Special Pointshogger Contributor Shirley Huang analyses the Walmart Rewards MasterCard.
As someone who shops at Walmart at least two times a week for groceries and all my basic necessities, I’m quite familiar with cash-back cards and which ones will benefit me more in the long run. I’ve noticed that recently Walmart Financial pushed out the Walmart Rewards MasterCard in which cashiers are supposed to sell their pitch to you when you’re getting ready to pay for all your goods. Is this a good idea? Not really. I am not usually good with saying no to people, and for the most part I won’t say no. When you’re the one scanning my daily needs through and have full rights to demand payment from me, I know I can’t run away from this one. I’m not sure if it’s the vibe I give off that states I’ll probably say yes to whatever you’re about to say to me, but I figured I should stand up for myself this time. So consequently, as I was asked the first time whether I wanted to sign up for the Walmart Rewards card, I had given a clear and firm no. Of course, I made proper assumptions that I would be asked the next time I was in Walmart again as per usual. Although each time I made no attempts to understand the benefits of the card, I went home and started to do my own research.
The Walmart Rewards card was pushed out by Walmart Financial to increase the amount of spending by clients at strictly Walmart in which you can earn 1.25% on every dollar spent at Walmart. For other purchases, 1% cash back can be earned through Walmart rewards. There is no annual fee and you’ll also get a bonus $15 at the time of sign-up as well as receive $10 if you go paperless. You can redeem your cash immediately after you have spent $5. If you’d like to have supplementary cardholders, you can request them for no charge at all.
Now the question is whether this card is sign-up worthy. The Walmart Rewards card offers a cash-back program that most cash-back credit cards don’t have. Most credit cards like the MBNA Smart Cash offer 1% cash back on qualifying purchases as opposed to the 1.25% on purchases made at Walmart. However, the benefits of the Walmart Rewards MasterCard are restricted to goods purchased specifically to the one retailer. Essentially speaking, the Walmart Rewards MasterCard works like most cash back credit cards offering a 1% cash back and 1.25% if you’re a Walmart shopper. The downfall to this card is that it has no insurance and extended warranty plan. If you’re worried about this one, you’ll be expecting to pay $3.99 a month to upgrade for an extended warranty with the card.
Overall, although the 1.25% cash back is attractive, with limits to one single retailer and no insurance plan (which most credit cards offer as a complimentary benefit), the Walmart Rewards Mastercard just doesn’t make the cut.
I recommend that they increase to at least 2% cash back on purchases made at Walmart, instead of only 1.25%. Target has a 5% cash back on its co-branded credit card and Canadian Tire has 3% on its co-branded credit card, so 2% isn’t asking a lot.
Personally, I would suggest going with the Capital One Aspire Travel World MasterCard as you can earn 2 reward miles for every $1 spent and receive 35,000 bonus miles during sign-up. If you’re looking for cash-back, I would recommend the Capital One Aspire Cash Platinum MasterCard as you can earn 1% cash back on all purchases along with an exceptional insurance plan such as travel accident insurance, car rental collision insurance, price protection and purchase assurance. So the next time I’m in Walmart, I know why I have to firmly keep my stand to this credit card sign-up.