Barnes & Noble Mastercard® Credit Card
Like most store credit cards, you’ll get the greatest benefit from the Barnes & Noble card when shopping at—you guessed it—Barnes & Noble. As a leading bookstore, you can find a vast range of genres and titles available both online and at brick and mortar locations. And with this card, you can earn some serious rewards while shopping. The earning rates are decent for purchases not made with B&N, too. But to the point, if you’re a bookworm, this is a card worth considering.
That said, the card does have a few downsides, and we’ll examine those as well. The biggest one is that all the rewards you earn can only be redeemed at Barnes & Noble. At B&N, you’ll get 5 percent back on your purchases in the form of a statement credit. All other purchases earn points that are automatically redeemed for B&N gift cards. Again, Barnes & Noble sells a wide range of reading materials and some other items, but if you’re only a casual customer of the bookseller, this card probably isn’t for you.
Features and Benefits
If you’re a regular at your local Barnes & Noble store, you’ll love the benefits that come with this card. Just for signing up, you’ll earn your first $25 gift card good toward anything at B&N. No minimum spend is required to earn your first reward.
Every time you check out at Barnes & Noble, whether online or in-store, you’ll earn 5 percent back on your purchase as an automatic statement credit. Next, you’ll earn double points on all restaurant purchases and one point per dollar everywhere else. Once you accumulate 2,500 points, Barclays will send you a $25 gift card in the mail automatically.
On top of that, you’ll be awarded with a free Barnes & Noble membership each year you spend $7,500 or more on the card, a savings of $25 per year. As a member, you’ll get 40 percent off the list price of bestselling hardbacks and 10 percent off the price of just about everything else. If you’re an online shopper, you’ll also get free express shipping at BN.com! All these benefits come with a $0 annual fee.
What You Get
- $25 Barnes & Noble gift card as a welcome bonus
- 5% back on all Barnes & Noble purchases
- 2 points per dollar at restaurants
- Free B&N membership every year you spend $7,500 on the card
- No annual fee
- 0% intro APR for 15 months on balance transfers
- Free FICO score
The rewards you earn with the Barnes & Noble Barclaycard are unlimited, and all redemptions are seamless. Eligible purchases at Barnes & Noble stores and at BN.com get 5 percent back as a statement credit automatically. Further, all other purchases earn points, and Barclaycard will mail you a $25 gift card automatically each time you accumulate 2,500 points. There are no caps to the number of points you can earn, and there’s no action you need to take to cash in your rewards.
Unlike some store credit cards, the Barnes & Noble card does not offer any special financing on your first or subsequent purchases. There is, however, an offer of 15 months with no interest for balance transfers, but it’s not available for new purchases.
Loyal fans of Barnes & Noble know about their membership program, which can offer substantial savings on B&N purchases. Normally, this membership costs $25 each year, but as a card member, you get a free annual membership if you spend at least $7,500 each year. What exactly does this get you?
As a Barnes & Noble member, you can save money every time you step foot in the store. Hardback books on their best-seller list get 40 percent off the list price, and hardcover fans know this can be a tremendous savings. Additionally, members receive 10 percent off almost everything else in the store (some exclusions apply).
If you prefer to shop online, you’ll get free express shipping with no minimum purchase amount, which will get your order to your door in 1 to 3 business days. Note that online purchases are not eligible for in-store member discounts.
Aside from a B&N membership and the rewards you can earn, there are no additional benefits exclusively for Barnes & Noble MasterCard holders. But you’ll be saving a ton of money quickly and consistently with this card if you often shop at B&N.
What is the Value of Barnes & Noble Points?
All the points you earn with your Barnes & Noble credit card are redeemed automatically, either as a statement credit when you make a B&N purchase, or in the form of a B&N gift card that’s mailed to you once you hit 2,500 points.
You’ll get your statement credit the month you make your purchase; the gift card can redeem at any time, either in-store or online. You can use that gift card toward any type of merchandise you like, or save up multiple cards if you’re planning to make a big purchase. Use the card for merchandise that’s on sale, the latest novel from your favorite author or maybe peruse the bargain shelves for unique finds. It’s totally up to you.
What is CPP and How is it Calculated?
