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I opened a new USAA card to take advantage of a 0% APR rate until February 2020 (but gosh how I wish the Limitless card with 2.5% cashback everywhere would come back). I previously got a new card to make a student loan payment.
So the USAA Preferred Cash Rewards card earns 1.5% cashback on purchases. I was hoping Plastiq payments would code as “miscellaneous services” (or similar), but nope, they post as a “quasi-cash merchant” and do not earn any reward points.
So don’t use your USAA card with Plastiq!
More importantly, I hope this doesn’t signal a trend of Plastiq coding as cash-like purchases.
Even still, I was not charged a cash advance fee per Plastiq’s advising.
Tread carefully with USAA Plastiq payments
- Link: Blue Business Plus Amex – learn more here
- Link: Blue Business Plus Amex: New Card for Plastiq Payments?
Currently, the best cards to use for Plastiq payments are:
- MasterCards for mortgage payments
- Discover cards for mortgage payments
- Amex cards for rent, utilities, student loans, and most others
- Visa small business cards
Within this framework, there aren’t many worthwhile cards left. That’s why I recommend the Blue Business Plus Amex (learn more here) for most payments, though the jury’s still out regarding mortgage payments.
If you go the Visa personal card route, you’ll get a cash advance fee on cards except those issued by:
- Capital One
- Navy Federal Credit Union
- Alliant Credit Union
- Wells Fargo
So when I saw USAA on the list, I thought, yay I can make payments without fees and get caught up on some bills.
I still did that but…
USAA cards don’t earn rewards for cash-like transactions
And Plastiq codes as a “quasi-cash merchant.” I hoped it would code differently.
The only rewards I earned for this billing cycle were for my Sinemia membership (I’m using it the first time this week – review coming!). I earned nothing for $1,000+ of Plastiq payments.
That said, I did NOT incur cash advance fees (whew!) – so that is still a net positive.
But it stung a little to lose/not earn all that cashback. Which would’ve been awesome, but alas.
The bit about USAA cards not earning rewards for Plastiq payments is niche because not everyone can get a USAA card. But the bigger issue is how Plastiq codes – and how it continues to shift.
In a general sense, I hope this doesn’t mean a shift toward no rewards with any cards because these payments will eventually code as cash-like instruments. If that ever happens, Plastiq will be useless.
For now, I’m still earning points and cashback with other cards. And, touch wood, I hope USAA is alone in how they’re processing payments for a long time.
Just wanted to put it out there in case you’re in the same boat.* If you liked this post, consider signing up to receive free blog posts in an RSS reader and you’ll never miss an update! And thanks for using my links to apply for new card offers!
Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post. The opinions of the commenters are not necessarily the opinions of this site.
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