The Bank of America Customized Cash Rewards card offers flexibility for those who want more control over their rewards categories. Here’s what to know.
Many of today’s best credit cards offer rewards programs that run the gamut from flat-rate cash back to rotating bonus categories to airline miles and everything in between. Whether you want to earn status in your favorite hotel chain’s loyalty program or the ability to transfer your points to a wide range of travel partners, chances are good that there’s a card that can help you achieve your goals.
Some rewards credit cards come with what we call a choose-your-own-adventure earnings structure, which gives you more control over your top bonus category. Having the flexibility to earn a higher rewards rate on the purchases you make the most can help you rack up points faster than you probably would with a fixed-bonus-category card.
The Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card provides just that: The ability to pick a cash back bonus category from a list of six options. What’s more, you can switch out your chosen category once a month, allowing you to maximize your bonus earnings as your spending habits change over time.
Here’s what you need to know to decide whether this Bank of America card is a good fit for your wallet.
Bank of America Customized Cash card details
If you’re considering getting the Bank of America Customized Cash card, check out our overview below of what you should know before you apply.
The Bank of America Customized Cash card is what’s called a tiered bonus-category card, which means it offers boosted rewards rates on specific types of purchases. In this case, you can earn cash back in three different tiers:
- 3% cash back in the category of your choice: gas, online shopping, dining, travel, drugstores or home improvement/furnishings
- 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs
- 1% cash back on all other purchases
This type of rewards card can be a great option for those whose everyday purchases align with one or more of these categories. For instance, big families with high grocery bills, couples who dine out frequently and consumers who do a lot of online shopping might find the Bank of America Customized Cash card especially rewarding (pun intended).
That said, there’s one potential deal-breaker that big spenders, in particular, should be aware of: The 3% and 2% bonus rates have a combined $2,500 quarterly spending cap. After that, you’ll earn just 1% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, as well as on all purchases that fall within your chosen 3% category.
The no-annual-fee Bank of America Cash credit card is pretty light on extras. The good news is that, as a Visa Signature card, you do get some purchase protections, including extended warranty coverage, which doubles the manufacturer’s warranty for up to an extra year.
You’ll also have access to BankAmeriDeals, a card-linked offer program that can help you earn extra cash back – in some cases up to 15% – on eligible purchases at select restaurants and other retailers, without having to use a promo code or coupon. Here’s how:
- Log in to your Bank of America mobile app or online account.
- Browse through the current promotions and activate the deals you like. (There’s no limit to how many you can pick.)
- Link them to your Bank of America Customized Cash credit card.
- Use your linked card to pay for your purchase.
A statement credit will be added to your account automatically within 30 days. Plus, you’ll earn a BankAmeriDeals coin for each qualifying purchase you make. Racking up coins earns additional cash bonuses as you continue to redeem promotions.
One lesser-known Bank of America perk is the company’s Museums on Us program, wherein cardholders receive free general admission to hundreds of “cultural institutions” during the first weekend of every month. Just present your Bank of America Customized Cash card and photo ID at participating partners, which include the Whitney Museum of American Art and the Liberty Science Center.
Other card features
The Bank of America Customized Cash credit card offers a few other features worth mentioning. For starters, new cardholders can earn a modest sign-up bonus of $200 in online cash rewards when they spend a manageable $1,000 on purchases in their first 90 days of account opening. The card also carries a 0% APR on balance transfers for 15 months, which could come in handy if you’ve racked up high-interest debt on another card. (Note, however, that you’ll have to pay either a $10 or 3% balance transfer fee, whichever is greater, and request the transfer within the first 60 days.)
Who should and shouldn’t get the Bank of America Customized Cash card?
The Bank of America Customized Cash credit card might be a good fit if you prefer a mostly hands-off approach to earning rewards and want to avoid an annual fee. It’s an even better match if you’re a Bank of America or Merrill account holder and you qualify for the Preferred Rewards program. If you do, depending on your account balance, you could boost your earnings rates across all categories, including your 3% pick, by as much as 75%. And if you have a large purchase coming up and want extra time to pay it off, the card’s 0% intro APR may be particularly appealing.
On the other hand, those who don’t mind putting in a little extra work to maximize their earnings might be better off with a card that has a 5% cash back rate in rotating spending categories, like the Discover it® Cash Back or the Chase Freedom Flex℠. You might also want to steer clear if you’re looking to use your rewards for travel redemptions – the Bank of America Customized Cash card comes with more limited options – or if you think you’ll regularly spend more than $2,500 per quarter in the 2% and 3% bonus categories.