Cents Per Point (CPP) is a way to measure the value of points. It tells you how many cents you get for each point you redeem by dividing the cash price of the hotel room by the number of points of an equivalent award stay costs. This can be a somewhat subjective calculation because the price of the stay in both cash and points fluctuates by season and availability.
We use the following formula to calculate the CPP:
Should You Get the Barnes & Noble MasterCard?
The Barnes & Noble MasterCard from Barclaycard is a straightforward rewards card that can offer a lot of value for the right shopper. While the $25 sign-up bonus is very low compared to many other rewards cards, the B&N card offers a nice rate of return on B&N purchases and double points for dining out. But the rewards you earn are limited in how you can redeem them.
The statement credits earned by shopping at Barnes & Noble are generous and easy to get. Just shop and you’ll get the credit on your next statement. Meanwhile, the points you earn at restaurants and everywhere else are worth one cent apiece, but they are only redeemable in $25 increments as a B&N gift card.
Granted, Barnes & Noble sells a wide variety of books and movies, as well as collectibles, music, periodicals, games and collectibles, but they’re certainly not as big as Amazon, which can sell you just about anything. So while these reward gift cards don’t expire, you are limited in what you can buy with them.
We’d also like to take a moment to share a little bit of insight when it comes to store-branded credit cards. Contrary to what you might think, the store doesn’t earn a cut of the profits made by MasterCard or Barclaycard, and if you’re someone who carries a balance and pays interest, B&N sees exactly $0 of those charges. So what’s in it for them?
Study after study has shown that customers who are loyal to a particular store are more likely to shop there when they hold that store’s credit card. Not only do they shop at that favorite store more frequently than non-cardholders, they also tend to spend more. So while the store doesn’t get any direct benefit from the credit card, they do see you more often as a repeat customer, and the extra business you give them is their incentive to offer the card and honor its rewards.
It’s easy to get caught up at your favorite bookstore (especially if you’re earning some nice cash back), but be careful not to overspend. Whatever you charge and can’t pay off each month will cost more in interest than you’re getting in savings with the card. Banks and big merchants know this, and you should, too.
Need more info? Check out our frequently asked questions. If you have other questions, please click on “Ask Now” below.
- Like a lot of bonus categories with other credit cards, the B&N card features a great 5 percent back category on purchases made at Barnes & Noble or online at BN.com. You’ll earn 5 percent back as an automatic statement credit on nearly all of the products they sell, not just books. The main exclusions are items like gift cards and other non-traditional merchandise.You’ll also get 5 percent back when shopping at the whole family of Barnes & Noble stores, which includes B. Dalton, Bookstop, Bookstar, Doubleday, Ink Newsstand and Charlesbank.
- Worried about losing your reward gift card or it getting lost in the mail? Good news! When logged into your account at barclaycardus.com, you can elect to receive electronic gift cards (also known as e-gift cards) instead of the traditional plastic version. Then, you can redeem your gift card online or print it out and take it to your nearest Barnes & Noble store. Whichever option you choose, you’ll still earn rewards at the same great rates and the value of your gift cards will remain the same.
- So you’re already a B&N insider? If you’ve already paid your $25 annual membership but still put $7,500 in spend on the card this year, your membership will be automatically extended another 12 months. Then, if you put another $7,500 in spend on your card the following year, you won’t be billed for your membership. That being said, putting $15,000 in spend on your B&N card won’t give you a 24-month membership as this benefit does not stack (it’s not transferrable, either).
- Nope, it’s only good at Barnes & Noble locations, on BN.com and with stores that are part of the B&N family. Remember, this is the Barnes & Noble rewards credit card, so all the rewards you earn are for B&N purchases and for using at B&N stores.Conversely, if you’re getting a 5 percent statement credit on a big B&N purchase during the same month you also bought a new dishwasher, you could mentally put your 5 percent credit as a savings toward that new appliance.
- Good question. Once you’ve earned enough rewards for a gift card, that will become your form of payment on your next B&N purchase, whether it’s in-store or online. If your purchase total exceeds the balance of your gift cards, you’ll need to pay the remaining balance another way. While you aren’t required to use your B&N card, why wouldn’t you want to earn more rewards?If you’re not redeeming a gift card, but plan to shop at Barnes & Noble, you only get the 5 percent statement credit when you use your card. That 5 percent savings isn’t applied at the register or when you check out online; it shows up later on your credit card statement. So yes, you do need to use your B&N MasterCard to get the 5 percent back.
