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CMU Visa® Signature Card

Cory Santos

| Last updated on October 27th, 2023

CMU Visa® Signature Card

CMU Visa® Signature Card
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CMU Visa® Signature Card

  • 20.24% to 30.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
  • 20.24% to 30.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Balance Transfer APR
  • 30.24% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR
  • 1.99% for 6 months from account opening date Intro Purchase APR

At a Glance

Sponsored by the Central Michigan University Alumni Association, the CMU Visa® Signature Card offers an easy way to show off school pride. Not only that, this maroon and gold credit card also rewards cardholders with impressive cash back. It earns 3% for fast food, ridesharing, and coffee shop purchases, plus 2% at gas stations and other restaurants. Whether current CMU students or alumni, this card can fit into just about any Chippewa fan’s wallet.

  • Best Benefits
  • Rates & Fees
  • Why Should You Apply?
  • Earn 3% cash back on rideshares, fast food, and coffee
  • Earn 2% cash back at gas stations and restaurants
  • Earn 1% cash back on uncategorized net purchases
  • Get a low introductory APR for the first 6 months
  • Intro Purchase APR: 1.99% for 6 months from account opening date
  • Regular Purchase APR: 20.24% to 30.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Intro Balance Transfer APR: 1.99% for 6 months from account opening date
  • Balance Transfer APR: 20.24% to 30.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
  • Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater
  • Cash Advance APR: 30.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
  • Penalty APR: 32.24% variable based on the Prime Rate
  • Foreign Transaction Fee: Up to 2% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
  • Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
  • You attended Central Michigan University and want to show support with every purchase
  • You want a card that earns the most rewards for rideshares, fast food, and coffee shop purchases
  • You also want rewards for gas and restaurants, plus base rewards for other purchases
  • You prefer flexible ways to redeem, from cash back to travel discounts

CMU Visa® Signature Card Review

The CMU Visa® Signature Card is a rewards card issued by Commerce Bank and designed for supporters of the school. It allows Central Michigan University alumni and others to earn rewards in several categories associated with dining and getting around town – expenses most college students find quite familiar. While it’s rates and fees aren’t anything to write home about, the card still comes with some worthwhile perks for the right CMU cardholder. 

Rewards for CMU Alumni, Students, and Fans

While this card is sponsored by the CMU Alumni Associationthere’s nothing in the terms and conditions to suggest that only graduates can apply. This is worth noting, because the top earning category centers on very student-friendly purchases: fast food, rideshares, and coffee shop fare. While the 3% rate isn’t as high as some top-tier cash back cards would offer, it can still build up plenty of rewards 

Even those who have left their campus days behind can benefit from the 2% cash back at gas stations and regular restaurants. (These must fall into the service stations and dining/drinking establishment categories.) This is on par with big-name cards like the Discover it® Chrome for StudentsPlus, the base 1% back on all net purchases ensures that you’ll earn rewards every time you use the card.  

Cashing in With Your CMU Alumni Credit Card

As a cash back card, the CMU alumni card gives you the most value when you redeem for cash back. This comes in the form of a statement credit to your bill, though it doesn’t count toward your minimum payment. In order to redeem for cash back, you’ll first need to accumulate at least 5,000 points. You can reach this by spending a little over $1,660 in just the top earning category.  

Meanwhile, you also have the flexibility to redeem for travel discounts, merchandise, and gift cards. Travel redemptions require a minimum of 10,000 points, while the other options vary by item. When you want to redeem for something other than cash back, you’ll go through the Commerce Bank Signature Rewards Service Center. Unfortunately, this catalogue is only available to cardholders, so you can’t browse available offers before you apply. 

Low Intro APR and Other CMU Card Perks

Rewards aren’t the only benefits you can get out of this Commerce Bank credit card. It also comes with a small introductory APR deal, which takes the interest rate down to 1.99% for the first 6 months. This applies to both purchases and balance transfers, so you can save no matter where your balance comes from.  

This isn’t a great rate for carrying a balance (you can obviously save more with a 0% introductory offer), but it’s still a nice addition to a niche rewards card. Other benefits that the card brings include: 

  • No annual fee 
  • Zero Liability coverage on unauthorized purchases 
  • A card lock feature and emergency replacement in case you lose your card 
  • Flexible pay through toggle®, which allows you to choose purchases to pay for now, and ones to pay later 
  • Digital wallet compatibility, such as Apple Pay 
  • FICO score access to keep track of your credit health from month to month 

Should You Apply for the CMU Alumni Visa® Signature Card?

If you’re among the current or soon-to-be Central Michigan University alumni, the CMU Visa® Signature Card is a fun card to consider. It offers a decent spread of rewards in useful categories, particularly for undergrads and grad students. However, it also provides a way for alumni to show off their school spirit well after graduation.  

That being said, it’s not a stand-out card in any particular category. If you want more rewards or a better introductory offer, you’re better off choosing a less niche card. The U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card, for instance, earns 5% cash back in two categories of your choice. Meanwhile, a card like the CMU alumni offer can be a great backup for hefty rewards cards.  

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