February 1, 2018
The New Starbucks Credit Card Launches Today

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Starbucks first revealed that it was working on a new credit card back in November 2017. That’s pretty much all we knew until today. Starbucks just spilled the beans on its partnership with Chase to bring its new credit card to market today.


Sign-Up Bonus


The card comes with a sign-up bonus of 2,500 stars after spending $500 in the first three months of account opening. You can redeem 125 stars for any complimentary food or beverage item. That means 2,500 stars can be redeemed for 20 food or beverage items. You’ll also receive a one-time bonus of 250 stars when you link the Starbucks credit card to the Starbucks app.


Earning Points



Cardholders will 1x star per $4 spent outside of Starbucks and 3x stars per $1 spent at Starbucks. The exact breakdown of the 3x stars per $ spent at Starbucks stores is as follows:


  • 2 stars per $1 when paying with the digital Starbucks card on your Starbucks app
  • 1 star per $1 you digitally load to your registered Starbucks card on your app with your Starbucks Rewards Visa card

Perks


Cardholders will receive 8 complimentary barista picked drinks curated for them throughout the year. These will be sent via email and through the Starbucks app 8 times a year and can be redeemed at participating Starbucks stores.


Cardholders will also receive complimentary Starbucks Gold Status. This comes with perks like a free birthday reward, monthly double-star days, a personalized gold card, free in-store refills, and 2 stars per $1 spent at Starbucks.


Fees


The Starbucks Rewards Visa card has a $49 annual fee and does charge foreign transaction fees on purchases abroad.


Should you get it?



Let’s do some math to figure this out. The two one-time bonuses will net you 2,750 stars which can be redeemed for 22 free items. If we assume you redeem these for products costing around $5, that will get you $110 worth of free items.


The card earns 1x star for every $4 you spend on non-Starbucks purchases. This means you’ll have to spend $500 to earn 125 stars, which gets you one free $5 item. That’s a terrible 1% return on spend.


The card earns 3x stars for every $1 you spend at Starbucks. This means you’ll have to spend $41.66 at Starbucks to earn one free $5 item. Your return on Starbucks spend will be 12%, which sounds great. However, remember that 2 of those 3 stars per $1 are earned because the card gets you free Gold status. If you visit Starbucks infrequently and don’t qualify for Gold status on your own, then this could make sense. But if you already have Gold status, the only incremental value of Starbucks visa is 1x extra star per $1, which translates to an incremental 1% return on spend.


I don’t see much value in getting this card. The 1x Star per $4 on non-Starbucks purchases is terrible. People who visit Starbucks often enough to already have Gold status only get one extra star per $1, which isn’t enough to justify the $49 annual fee unless you’re drowning yourself in coffee. People who visit Starbucks infrequently and don’t qualify for Gold status on their own do get a great return on spend, but that value is wiped out by the $49 annual fee.


What do you think of the Starbucks Rewards Visa Card?

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