Last updated on September 8th, 2023
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U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature®
U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature®
- 21.24% to 29.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Regular Purchase APR
- 21.24% to 29.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate Balance Transfer APR
- 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate Cash Advance APR
At a Glance
The U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® offers up to 4X points on eligible travel purchases, statement credits for streaming services and TSA Precheck, and plenty more – all for a $95 annual fee that U.S. Bank waives for the first year. The card also provides an impressive 50,000-point signup bonus after meeting minimum spending requirements in the first 120 days.
- Best Benefits
- Rates & Fees
- Why Should You Apply?
- No foreign transaction fees
- Earn 4X points on travel and gas station purchases
- Earn 2X points on grocery stores, grocery delivery, dining and streaming services
- TSA Precheck or Global Entry statement credit every four years
- Regular Purchase APR: 21.24% to 29.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Balance Transfer APR: 21.24% to 29.24% variable based on creditworthiness and the Prime Rate
- Balance Transfer Transaction Fee: Either 3% of the amount of each transfer or $5 minimum, whichever is greater
- Cash Advance APR: 29.99% variable based on the Prime Rate
- Cash Advance Transaction Fee: Either 5% of the amount of each advance or $10 minimum, whichever is greater
- Annual Fee: $0 for the first year; $95 after that
- Late Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
- Return Payment Penalty Fee: Up to $41
- You either travel occasionally or commute often (or both)
- You want a statement credit for TSA Precheck of Global Entry
- You plan to spend at least $3,000 on purchases in the first four months
- You frequently use streaming services
U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card Review
The U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® is a premium rewards card that offers additional value for travelers versus the U.S. Bank Altitude® Go – for a $95 annual fee, which U.S. Bank waives for the first year.
Impressive Sign-up Bonus
New accounts enjoy an impressive sign-up bonus with the U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect. Cardholders can earn 50,000 bonus points after spending $3,000 in the first 120 days after account opening. U.S. Bank values this bonus at around $500, which is approximately 16.5% cash back.
Earn Up to 4X Points on Purchases
The U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect is, at its heart, a travel rewards credit card. As such, the card earns the most amount of points on travel purchases.
Cardholders earns 4X points on travel purchases and at gas stations. Travel is a fairly broad merchant category, meaning Connect cardholders will earn those 4X points on flights booked directly with airlines, hotel stays, and car rentals – as well as on taxis, train fares, limo rentals, cruises, and more. The 4X also applies to gas station purchases, making the Connect card one of the more versatile gas rewards cards on the market today – especially after the Ducks Unlimited Visa saw its points-earning potential slashed dramatically in 2020.
The U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect also earns 2X points at grocery stores, grocery delivery, dining, and streaming services. Earning bonus points on streaming is something U.S. Bank has offered since unveiling the Altitude Go and offers great value for users.
Streaming is another broad category, encompassing a variety of services, including tv and music. Some examples of eligible streaming services that earn 2X points include:
|Disney+||Vudu||Google Play Music|
|Netflix||Apple Music||Slacker Radio|
|Sling TV||YouTube Music||Spotify|
All other purchases with the Connect card earn an unlimited 1X points. Points never expire as long as the cardholder’s account is active and open.
How to Redeem Points
Like other rewards cards, the U.S. Bank Altitude Connect allows cardholders to redeem their points towards:
- Cash back
- Statement credits
- Gift cards
Like the Altitude® Go, the Altitude® Connect also comes with a yearly statement credit towards streaming credits. Unlike the Go, however, the streaming credit with the Connect is $30 per year instead of $15.
The streaming credit only applies after making eleven consecutive monthly payments for an eligible streaming service each year. Still, $30 is $30, so it is a decent offer for those who do stream much of their content.
Comparing the U.S. Bank Altitude Credit Cards
|Annual fee||$0||$0 for the first year; $95 after that||$400|
|Rewards||4X points on dining, takeout, and restaurant delivery, 2X on streaming services, grocery stores, grocery delivery, gas stations, and EV charging stations, 1X on everything else||4X points on travel and gas station purchases, 2X points on grocery stores, grocery delivery, dining and streaming services, 1X on everything else||5X on prepaid hotels and car rentals booked directly in the Altitude Rewards Center, 3X on eligible net travel purchases and mobile wallet spending, 1X on everything else|
|Perks||$15 streaming credit||Priority Pass™ Select, TSA PreCheck® or Global Entry® credits, cell phone protection||Priority Pass™ Select, TSA PreCheck® or Global Entry® credits, Visa Infinite® Luxury Hotel Collection|
|Network||Visa Signature||Visa Signature||Visa Infinite|
Since the Altitude® Connect is a travel card, it naturally provides some quality travel perks. Chief among these features is a $100 statement credit every four years for a TSA Precheck or Global Entry application fee. These services are a great feature for those who frequently travel, as who doesn’t hate waiting in lengthy lines at airport security?
The Altitude® Connect also features no foreign transaction fees. While not an exclusive perk, combining no fees when using the card abroad with the enormous reach of the Visa payment network (the world’s largest) and you have a card that works pretty much anywhere you find yourself.
Other travel features of the card include Visa benefits and protections, including:
|Zero Fraud Liability||Cardholder Inquiry Services||Emergency Card Replacement||Luxury Hotel Collection||Extended Warranty Coverage|
|Roadside Dispatch||Lost/Stolen Card Reporting||ID Navigator from Norton||Travel & Emergency Assistance|
While the Altitude® Connect doesn’t have the lowest interest rates on purchases or balance transfers, the APR with the card is highly competitive. The purchase APR with the card, for example, starts as low as around 16%, which is over a percentage point lower than the national average APR for a general travel rewards credit card.
Other Card Features
Other notable features of the U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature include:
- Contactless payment compatibility
- EMV chip technology
- Mobile wallet compatibility
- Up to $600 reimbursement if your cell phone is stolen or damaged when you pay your monthly cell phone bill with your card
Cardholders also gain access to GigSky Global Mobile Data. This program lets you explore the world without data roaming charges with your U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card and GigSky. You can stay connected using the GigSky app on compatible devices. With a complimentary 1 GB/15-day global mobile data plan from GigSky on your eligible Visa card, you can enjoy fast and reliable internet access in over 125 countries. No more searching for Wi-Fi hotspots, buying expensive local SIM cards, and paying overpriced roaming fees. On compatible eSim devices*, connect with your eligible Visa card and you’re good to go.
U.S. Bank Ratings
What is it like living with U.S. Bank as your credit card issuer? Here is a selection of expert and consumer reviews of the bank:
Should You Apply for the U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card?
For the occasional traveler and daily commuter, the U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® Card offers plenty of upsides when compared to juggernauts like the Chase Sapphire Preferred. The card offers impressive point earning potential on travel and gas station purchases, plus decent rewards when dining, shopping for groceries, or streaming the latest tv shows and movies.
The real questions about the usefulness of the Connect comes with the travel perks – and, more importantly, what you want in a travel card. For example, if you want to fast-track through TSA, the card is ideal (especially without an annual fee for the first year). If you have other priorities when traveling, however, there are better options available.
The Hilton Honors Surpass, from American Express, provides ten free airport lounge visits each year through priority Pass Select – for the same $95 annual fee. That card also offers 6X points at U.S. gas stations, while a lower value than the 4X from the Connect (trust us, the math makes sense) is still good. The Citi Premier® Card is another option, offering up to 3X points on purchases for a $95 annual fee.
Ultimately, the U.S. Bank Altitude® Connect Visa Signature® is an impressive travel card from U.S. Bank. The card is an ideal entry into the travel card space for those willing to stump up an annual fee for some quality travel-centric perks.