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Nordstrom Credit Card - Ultimate Review

Tom Broucksou
Updated on: 03/15/2018
RE®: 66
Our Rating
Nordstrom Card
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For excellent/good credit

"Get double points and exclusive offers with the Nordstrom card."

If you frequently shop at Nordstrom, the department store’s credit card may be of some value to you. It comes with a variety of perks for customers, including double points in the Nordstrom Rewards program, access to special sales and discounts, a welcome bonus and free alterations.

However, the card can only be used at Nordstrom and its family of stores, including Nordstrom Rack, HauteLook and Trunk Club. Plus, the rewards you earn come in the form of Nordstrom Notes, which can only be spent at the department store.

As a cardholder, you’ll get two points per dollar spent. Since every 2,000 points earned can be redeemed for $20 in Nordstrom Notes, you’re essentially getting 2 percent back. That’s a reasonable return rate, but you can do just as well with a much more flexible cashback card.

What you do get with this card, though, are special offers and free alterations. All cardholders get early access to Nordstrom’s annual Anniversary Sale, invites to special bonus points events, one triple points day and $100 in alterations.

The more you spend at Nordstrom, the more you’ll get, too. That’s more triple points days, more free alterations and more exclusive events.

This is a no-annual-fee card, so if you often shop at Nordstrom, and you don’t mind the restricted nature of the card, it may be worth getting. Otherwise, you’ll probably be better off with a standard cashback card that can be used anywhere.

Nordstrom Credit Card Features and Benefits

The more you spend on the Nordstrom card, the more perks you’ll get. But there are a few valuable benefits every cardholder gets, no matter how much they spend. To start with, you’ll get an instant $40 discount if you spend at least $100 the first day you’re approved for the card.

Next, you’ll get double points. Standard Nordstrom Rewards members earn one point per dollar spent, but card members get two points per dollar.

Every 2,000 points you earn can be redeemed for $20 in Nordstrom Notes. That works out to a value of one cent per point. If you have the card, though, you’ll effectively be getting two cents per point since every $1,000 you spend earns $20 back in Nordstrom Notes.

All cardholders also earn triple points on purchases one day a year. The best part is that you get to choose which day that is. So if you’re planning to update your wardrobe, or perhaps you’re thinking about buying a TV or other big ticket item, you can get a little more back.

You’ll get at least $100 in free alterations, too. You’ll receive reimbursements for the cost of the alterations in Nordstrom Notes, which can be used for future purchases at Nordstrom.

Nordstrom rewards customers who spend a lot, too. If you spend between $2,000 and $4,999 in a year, you’ll get two days of triple points and up to $200 in alterations; spend between $5,000 and $9,999 and get three days of triple points and $300 in alterations; and big spenders who make more than $10,000 in purchases get unlimited free alterations and four days of triple points.

What You Get

  • $40 in Nordstrom Notes if you spend at least $100 the day you’re approved
  • 2 points per dollar spent at Nordstrom
  • Triple points one day of your choice a year
  • $100 in free alterations
  • Early admittance to Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale
  • Access to bonus points events
  • No annual fee

Redemptions must be made in 2,000-point increments that are worth $20 in Nordstrom Notes. Points expire three years from the last day of the year in which they are earned.

In-Store Financing

Unlike many store-branded credit cards, Nordstrom does not offer special financing to cardholders. You’ll pay 24.15% APR for all purchases.

If you miss a payment, your APR will increase to 31.15%, and you’ll be charged a penalty fee of $38. You’ll have at least 25 days from the close of each billing cycle to pay your balance in full and avoid interest charges.

Customer Perks

Nordstrom cardholders get a variety of special perks, including early access to sales, bonus points events, free alterations and more. The benefits you get depend in part on how much you spend.

Anyone with the card is automatically at Level 1. You’ll achieve Level 2 status if you spend more than $2,000 in a year, Level 3 if you spend more than $5,000 and Level 4 if you spend more than $10,000.

Level 1 comes with early access to Nordstrom’s big Anniversary Sale, special bonus points events, one day earning triple points and $100 in alterations (which are refunded in Nordstrom Notes). Level 2 gets all of those perks, plus access to an exclusive holiday points event and $200 in alterations.

