Posted by William Charles on September 18, 2017
Credit Card Offers

Published on September 18th, 2017 | by William Charles


Bank of America Premium Rewards Credit Card Now Review – 50,000 Point Bonus, $100 Annual Travel Credit & More

The Bank of America Premium Rewards credit card is now available for applications. With benefits and sign up bonuses as predicted.

Card Basics

  • Annual fee of $95 (not waived first year)
  • $100 Airline Incidental Statement Credit annually for qualifying purchases such as seat upgrades, baggage fees, in-flight services and airline lounge fees. Only applies to domestic-originated flights on certain U.S. Domestic airline carriers.
  • $100 airport security statement credit towards TSA Pre✓ ® or Global Entry Application fee every four year
  • Sign up bonus of 50,000 points after $3,000 in purchases within the first 90 days of account opening
  • Card earns at the following rates:
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Eligible for Bank of America Preferred Rewards, meaning you can get an additional 25-75% rewards on all purchases. Makes the card earn at the following rates with top tier status:
    • 3.5x points per $1 spent on travel & dining purchases
    • 2.625x points per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Points are worth 1¢ each and can be redeemed for cash back as a statement credit into eligible Bank of America or Merrll Lynch accounts or to purchase travel through the Bank of America travel center or to redeem gift cards

Card Benefits

$100 Travel Incidental Credit

This card gives you a $100 airline incidental statement credit every calendar year. This is big news as it means you can get use the credit twice but only pay the annual fee once (e.g apply now and use for 2017 and then use it again in 2018). To use the credit you just need to use the Premium Rewards card to pay your airline incidentals and then allow 7 days for the statement credit to post to your account. Unfortunately only  the following is eligible:domestic-originated flights on certain U.S.-domestic airline carriers that include: preferred seating upgrades, ticket change/cancellation fees, checked baggage fees, in-flight entertainment, onboard food and beverage charges, and airport lounge fees affiliated with eligible airline carriers.

The following as specifically excluded in the fine print: Airline ticket purchases, mileage point purchases, mileage point transfer fees, gift cards, duty-free purchases, award tickets and fees incurred with airline alliance partners do not qualify. Airline incidental fee transactions must be separate from airline ticket charges. In practice we don’t know what will and won’t work. I’ll keep this section of this post updated with what does and doesn’t work with datapoints as they come in, please share yours in the comments when possible.

They list the following Merchant Category Codes as qualifying: 3000, 3001, 3057, 3058, 3063, 3066, 3132, 3174, 3196 or 3256. You can find datapoints on what does/doesn’t work here.

TSA Pre✓/Global Entry Credit

You’re eligible for one statement credit per account every four years for either TSA Pre✓ ($85) or Global Entry ($100). You might as well get Global Entry as it includes Pre✓ as well. You just need to use your card to pay for application fee.

Emergency Travel Benefits

  • Trip Delay Reimbursement of $500 per ticker purchased for you and your eligible family members for reasonable expenses if a covered trip is delayed for more than 12 hours
  • Trip Cancellation/Interruption of up to $5,000 per person per trip for the unused prepaid non-refundable travel expenses including passenger fares, tours, and hotels if you have to cancel due to a covered reason
  • Baggage Delay of up to $100 per day (up to five days) when your bags are delayed or misdirected by a common carrier for more than six hours for essential items including clothing.
  • Lost Luggage Reimbursement provides coverage for luggage and it’s contents if they are lost or stolen due to theft or misdirection by the common carrier
  • Common Carrier Travel Accident Insurance provides coverage against accidental lost of life, limb, or sight while travelling by land, air or sea on a licensed common carrier when tickets have been purchased using this card
  • Travel and Emergency Assistant Services provides help cordinating medical, legal and travel services when you are traveling.
  • Emergency Evacuation and Transportation Coverage if you or a member of your immediate family are injured or become sick during a trip far from home that results in an emergency evacuation you can be covered for eligible medical services and transportation

Purchase Benefits

  • Purchase Security. Repair/replace/reimburse you if an eligible item purchased with the card is stolen or damaged within 90 days of purchase. Up to $10,000 per claim
  • Warranty Manager Service. Doubles the time period of the manufacturers’ warranty up to one additional year for eligible items purchased with card.
  • Return Protection. Provides reimbursement for the cost of an eligible item of personal property if you are dissasitified with the item for any reason within 90 days of the purchase and if the retailer will not accept the return. Limited to $250 per eligible item and up to $1,000 annually. Items must be received by the benefit administrator in like-new/good working condition

Automotive Benefits

  • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver. Provides reimbursement for damage due to collision or theft. Coverage is supplemental to and in excess of other insurance. You must also decline the collission/loss damage waiver offered by the auto rental agency.
  • Roadside Dispatch Program. 24/7 on demand referral dispatch network that poviders emergency roadside assistance, towing and locksmith services.

