Everything You Need to Know About the Best Buy Credit Cards & Best Buy Visas

FT Contributor  | 

Best Buy offers four different credit cards. Many of the features of these cards are similar, but each one also provides unique benefits. To get the most out of a Best Buy credit card, you need to choose the option that offers the best reward system for your needs.

Your credit score and the approval process can also affect the type of card you’re able to obtain.

Best Buy partners with Citibank to offer its Visa cards and store credit cards to customers. To maximize rewards, you also need to use the My Best Buy rewards program, which Best Buy administers itself.

Best Buy Credit Card Rewards, Benefits, and Features

You need to weigh the various benefits and drawbacks of each of the four Best Buy cards before choosing the one that is best for your needs. Two of the options are Visa cards cardholders can use anywhere that accepts credit cards. The other two are store-specific credit cards you can only use at Best Buy or online at BestBuy.com.

My Best Buy Visa Platinum

The My Best Buy Visa Platinum card offers 5% cashback for all qualifying Best Buy purchases. You can also earn 6% back if you are an Elite Plus cardmember. You get Elite Plus status when you spend $3,500 at Best Buy, on BestBuy.com, or with your Best Buy Visa within one calendar year.

The Best Buy Platinum Visa does not have an annual fee, and you can also earn points outside of Best Buy. You get 1% back on all purchases, 3% on groceries and gas, and 2% on dining and other select purchases. The non-Best Buy rewards are subject to change.

If the amount of your purchase is over $199, you can opt for special financing instead of rewards. Financing options include the ability to pay for your purchase over time without paying interest. The catch to this deal is that you need to pay off the entire balance during the repayment period, or you could be required to pay all interest for the purchase. Current financing deals include six months of deferred interest on charges over $199 and 18 months of deferred interest on purchases over $479.

The standard interest rate is 27.49% for Best Buy Visa cards. To take full advantage of the benefits, you also need to register for a My Best Buy Rewards Program account.

My Best Buy Visa Gold

The My Best Buy Visa Gold card offers the same set of perks and benefits as the Visa Platinum. There is one significant difference: the My Best Buy Visa Gold card has a $59 annual fee. You apply for the Platinum card and Gold card at the same time. If your credit score and other factors do not qualify you for the Platinum card, which does not have an annual fee, Best Buy may offer you the chance to get a Visa Gold Card.

My Best Buy Credit Card Preferred

My Best Buy Credit Cards are only for use at Best Buy and on BestBuy.com. However, when you use these cards at Best Buy with the My Best Buy Rewards Program, you get the same 5% back just as you do with the Visa. The rewards jump to 6% when you make combined purchases of $3,500 or more in one calendar year. Best Buy Credit Card members can also opt for deferred interest financing for six months on purchases over $199 and 18 months on Purchases over $479.

The My Best Buy Credit Card Preferred has a variable interest rate of 27.49%. Again, because the financing leads to deferred interest, you need to pay off the entire balance within the time frame; otherwise, you will have to pay all interest charges at the standard rate.  

My Best Buy Credit Card

According to the information and terms published by card issuer Citibank, the My Best Buy Credit Card has the same benefits and interest rates as the My Best Buy Credit Card Preferred. Neither card has an annual fee.

Applying for a Best Buy Credit Card

Applying for a Best Buy credit card or Visa card is convenient because you submit one application for all four cards. Like all credit card applications, you provide information such as income, Social Security number, address, and phone number. The issuer will perform a credit check.

First, applicants get considered for the My Best Buy Visa Platinum Card. If you do not qualify for this card, Best Buy will then consider you for a Visa Gold Card. Finally, they will assess your eligibility for a My Best Buy Credit Card Preferred and a My Best Buy Credit Card.

During the application process, you may get to choose which card you would like to use. For example, you could qualify for a Visa Gold, which comes with a $59 annual fee, but which you can use anywhere that accepts credit cards. Alternatively, you could opt for a My Best Buy Credit Card, which has the same benefits as the Visa Gold without the annual fee, but which you cannot use elsewhere.

What Credit Score Do You Need for a Best Buy Credit Card

To qualify for a Best Buy Credit Card, you may need at least a fair credit score or an average credit score of 640 or above. For the highest card, the My Best Buy Platinum Visa, you need a good credit score, which is in the range of 700 or above. Those with a score below 700 may qualify for a My Best Buy Gold card, but not a Platinum card.

Applicants sometimes get instant approval. However, if the company needs to perform additional research, it could take seven to 10 days or more to get an answer.

How to Manage a Best Buy Credit Card in a Financial Plan

All of the My Best Buy Visas and credit cards offer 5% back on purchases. To take full advantage of these perks, you need to pay off the balance before you accrue any interest. Interest charges could cancel out the value of the rewards.

For large purchases, you may need to choose between the 5% reward and special financing. All four cards could be ideal for people who make large electronics or appliance purchases. The financing option allows buyers to spread the cost out over six to 18 months without requiring interest payments.

With special financing, the interest rate gets deferred, not waived. To avoid interest payments, you need to make a minimum payment each month and pay off the entire balance before the end of the financing period. If you do not pay off the whole balance or if you miss a minimum monthly payment, then you are responsible for interest payments for the entire purchase (not just the unpaid balance).

Also, you should realize that the combined minimum monthly payment may not equal the total amount of the purchase. You may need to pay more than the minimum or make a larger payment during the final month of the financing deal to avoid having to pay the deferred interest.

If you make large or frequent purchases at Best Buy or on BestBuy.com and you have a good credit score, you could benefit from applying for a My Best Best Visa Card or My Best Buy Credit Card.

Image Source: https://depositphotos.com/

This post was updated December 5, 2019. It was originally published December 5, 2019.