Level 3 adds another $100 in alterations, plus invitations to Extraordinary Experiences at the department store. With the most elite Level 4, you’ll enjoy unlimited free alterations, plus VIP Rewards Experiences and pre-shopping privileges at the Anniversary Sale.

How Much Will You Earn with Nordstrom Credit Card?

The Nordstrom card is accepted at Nordstrom, Nordstrom Rack,, HauteLook and Trunk Club. You’ll get two points per dollar spent at any of those stores. Nordstrom Rewards members who do not have the card will earn just one point per dollar.

Your Monthly Charges
Rewards You Will Earn Annually
48,000points$480in dollar value
Members w/o a card
Trunk Club purchases
Nordstrom purchases
Nordstrom Rack purchases
2points/$1 purchases
HauteLook purchases

What is the Value of Nordstrom Credit Card

With the Nordstrom card, you’ll earn points in the department store’s rewards program. You can only redeem those points for Nordstrom Notes, which are certificates that can be applied to future purchases at Nordstrom and Nordstrom Rack.

You must redeem in 2,000-point increments, which are worth $20. While that’s a value of just one cent each, you’ll earn two points per dollar if you’re a cardholder. That effectively brings the value up to two cents per point.

Earned Points
2,000 points
$20 in Nordstrom Notes for 2,000 points
Average CPP
Dollar Value

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:

The final result:

Should You Get the Nordstrom Credit Card?

If you’re just a casual Nordstrom shopper, the Nordstrom credit card won’t offer you much more than a standard cashback card. In fact, you’ll have fewer options with the Nordstrom card since it can only be used at the Nordstrom family of stores, and the points you earn can only be used for purchases at Nordstrom. You won’t be tied down to one store with a cashback card.

If you get the right cashback card, like the Citi Double Cash, you’ll earn the same 2 percent back everywhere you shop, even at Nordstrom. You could even double dip, earning both on your cashback card and through the Nordstrom Rewards program, since you don’t have to have the credit card to join.

Through the Nordstrom Rewards program, you’ll earn one point per dollar if you’re not a cardholder. Add that to the two cents per dollar you get back on all purchases with the Double Cash card, and you’ll actually come out ahead without the Nordstrom card.

You’ll effectively get a total of three cents back per dollar spent and Nordstrom using that strategy. You’ll get two cents via the Double Cash card and one cent as a basic Nordstrom Rewards member. As a Nordstrom card member, you’d get just two cents back.

Serious Nordstrom shoppers, though, will find some benefit to having the card. At the most basic level, you’ll get $100 worth of free alterations (reimbursed as Nordstrom Notes), access to special sales and one day of triple points. The more you spend at Nordstrom, though, the more perks you’ll get, including more free alterations, more triple points days and more special sales.

Are those perks worth the limited flexibility of the rewards you’ll earn? That’s a call you’ll have to make.


Need more info? Check out our frequently asked questions. If you have other questions, please click on “Ask Now” below.

  • Do I need to have the Nordstrom card to earn points at Nordstrom?

    You do not have to have the Nordstrom card to earn points at Nordstrom. You can join the Nordstrom Rewards program without having the card. However, cardholders will earn twice the points. Standard program members get one point per dollar, but card members get two points per dollar.
    The Nordstrom Rewards program is free to join. You can fill out an application online or in a store. If you are not already a program member, you will be automatically enrolled if you apply for the Nordstrom card.
  • Where can I use the Nordstrom card?

    The Nordstrom card is only good at Nordstrom and its family of stores, which includes Nordstrom Rack, HauteLook and Trunk Club. You can also use the card to make online purchases from Nordstrom.
    Nordstrom also offers a Visa Platinum and Visa Signature version of the card. Those cards come with the same benefits as the standard Nordstrom card but can be used anywhere Visa is accepted. Non-Nordstrom purchases earn one point per dollar.
    You will need a better credit score to qualify for the Visa Platinum version of the card. Only customers who make frequent purchases at Nordstrom are considered for the Visa Signature card.
  • Do Nordstrom Notes or Nordstrom Rewards points expire?

