Posted by William Charles on October 3, 2016
Credit Card Offers

Published on October 3rd, 2016 | by William Charles


USAA Limitless Credit Card Review – 2.5% Cash Back On All Purchases

This card is now no longer accepting new applications.

USAA has launched a pilot program for a new credit card called ‘limitless’. Let’s take a look at this new card offering.

The Basics

Here are the basics of the card:

  • Card earns at the following rates:
    • 2.5% cash back on all purchases if you have a $1,000 monthly direct deposit into your USAA checking account
    • 1.5% cash back on all purchases if you don’t receive the monthly direct deposit
  • No annual fee
  • No sign up bonus
  • Chip & PIN
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • You must be a USAA member to apply for the card


USAA Membership

You’re eligible if you fit in these categories:

  • Active, retired and honorably separated officers and enlisted personnel of the U.S. military.
  • Officer candidates in commissioning programs (Academy, ROTC, OCS/OTS).
  • Adult children whose eligible parents have or had a USAA auto or property insurance product.
  • Widows and widowers of USAA members who have or had a USAA auto or property insurance policy.

You can find more information here.

Pilot Program

This is a pilot program and only available in select states at the moment, currently it’s available in:

  • AL, AR, AZ, CO, CT, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IN, KS, LA, MD, MI, MN, MT, ND, NM, NV, NY, OR, PA, RI, SC, TN, TX and WA

They are also slowly adding more states.

Credit Limits

Here are some data points on what credit limits people have been receiving:

Our Verdict

This card would be your best option for non-category spend (apart from the Discover it Miles, that offers 3% cash back for the first year). Obviously this is a loss leader for USAA, but they would be trying to make that money back on the checking account that requires the $1,000 direct deposit. Most other financial institutions have used bank account bonuses instead, but Fidelity also loses money on their 2% card but still come out ahead as cardholders have larger Fidelity deposits than non-cardholders. I suspect USAA will need to add some limits to this card to make it sustainable, but the limited membership might make this unnecessary.

If anybody has some screenshots or additional information, please share them in the comments below.

You might also be interested in our reviews of other USAA cards:

Hat tip to RileyRydem on /r/churning

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It is possible to become a USAA member through grandparents.You will need their ss# regardless if they are living or not. A friend just got membership through her 92 year old Grandfather, though she was turned down at first because her father was reserve national guard for some reason.

Yep. I am only a member through my grandparents. Parents have no military affiliation, but both grandfathers were drafted for WW2. Parents had to sign up for something trivial like “valuables insurance” in order to get me in.

Wonder if this can be done with their Amex cards too. I don’t tend to keep VISA top of wallet because of their forex markups

It’s not. Only this.

Was approved for this with a 12k CL if you need any other DPs

No FTF as well. Seems decent. Exciting to see a small issuer making a big play.

I was targeted for it. Here’s the text from the app: Limitless™ Cashback Rewards Visa Signature® Card Card Design Rates and Fees Apply Now Exclusive Online-Only Offer 2.5% cash back on every purchase Earn 2.5% cash back on purchases while you maintain a monthly qualifying direct deposit of $1,000 in a USAA Secure Checking (Opens Pop-Up Layer) account.See note 1 Enjoy cash back on every purchase, with no limit on the amount you can earn. Redeem your cash rewards anytime using your mobile device or computer.See note 2 View Terms & Conditions Special Military Benefits Deployment/PCS rate: Get 4% APR on all balances for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS. After 12 months, the regular APR, currently between 14.15% and 20.15%, will apply. This rate will vary with the market based on the prime rate. Special 4% SCRA rate: When you have a balance on your account at the time you enter active military duty, get 4% APR on that existing balance until one year after you complete active duty. See Special Bank Benefits for MilitaryMilitary Benefits Link Retail and Travel BenefitsSee note 3 Enjoy no foreign transaction fees when you travel outside of the United States. Extended warranty doubles the manufacturer’s or store brand warranty for up to one year. Collision damage waiver coverage pays for damage and theft of most rental cars. Concierge, emergency and roadside assistance. Security and Convenience Chip technology (Opens Pop-Up Layer) has added security and greater acceptance worldwide Protection from unauthorized charges — $0 liabilitySee note 4 Text messaging options to get account balances and transaction history Account access on or your mobile device Rates and Fees Apply Now Return to All Credit Cards Social NetworksMember Community Switch to full site Copyright © 2016 USAA. Note 1 Within 90 days of opening your credit card account, you must establish a monthly qualifying direct deposit of at least $1,000 to your USAA checking account. A qualifying direct deposit is a single electronic transfer of at least $1,000 that you initiate with your employer, a government entity or an external financial institution. Funds transfers between USAA accounts are not qualifying direct deposits. Note 2 Account access restrictions may apply to mobile/web access in certain countries. Note 3 Restrictions apply. See the credit card Guide to Benefits. Note 4 Zero liability policy: You are not liable for unauthorized use that is reported to… Read more »

Is this limited to a few states (as I’ve read) to start?

