no foreign transaction fees which is great for a fee-free card and it currently only requires $1,000 in spend. It has a 20,000 point signup bonus that will also receive a 10% point refund with every redemption. But it only earns double points on travel and dining purchases.