Today is a quick one. There are only TWO chip-and-pin smart chip credit cards available in the USA.
If you are interested in the chip-and-signature smart cards, we have a detailed comparison table created to help you decide.
For a comprehensive list of all the smart chip credit cards available in the U.S., you should refer to the post here.
Not sure if you even need a smart card? Then you must read this post.
Chip-and-pin Cards Compared
Below are all the chip-and-pin cards at a glance.
|Card Name||Issuing Bank||Annual Fee||Foreign Exchange Fees||Rewards||Sign Up Promotion|
|GlobeTrek Visa® Rewards Card||Andrews Federal Credit Union||None!||1%||Visa Platinum Rewards
||5,000 points after first purchase|
|The Elite Credit Card||UNFCU||$50||None||Rewards
||LOUNGE CLUB™ cards allow access to over 350 VIP lounges worldwide|
** Please refer to comments box below on how to apply for the GlobeTrek VISA Rewards Card. We will write a post shortly with detailed instructions. In the meantime, if you have questions or run into any issues, feel free to drop us a note!
How to Decide Which Chip-and-Pin Card to Apply
The best smart chip credit card for you depends on your lifestyle and spending habit.
This is because everyone places a different value on the various benefits offered by a credit card.
For us, first and foremost, saving money is key. So, anytime we can save cash or get more rewards to subsidize our travel, we like that smart chip credit card a little bit more.
Let’s look at the easy stuff first.
On Sign Up Promotion, the GlobeTrek Visa Card wins because we will get 5000 points after 1st purchase. Staying in lounges at the airport is a luxury that we will trade 5000 points for.
On Rewards, we think the Elite Credit Card wins, although not by much. This is because while the rewards program of the Elite Credit Card is slightly richer, we have another card we use for grocery and dining spend, so we will not likely take advantage of the 2 points per $1 at supermarket offer. It will be a nice backup card though in case we forget the other card.
Now, the tricky part is how to evaluate annual fee and foreign exchange fee. It depends on how much you plan to spend overseas.
Essentially, you are trying to compare $50 vs. 1% of foreign spend.
If you think you will put more than $5000 on your new credit card from overseas, then apply for the Elite Credit Card because you will spend more on the foreign exchange fee with the GlobeTrek Card than the annual fee on the Elite Credit Card.
On the other hand, if you think you will spend less than $5000 overseas, then by all means, apply for the GlobeTrek Visa Card because the 1% you spend on foreign exchange fees on that card will be less than the annual fee on the Elite Credit Card.
**Caveat Emptor? We noticed one inconvenience on the Elite Credit Card in that it will automatically enroll you in a 60-day complimentary term life insurance product and the cost of this product will be automatically billed to your Elite Credit Card starting on the 61st day. If you don’t need term life insurance you can opt-out before the 61st day, but you must call a designated number on the fine print of the application to cancel. We think this is a very questionable practice to automatically opt-in everyone to this (eventually) paid product. So all else being equal, we will sign up for the GlobeTrek Visa Card instead.
Everyone has different spending habits, so think about how you spend, then decide on the card you want to apply.
Which smart chip credit card are you planning to apply for? Any questions, drop us a comment below!
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