The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card is a fairly basic credit card and one that offers no rewards program. That doesn’t mean, though, that it doesn’t come with some attractive benefits.
The U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card doesn’t come with a rewards program. You won’t earn cash back, airline miles or rewards points when you use the card to make purchases. That doesn’t mean, though, that this basic card doesn’t come with some perks – most notably a generous zero-interest offer on both purchases and balance transfers.
Is the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card a smart choice for you? It might be, depending on what you’re looking for out of a credit card.
If you’re looking for a valuable rewards program, extensive travel benefits and free access to airport lounges, this card isn’t the right option for you. But if you instead want a solid card that can help you build your credit without charging an annual fee, the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card might be a good choice.
U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card benefits
You won’t find many big-name perks with this card. Rewards programs, travel insurance, discounts on food delivery services and complimentary rideshare benefits usually come with higher-end cards (or credit cards available to consumers with excellent credit scores). These cards typically charge an annual fee, too.
But the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card does come with some benefits, and they can come in handy if you have existing credit card debt or want to build or improve your credit score.
0% intro APR on balance transfers
Do you have existing credit card debt that you’re trying to pay off? The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card’s introductory low-interest offer on balance transfers can help.
This card offers a 0% intro APR on balance transfers for 20 billing cycles, followed by a variable APR of 15.99% to 25.99%. This means you’ll have 20 months to pay off any existing credit card debt you transfer to your U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card before you have to pay any interest. This can be a valuable tool if you need to pay down a lot of debt that currently comes with a high interest rate.
Just be sure to pay off the debt you transfer before the 20-billing cycle promotional offer ends. If you don’t, the debt you haven’t paid off will be hit with the card’s standard variable interest rate of 15.99% to 25.99%, depending on the strength of your credit.
Be sure, too, not to add any new debt to the card that you can’t pay off in full by its due date. If you don’t, the new debt will roll over each month, and you’ll be charged interest on it. This would effectively defeat the purpose of your zero-interest offer.
Remember, too, that balance transfers aren’t free. You’ll pay either 3% of the amount you transfer or $5, whichever is higher.
0% intro APR on new purchases
You can also take advantage of the card’s 0% intro APR on purchases for your first 20 billing cycles. After this introductory period ends, all purchases will come with the card’s standard variable interest rate of 15.99% to 25.99%.
Again, avoid running up charges that you can’t afford to pay off in full each month. If you don’t do this, you’ll eventually have to pay off plenty in interest.
No annual fee
You don’t have to pay any annual fee to own the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card (also meaning you won’t have to worry about paying an additional $95 or more each year while chipping away at your debt).
You’ll receive a reimbursement of up to $600 if your cellphone is damaged or stolen. To qualify for this perk, you must use your U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card to pay your monthly wireless bill. You can claim this (maximum) $600 reimbursement two times for every 12-month period.
Visa will notify you if it discovers suspicious activity on your U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card. This service can help you quickly catch possible fraudulent activity on your card – often before the illegal purchase is even completed.
Free credit score
Lenders use your three-digit credit score to determine how well you’ve managed your credit and paid your bills. The higher your score, the more likely you are to qualify for a mortgage, loans or a credit card (and at lower interest rates). With your U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card, you can check your TransUnion VantageScore and receive emails regarding major changes to it.
Be aware, though, that this score isn’t the FICO credit score that most lenders use when approving you for mortgage or auto loans. Also, note that as U.S. Bank says on its website, this score is for educational purposes only and is not used by U.S. Bank to make credit decisions.
Having access to your score, though, does give you a good idea of whether your credit is strong. If your VantageScore is good, your FICO score probably is, too. A good VantageScore is anything from 661 to 780, while a score above 780 is considered excellent.
Set your due date
You might prefer paying your credit card bills at the end of the month when you are paid. Or, you might prefer to pay in the middle of the month. With the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card, you can set whatever due date works best for your lifestyle.
Maximizing the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card
The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card is best for consumers who need to pay off existing credit card debt or for those who want to build a higher credit score. Here are some tips for maximizing the benefits this card has to offer.
Pay off existing credit card debt
The low-interest offer on balance transfers is one of the main perks of this card, and this introductory period is longer than you’ll see with similar cards.
Transfer your debt to this card, and then pay it off before the introductory period ends. That way, you won’t accumulate the extra debt that comes with a high interest rate. And don’t add new debt on top of the debt you’ve transferred – only make charges that you can afford to pay off in full before or on each due date.
Build a better credit score
Making certain payments on time each month helps you improve your credit score. That’s because these payments, which include your credit card payments, are reported to the three national credit bureaus – Experian, Equifax and TransUnion. Each on-time payment will help strengthen your score.
Your best move is to only charge items to your card that you can afford to fully pay off before or on your due date. Anything you don’t pay off by your due date will be hit with the U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card’s standard variable interest rate of 15.99% to 25.99%.
Lastly, never make any credit card payment late. If you make your payment 30 days or more past the due date, your credit card provider will report the late payment to the three credit bureaus and cause your credit score to drop.
The U.S. Bank Visa Platinum Card isn’t going to get you standard rewards, travel perks or even a welcome bonus. But if you need to pay off existing debt, it’s a smart choice with a generous interest-free period on both new purchases and balance transfers.
The card is also a solid choice for those hoping to build their credit thanks to its fair credit score requirement and lack of an annual fee. And once you pay off your existing debt and build your credit score, you can apply for a card that comes with the perks you desire.