4 Key Benefits and Alternatives – Forbes Advisor

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American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) Inc. is one of the most popular retailers in the country. Known primarily for its jeans, this chain operates more than 1,300 stores worldwide.

Whether you love Temp Tech jeans or love Aerie casual wear, you might consider signing up for an American Eagle credit card to take advantage of special benefits and earn extra points. Before submitting your credit card application, here’s what you should know.

Find The Best Store Credit Cards Of 2023

American Eagle Credit Card Highlights

American Eagle has two credit card options:

  • American Eagle Real Gift Card: A store card that can only be used at American Eagle Outfitters and Aerie.
  • American Eagle Real Prize Visa: A Visa card that can be used anywhere that accepts Visa.

Both cards are issued through Synchrony Bank.

The American Eagle card has no annual fee, and you can earn Real Rewards points for your purchases that can be redeemed for future purchases of American Eagle or Aerie. Card members also get benefits such as free shipping and returns.

American Eagle Credit Card Benefits

Becoming a cardholder allows you to take advantage of several advantages:

1. Enhanced Real Gift Status

When you become a card member, AEO automatically upgrades you to the Real Rewards Level 2 membership tier. As a Level 2 member, you can earn more points per dollar spent, gain access to members-only sales and events, and gain special benefits such as discounts. 20% birthday coupon.

If you spend at least $350 per calendar year, you can reach Level 3 status, allowing you to earn more points and giving you access to even bigger discounts.

Credit card members earn twice normal points, so Level 2 members earn 30 points per dollar spent and Level 3 members earn 40 points per dollar spent.

For every 1,250 points you earn, you can redeem them for $5 credit towards future purchases of American Eagle or Aerie. If you’re a cardholder with a Level 2 membership, you’ll need to spend around $42 to be eligible for the $5 rewards. With a Level 3 membership, you only need to spend $31.25.

If you qualify for the American Eagle Real Rewards Visa, you can also earn five points for every dollar spent at non-AEO retailers.

2. Quadruple Points on Qualifying Jeans

As a card member, you can earn up to four times Real Rewards points on qualifying jeans purchases. Level 2 rewards members will earn 60 points per dollar spent, and Level 3 rewards members will earn 80 points per dollar spent.

3. Special Sales and Discounts

Card members get access to special sales, including:

  • Exclusive card member sale events all year round
  • Choose your own sale day, where members can choose one day a year to shop for discounted items
  • Free shipping and returns for purchases made on AE.com and Aerie.com

4. First Purchase Discount

New card members are entitled to a 20% discount on their first purchase.

Weaknesses of the American Eagle Credit Card

While the American Eagle credit card can be useful for some shoppers, there are some drawbacks to consider:

  • Higher than average annual percentage rate (APR): Both the American Eagle Real Rewards and American Eagle Real Rewards Visa cards have a significantly higher APR than the average of all interest-rate credit cards.
  • Gift expiration: With the Real Rewards program, your prize expires after 30 days. You will lose the prize if you don’t redeem it within that period.
  • Cannot be used for all brands: Although American Eagle Outfitters also operates Todd Snyder New York, American Eagle credit card users cannot earn points or rewards on Todd Snyder purchases.

Who Should Get an American Eagle Credit Card?

The American Eagle credit card is best for those who regularly shop at American Eagle or Aerie. It has no annual fee, so if you stop or shop online at least once a month, the card allows you to earn and redeem rewards for your purchases and helps you save money.

If you only shop for clothes occasionally, your gift will likely expire before you can use it, so it’s best to use a generic gift card that offers cash back.

Alternative to the American Eagle Credit Card

If you decide against an American Eagle credit card, consider the following alternatives:

Discover it® Secure Credit Card

If you have less than perfect credit, you might consider signing up for American Eagle Real Rewards; store cards are easier to qualify than other cards. But another way to build credit is with a secured credit card. They require a security deposit, but when you make a payment, you can establish credit and increase your credit score.

The Discover it® Secured Credit Card is a great choice for those who need to build or enhance their credit. There are no annual fees, and no minimum credit score required. And it’s one of the few secured cards that lets you earn cash back rewards. You can get 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants for up to $1,000 in combined purchases each quarter. Plus, get unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases.

Blue Cash Every Day

The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express (Terms apply. View rates & fees) may be perfect for someone looking for a gift card with no annual fee. You can get 3% cash back at US supermarkets, US gas stations, and online retail purchases in the US (up to $6,000 in each category per year on purchases, then 1%), and 1% cash back on other purchases. Cashback is received in the form of Reward Dollars which can easily be redeemed for statement credit.

If you’re looking for other options, check out our picks for the best cash-back credit cards of 2023.

The main thing is

If you shop frequently at American Eagle or Aerie, their two credit cards allow you to earn additional Real Rewards points, access exclusive sales, and get extra perks like free shipping. However, like many store brand cards, the American Eagle credit card has a higher than average APR and rewards are limited in use. If you sign up for one of the cards, limit your spending so you can pay off the balance in full each month and avoid costly interest charges.

To view American Express Blue Cash Everyday® Card rates and fees, please visit this page.

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