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USAA Rewards Visa Signature Card Review

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This article was last updated Jun 20, 2018, but some terms and conditions may have changed or are no longer available. For the most accurate and up to date information please consult the terms and conditions found on the issuer website.

  • Earn 2X points per dollar spent on gas and dining and earn one point for every dollar spent on all purchases

  • Get 2,500 bonus points with your first purchase

  • $0 annual fee, no penalty APR & no foreign transaction fee

Highlights
  • Earn 2X points per dollar spent on gas and dining with no cap
  • Earn 1X points for every dollar spent on all other purchases
  • Get 2,500 bonus points with your first purchase
  • Redeem points for cash, merchandise, gift cards and more.
  • USAA membership is available to active and former military and their eligible family members
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card

More Info

Who the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card is best for

If you’re a military member or eligible family member who frequently dines at restaurants and purchases gas, you may get a lot of value from from the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card. At a $0 annual fee, this card has a great selection of travel benefits, plus a decent rewards program. However, if you’re someone who doesn’t qualify for membership or wants to earn cash back or rewards in different categories, such as travel, check out our lists of the best travel, rewards and cashback cards.

Rewards breakdown

Frequent drivers and foodies can benefit from the rewards program that is geared toward purchases in those categories — Earn 2X points per dollar spent on gas and dining and earn one point for every dollar spent on all purchases.

Here are examples of qualifying purchases in each category:

  • Dining: restaurants and fast-food restaurants
  • Gas: purchases made at businesses that primarily sell gas to consumers (ie. Shell and ExxonMobil stations)

The value of rewards points vary, but you can redeem them in a variety of ways:

  • Airline tickets
  • Merchandise and gift cards
  • Cash rewards
  • Donation to participating charities
  • Cruise tickets

Refer to the terms and conditions of the rewards program for more detail.

Where the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card stands out in its category

Wide range of travel benefits. This card offers numerous travel benefits that can be helpful when you’re away from home. You may receive coverage for various issues like a damaged rental vehicle, a canceled trip or an accident that occurs when you travel. Check out the additional card benefits section below for more details. Plus, there’s no foreign transaction fee, saving you the typical 3% fee some other cards charge on purchases outside the U.S.

All USAA credit cards provide the opportunity to benefit from military interest rates. If you’re an active duty military member and are deployed while your account is in good standing, you may receive a reduced interest rate of 4%. Purchases made before and after active duty may be covered if you qualify. This is a helpful feature that can save you from racking up high interest charges while you serve, and is a better rate than the 6% provided by the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA). Find out more about this benefit here.

Where the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card falls short in its category

This card is an overall decent choice that has no major setbacks. However, one factor that competing cards outdo is the 1-point-per-dollar rewards rate on purchases other than gas and dining. For example, the Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer has a cashback program where you can Earn 2% cash back on purchases 1% when you buy and 1% as you make payments for those purchases. That card may be appealing if you want to earn the same rate on all purchases, though it doesn’t have many of the same benefits provided by the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card.

Additional card benefits

The USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card has several added perks:

  • Rental car insurance*: When you rent an eligible vehicle for 31 consecutive days or less, you may be covered for damage or theft, reasonable loss of use charges and towing charges.
  • Travel accident insurance*: Pay for your trip with your card and you may receive coverage for accidental death or dismemberment up to a maximum of $500,000.
  • Baggage delay insurance*: Use your card to pay for your trip fare, and if your baggage is delayed more than four hours, you may be reimbursed for incidentals up to $100 a day for three days.
  • Trip cancellation/interruption insurance*: When you pay for travel on a common carrier (such as an airplane or train) and cancel travel or cut your trip short due to covered situations, like accidental injury or physical illness, you may be reimbursed up to $1,500.
  • Travel assistance services*: Receive referrals for emergency medical assistance and legal issues when you travel 50 miles or more from home.
  • Road assist service*: If your car breaks down during a trip in the 50 states, including D.C., call 866-200-9866, and you can receive assistance like gas delivery, tire changes and towing.

Should you find yourself in need of any of these benefits, a USAA representative can assist you when you call 866-200-9866.

*Terms apply. Refer to your Guide to Benefits for more detail.

Compare it with the USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card

If you want a higher rewards rate on dining and grocery shopping, the USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card is a good alternative.

The USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card and the USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card are similar cards with many of the same terms but different rewards programs. The USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card has a more robust rewards program that includes a higher rewards rate on dining purchases and grocery purchases — Earn 3X points per dollar spent on dining, 2X points per dollar spent on gas and groceries, 1X point for every dollar spent on all other purchases. In comparison, the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card offers Earn 2X points per dollar spent on gas and dining and earn one point for every dollar spent on all purchases.

It’s clear that the rewards program offered by the USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card has the advantage over the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card. For example, spending $1,200 a year on qualifying dining purchases can earn you 360,000 in rewards points with the USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card and 240,000 rewards points with the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card.

Here’s a breakdown of the key features of each card:

USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card
Annual Fee $0 $0
Regular Purchase APR 12.15% - 28.15% Variable 12.15% - 28.15% Variable
Rewards Earn 2X points per dollar spent on gas and dining and earn one point for every dollar spent on all purchases Earn 3X points per dollar spent on dining, 2X points per dollar spent on gas and groceries, 1X point for every dollar spent on all other purchases
Foreign Transaction Fee None None

Bottom line

Military members and their eligible family members who spend a lot on dining and gas may see a lot of value in the USAA® Rewards™ Visa Signature® Card. However, if you’re looking for a rewards program with higher rewards rates on dining and groceries, check out the USAA® Rewards™ American Express® Card.


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