How Does LendingTree Get Paid?
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How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

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USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card Review

USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card Review

Low Ongoing APR
7.65% - 24.65% variable
Extra Perks
Rental Car Insurance, Price Protection, Extended Warranty & more
Rates & Fees
$0 annual fee, no penalty APR & no foreign transaction fee
Edited by
Julie Sherrier
Reviewed by
Glen Luke Flanagan
Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It may not have been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuer. This site may be compensated through a credit card issuer partnership.

Who is the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card best for?

It’s considered best practice to pay off your credit card in full every month, thus avoiding interest charges. But sometimes life gets in the way and you have to carry a balance. That’s why having a credit card with a low APR, such as the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card, can help.

Note that you must first join USAA to be able to apply for this card. USAA membership is open to United States military members and veterans, precomissioned officers, and spouses and children.

USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card overview

    • Enjoy USAA's lowest rate card
    • No annual fee, no foreign transaction fees, no penalty APR
    • USAA membership is available to active and former military and their eligible family members
  • Credit needed:
    680 850
    Excellent/Good
  • Auto rental coverage
  • Trip cancellation and interruption coverage
  • Baggage delay and reimbursement
  • Travel accident insurance
  • Extended warranty protection
  • Concierge assistance with reservations, tickets and shopping
  • Guidance from identity theft resolution specialists

Intro Purchase APR

N/A

Regular Purchase APR

7.65% - 24.65% variable

Intro BT APR

N/A

Regular BT APR

7.65% - 24.65% variable

Annual Fee

$0

Cash Advance Fee

3%

Foreign Transaction Fee

$0

Balance Transfer Fee

3%

Pros and cons

Pros

  • Chance for an exceptionally low APR
  • Doesn’t assess a penalty APR
  • No annual fee or foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • USAA membership isn’t open to everyone
  • Doesn’t earn rewards
  • No 0% introductory APR offers

What we like about the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card

  • One the best credit cards for a low APR

    The USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card has a 7.65% - 24.65% variable APR. If you’re approved for the card and receive an APR at the lower end of that range, that’s one of the lowest interest rates you’re likely to find on a credit card.

    If you’re a USAA member and need a low APR card for those times when you have to roll over a balance, the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card‘s low interest rate could be a great card to have in your wallet.

    Be aware that the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card requires excellent/good credit, and the better your credit score, the better your chances of receiving a low APR on your account.

    Finally, for U.S. military members on active duty, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) offers protections on debt incurred prior to when active duty began, including capping credit card interest rates at 6%. But USAA does even better than what’s required by the law, with a maximum 4% interest rate on accounts qualifying under the SCRA.

  • APR won't go up over a late payment

    If you pay late, many credit card issuers will raise your APR — this is called a “penalty APR.” The USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card has no penalty APR, however, so you can have peace of mind that missing your due date won’t cause you to lose your low interest rate.

    However, on-time payments are the most important factor in maintaining a good credit score, and issuers will typically report your late payment to the credit bureaus once you hit 30 days past due.

    Plus, though the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card has no penalty APR, you can still end up facing a late fee of up to $35. So, to avoid late fees and to keep a good credit score, make sure to make at least the minimum payment on time every month.

  • Travel with no foreign transaction fee

    Travel abroad with this card and avoid having an extra fee tacked on to purchases thanks to the $0 foreign transaction fee.

  • No annual fee to carry the card

    The USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card charges a $0 annual fee.

What to watch out for with the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card

  • USAA membership is restricted

    USAA is known for affordable rates and exceptional customer service, but membership is not open to everyone. You’re eligible if you fall into one of the following groups:

    • U.S. military members and veterans
    • Precommissioned officers
    • Spouses and children
  • You won't earn rewards

    While other USAA credit cards earn cash back or points, the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card does not. Consider our list of best rewards credit cards if rewards are what you’re looking for.

  • Lacks a 0% intro APR period

    While the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card offers the chance for a very low APR, it doesn’t offer a 0% intro APR period on either balance transfers or purchases. If you’re looking for an intro APR period to avoid interest charges entirely, check out our list of the best cards with long 0% APR promotions.

