BrightStar Credit Union Visa Platinum Card
Up to $50,000 Credit Limit
- 3.99% introductory APR for 6 months on balance transfers
- Low regular APR
- No annual fee
- No balance transfer fees
- Credit limits of up to $50,000
- Low cash advance and foreign transaction fees
- Regular Purchase APR: 10.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Intro Balance Transfer APR: 3.99% for 6 months on transfers made within 60 days from account opening date
- Balance Transfer APR: 10.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance APR: 10.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: $1 at ATMs
- Foreign Transaction Fee: 0.8% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $25
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $25
At a Glance
If you need a credit card to help you fight against your debt, the BrightStar Credit Union Visa Platinum Card may pop up on your radar. It offers features like credit limits up to $50,000, no annual or balance transfer fees, and relatively low rates and fees for everything else.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Reside or work in one of the associated Florida counties, including Broward, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach
- Want a card with low-to-no fees all around, including for foreign transactions, cash advances, and balance transfers
- Plan to open or already have a bank account with BrightStar to maximize benefits
- Have a particularly high balance to pay off and can benefit from the low regular APR and introductory rate
BrightStar Credit Union Visa Platinum Card Review
On its surface, the BrightStar Credit Union Visa Platinum Card may seem like just another low rate card from a local financial institution. However, it comes with certain advantages –and disadvantages – that might surprise you. From the massive potential credit limit, to the odd introductory APR offer, there’s a lot to unpack here before you consider adding this card to your wallet.
High Credit Limits, Low Regular Rates
The biggest benefit of the Visa Platinum Card from BrightStar Credit Union by far is the ability to receive a credit limit up to $50,000. This is a pretty outstanding feature, considering that alternatives like the Discover it Balance Transfer card is rumored to offer credit limits up to $25,000.
If you carry a considerably high balance or need to consolidate several balances onto one account, this card may be able to accommodate you and then some. The card also boasts low regular APRs to keep your interest accrual low while you pay off that balance.
Of course, the exact credit limit and APRs you’ll receive depend on several factors, including your income and credit history. If you have a steady income and consistently pay your bills on time, you’re more likely to benefit from these features.
No Balance Transfer Fee vs Low Intro APR
Most great balance transfer credit cards offer an introductory APR of 0% and charge fees around 3% for balance transfers, but that’s not the case with this BSCU credit card. Instead, BrightStar chooses to waive the initial balance transfer fee in exchange for an introductory APR of 3.99%. This applies only to balance transfers made in the first 60 days, and lasts for 6 months.
Here’s where the benefits of this card start to come into question. A deal like this may seem helpful, especially if you’re planning to consolidate several balances onto one card. However, this isn’t actually much of a deal at all; a balance transfer fee is a one-time charge, whereas you’ll have to pay this APR again every month until you pay down the balance.
In all likelihood, a card with a lengthy 0% introductory offer and a small balance transfer fee may save you more in the long run. On the other hand, this can still benefit you in the future. If you need to make a balance transfer after you’ve had the card for a while, you’ll get the full benefit of skipping this additional fee.
Affordable Transaction Fees
Though the lack of balance transfer fees may not be all it’s cracked up to be, this card offers other interesting ways to save you money. For example, the BrightStar Visa Platinum only charges you $1 for ATM cash advances, rather than a percentage of the transaction. Though it’s best to avoid advances when you can, this can be helpful if you need to carry cash on you for one reason or another.
The foreign transaction fees are also significantly lower when compared to other cards, including some low-tier travel rewards cards. You’ll only pay .80% for transactions made in U.S. dollars, compared to the standard 3% charged by many issuers. That makes this card surprisingly travel-friendly for cardholders who spend time abroad.
Get More When You Bank with BrightStar
Whether you use the Visa Platinum credit card or a related card, you’ll receive more benefits if you bank with BrightStar too. Customers who fulfill certain criteria become eligible for Platinum Star Membership, which includes plenty of interesting financial perks. Examples include things like:
- Free BrightStar checks
- A $10 annual discount on a safety deposit box
- A discounted APR on an auto, home, or vacation loan
- $50 discounts on an extended vehicle warranty or GAP for your auto loan
BrightStar automatically enrolls you in this membership when you meet the qualifications. If you set up a checking account and enroll in Online BillPay, you’re already halfway there. Then you’ll either need to have at least $500 deposited into your checking account each month, or have a combined balance of $20,000.
Should You Apply for the BrightStar Credit Union Visa Platinum Card?
The main benefit that you’ll get from the BrightStar Credit Union Visa Platinum Card is the potential $50,000 credit limit. While that doesn’t make this a card worth reaching for in the day-to-day, it can be a great asset in case of an emergency. You can definitely find an alternative with a better introductory rate, but the regular APR is low enough to consider this among the top low rate credit cards.
However, if you don’t think you’ll qualify for or use the $50,000 limit, you’d likely be better off applying for the Visa Platinum Cash Rewards Card instead. This card offers most of the same rates as this one, but it provides the traditional 0% intro APR while still eliminating the balance transfer fee. While the regular APR is slightly higher, it also lets you earn 1.5X points on all purchases.