The Peebles credit card is another in a long list of what I consider to be subpar, limited-use store credit cards offered by Comenity Bank.
That said, if you are a devoted shopper at Stage, Bealls, Palais Royal, Peebles, Goody’s or Gordmans, then you might have some use for this card, if only because of the outside rewards you earn on your spending.
Is the Peebles Credit Card Good for Me?
For the typical consumer, no. You will find far superior credit cards that give you demonstrably better benefits and greater financial freedom and flexibility.
But if you routinely shop the stores where this card is useful (the stores I mentioned above), then I can make a very narrow case that this card will benefit you.
All You Need to Know About the Peebles Credit Card: Benefits and Features
As with many of the credit cards from Comenity, the Peebles card is a simple affinity card for consumers who shop the various stores I previously mentioned. Which means, this is not a general, all-purpose credit you can use to buy gas or groceries or whatever. For that, you need a credit card from Visa, Mastercard, American Express, etc.).
The Peebles credit card comes in two flavors:
- Peebles Preferred Credit Card
- Peebles Platinum Credit Card
Most of the benefits you’ll earn with either Peebles credit card are, frankly, a bit of a yawner. With the Preferred credit card (the standard card) you’ll get:
- A welcome coupon of $5 (which expire if it’s not used on the first day);
- A 15% discount on all purchases on your first day;
- $5 payback rewards for every 100 points you earn;
- Double points every day when using your Peebles card, meaning $1 = 2 points;
- Double-double points 4x a year when using your Peebles card, meaning $1 = 4 points;
- $10 birthday gift (if you’ve used your card at least once in the past 24 months). If you spend $TK in a year, you’re upgraded to the Peebles platinum card. With that, you receive all the same benefits as you would with the regular card, plus:
- A $10 holiday coupon.
If you spend $750 a year on a Peebles credit card, you’re upgraded to a Platinum credit card, for which the primary additional benefits are:
- A $20 birthday gift instead of $10;
- Free shipping with online purchases.
What You Need to Know Before You Apply for a Peebles Credit Card
Those first two benefits – $5 rewards for 100 points, and two points per $1 spent – tell you that you’re earning a 10% reward benefit ($50 in spending = 100 … which earns a $5 reward).
So, for a consummate fan of Peebles, or the various other stores, that’s a worthy benefit. It’s certainly better than any cashback offer you’ll find.
However, there are huge caveats to that last statement. Several fine points about a Peebles credit card underscore why I think this card is a loser among the world of credit cards.
First, any rewards you earn expire in 30 days.
If you happen to cross the 100-point threshold while shopping in the store, your reward coupon is printed and given to you at checkout and the 30-day clock starts ticking. Cross the threshold with online purchases and the clock starts ticking the moment the rewards show up in your account.
Frankly, I think this is a scam that slaps consumers in the face and does more to benefit the retailer than the shopper. A coupon that expires within a month is particularly egregious in its demonstration of corporate greed.
Such a coupon forces you back into the store to spend more money, thereby robbing you of your financial freedom. Worse, if you don’t return quickly, or you have no need to buy something new, well say “bye-bye coupon.”
It’s a huge rip-off that negates all of your previous spending and serves only to benefit the company. Bad form!
Moreover, you cannot use Peebles credit card rewards coupons like cash.
You cannot deposit rewards you earn into a bank account, for instance, nor can you use them to reduce the debt on your Peebles credit card. With a real cash-back credit cards, you can do both, which gives you total financial freedom.
Finally, you can only earn a maximum of $5,000 in rewards coupons in one year. I don’t think that’s an issue for the vast majority of people, given that it implies a spending level equal to or greater than what the average American earns, nevertheless it’s another example of a card that’s not particularly well built with the consumer in mind.
What Credit Score You Need to be Considered for a Peebles Credit Card
As with most store-affinity credit cards not tied to a major credit card company such as Mastercard or Visa, the Peebles credit card is easily obtained. You’ll need a credit score somewhere in the 650 range, which is fair credit.
Peebles Credit Card Alternatives for Poor or No Credit
If you have poor credit or no credit history, I would suggest you should apply for a Capital One Platinum credit card. It charges no annual fee and offers an automatic credit-limit increase after five consecutive on-time payments. Both of those benefits will help bump up your credit score quickly.
You won’t earn miles, cash-back, rewards points or a signup bonus with Capital One Platinum, but when you have no credit or bad credit, perks are not what you need.
Which Credit Cards Do Better Job Than the Peebles Credit Card?
Since the Peebles credit card pretends to be a cash-back card, let’s look at far-better credit cards with real cash-back opportunities.
I particularly like the Bank of America Cash Rewards credit card, which is a well-thought-out, cash-back credit card. It gives you:
- 3% cash back in the category of your choice
- 2% at grocery stores and wholesale clubs
- 1% on everything else.
You’re in control when it comes to the 3% in that you can choose the category of spending that best fits your lifestyle. The categories include: gasoline, online shopping, dining, travel, drugstore and home-improvement/furnishings. You’ll earn 3% cash back on the first $2,500 in spending you do in that category each quarter; beyond that it reverts to 1% cash back. (That same rule applies to 2% cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs.)
You can change the category every month if your spending needs change, or you can leave your category as is, forever.
With the Bank of America Cash Rewards card, you’ll also earn a $200 signup bonus after spending just $1,000 in the first three months – a respectable 20% cash back rate. And there’s no annual fee.
And this is real cash. The money can flow into your bank account, or you can use it to pay off your existing credit card balance.
I also regularly point consumers to the Chase Freedom credit card that pays you an unlimited 1% cash back on all purchases, and then another 1% when you repay the balance.
Chase Freedom also offers a rotating list of categories in which you will earn 5% cash back each quarter. You have no control over the categories, but they’re categories where most consumers spend their money. Over the previous four quarters, for instance, the Chase Freedom credit card categories have included department stores, wholesale clubs, gasoline, highway tolls, grocery stores, drugstores, home-improvement stores and streaming entertainment services.
Chase Freedom will also give you $200 in bonus cash back after you spend just $500 in the first three months – a whopping 40% cash back rate. There’s no annual fee, your rewards never expire, and this, too, is real cash, not a reward coupon that expires.
Finally, I also like Capital One Savor, which is great for consumers who regularly spend on entertainment and eating out. The Capital One Savor credit card will give you:
- An unlimited 4% cash back on dining and entertainment.
- An unlimited 2% at grocery stores.
- And an unlimited 1% on everything else.
Capital One will give you a $300 signup bonus after you spend $3000 in the first three months – a 10% cash back rate – and there’s no annual fee. Once again, this is real cash to use however you want.
Bottom Line: Should You Get the Peebles Credit Card?
If you are so devoted to Peebles and the other stores where you can use this card, and you don’t mind the risk that your rewards will expire, then sure.
Then again, why would you want this card when so many better credit cards exist?