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Whether or not you are an AAA member, the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card is an excellent option for your wallet. It provides a 3% rewards rate on travel purchases, and 2% at gas stations, grocery stores, and drugstores. All of these are well above what the average cash back credit cards provide in similar categories. Though you can get comparable rewards with a better welcome bonus with other cards, those offers typically come with annual fees and bonus-requirements that require you to be a high-spender to turn a profit.
This card is good for...
- Low spenders who want a no annual fee travel credit card
- People in Bank of America's Preferred Rewards program
This card is bad for...
- High spenders who can qualify for bonuses on other cards
- People who want to earn points that are transferrable to airline miles
Review: Our Thoughts on the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card
The AAA Member Rewards Credit Card is a fantastic card, especially if you are part of Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards. The cash back this card provides on travel, groceries and gas rivals some of the best credit cards out there. Note that while this card is co-branded with the American Automotive Association (AAA), you don’t have to be a member to apply. That means the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card is available to anyone who meets its minimum FICO requirements - good/excellent credit is required.
The rewards rate on this card will vary depending on the amount of money you have deposited into Bank of America accounts. Even without these extra rewards, however, this card would be considered good. If you factor in the bonus you'd get as a Gold, Platinum or Platinum Honors tier member, this card becomes very hard to beat.
While the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card offers a competitive rewards rate on travel, it fails to keep up as far as bonuses are concerned with other top travel credit cards. These competitors often come equipped with bonuses worth anywhere between $300 and $600. The welcome offer on this card is worth just $150. The good news is that it’s much easier to qualify for. To get the bonus you need to spend $500 on the card within the first 90 days of account opening. That is much lower than these other cards. Therefore, if you’re a low spender who wouldn’t qualify for bigger bonuses anyway, the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card offers a great solution.
One other thing worth mentioning is that this card comes with no foreign transaction fees. This is another feature that makes it a good choice for travellers. Whenever you use most cards outside of the United States, you pay a charge with every transaction – roughly 3%. This is entirely waived with the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card.
Bottom Line: The AAA Member Rewards Credit Card is an excellent everyday card, and solid travel option for low spenders. While the top airline and hotel cards can give you better sign-up bonuses, those often require you to spend thousands of dollars.
AAA Member Rewards Credit Card Benefits & Features
At the base level, the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card earns you 3% cash back on travel and AAA purchases, 2% back on gas, grocery and drugstore shopping, and 1% back on everything else. Those with Preferred Rewards membership can increase their cash back rate, based on the amount of money they have deposited into their Bank of America account. Gold membership gives a 25% bonus, Platinum gives 50%, and Platinum Honors gives 75%. Note: These bonuses are applied to the base earn of 1 point per $1, not the bonus points you get in each category.
|Effective Rewards Rate|
|Preferred Rewards Tier||Combined Balances||AAA Purchases & Travel||Gas, Grocery and Drugstore||All other|
|$20,000 - $49,999||3.25%||2.25%||1.25%|
|$50,000 - $99,999||3.50%||2.50%||1.50%|
Your tier is based on your qualifying combined balances in your Bank of America® banking and/or Merrill Edge® and Merrill Lynch® investment accounts.
In addition to the above-mentioned rewards, AAA Member Rewards Credit Card cardholders who spend at least $500 on purchases within the first 90 days of account opening receive a $150 statement credit. This is a lower requirement than most no annual fee cash back credit cards. Other offers typically require you to spend twice as much for the same reward. Keep in mind that you need to make purchases to qualify for the bonus. Other types of transactions, such as cash advances or balance transfers, do not count towards the $500.
How Does the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card Compare to Other Offers?
To better gage the value the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card, it’s best to compare it to other available offers. We took a look at how this card stacks up to some of its leading competitors below.
AAA Member Rewards Credit Card vs Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card
When it comes to everyday spending, the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card is better for consumers with big gas expenses, who don't need an emphasis on travel. Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card users get 2% back at grocery stores & wholesale clubs, and 3% back at the pump – both capped at a combined $2,500 each quarter. The average American is likely to get more out of the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, if we don’t consider travel expenses. At the end of the day, these two cards are extremely similar. We recommend using our tool below to help split the difference based on how you spend your money every month.
AAA Member Rewards Credit Card vs Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card
The Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card is another great option for those who love travel. This card provides you with 1.5 reward points on all purchases, which works out to a 1.5% rewards rate on the base level. Like the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card and the Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card, the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card is part of BofA's Preferred Rewards program. The fixed 1.5% rewards rate makes the card much better for people with a wide array of expenses that don’t always conform to the standard credit card reward categories – dining, gas, groceries and travel. The other thing to note about the Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card is its better sign-up bonus. The card offers 25,000 points to those who manage to spend at least $1,000 on purchases within the first 90 days of account opening. That bonus is worth twice what the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card offers. So, if you’re interested in optimizing for short-term rewards, this is the card to get.
AAA Member Rewards Credit Card vs Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express
The Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express has been one of our favorite cash back cards, and for good reason. The card gives users an outstanding 6% cash back at US supermarkets, up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%). Additionally, cardmembers can get 3% back at US gas stations and select US department stores. This touches upon all the major consumer shopping categories, with the exception of travel. An important thing to keep in mind is that the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express has an annual fee of $95 (See Rates & Fees). Therefore, you should make sure you can get enough rewards out of it year-to-year, before applying.
For rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, please click here.
Compare The AAA Member Rewards Credit Card Based on Your Expenses
The tool below can shortcut some of the math involved in figuring out the rewards value of cash back credit cards. We recommend inputting your estimated monthly expenses, by category, by clicking on the little gear below. This will help you visualize the relative strength of the AAA Member Rewards Credit Card to other offers.