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Friday, April 12, 2024

Belk Credit Card Review (Feb. 2024)

Belk Credit Card Review
Brittney Mayer

Written by: Brittney Mayer

Brittney Mayer
Brittney Mayer

Brittney is a Credit Strategist and Finance Expert who has spent years honing her knowledge of the credit industry both personally and professionally. Brittney applies her more than a decade of research experience to crafting in-depth consumer guides designed to help CardRates readers make better, more informed financial decisions.

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Edited by: Lillian Guevara-Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro
Lillian Guevara-Castro

Lillian Guevara-Castro brings more than 30 years of editing and journalism experience to the CardRates team. She has written and edited for major news organizations, including The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and the New York Times, and she previously served as an adjunct journalism instructor at the University of Florida. Today, Lillian edits all CardRates content for clarity, accuracy, and reader engagement.

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Reviewed by: Ashley Fricker

Ashley Fricker
Ashley Fricker

Ashley Fricker has more than a decade of experience as a finance contributor and editor, and has specialized in the credit card industry since 2015. Her credit card commentary is featured on national media outlets that include CNBC, MarketWatch, Investopedia, and Reader's Digest, among many others. She has worked closely with the world’s largest banks and financial institutions, up-and-coming fintech companies, and press and news outlets to curate comprehensive content and media. Ashley holds a bachelor's degree in multimedia journalism from Florida Atlantic University.

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Advertiser Disclosure

Although few may realize it, Belk has been around for well over 100 years, the popular department store chain founded in Monroe, North Carolina, in 1888 by William Henry Belk. Today, Belk is a staple in dozens of malls across America, with around half of its 300 US locations serving as anchor stores for shopping malls. Belk offers a variety of clothing and home goods, including women's and men's apparel, accessories, and shoes, as well as cosmetics and home furnishings.

With more than a century of retail under its belt, Belk is a popular choice for many department store shoppers, and the Belk® Rewards Card is likely one of the reasons many make the choice to shop at Belk. With three different rewards levels, the more you spend the more you earn — just watch out for the high APR.

Better Cards to Use at Belk

Unless all of your shopping takes place in a Belk store (or at Belk.com), chances are your annual Belk spending won't hit the $1,000 point needed to unlock the best benefits. And even if it does, well, those perks and rewards are only useful at Belk.

For most shoppers, an all-purpose credit card with cash back or travel rewards will end up being a better deal. And for those who are prone to carrying a credit card balance, the Belk Rewards+ Credit Card should probably be avoided in favor of something with a much lower APR.

Cash Back

While it's true that not many cash back credit cards will give you a higher rate of return on Belk purchases than the Belk Rewards+ Credit Card — how much are you really spending at Belk?

A better option for most consumers is a regular rewards credit card that will let you earn rewards on purchases you make anywhere, not just a single store. Even better, these cards will let you redeem rewards for cash back that can be used on any purchase, rather than limiting you to branded rewards.

Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card Review

at Bank Of America'ssecure website

CASH BACK RATING

★★★★★

4.9

OVERALL RATING

  • $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.
  • Earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice, automatic 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and unlimited 1% on all other purchases.
  • Choose 3% cash back on gas and EV charging station, online shopping/cable/internet/phone plan/streaming, dining, travel, drug store/pharmacy or home improvement/furnishing purchases.
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more cash back on every purchase. That means you could earn 3.75%-5.25% cash back on purchases in your choice category.
  • No annual fee and cash rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open.
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the Intro APR offer ends, a Variable APR that’s currently 18.24% - 28.24% will apply. A 3% Intro balance transfer fee will apply for the first 60 days your account is open. After the Intro balance transfer fee offer ends, the fee for future balance transfers is 4%.
  • Contactless Cards - The security of a chip card, with the convenience of a tap.
  • This online only offer may not be available if you leave this page or if you visit a Bank of America financial center. You can take advantage of this offer when you apply now.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases
0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days (Balance Transfer Fee 3% for 60 days from account opening, then 4%)
18.24% - 28.24% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
$0
Excellent/Good

Additional Disclosure: Bank of America is a CardRates advertiser.

0% APR

While a potential rewards rate up to 7% can be tempting, the Belk Rewards Card's high APR can take the temptation right out of it. That's because the $1,000 worth of purchases you'd need to make for Belk Elite-level perks would cost you almost $400 to carry for a year with the card's 28.49% APR — an additional cost that makes that awesome deal a whole lot less awesome.

If you need a card you can carry a balance on, try an all-purpose credit card with a solid intro-APR deal, instead. Not only will you save on pricey interest fees, but you won't be limited to Belk purchases for the savings, either.

Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card Review

at Bank Of America'ssecure website

0% INTRO APR RATING

★★★★★

4.8

OVERALL RATING

  • $200 online cash rewards bonus after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening.
  • Earn 3% cash back in the category of your choice, automatic 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs (up to $2,500 in combined choice category/grocery store/wholesale club quarterly purchases) and unlimited 1% on all other purchases.
  • Choose 3% cash back on gas and EV charging station, online shopping/cable/internet/phone plan/streaming, dining, travel, drug store/pharmacy or home improvement/furnishing purchases.
  • If you're a Bank of America Preferred Rewards® member, you can earn 25%-75% more cash back on every purchase. That means you could earn 3.75%-5.25% cash back on purchases in your choice category.
  • No annual fee and cash rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open.
  • 0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases, and for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days. After the Intro APR offer ends, a Variable APR that’s currently 18.24% - 28.24% will apply. A 3% Intro balance transfer fee will apply for the first 60 days your account is open. After the Intro balance transfer fee offer ends, the fee for future balance transfers is 4%.
  • Contactless Cards - The security of a chip card, with the convenience of a tap.
  • This online only offer may not be available if you leave this page or if you visit a Bank of America financial center. You can take advantage of this offer when you apply now.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for purchases
0% Intro APR for 15 billing cycles for any balance transfers made in the first 60 days (Balance Transfer Fee 3% for 60 days from account opening, then 4%)
18.24% - 28.24% Variable APR on purchases and balance transfers
$0
Excellent/Good

Additional Disclosure: Bank of America is a CardRates advertiser.

Travel Rewards

Shoppers may love Belk for its apparel and home goods, but you know what most of us love more? A great vacation. Sandy beaches, snowy mountains, and neon-colored drinks can make you forget even the best shoe sale.

And what's a fantastic way to make it to the destination of your dreams? A quality travel rewards credit card that helps you earn points or miles you can redeem for free flights, hotel stays, and other travel-related expenses. Check out of the department store and into a killer trip with a travel rewards card.

Discover it® Miles Review

at Discover Card'ssecure website

AIR MILES RATING

★★★★★

4.9

OVERALL RATING

  • UNLIMITED BONUS: Unlimited Mile-for-Mile match for all new cardmembers - only from Discover. Discover gives you an unlimited match of all the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. There’s no signing up, no minimum spending or maximum rewards. Just a Miles-for-Miles match.
  • Automatically earn unlimited 1.5x Miles on every dollar of every purchase
  • No annual fee
  • Turn Miles into cash. Or redeem as a statement credit for your travel purchases like airfare, hotels, rideshares, gas stations, restaurants and more.
  • 0% intro APR for 15 months on purchases. Then 17.24% - 28.24% Standard Variable Purchase APR will apply.
  • Discover could help you reduce exposure of your personal information online by helping you remove it from select people-search sites that could sell your data. It’s free, activate with the mobile app.
  • Discover is accepted nationwide by 99% of the places that take credit cards.
  • Terms and conditions apply.
Intro (Purchases)
Intro (Transfers)
Regular APR
Annual Fee
Credit Needed
0% Intro APR for 15 months
0% Intro APR for 15 months
17.24% - 28.24% Variable APR
$0
Excellent/Good

As far as store credit cards are concerned, the Belk Rewards+ Credit Card isn't a bad card option, offering an alright return for loyal shoppers and rewarding big spenders with a slew of perks. But if you don't spend enough at Belk to make it to the top tiers, many of the card's offerings will likely fall flat. For the majority of shoppers, a more versatile credit card that can be used to make purchases anywhere will provide more utility — and better value — than the Belk Rewards card.

Belk Card Overall Rating: 3.5/5.0

The Belk Rewards+ Credit Card can be a good savings tool for regular shoppers who spend a lot in the store, but the card's 28.49% APR means those shoppers need to be careful to avoid carrying a balance from month to month. For cardholders who pay it off each cycle, the Belk Rewards Card's base 4% back in Belk Reward Points can provide a nice bonus when you cash in 1,000 points for $10 in Belk Reward Dollars. The biggest rewards come to those who spend the most, however.

The Belk® Rewards Card has a three-tier rewards system, with the basic 4X rewards given to the first tier of Belk Rewards shoppers, those who spend $0 to $299 on their Belk Rewards+ Card each year. The next level, Belk Premier, is for those who spend $300 to $999 a year, and rewards cardholders with 5% in rewards points for card purchases. The top tier, Belk Elite, offers the largest rewards — 7% back on eligible purchases — but you'll need to spend at least $1,000 a year on your card to qualify.

