Regions Signature and Platinum Visa Review

Regions Platinum VisaRegions Signature VisaThe Regions Signature Visa is a rewards credit card that gives members the opportunity to earn points on every purchase made with the card.  The Regions Platinum Visa comes in two different versions- one that offers rewards and one that doesn’t. Both credit cards are currently offering new account holders an introductory APR on balance transfers for the first seven months.  Neither card has an annual fee (compared to the Regions Signature Preferred Visa which charges $125 per year).  Both cards are issued by Regions Financial Corporation.

New cardholders receive a 0% introductory annual percentage rate on balance transfers through the first seven months that your account is opened.  This promotional rate does not apply to purchases.  Balance transfers must be requested within 60 days of your account being activated to qualify for the 0% rate.  Once this promotional period ends, your APR will depend on which card you have.  The Regions Signature Visa and Platinum Visa (with rewards) apply an APR of 12.99%-19.99%, based on your creditworthiness at the time of approval.  The Platinum Visa (without rewards) applies an APR of 11.99%-18.99%, again based on your creditworthiness.  A balance transfer fee of $10 or 4% of the total amount transferred (whichever is greater) will be applied to all balance transfers that post to your account.  This fee is not waived during the promotional time period.

The Regions Signature Visa and the Regions Platinum Visa (with rewards) allow members to earn one point per $1 spent on eligible purchases.  Points are also earned on eligible purchases made by any joint account holders and authorized users (note that only the primary account holder may redeem points).  Qualifying purchases are new retail purchases charged to your credit card minus any credits, returns, or adjustments.  Cash advances and balance transfers are not considered purchases and do not earn points.

The more services and products you use with Regions Bank, the more points you can earn.  For example if you open a Savings or Money Market Account, you earn a one-time bonus of 500 points.  Signing up for Online Banking or Mobile Banking will earn you a bonus of 250 points.  This features gives a slight reward advantage to Regions Bank customers.

Points may be redeemed for merchandise, gift cards, or credited directly to a Regions checking account.  It’s interesting to note that Regions does not provide any information related to the actual value of redemption points to prospective applicants.  You have to be an existing card members to access the online catalog.  This is sometimes a red flag that points do not have much value.  It’s easy to advertise “one point for every dollar spent” but if the redemption value is kept low, card members get little or no benefit.

The Regions Signature Visa offers cardholders additional benefits, such as:

  • Lost Luggage Reimbursement- Covers any checked or carry-on luggage that is lost or stolen when your entire common carrier ticket is charged to your Regions Signature Visa.
  • Purchase Security- Provides replacement, repair, or reimbursement for eligible items purchased with the card within 90 days from date of sale. Limitations and restrictions apply.
  • Visa Signature Concierge- Provides 24/7 assistance with finding tickets to sports and entertainment events, booking travel, and making dinner reservations.

Both cards charge members a 3% foreign transaction fee on all purchases made while traveling outside of the U.S.  (In comparison, the Regions Signature Preferred Visa charges a 1% fee)

The Facts

Below we have broken down the specific details of the Regions Signature Visa and the Regions Platinum Visa to help you determine if it’s worth signing up.

The Good:

Introductory APR:

The Regions Signature Visa and Regions Platinum Visa (with rewards) offer new members a 0% introductory APR on balance transfers only for the first seven billing cycles that your account is open.  Compared to many other rewards cards, this is a fairly short promotional period (and it doesn’t cover purchases).  The balance transfer fee of $10 or 4% of the total transfer amount (whichever is greater) is not waived.  Note: The $10 minimum fee is nearly double the standard rate charged by most cards.  To be eligible for the 0% rate, all balance transfers must be requested within the first 60 days that your account is active.  After this time, your actual APR will be 12.99%- 19.99% depending on your credit score and other factors at the time of approval.

The exact same terms and conditions apply to the Regions Platinum Visa except that the APR will be 11.99%-18.99% based on your creditworthiness.

Easy to earn rewards:

Cardholders with the Regions Signature Visa or the Regions Platinum Visa (with rewards) earn points (called Relationship Rewards) at the rate of one point per dollar spent on eligible purchases.  The more Regions Bank products and services you use, the more you points you can earn.  This feature gives a slight advantage to Regions Bank customers.

Easy to redeem:

Points can be redeemed online for merchandise, gift cards, or credited to a Regions Bank checking account.

Additional Visa Signature Benefits:

Members who have the Visa Signature card receive additional benefits, including:

  • Lost Luggage Reimbursement
  • Purchase Security
  • Visa Signature Concierge

No annual fee:

Neither card has an annual fee.

The Bad:

Harder to qualify:

An excellent credit score (750+ FICO) is generally needed for approval.

The Ugly:

Points vs. Cash Back Rewards:

Cardholders earn points as opposed to cash back rewards with the Regions Signature Visa and the Regions Platinum Visa (with rewards) cards.  Many times this is an indication that earned points have very little redemption value.  For example, if a $10 gift card requires 2,000 points- that’s a .5% rate of return.  You may earn a decent amount of points on your purchases but if the redemption rate is low- it’s not much of a deal.

Prospective applicants cannot access the online catalog to see actual redemption amounts. (Regions does not disclose this information except to existing card members).