- One nice perk about the Barclays Barnes & Noble rewards programs is that your points don’t expire. And since there’s no annual fee or minimum spend, your points will sit in your account until you’ve earned enough points for your next $25 gift card. There are only two ways you’ll lose your points: 1) By closing your account, or 2) By mismanaging your account to the point that Barclays is forced to suspend or close it due to repeated late payments or nonpayment of your bill.
- Thinking of using your rewards to buy gifts around the holidays? That’s a great way to save some money at the end of the year. Unfortunately, your rewards are redeemed automatically as either a statement credit for B&N purchases or a gift card sent once you hit 2,500 points. So there’s no way to hoard your points. However, you could collect your gift cards throughout the year to give as gifts around the holidays or to go on a big shopping spree.
Store and co-branded cards are very popular with numerous banks, and Barclaycard offers multiple products. We’ll take a look at a few other no annual fee cards they offer and how they compare to the Barnes & Noble rewards card.
Other Barclays Rewards cards
|Barclaycard Visa® with Apple Rewards||NFL Extra Points Credit Card||Barclaycard CashForward™ World Mastercard®|
|Sign-up bonus||0 points||0 points||10,000 points||$200|
|APR On Purchases||14.99% to 27.99% Variable±||14.99% to 25.99% Variable±||15.99% to 25.99% Variable±||15.99% to 25.99% Variable±|
|Second Year Value||$240||$240||$240||$360|
Except for the CashForward card, which earns a flat 0 percent back on every purchase, all of the cards above are intended for a specific type of customer. If you’re looking for a simple card that earns flexible rewards, the CashForward would probably be more appealing than the other cards that are tied to a specific merchant.
The Apple Rewards card attracts customers who shop at Apple in-store, online and also through iTunes, and the triple points you earn with Apple is very attractive. Like the B&N card, you also earn double points on restaurant purchases and one point per dollar everywhere else. Additionally, once you earn 2,500 points, you’ll receive an automatic gift card sent to you for $25 good with Apple.
Meanwhile, Barclaycard’s NFL Extra Points card is more unique in that you earn double points on NFL ticket purchases and NFL merchandise, as well as getting a 20 percent discount at NFLshop.com. All your NFL Extra points are good toward cash back, including the 0-point sign-up bonus. You can also redeem points for NFL experiences.
Another unique aspect of this card is that you can get an automatic 0% APR for six months on NFL tickets purchased through official NFL channels. These ballgame tickets can be pricey, so getting a no-interest loan on these large purchases can be a great way to pay off your tickets. However, regular interest rates will apply after the introductory period.
The Apple Rewards card also offers a 0% intro period, but only at account opening. Unlike other 0% purchase offers, the Apple card is tiered based on the total price of your purchase. You get six months at 0% for purchases less than $499; 12 months at 0% for purchases between $499 and $999; 18 months for purchases between $999 and $1,499; and 24 months for purchases over $1,500. Like NFL tickets, Apple products can also be expensive, so this could be a great way to get the latest iPhone without having to shell out the big bucks all at once.
As you can see, these Barclaycards have their similarities and differences, and the best card for you really depends on where you like to spend your money. Booklovers should look to the Barnes & Noble card, NFL fans should consider the NFL Extra Points card and Apple customers will find the most value in the Apple Rewards card. And if you’re looking for an easy solution for everywhere you shop, the CashForward card offers 1.5 percent cash back on every purchase.
Some Alternatives for Barnes & Noble Shoppers
While the Barnes & Noble card offers some nice perks for B&N shoppers, it isn’t the most rewarding or flexible rewards card on the market. If you’re looking for something that you could use for more than just B&N rewards, consider getting a straight cashback card. Let’s take a look at a few options.
- Discover it® - Cashback Match™
Up to 5% cash back offerRead Review
- Chase Freedom Unlimited℠
15,000 points offerRead Review
- Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
$150 bonus offerRead Review
Get the Highest Earning Rate
The Discover it card does offer up to 5 percent cash back, but only for certain categories of purchases. All other purchases earn just 1 percent back. Both the Chase Freedom Unlimited and the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards cards offer a fixed 1.5 percent return on every purchase.
