Reviews Popular Community Bank Platinum card review
Popular Community Bank Platinum card review

Popular Community Bank Platinum card review

Published: August 15, 2017
Advertiser Disclosure
Ratings Policy
Balance Transfer Rating:
0 rating
0 rating
0 / 5
Introductory Offer: 2.0
Net Value: 3.0
Features: 2.0

In a nutshell:

For most cardholders, the Popular Community Bank Platinum card is an overpriced rewards card with a disappointing balance transfer offer and forgettable rewards. This offer is no longer available.

0% Introductory Period
9 months

Transfer Fee
$5 or 3% (whichever is higher)

Introductory Purchase APR
None

Regular APR
10.99-29.25%

Annual Fee
$0

Other Notable Features: Car rental insurance, emergency travel assistance, emergency card replacement

This offer is no longer available.

With a high APR and below-average balance transfer offer, the Popular Community Bank Platinum card ranks low on our list of balance transfer cards. Cardholders with low credit scores can be charged an APR that’s as high as some cards’ penalty APRs, making it a risky choice for cardholders who tend to carry a balance. The card’s interest-free balance transfer offer is also too short for cardholders with hefty balances.

Popular Community Bank does offer bilingual customer service. So if you’re a native Spanish speaker, you might appreciate the extra option. The card isn’t widely available, however. Only cardholders living in New York, New Jersey and Florida can apply.

Very brief balance transfer offer
Popular Community Bank gives cardholders just nine months to transfer a balance without paying interest, sharply limiting the card’s appeal. If you have good credit, you can typically find longer promotions through other cards. Most balance transfer cards offer an interest-free period of at least 12 to 15 months. The Platinum card also lacks a promotional APR. So if you use the card before you repay your balance transfer, you’ll have to pay the card’s standard rate on all new purchases.

Few restrictions
Transferring a balance to the Popular Community Bank Platinum card is relatively painless, so if you just need a quick balance transfer and don’t qualify for a better card, the Platinum card can be an OK option. Popular Community Bank charges just 3 percent, or a minimum of $5, to transfer a balance, which is about average for a balance transfer card, but significantly better than some competitors. Unlike some balance transfer cards, the Platinum card also imposes few restrictions on when and how much you can transfer. You do need to transfer your balance quickly, since Popular Community Bank only gives cardholders three months to take advantage of the card’s promotion.

Exceptionally high APR
The worst thing about the Platinum card is its sky-high APR. Cardholders with excellent credit might qualify for a relatively low rate. The card’s advertised APR starts at 10.99 percent. But cardholders with lower scores can get stuck with a rate as high as 29.25 percent, which is as high as some cards’ penalty rates. Even cards reserved exclusively for consumers with bad credit offer lower interest rates. The average APR for subprime credit cards, for example, is currently 22.73 percent. Meanwhile, the average APR for balance transfer cards is only 14.12 percent.

Subpar rewards
The rewards offered by the Popular Community Bank Platinum card are also unremarkable. Cardholders earn just one point for every dollar spent, which is typical for a rewards card from a small community bank, but disappointing for a card with such a high APR. Cardholders also have to pay to redeem their rewards, significantly lowering the card’s overall value. Popular Community Bank charges a $3 redemption fee every time points are redeemed.

Bilingual customer service
The most attractive perk offered by the Platinum card is its bilingual customer service. If you’re a native Spanish speaker – or have Spanish-speaking family members who will be authorized users – the Platinum card can be a good option. Just make sure you can qualify for one of the card’s lowest available rates before you apply. Otherwise, the card’s limited benefits aren’t worth the excessive APR.

Reasons to sign up for it:

  • You have excellent credit and can qualify for the card’s lowest available rate.
  • You’re a native Spanish speaker or have Spanish-speaking relatives and prefer a card with bilingual customer service.
  •  You want to continue using the card after you pay off your balance and earn rewards on your spending.

How to use it:

  • Do the math before you apply. If you can’t afford to pay down your balance transfer before the card’s introductory rate expires, it might not be worth the higher APR.
  • Don’t use your card for new purchases unless you can pay off your new balance in full and still pay down your balance transfer.
  • Wait to redeem your points until you have enough points saved up to make a bigger purchase. Each time you redeem your points, you incur a $3 fee.

All reviews are prepared by CreditCards.com staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the bank’s website for the most current information.

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