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Last updated on June 8th, 2021
- Up to 5X points per dollar spent at eBay
- 2X points at gas stations, restaurants, and grocery stores
- 1X points on all other purchases
- Must have an eBay account in order to apply
- Regular Purchase APR: 19.99%, 23.99%, or 26.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance APR: 29.99%
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
- Foreign Transaction Fee: 3% of the transaction amount in U.S dollars
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $40
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: $29
At a Glance
The eBay Mastercard® is ideal for heavy eBay shoppers that spend at least $1,000 through their online marketplace each year. Earn points on every transaction and redeem them for discounts at the eBay checkout – includes taxes and shipping costs.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Are eBay merchants or collectors
- Spend over $1,000 at eBay per calendar year
- Conduct the bulk of their eBay purchases during the first half of the year
- Will pay their credit card balance in full every month
ebay Mastercard® Review
The eBay Mastercard® has the potential to be lucrative for fans of the online marketplace, but cardholders will need to spend a pretty penny before unlocking the card’s most worthwhile benefits. Despite this hurdle, the card presents the only opportunity for frequent shoppers to earn any rewards towards eBay through external purchases. Each transaction earns points that can be applied as a discount on the total purchase price from eBay checkout page, including taxes and even shipping costs.
While handy, the hyper-specific nature of the redemption methods limits the card’s usability to all but the most frequent eBay users. There are several notable limitations of the eBay Mastercard® as a financial or savings tool, namely the lack of the ability to conduct balance transfers and sky-high APRs. But as is the case with the co-branded retail cards issued by Synchrony Bank, this card is meant to offer rewards for shopping—and little else.
No Introductory 0% APR Offer + a High APR = Could be Trouble
Sadly, the eBay Mastercard® doesn’t offer anything by means of financial support for someone planning an eBay shopping spree. There is no introductory APR for purchases or balance transfers – in fact, this card doesn’t have the capability to conduct balance transfers at all.
The lack of an intro APR is particularly detrimental to this card since the APRs are high – even for a retail card. Cardholders with phenomenal credit scores will find themselves with an interest rate upwards of 20% (and those with Fair credit scores are more likely to see their interest rate edge towards 30%). As such, anyone who owns the eBay Mastercard® should plan on paying their balance in full each and every month.
How to Earn eBay Rewards Points
The eBay Mastercard® has common bonus categories typical of other cards offered by Synchrony Bank. It allows cardholders to earn rewards for offline purchases with bonuses for gas station, grocery store, and restaurant purchases, and awards users most highly for eBay purchases.
- 3X/5X points at eBay
- 2X points at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants
- 1X points everywhere else
However, one of the biggest challenges of this card is cardholders have jump through hoops to unlock the 5X rewards rate. Essentially, the eBay bonus category can be thought of in two phases in which a $1,000 spending requirement is the tipping point. At the beginning of the calendar year, cardholders will receive 3X points until reaching a $1,000 spend.
Afterward, all future eBay purchases will yield 5X points per dollar – a bonus rate that expires at the end of that calendar year and must be re-earned each time. If it wasn’t already frustrating enough that cardholders are missing out on an extra 2 points per dollar for the first $1,000 they spend at eBay (a return of about $12), the issue is made even worse that bonus rate expires each year (December 31st) regardless of when the 5X bonus rate was earned.
This approach spells two problems for two distinct type of eBay shoppers:
- Type 1: Does a moderate amount of shopping throughout the year with no major shopping hauls
- Type 2: Does the bulk of their eBay browsing during the holiday season for gifts
The eBay shopper this would work best for is someone who can front load their eBay Mastercard® towards the beginning of the year, leaving them more time to enjoy a 5X return on items – that is, if there’s anything left for them to buy.
International eBay Purchases
Purchases made between international eBay merchants that aren’t in U.S. dollars will only earn 1 point per dollar and will not count towards the $1,000 purchase threshold.
Redeeming eBay Rewards Points
Points have an individual value of 0.6¢ each and can only be redeemed for purchases, related taxes, or shipping fees at ebay.com once 1,500 points have been reached (the equivalent of spending $500 at eBay). Once this threshold has been met, points can be redeemed towards eBay purchases at any amount with no redemption minimum or maximum.
To do so, cardholders must be logged in to use their points and can do so directly from the checkout page. At checkout, select “Your Rewards” which will display how many points are available as well as their dollar value. Note: Points can take up to two billing cycles to post to an account, so they may not be immediately available for redemption.
Forfeiture & Expiration of Reward Points
Reward points expire 24 months (2 years) from the month they were earned, however, can be lost based on the follow cardholder behavior:
- Missing two or more consecutive payments
- Failing to make a purchase with the eBay Mastercard® for 12 consecutive months
- If the eBay Mastercard® account is closed
- If your eBay user account is closed
forces cardholders to jump through a considerable hoop before being able to enjoy the full earning capabilities of the card.
Are eBay Reward Points the Same as eBay Bucks?
No, points earned with the eBay Mastercard® are not the same as eBay Bucks. The eBay Bucks Rewards Program is a separate entity that works independently of the eBay credit card and are only issued when shoppers purchase qualifying items (items are indicated with the green eBay Bucks symbol). Rewards points are not restricted to the purchase of specific items and can be earned through all purchases made with the eBay Mastercard®.
Should You Apply for the eBay Mastercard® Credit Card?
Retail cards are more prone than other types of credit cards of making cardholders to jump through hoops, but even so, the eBay Mastercard® demands more of cardholders than most. In addition to trying to shoehorn cardholders into specific spending behaviors, the eBay Mastercard® fails to offer cardholders much by the way of an enhanced shopping experience – discounted shipping, expedited shipping, exclusive discounts, etc.
The signup bonus is mediocre, and the APR is more of a detriment than a draw, leaving potential cardholders reliant on the card structure itself to provide value – something it does slowly and stingily. The bonus structure of the eBay Mastercard® makes it a poor fit for casual eBay shoppers. Not only does it try to force customers to spend $1,000 by withholding the worthwhile 5X rewards as bait, but it provides a very short time frame for shoppers to do so—pressuring them to adopt a front-loaded shopping schedule, not caring whether that aligns with their shopping habits or needs.
There’s technically no cost to owning the eBay Mastercard® since it carries no annual fee, but even the hard inquiry alone seems a high price to pay for a card so seemingly insensitive to its user-base. Aside from the weaknesses of eBay’s own bonus category, the below-average point value makes this card ill-suited for external purchases – even the ones with bonuses (groceries, gas stations, restaurants). The average flat-rate cash back credit card would yield almost double the rewards on any amount spent with the eBay Mastercard®.
Overall, it is unlikely that anyone besides someone who spends several thousands of dollars a year at the online marketplace (such as a professional eBay merchant) will find the eBay Mastercard® to be worthwhile.