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Last updated on March 16th, 2021
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At a Glance
The Liberty Bank Cash Rewards American Express® Card earns cardholders 3% cash back on up to $6,000 in purchases at gas stations per year. Cardholders also earn 2% cash back at supermarkets and 1% cash back on all other purchases. New cardholders receive a $25 cash back bonus on their first purchase. Furthermore, new cardholders can take advantage of 0% APR for six months on purchases and balance transfers. You get all these perks with no annual fee!
Ideal for Those Who:
- Don’t want to pay an annual fee
- Do most of their spending at gas stations and supermarkets
- Want to take advantage of 0% APR on purchases for 6 months
- Need to transfer a balance and expect to pay it off in 6 months
Liberty Bank Cash Rewards American Express® Card Review
The Cash Rewards American Express® Card from Liberty Bank is this bank’s only personal cash back rewards card. It presents cardholders with a tiered rewards system by which you earn more cash back for certain categories of purchases.
This rewards card is well-suited for people whose biggest expenses include fuel and groceries as they’ll earn the most rewards on those purchases. However, cardholder also earn points on all other purchase…albeit at a lesser rate.
New cardholders can earn a $25 bonus on their first purchase, and there’s no minimum purchase amount required. What’s more, new cardholders can also take advantage of a 0% introductory APR on both balance transfers and purchases during six months.
What’s great about this card is that there is no annual fee. Keep reading to learn more about this card’s features and whether it’s a good fit for you.
Earn 3% Cash Back on Gas
The Liberty Bank Cash Rewards American Express® Card gives the most rewards to people who spend the most at gas stations. Cardholders can earn 3% back on all gas station purchases.
If you spend $30 a week at the pump, you can earn over $40 in cash back in a year. That means you can get a free tank of gas after 12 months. If you have more than one person in your household using your card to fuel up, you can be earning several times more in cash back rewards.
There is one detail you should be aware of, however. You earn 3% cash back at gas stations. That last word is important because many grocery stores and wholesale clubs also sell gas. In order for you to earn the maximum amount of cash back on your fuel purchases, you’ll need to make sure you get your gas somewhere that is officially categorized as a gas station.
If you like filling up your tank at a grocery store or wholesale/warehouse club (such as Costco), you’ll want to make sure that Liberty Bank classifies these as gas stations. Otherwise, you won’t be earning the cash back you’d hope for.
Another restriction to this benefit is that you can only earn 3% back on a maximum of $6,000 in gas station purchases per year. Don’t let this little detail turn you off from this card, though.
The average American spends just under $1,500 on gas a year according to a 2019 Business Insider report. So, a household with four vehicles would still be able to use the Cash Rewards Card to fuel up all year and earn $180 in rewards.
Earn Cash Back on Your Other Purchases, Too
Even if you don’t spend lots of money at gas stations, the Liberty Bank Cash Rewards American Express® Card can earn you points on other purchases. A major expense for many Americans involves shopping for groceries. Fortunately, you can earn 2% cash back on purchases at supermarkets.
If your average weekly grocery bill comes out to $100, that means you can earn nearly $100 in cash back rewards in a year. That’s one free trip to the grocery store. Or, you can spend your earnings on something indulgent, like a vacation or a fancy dinner.
All your other purchases will earn you 1% cash back. This isn’t the most generous amount of cash back you can earn for purchases, but it’s at least the bare minimum that most (if not all) rewards cards offer. What’s good about this feature is that no matter what you purchase, you’ll know that you’re at least earning something.
As an added bonus, new cardholders also receive $25 on their first purchase with no purchase minimum. This means that you can spend $1 and still qualify for this bonus.
There are no limits to how much cash back you can earn with the Cash Rewards American Express® Card. However, you have five years to redeem your cash back before it expires.
Redeeming Your Cash Back
You may think that the Cash Rewards American Express® Card instantly puts cash back into your account as soon as you earn it. That’s a reasonable expectation given the name “cash rewards.” However, cardholders actually have to redeem their cash back.
In other words, the cash rewards function almost like points. The only exception is that you can’t redeem your cash rewards for merchandise, gift cards, or other items from a rewards card.