Alternate card for carrying a balance

Compare it to the Wells Fargo Reflect® Card

| Disclosures
Wells Fargo Reflect® Card
Wells Fargo Reflect® Card
on Wells Fargo's secure site
0% intro APR up to 21 months from account opening
15.24% - 27.24% variable APR
$0
None
  • 0% intro APR for 18 months from account opening on purchases and qualifying balance transfers. Intro APR extension of up to 3 months with on-time minimum payments during the intro and extension periods. 15.24% to 27.24% variable APR thereafter; balance transfers made within 120 days qualify for the intro rate and fee of 3% then a BT fee of up to 5%, min $5
  • $0 Annual Fee
  • Get up to $600 of cell phone protection when you pay your monthly cell phone bill with your eligible Wells Fargo card (subject to a $25 deductible).
  • An easy way to earn cash back while you shop, dine or enjoy an experience simply by using your Wells Fargo credit card. Through My Wells Fargo Deals, you can get access to personalized deals from a variety of merchants.
  • Select “Apply Now” to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions
660 850

How Does LendingTree Get Paid?

LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appears on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.

 

If you’re looking for a card with a low ongoing APR, the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card is hard to beat. But if you need a period of 0% intro APR, where the entirety of your payments go toward your balance rather than interest charges and principal, the Wells Fargo Reflect® Card is a better option. This card comes with long 0% intro APRs on both balance transfers and new purchases.

Enjoy a 0% intro APR up to 21 months from account opening on qualifying balance transfers, after which a 15.24% - 27.24% variable APR applies. If you need to transfer high-interest debt, that’s almost two years of no interest. The balance transfer fee is 3% for 120 days from account opening, then up to 5%; min: $5.

There’s also a 0% intro APR up to 21 months from account opening on purchases. After, a 15.24% - 27.24% variable APR applies.

Note that the 0% intro APR periods come with a stipulation. Once approved, you’ll start out with 18 months of a 0% intro APR, and after you demonstrate responsible behavior by making on-time minimum payments, Wells Fargo may grant extensions of up to three additional months of no interest.

The Wells Fargo Reflect® Card charges a $0 annual fee and a 3% foreign transaction fee.

Compare the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card to similar cards

Comparison of four different credit cards
USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card Wells Fargo Reflect<sup>®</sup> Card DCU Visa® Platinum Credit Card U.S. Bank Visa<sup>®</sup> Platinum Card
USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card Wells Fargo Reflect® Card DCU Visa® Platinum Credit Card U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card
Read Review
Apply Now
on Wells Fargo's secure site
Read Review
Apply Now
on U.S. Bank's secure site
Annual Fee
$0 $0 $0 $0
Intro Purchase APR
N/A 0% intro APR up to 21 months from account opening N/A 0% intro APR for 20 billing cycles on Purchases
Regular APR
7.65% - 24.65% variable 15.24% - 27.24% variable APR 10.00% to 18.00% variable 16.74% - 26.74% (Variable)
Intro Balance Transfer APR
N/A 0% intro APR up to 21 months from account opening on qualifying balance transfers N/A 0% intro APR for 20 billing cycles on Balance Transfers
Regular Balance Transfer APR
7.65% - 24.65% variable 15.24% - 27.24% variable APR 10.00% to 18.00% variable 16.74% - 26.74% (Variable)
Balance Transfer Fee
3% 3% for 120 days from account opening, then up to 5%; min: $5 None Either 3% of the amount of each transfer or $5 minimum, whichever is greater
Card Details
USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card Wells Fargo Reflect® Card DCU Visa® Platinum Credit Card U.S. Bank Visa® Platinum Card

The information related to the DCU Visa® Platinum Credit Card has been independently collected by LendingTree and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Is the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card right for you?

If you meet the membership requirements to join USAA and need a low-interest credit card for those times when you have to carry a balance, the USAA® Rate Advantage Visa Platinum® Card is an excellent choice.

However, if you’re planning a big purchase that you need to finance over time or need to consolidate high-interest debt with a balance transfer, the Wells Fargo Reflect® Card is worth considering. Cardholders get the opportunity to earn an extension on their initial intro APR period by making on-time minimum payments, resulting in almost two years of no interest.