How Much Are Points Worth?

Points are worth 1¢ each and can be redeemed for cash back into a Bank of America checking or savings account (or various Merrill Lynch accounts) or as a statement credit. In addition you can redeem points for travel at the travel center or for gift cards. Minimum redemption is 2,500 ($25) for all options.

Preferred Rewards

Bank of America’s preferred rewards program is where it becomes interesting for ongoing spend. We have discussed this program in detail before here. But basically is if you have assets held in Bank of America accounts (or Merrill Lynch) you’re eligible for a bonus as a Preferred Rewards relationship client. Here are the tiers:

  • Preferred Rewards Gold $20,000 – $50,000:  25% bonus on rewards
    • 2.5x points per $1 spent on travel & dining purchases
    • 1.875x points per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Preferred Rewards Platinum $50,000-$100,000: 50% bonus on rewards
    • 3x points per $1 spent on travel & dining purchases
    • 2.25x points per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • Preferred Rewards Platinum Honors $100,000+: 75% bonus on rewards
    • 3.5x points per $1 spent on travel & dining purchases
    • 2.625x points per $1 spent on all other purchases

Our Verdict

It’s hard to make a case against signing up for this card, it comes with a sign up bonus worth $500 in cash or statement credit (using for travel/gift cards doesn’t make a lot of sense, just redeem for statement credit and then make those travel/gift card purchases on the card instead) and you can also get $200 in travel incidental credits and only pay a $95 annual fee. The downside is that there is a $3,000 minimum spend requirement but that isn’t excessive given the sign up bonus. I suspect this is only the launch bonus and it will be decreased over time (we saw the same with the Chase Sapphire Reserve and also the Blue Business Plus).

Keeping the card long term would only real make sense if you had Preferred Rewards as otherwise you’d be better off just using a 2%+ cash back card for all purchases (otherwise it’s 1.5% on all purchases and then 2% on travel/restaurants). For those with Preferred Rewards this card would be better option than say the travel rewards card (this card also gives 2.625x on all purchases with the highest Preferred Rewards status but can’t be redeemed for cash back), but that’s only true if the travel credit would offset the annual fee for you (or the convenience of being able to cash out your rewards instead of having to use them for travel).

For most people this will be a card that is at the very least worth signing up for the 50,000 point sign up bonus and the $100 travel incidental credits * 2 that you’ll be able to get. Because of that I’ll be adding it to our list of the best credit card sign up bonuses. I also imagine that this saddly means the Merrill+ is no longer available, but if anybody tries to sign up please let us know. If you have any questions about Bank of America credit cards in general, I’d recommend reading this post. There is also a $100 checking bonus currently available, not sure if that helps get approved or not.


Do you get the Preferred Rewards bonus on the sign up bonus?

Unfortunately I don’t think so. You get this bonus on purchases and not the sign up bonus.

Can I triple dip the travel credit by applying in December?

This might be possible, will likely depend on how quickly the statement credit posts (looks like it should be within 7 days but isn’t entirely clear if this is 7 days of the purchase posting or the statement cycle posting).

Can you product change to this card?

According to this datapoint, you can. Just keep in mind that by product changing you will not get the sign up bonus.

Will Bank of America expedite this card?

  • Yes (for Preferred Rewards customers by calling 888.888.7937): 1

Can you transfer points to this card?

Yes, travel rewards & AAA points can be transferred to this card but cash rewards cannot be transferred. This is useful as this premium card gives you the option of redeeming points for cash back/statement credit.

Does this card have any transfer partners?




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I’d add in your write up that points can also be redeemed as a statement credit, which is probably a better option than gift cards for those of us who don’t have a BofA banking account.

I got approved for my 2nd merill+ on 9/8. I will try to apply for this card based on the previous hp. I hope i can save another hp.