Not having access to a rewards catalog isn’t such a bad thing with this American Express® Card, though. Like many credit card issuers these days, Liberty Bank keeps its rewards catalog private. This means you can’t browse through the catalog until you actually sign up for a rewards card.
This detail can make it frustrating to figure out how much your points are worth with many rewards cards. You don’t have to worry about that with this. You know that your Cash Rewards Card will earn you a specific percentage of your purchases.
Your cash back rewards don’t appear on your account immediately after your purchase. You have to wait until the end of your monthly billing cycle to receive these rewards. Additionally, you earn cash back on your net purchases. This means that if you purchased $300 in goods and returned $100 worth of merchandise, you’ll only earn cash back for $200.
Cash Back or Statement Credit?
You have two options when you redeem your cash back with the Cash Rewards American Express® Card. You can opt for a cash deposit or a statement credit
In order to receive a cash deposit, you’ll need to have a Liberty Bank check or savings account. You can redeem your rewards for a cash deposit within seven days of earning them. In other words, after you have earned your cash rewards at the end of your billing cycle, you have seven days to redeem them for cash.
On the other hand, you don’t need a checking or savings account to receive a statement credit. A statement credit is like getting a dollar amount deducted from you credit card balance. However, you’re still responsible for making you minimum monthly payment as credits are not applied to these.
Liberty Bank will apply your statement credit to your balance within one to two billing cycles. Also keep in mind that your $25 bonus won’t appear on your account until six to eight weeks after you have earned it.
0% APR on Purchases
In addition to earning points, the Cash Rewards American Express® Card offers new cardholders 0% interest for six months on purchases. This can be a fantastic deal for those who need to make large purchases all at once.
This feature gives you time to pay it off without having to pay anything extra. It’s almost like getting that 0% financing many retailers advertise. However, you should have a clear idea of what you need to purchase before you apply for this credit card. This way you’ll maximize the time you have to pay off your purchase interest free.
Remember that after the six-month promotional period expires, any remaining balance will automatically accrue interest. So, plan accordingly so that you pay off your balance in time.
While this is an attractive deal, it might not be so attractive for very large purchases. Many competing credit cards offer new cardholders a 12-month zero-interest period.
If you have to make a $12,000 purchase with the Cash Rewards Card, that means your monthly payments will come out to $2,000 a month. This can put a lot of strain on your finances.
0% APR on Balance Transfers
The Cash Rewards American Express® Card also offers new cardholders six months of 0% interest on balance transfers. You have 186 days (roughly six months) to make a transfer and take advantage of this deal.
What’s good about this feature is that the six-month period begins on the date that you transfer a balance. So, if you transfer a balance 5 months after signing up for this Cash Rewards American Express®, you still have six months to pay it off with no added interest.
If you are looking for a balance transfer card, however, this card may not be the one for you. Just as with the 0% APR on purchases feature, there are many other credit cards that offer longer promotional periods. Many offer 12 months, while some will even extend the period to 18 months.
If you’re looking to transfer over a large balance and pay it off in full, this credit card won’t give you a lot of time. Financial experts always recommend that you pay off your credit card debt with cash. If you have a limited cash flow, this fact can seriously restrict the amount of disposable funds you have each month.
For instance, a $6,000 balance will require you to pay $1,000 a month in order to pay it off before it accrues interest. That can be a significant chunk of the average American’s paycheck.
Should You Apply for the Liberty Bank Cash Rewards American Express® Card?
This credit card can be a great fit for those who do most of their spending at grocery stores and gas stations. These two types of purchases will earn you the most cash back. While there are other credit cards that may offer more rewards, these often charge hefty annual fees.
If you’re looking for a card that rewards you the most on hotel, airline, or dining purchases, you might want to check out Liberty Bank’s other American Express® Card. Additionally, you may want to explore some other cash back cards on bestcards.com.
The 0% APR feature is a nice add-on benefit, but it’s not the real draw of this card…especially if you want to transfer a large balance. As previously mentioned, there are other balance transfer cards that offer cardholders more time to pay off their balances without interest.