    Yes, they both expire. Nordstrom Rewards points, which you can earn as either a cardholder or just a rewards program member, expire three years from the last day of the year in which they are earned. For example, if you earn points in August 2018, they will expire three years from December 31, 2018, or on December 31, 2021.
    When you redeem your points, you’ll get Nordstrom Notes. The notes are certificates that can be used to make purchases at Nordstrom. They can only be redeemed in 2,000-point increments, which are worth $20.
    Nordstrom Notes expire one year from the date of issue. The expiration date is printed on the note when it’s issued.
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Compare Cards

If you’re looking for a store credit card co-branded with a popular department store, there are several options in addition to Nordstrom. Macy’s, Kohl’s and Saks Fifth Avenue all offer their own credit cards that can only be used at their respective stores. Let’s take a look.

Nordstrom Card
For Excellent/Good Credit
Check which store card is the right fit for you
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Compare Cards in the Same Lineup

Sign-up bonus0 points0 points0 points0 points
Annual Fee





APR On Purchases26.49% Variable±24.15% Variable±26.24% Variable±25.24% Variable±
Foreign Fee0%0%0%0%
Bonus Value$0$0$0$0
Second Year Value$0$480$1,200$480

Like the Nordstrom card, the Macy’s credit card offers more benefits to customers who spend more. At the most basic Silver level, which is anyone who spends less than $499 a year at Macy’s, you won’t get a lot. The welcome bonus is 25 percent off your purchases the first day you have your card, plus every purchase will earn one point per dollar.

If you spend between $500 and $1,199 per year, you’ll earn Gold status and get free shipping on web purchases and a birthday offer. Big spenders who make $1,200 or more in purchases get all of the previously mentioned perks plus 5 percent back on all purchases.

The Kohl’s Charge card comes with two welcome bonuses. You’ll get 25 percent of the day you apply for the card and another 15 percent off when your card arrives in the mail. Beyond that, Kohl’s really emphasizes the exclusive sales and discounts offered to cardholders, claiming that you’ll get at least 12 offers a year.

You will also earn points in the Kohl’s Cash rewards program, but cardholders earn at the same rate as non-cardholders. You’ll get one point per dollar, and 100 points earns a $5 certificate.

The SaksFirst store card gives you just 10 percent off the day you apply for the card. It does, however, give you access to the store’s rewards program.

You’ll earn more if you spend more. With up to $5,000 in spending a year, you’ll get two points per dollar. Between $5,000 and $10,000 in spending earns four points per dollar. Over $10,000 in spending earns six points per dollar.

Points can only be redeemed for purchases at Saks. Every 2,500 points equals a $25 gift card.

At the basic level, you’ll also get invites to one-of-a-kind members-only experiences and early access to designer sales. At the highest level, with over $10,000 in spending, you’ll also get free valet parking and free storage for one fur.

For casual shoppers, none of these cards offer all that much. You won’t earn more back than you would with many standard cashback cards, plus your rewards will be a lot more limited. You will get access to some special sales and discounts at the respective department stores, but it’s hard to predict what value you’ll get out of those perks.

If, however, you spend a lot at Nordstrom, Macy’s or Saks, you will get more out of those cards. Is it enough to justify getting a dedicated store card? That’s a tough call. Strictly in terms of the return you’ll get, you’ll be better off with good cashback card unless you hit the highest spending categories at Macy’s or Saks.

Some Alternative Cards for Nordstrom Credit Card

You don’t have to get a co-branded store credit card to save money at your favorite department store. In fact, you may be better off with a cashback card. The rewards are more flexible, and you can use them just about anywhere.

$40 inNordstrom Notes
Nordstrom Card

Check if Nordstrom Card is the best option for you

Best Cashback Card

The Citi Double Cash card offers a fixed rate of return for every purchase. You’ll get 2.0 percent back on all purchases with no caps or limits. There isn’t a more rewarding fixed-rate card on the market.

While you don’t have to worry about certain categories of purchases, you do have to pay your bill. You’ll get 1 percent back when you make a purchase and another 1 percent back after you pay it off. If you often carry a balance on your card, this is not the best option for you.