Earning is simple with those two cards. You don’t have to worry about which purchases earn bonuses or what the current bonus categories are. You’ll just earn bonus points for every single purchase. If simplicity is what you want, you can’t go wrong with either the Freedom or the Quicksilver.
Best Rotating Category Card
However, if you want to maximize your return on spending, you’ll probably want to get at least one card with bonus categories that rotate every quarter. While it can be difficult to keep track of what each purchase is going to earn, you will be generously rewarded if you do.
With the Discover it card, you’ll get 5 percent cash back in whatever the current bonus category is. They do vary from year to year, but they are typically popular spending categories, such as gas stations, restaurants, Amazon.com, wholesale clubs and more. The drawback is that all other purchases earn just 1 percent back.
If you’re serious about your rewards, think about getting a card that has rotating bonus categories and a second card that earns a fixed return, such as the Freedom Unlimited or Quicksilver. That way you can earn a bonus on all purchases.
Get the Biggest Sign-Up Bonus
Both the Freedom and Quicksilver cards offer a $150 sign-up bonus after spending $500, but the Discover it card could potentially be even more lucrative. At the end of your first year as a cardholder, Discover will match the cash back you’ve earned throughout the year.
You have to wait a year to get the bonus, and your bonus will be determined by how much you spend on the card. If you spend a lot, you’ll get a big bonus. If you don’t, then you might be better offer getting a card with a traditional sign-up offer.
Getting 5 percent back on B&N purchases is a great perk of the Barnes & Noble card, but the meager sign-up bonus of a $25 gift card and the limited nature of the rewards you earn makes it less appealing than most cashback cards. However, none of the cards discussed here charge an annual fee, so you could simply stack your wallet and maximize your return on every purchase.
Whenever you apply for a credit card make sure you read the terms and conditions of the card and the rewards program to find out about minimum spend requirements and any restrictions to ensure you can successfully obtain the card and earn the rewards it offers.
Good credit score
IssuerBarclays Bank Delaware
Card Terms and Conditions
While it's easy to focus on the benefits of the Barnes & Noble MasterCard, it's worth taking a closer look at the terms and conditions. There's a lot to consider as you think about how you're going to use the card. Will you carry a balance, get a cash advance or maybe make a big purchase? Below is a rundown of the various interest rates, purchase protections, security features and mobile banking options that come with this MasterCard.
- Intro APR:
- See Terms and Conditions
- Intro APR for balance transfers:
- 0% introductory APR for the first fifteen billing cycles following each balance transfer that posts to your account within 45 days of account opening
- Ongoing APR:
- 14.99% to 25.99% Variable±
- Minimum Grace Period:
- 23 days
Cash Advance Features
- Ongoing APR:
- 26.24% Variable±
- Cash Advance Fee:
- Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
Security and Protections
All Barclaycards comes with certain standard security benefits, like account alerts and $0 fraud liability protection. Even though the Barnes & Noble credit card doesn’t have as many bells and whistles as other rewards cards, Barclays wants to protect all their customers’ accounts.
- Account alerts:
- Get email alerts about your card whenever a payment is due or a transaction is over a certain established threshold.
- Banking On the Go:
- The easy-to-use Barclaycard app makes managing your account a snap when you’re away from your computer.
- EMV Chip Technology:
- Your card is accepted worldwide with Chip technology built right into the card.
- Credit Score:
- Your FICO score is available for free when you log onto barclaycardus.com or from your Barclaycard app.
Additional Cardholder Benefits
Customers who are approved for the Barnes & Noble card will receive a World MasterCard. This mid-tier perks program is offered directly through MasterCard, not Barclaycard. These are similar to Visa Signature and American Express benefits, but with their own set of guidelines.
Master Card Travel Benefits
- Identity Theft Protection:
- Get Mastercard’s identify theft detection and resolution service at no cost.
- Price Protection:
- Within 120 days of purchase, if you find a lower price on an item you’ve purchased, you may be reimbursed for the difference.
- Extended Warranty:
- Made a big purchase? Your World MasterCard doubles the manufacturer’s original warranty up to 24 months.
- MasterCard Global Service:
- Emergency assistance is available anytime, anywhere and in any language. This service helps you get a replacement card, access to cash and more.