Belk Credit Card

  • APR: 28.49% as of Feb 2024
  • Annual Fee: $0
  • Rewards: Earn up to 7 points per $1 spent at Belk
★★★★ 3.5/5.0

While an extra 1% or 3% in rewards can certainly add up, especially when you reach top-tier-level spending, extra rewards points aren't the only perk to earning a higher Belk Rewards+ Card status. While the first-tier users get a few extra perks, like birthday coupons and VIP Savings Events, Belk Premier and Elite members have access to even more benefits, including the Belk Rewards Flex Pay Plan and choose your own sales days.

Even if you don't shop Belk enough to make much of the purchase rewards, you may consider obtaining a Belk Rewards+ Credit Card simply for the signup bonus, particularly if you have a big buy on the horizon. New cardholders can take 20% off (15% off Home/Shoes) all day when they open an account and make a purchase with their card. Plus earn 1,000 bonus Belk Reward Points, enough for a Belk Reward Dollars redemption.

Approval Requirements & Application

There are two versions of the Belk Rewards+ Credit Card -- the closed loop version, reviewed here, which accepts applicants with bad credit. Then there's the Mastercard version that can be used anywhere (and awards points outside of Belk purchases) for those with good credit. You can apply in store or online using the link below.

What Others Say About the Belk Credit Card

The Belk Rewards+ Credit Card has been around for a few years, and it has plenty of fans across the web. At the same time, not all reviewers are in love with the card, and many users report issues with credit lines being cut or accounts being closed for inactivity. Other reviewers recognize the card's high APR as a major drawback.

CreditKarma.com
A review from CreditKarma.com says:

I have had the Belk credit card for several years. I have never had a missed or late payment. In fact, I have always made higher than the minimum payment. I have had a zero balance for about a year. I was just notified by Experian that my credit score went down a couple points, because Belk lowered my credit limit from $1,300 to $1,024 for no reason! What if I had a balance of, say, $1,200? Would I have been assessed an over-limit fee? Why would a company that I have had only a positive payment history with do something to harm my credit rating? This card is through Synchrony Bank, by the way, as are many department store cards. — CreditKarma.com

1.0/5.0
MyBankTracker.com
A review from MyBankTracker.com says:

The Belk card offers a decent rewards rate and, if you are a frequent shopper, you can qualify for the tiers offering special offers, perks, and personal sale days. These extra benefits can lead to bigger savings and increase the value of the card. Plus, if you have a lower credit rating, store credit cards like the Belk card can be valuable tools for rebuilding or building a positive credit rating. However, if you qualify for other rewards cards, many other credit card alternatives provide better long-term cash back opportunities and rewards for all your purchases – not just the ones you make at Belk stores. Even if you choose a card with a lower rate of rewards, you may find that you get more value from the card simply because you can use it for all your purchases and redeem for cash back. — MyBankTracker.com

1.0/5.0
WalletHub.com
A review from WalletHub.com says:

Having a Belk Credit Card is worth your time if you shop relatively frequently at Belk. There is no annual fee and there are instant incentives for signing up. They give you 20% off of your first purchase and give you points that result in cash after a few purchases. When they do sales such as 20% off your purchase, card owners often get an additional bonus such as 30% off. I would recommend this card for anyone who pays off their card at the end of the month, but not to someone who keeps a balance. The APR is high and adds up quickly for people I have known who do this. — WalletHub.com

★★★★ 4.0/5.0

Is the Belk Card Right for You?

With a wide range of products, from clothing to closet organizers and most stuff in between, Belk has a lot to offer its loyal shoppers — and the Belk Rewards+ Credit Card can offer those shoppers a lot of value, too. Unfortunately, the amount you need to spend each year at Belk to earn the best benefits will likely place those perks out of reach for many shoppers, limiting the potential perks for the average cardholder.

Most consumers who qualify for the Belk Rewards+ Mastercard version will also qualify for a general purpose card with better overall benefits. More importantly, those cards don't limit their redemption options to one location.

Advertiser Disclosure

CardRates.com is a free online resource that offers valuable content and comparison services to users. To keep this resource 100% free, we receive compensation for referrals for many of the offers listed on the site. Along with key review factors, this compensation may impact how and where products appear across CardRates.com (including, for example, the order in which they appear). CardRates.com does not include the entire universe of available offers. Editorial opinions expressed on the site are strictly our own and are not provided, endorsed, or approved by advertisers.