In addition to offering a lot more flexibility than a store card like Nordstrom’s, many cashback cards will also give you a promotional period with 0% APR. The Citi Double Cash card offers interest-free financing for 18 months on balance transfers.

If you’re carrying balance on a high-interest credit card, you can save a lot of money by transferring the debt over to the Double Cash card. You can then use the money you’ll save on interest payments to help pay down your principle and get out of debt.

Best Rotating Category Card

The Discover it Cashback Match card is great for earning a lot of cash back for certain purchases. That’s because it offers 5.0 percent back in rotating categories.

Every four months that category will change, and every year they’re a little different. They typically include popular spending categories, though, such as wholesale stores, gas stations, restaurants, grocery stores and more.

Unfortunately, those bonus categories are capped at $1,500 in spending per quarter. After that, you’ll earn at the base rate of 1 percent. Also, all purchases that do not fall into those categories earn at 1 percent.

You shouldn’t be earning just 1 percent back on any purchase, so the Discover it card is not a great everyday card. It’s best used as a supplement to a fixed-rate card, like the Citi Double Cash.

However, the Discover it card has a few more tricks up its sleeve. First, Discover will match every penny you earn in cash back during your first year as a cardholder. That can easily be more lucrative than a standard sign-up bonus. There are no limits on the cashback match, so if you spend more, you’ll earn more.

For example, if you max out your spending in the bonus categories, you’ll earn $300 back on $6,000 of spending. That’s a great rate of return. At the end of the first year, though, you’ll get another $300, making it a total of $600 back. That’s a fantastic return rate of 10 percent. You won’t get that with any other card.

On top of that, all other purchases will effectively get 2 percent back, matching the best fixed-rate cashback cards. The Discover it card is impossible to beat for the first year.

Remember, though, that the cashback match is only happens the first year. There’s no annual fee, but you’ll have to decide if the card’s worth keeping in the long term.

One reason you might want to keep it forever, though, is Discover’s excellent security features. They are the only card issuer to offer free Social Security number alerts and daily credit report checks.

As a cardholder, Discover will monitor risky websites buried in the dark web for the illegal use of your Social Security number. Plus, they’ll check your Experian credit report daily to see if any new accounts, including credit cards, mortgages and car loans, have been opened in your name.

Get the Biggest Bonus

A few no-fee cashback cards offer a sign-up bonus. If you’re looking for a quick payout, the Blue Cash Everyday card from American Express is an excellent choice. You’ll get an easy $150 after spending $1,000 within the first three months as a cardholder.

You’ll also get 3.0 percent back on the first $6,000 you spend at supermarkets per year, an unlimited 2.0 percent back at gas stations and select department stores and 1.0 percent back for all other purchases.

There aren’t any other standard cashback cards that I know of that offer a bonus for purchases made at department stores. Those stores include Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, Kohl’s and Macy’s, plus Belk, Bloomingdale’s, Bon Ton, J.C. Penney, Lord & Taylor, Sears and many more.

As an American Express card, you’ll get access to the issuer’s celebrated benefits and customer service, including complimentary rental car insurance, the Global Assist hotline, roadside assistance and travel accident insurance.

If you have a big ticket purchase coming up, you can get 15 months of interest-free financing with the Blue Cash card. You can also transfer a balance and get the same 0% APR offer.

Card Overview

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.

Card Details
Good credit score
From 700 to 749
TD Bank, N.A.TD Bank, N.A.
Rewards Currency

Card Terms and Conditions

While it's easy to focus on the benefits of the Nordstrom card, 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 store credit card.


Intro APR:
See Terms and Conditions
Intro APR for balance transfers:
See Terms and Conditions
Ongoing APR:
24.15% Variable±
Minimum Grace Period:
25 days

Cash Advance Features

Ongoing APR:
See Terms and Conditions
Cash Advance Fee:
See Terms and Conditions

Security and Protections

The Nordstrom card comes with some basic security features. They include:

Account alerts:
Set up alerts to be notified when large transactions occur, if there’s an unauthorized withdrawal and when your bill’s due.
Online Access:
Monitor your balance, track your purchases, redeem your rewards and pay your bills via the Nordstrom card website.
Zero Liability:
You’ll never be held responsible for unauthorized charges made to your account.