Could you elaborate on this? Because I applied for my 2nd Merrill+ on 9/13. Are you saying applying for another BofA card within a certain amount of days will use the previous HP? I thought it would need to be the same day.

BOfA uses the same pull for 30 days.. Most of the times they use EX for new apps and TU for CLIs.

This is not a hard and fast rule. I’ve seen DPs suggesting both one and two HPs.

But, as a churner, you shouldn’t really be overly concerned about HPs anyway.

I am going to call and find out if its possible.
As i said i want to save a hp, i am not sure if it work or not.

BOfA uses same pull for 30 days.. Most of the times they pull EX for new apps and TU for CLIs

Do i need to call them or they will automatically use my last report which is less than 30 days?

No it’s system who uses the recent pull automatically.. rep may not know this and even if they do they might not tell you that..

Do you get the +25/50/75% extra reward points when you make the purchase or is it only when you redeem?

Purchase. No bonus on the 50,000 points.

Oh wow, it kills the card for me. I’m less upset about my denial

Ahh, it’s earned upon purchase.

If you’re a Bank of America® Preferred Rewards client, you can enjoy 25% – 75% rewards bonus on every purchase. That means you could earn up to 3.5 points per $1 on travel and dining purchases and up to 2.62 points per $1 on all other purchases

My app went straight to pending. PH PR, four BoA CC. Approx 10/24. Not shocked. Will call later.

A while back there was a post that they are possibly limiting to four cards now. You may be able to get it if you agree to close one of your four.

Recon agent says BoA “wants to approve”, but can’t tell if it’s a straight approval or moving credit from other cards. Agent is supposed to call me back. Strange.

I finally called back today. Approved with similar credit line to my other four BoA cards (~15k).

In my online account, it is clear BoA reassigned credit from my BBR for the new PR. This is fine. I only charge $1/mo on BBR to keep the bonuses rolling in.

I am top tier PR (based on Merrill Edge) and have 3 CCs presently with BoA. Both my 2nd and 3rd cards were rather difficult to get – had to beg and plead with Recon to get them, so I’m not feeling too good about trying for a 4th card. My CS is over 800 on all three agencies.

Anyone tried reducing their overall credit limit with BoA before they apply for new cards? I know this works with Chase sometime (if you’re under 5/24).

I have the regular Travel Rewards, so this card would essentially replace that one (not sure what card I would PC it to, as BBR is dead I’ve heard, and I already have a Cash Rewards card).

The reason first given for denial both times was “client already has sufficient accounts with Bank of America,” so it sounds like they think that one card was enough (and then two cards was enough). Pretty sure they’ll say 3 cards is more than enough.

They never mention the overall CL being the issue. When I offered to move some of my CL the first time it worked; the second time they said no go, but then a banker called me back and went to bat for me (which was very surprising).

Kinda interesting that the BoA bankers don’t really see your Merrill balances – I had to tell them both times about it, even though the accounts are connected.

I would say don’t do it. I tried a similar strategy (bump down my credit limits $6K each on 2 current BoA cards) and they still won’t give me a 3rd card, whether it be an MLB card or today the Premier Rewards.

Hoping recon later today goes a bit better, as I fully intend to use this card to replace my Travel Rewards, but I wouldn’t be surprised to find that BoA doesn’t budge (again).

I reduced my CL by 20k around 20 days prior to applying for Merrill+ (would have been my 5th BOA personal CC or 6th CC overall in 24 months), but got denied, even by reconsideration. But I read the reduced CL might take at least 30 days before becoming seen by the new accounts department.

I’ll concur here. I lowered my CL about 2 weeks before applying and credit dept didn’t see it either.

I lowered my CL in August in an effort to get a MLB Card – no go. Today the reps saw my lower CL and still – no go. They seem to be more interested in the number of cards (esp. newer cards) than in the overall credit limit.

Yeah, that too, the new rule of 4/24 BOA CC per a reddit post, as confirmed by my own experience. The only unclear is whether BOA coutns biz CC or not.

Wish that the information page had more info on the available travel insurance, as this is the one other improvement over the Travel Rewards card that might justify the AF.

Yep, that’s it! Didn’t see that earlier today, thanks.

New DP:

I’ve been waiting for this card to come out! Just applied online for both myself and my husband (separately). Both approved for the card with credit line of $21,000.

