Having opened its first store in 1901, Nordstrom has since spent the better part of a century reigning as a leader among luxury department stores. The modern Nordstrom empire includes its flagship full-line stores and compact Nordstrom Rack stores, as well as Trunk Club and Jeffrey boutiques locations, totaling 349 stores operating in 40 states, Canada, and Puerto Rico.
While Nordstrom may have begun as a shoe retailer, it now offers a variety of popular goods, including clothing, jewelry, cosmetics, and fragrances. Offering the opportunity to earn rewards on your purchases, the Nordstrom Retail Card is a closed-loop credit card ideal for loyal shoppers but of limited use to casual Nordstrom visitors.
Better Cards to Use at Nordstrom
As a closed-loop card, the Nordstrom Retail Card is only usable for branded purchases, accepted at any Nordstrom location (or associated properties), plus online at Nordstrom.com, NordstromRack.com, and HauteLook.com, and TrunkClub.com. For those who don't spend enough with these brands to make the card worthwhile, an all-around rewards card can be a much better choice.
Cash back rewards are like universal coupons, giving you savings on every purchase, everywhere you use your card. Rewards programs typically award cash back as a percentage of your qualifying purchases, either offering a single flat-rate percentage on all purchases or offering bonus cash back on purchases in predetermined categories. Consider your particular spending habits to select the best program.
Anyone who carries a balance can be quickly overwhelmed by the hefty 23.90% APR charged by the Nordstrom card. Instead, try a credit card with an introductory 0% APR offer to enjoy 12 months or more of interest-free purchasing. Just be sure to pay your balance off before the introductory period ends to avoid fees.
For all that cash back rewards may be the simplest, travel rewards redeemed for flights, hotel stays, and other travel expenses will often offer a better per-point value. Those who have yet to swear fealty to a particular airline or brand should look for travel rewards credit cards with flexible redemption options and no blackout dates.
If you spend thousands a year in your local Nordstrom, the company's retail-focused credit card can be a great value. For everyone else, however, the best way to earn rewards worthy of the name is to find a great open-loop rewards credit card that can be used practically anywhere.
What Others Say About the Nordstrom Credit Card
As awesome as we are, of course, we don't expect you to just take our word for it. Check out what other reviews are saying about the Nordstrom Retail Card before making up your mind.
I had a bankruptcy in my past, in 2010 due to a serious illness. They approved me in the 600's for a low credit line of about $1500 in 2015. Now my credit line is $8500, they raised it fairly regularly but my credit score is 750. I called and got approved for the signature visa. I also think they're nice and fair. I never had problems with customer service or long waits but have only called twice. — CreditKarma.com”
The Nordstrom Store Credit Card is available to people with fair/limited credit and does not charge an annual fee. As such, it’s a great way to invest in your credit standing. This card also offers a decent initial bonus and solid ongoing rewards, at least in percentage terms, giving you a $20 rebate on a purchase of at least $100 the day of account opening and then the points equivalent of 2% back on Nordstrom purchases. Plus, you’ll benefit from free alterations, “triple-points days” and other Nordstrom deals. But it’s important to note that most of that package is easily replaceable by another credit card. So you shouldn’t lose any sleep if you choose to let this offer slip by. — WalletHub.com”
The Nordstrom Retail Card has a high interest rate, no annual fee, and an average redemption value compared to similar cards. It's great for Shopping Rewards. — BirchFinance.com”
Is the Nordstrom Card Right for You?
The more you spend with Nordstrom each year, the more you'll benefit from the Nordstrom Retail Card. And if you can spend enough to qualify for the highest level of rewards, the card can be full of value. If you don't happen to spend a small fortune in the luxury retailer on an annual basis — or tend to carry your balance from month to month — you'll be better off looking elsewhere for a new card.
Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are the author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.