Chat with USAA rep informed me that the USAA Limitless Credit Card will be available to all members on October 28th. Currently is only available to selected members.

I was reading on Reddit that a USAA employee noted the rollout would be to only four states at first, with the rest coming through 2017. Not sure why it would be state specific but the source seemed credible.

Just approved for $20k line. Been USAA member since I was 16 though (I’m 40 now).

I was sent an email to apply for this card. It does not show up in my offers on the mobile app. When I try to apply, I get “we are having technical difficulties, please try again later or call us to continue your application”. Have been getting that for over 24hrs. When I called, no one was able to help because it is an online pilot. The reps don’t know a lot about it yet.

I have a USAA cash rewards Visa that earns 1% Cashback. I do not have much experience with the company and barely use the card. Do you think they might let me convert it to the new product?

several years ago i changed my USAA visa from rewards to cash back. i recently inquired about doing this again (cash back to rewards this time) and was told the software is being updated and it cannot be done at the present time. i did not ask about changing cards altogether.

I asked them specifically about this back in March 2017. I asked if I could convert my 12 year old USAA Cash Rewards Visa card into a USAA Limitless Visa card. I was told it was not possible.

So I applied for the USAA Limitless Visa card like normal and was approved for with a $8000 credit limit.

I then asked in April 2017 if it was possible to reallocate some my USAA Cash Rewards Visa credit limit to the new Limitless card. That was also not possible.

I have converted USAA credit cards and reallocated USAA credit limits in the past, but it seems like that is no longer something USAA does.

Approved for 25K CL on 10/12/16.

Oh, joy! Just got approved, 20k limit. There is the possibility of charging immediately, as your card number and security code are included in the approval. Temporary limit til card is delivered is 1k. Can also opt for express card delivery for $8. I love the Doctor of Credit, have learned so much and look for my daily e-mail!

Okay, can anyone explain how banks make money on direct deposit? USAA has been our primary bank for over a decade and we deposit our paper paychecks with USAA like clockwork (that’s the only way the small business we work for will pay us). Why does that make us less valuable to them than when worked for a company that paid us by direct deposit? I’m pretty angry that I’ll be excluded from this.

From the detailed info posted by Harlan on Oct 3rd, it stated the direct deposit can be from an external financial institution – so maybe deposit you checks at another bank and setup a regular transfer to USAA ?

Good catch. Thanks for pointing that out. I hadn’t thought that would work because transfers have shown as transfers for me, not ach. But I’m going to do some test pushes from my other banks and see what it shoes. Thanks!

Hi, did you ever find out if this works? I’m thinking about applying for the card but I don’t get a dd paycheck, so I’d have to ACH transfers, trying to find out if this would work.

It looks like direct deposit if I initiate the transfer from the other institution rather than from USAA. But they only opened access in my state a week ago. You get 90 days to start direct deposits, so I probably won’t know for sure if it worked for almost 90 days.

Hi Melissa, did you find out it it worked?

Hi Melissa, did you find out if it worked?

Yes, I push from an online savings bank and so far it has worked.

Agree with CrazyAussie. You can transfer $1000 from your USAA account to another institution and then deposit it back into your checking account. That will suffice for your monthly direct deposit requirement.

Saw link yesterday on USAA’s regular web site (NOT the mobile site)
Under Products, Credit Cards
Approved in 1 minute
$20k Credit Limit with about 800 credit score
Got instant credit card number with security code and instant activation
Card showed up on web banking under my accounts instantly
Was given the option for authorized user cards

Site says
“Exclusive Online-Only Pilot”
“Available in LA, NM, KS and ID”

Card delivered today (I paid the $8 rush shipping)

Online instant approval 18.5k CL USAA member for 6 years. 1k limit to use immediately until card arrives. Best cash back on the market for everyday spend.

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