Hubs is Gold tier, and I am Platinum. We have checking, savings, ME IRA’s, and a Cash Rewards & Travel Rewards card each.

Now to call them to have them overnight the card since we’re leaving for a trip on Friday!

Thanks DOC for getting this post up first thing this morning!

Sorry, forgot to add. Hubs and I are both at 8/24 and I also have a BOA business credit card

Rebekka – have you had any luck getting BofA to expedite your card? Multiple calls to the Preferred Rewards line with no luck!


It took forever. After calling the Preferred rewards line, being transferred and on hold for 30 minutes, the CS rep didn’t know what I was talking about. He transferred me again and I got disconnected.

Called back and it said 45-75 min wait…so I put my # in the queue for a callback.

Once I was called back it only took about 5-6 min. The front CS rep saw the new card and said she had to transfer me to a credit analyst to have it taken care of. A CA answered almost immediately, verified my identity, and put in the request to expedite my card. This was at around 2pm ET today. She said I should receive my card on Wednesday. I asked her if we could take care of expediting DH’s card also, but she said she needed to speak with him. Wasn’t able to conference him in but she gave me a direct # back to the CA dept. It is 800.667.9687. They are open 8a-7p.

I am going to have DH call tomorrow morning, so hopefully he’ll get his card on Thursday.

The long and short of this story is, don’t call the Preferred Rewards line, just call the Credit Analyst Dept directly!

Hope this helps!

Thanks Rebekka! Just tried calling and they are closed now, will try again tomorrow. I am really disappointed that requesting a card be expedited is so difficult as a Platinum Rewards Member. Anne

I agree…the Pref line is no better than any other number in my opinion. I was very disappointed also.

Rebekka – your contact number worked great! Thanks! A service rep answered immediately and my card will be delivered tomorrow. Anne

Awesome! Yes, update to my story…she said I would get the card by Thursday but I got a notification last night via my UPS app that it would be delivered today.

DH called that # this morning and was only on the phone for a few minutes also.

Cannot wait to get my hands on this card!!

Rebekka Alexander

My card arrived today! Hubby called this morning and I got a notification from UPS about an hour ago that his would be delivered tomorrow.

The card is pretty chintzy feeling. It’s uber thin and cheap feeling. If you don’t actually touch it, it looks OK from far away. Card # is on the back. Only name and “Preferred” shown on the front.

DP question – how old are your current BoA cards?

The personal cards are almost 2 years old. The business one about 9 months.

Probably worth it to apply for this and M+ assuming M+ is still available today

It is. Just got approved.

What about the reports of m+ being shutdown after folks open another card soon after?

I will boycott or otherwise find a way to abuse BoA so hard if that happens. First account with them, and they pulled a report they were not given permission to (froze EX, called in, they asked what to pull, told them EQ… get approved, look and they took EQ and TU…)

I’ll report back if such issue happens.

You won’t boycott them unless you are a fool. You simply play by the rules. I don’t get why churners try to threaten they will boycott when they are the ones making a bunch of money off the banks. When a churner boycotts, the banks win.

Anyone know who the eligible carriers are?

Applied and instantly denied (my first denial!).

No relationship with BoA, 9/12 with 3 cards in August.


I’m going to give it a shot after work and report back

I applied for M+ about an hour ago, would it be wise to go for this one too? If my EXP is frozen, can I specify which report they will pull as well and combine HP’s?


Is it just me, or does it look like BoA may have rolled out some new application rules along with the rollout of this card? I’m seeing an awful lot of denial (or at least pending) DPs, including from people with high credit scores who don’t have many BoA cards. The pattern that I’m seeing suggests they’re looking back at least a couple months and denying people with a lot of recent applications.

probably just recent opens open and/or inquiries

Too many recent open accounts I mean

I just got the instant denial. 12/24, my last approval in Feb. My last couple of applications have been instant denials. I hoped BOA might be different because I have BBRs and a savings account there. I’m guessing everybody’s tightening down against “churners.”

I’d like to get the new Premium Rewards card but already have 9 BOA ccs, Preferred Rewards Platinum Honor Level assets.

Do you think it is worth a hard pull denial to apply for this card?

Will they overnight the first card to you while on vacation? (Tried that once with Chase & they refused, said the first card had to go to the primary address.)

approved $15,000. this will be my 5th active card with them. They reduced the line from one of my other cards so new new credit but thats fine with me

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