MoneyGeek’s Take

USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card Review

fact checked icon

Updated: June 12, 2024

Advertising & Editorial Disclosure

Shield Insurance

MoneyGeek partners with leading industry experts and advertisers to help you get to your financial happy place. Our content is accurate when posted but offers may change over time. We may receive compensation for partner advertisements, but our editorial team independently reviews and ranks products. Learn more about our editorial policies.

USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card

Rewards RateEarn 5% cash back on your first $3,000 in combined...
APR17.15% – 29.15% variable
Annual Fee$0
Recommended Credit670-850 (Good to Excellent)
creditCardsMagnifyingGlass icon
WHY TRUST OUR REVIEWS

MoneyGeek conducts in-depth research on credit cards and card providers and grades them using a comprehensive methodology. We collect data from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's database, standardize data points for comparison, estimate spending profiles, account for yearly or initial incentives associated with each card, and compute the three-year value of using the card. Additionally, we update the card lists quarterly and semi-annually and rank the cards monthly.

The USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card might work best for those spending on gas, grocery and military base purchases. Each year, members can earn 5% cash back on their first $3,000 in the combined gas station and military base purchases, 2% cash back on their first $3,000 in grocery purchases and 1% cash back on all other eligible purchases. It doesn’t have an annual fee, nor does it charge fees on foreign transactions, allowing you to continue earning while traveling abroad.

Our MoneyGeek USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card review will help you decide if this card is right for you.

USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card Overview

You may want to learn about the following benefits associated with the USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card:

Quick Take

  • No annual or foreign transaction fees
  • 3% fee for each balance transfer/convenience check
  • Earn 5% cash back on combined spending of up to $3,000 at gas stations and military bases each year
  • Earn 2% cash back on up to $3,000 spent grocery stores each year
  • Earn 1% cash back on all other purchases
  • Redeem part or all your cash back in increments of $1
  • Complimentary auto rental coverage, travel accident insurance, trip cancellation and interruption coverage, and baggage delay and reimbursement
  • Access to identity theft resolution specialists
  • Access to a concierge service
  • Zero liability
  • Extended warranty

Important Card Details

You should be aware of your rights as a credit card user before applying for a credit card or comparing multiple cards' pros and cons, fees, rates and other features. You can find the USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card's rates and fees, rewards and bonuses in the table below.

    annualFee icon

    Annual Fee

    There is no annual fee associated with this card.

    noForeignTransactionFee icon

    Foreign Transaction Fee

    There is no fee for transactions and purchases you make outside of the United States.

    cashBack icon

    Cash Back Rate

    Each qualified purchase you make with this card gets you between 1% and 5% cash back, depending on the purchase category.

    highInterestAPR icon

    Regular APR

    Depending on your creditworthiness, the regular APR on purchases, balance transfers and cash advances ranges from 17.15% – 31.15%, which can be potentially high. As the prime rate rises, so does the APR on these loans.

    discount icon

    Balance Transfer and Cash Advance Fees

    All balance transfers and cash advances have a 3% fee.

    Late Payment Penalty

    If you make a late payment (or your payment is returned), you will be charged a penalty of up to $35. The first-time late or returned payment within six billing periods has a $25 fee, and any subsequent late or returned payment will be charged up to $35 fee.

Additional Benefits

There are other USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card benefits that you might want to know about, such as:

  • Customer Service: The company provides 24-hour online customer service to address any complaints or queries that you may have.
  • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver: For a period of 31 days, the auto rental collision damage waiver on your card covers cars that you rent using this card.
  • Baggage Delay Reimbursement Coverage: This pays up to $100 a day for up to three days for checked baggage delays, so you can buy essentials like clothes and toiletries.
  • Identity Protection: This offers solutions to the victims of identity theft. After a covered identity theft event, you will be reimbursed up to $1,000 for identity restoration services.
  • Shopping Benefits: The card’s shopping benefits enable you to gain more from your card purchases. For example, the extended warranty protection extends the manufacturer's guarantee on products purchased with your card. Concierge services are available all year round to assist with reservations for entertainment, dining, hotel and travel.
  • Travel Accident Insurance: When you buy an airline, rail, bus, ferry or cruise ticket using your USAA card, you get coverage for loss of life or limb in the case of an accident.
  • Travel Emergency Assistance: The travel emergency assistance that comes with this card provides round-the-clock customer service for several kinds of emergencies, including medical. Prescription medicine advice, medical and legal referrals and travel planning are some of the services offered.
  • Trip Cancellation and Interruption Coverage: For canceled trips, you will be reimbursed up to $1,500 per covered person, but only if it's a non-refundable prepaid passenger ticket purchased using the card.
  • Mobile App: The USAA mobile app is available for both iOS and Android devices and allows you to access your credit card account, pay bills, receive alerts and automatic updates, report lost or stolen cards and contact customer care.
  • Zero Liability Protection: If you promptly notify USAA of any unauthorized use of your card, you will bear no responsibility for the charges that result from the fraudulent transaction.

How the USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card Compares To Other Cards

The USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card is not one of the best cash back or rewards cards per our ranking due mainly to its exclusivity. However, it did fare well in comparison to other similar cards.

Before comparing any card to its competitors, you should first know what you’re looking for in a credit card. The chart compares the USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card and another similar cash back card.

How the USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card Compares

creditCard icon

USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card

  • Annual fee: None
  • Regular APR: 17.15% – 31.15% variable
  • Rewards rate: 1%–5%
  • Foreign transaction fee: None
  • Best for: Military members looking for a cash back card with no annual fees and a 0% APR balance transfer offer
creditCard1 icon

Chase Freedom Unlimited

  • Annual fee: None
  • Regular APR: 20.49% – 29.24% variable
  • Rewards rate: 1.5%–5%
  • Foreign transaction fee: 3%
  • Best for: Minimalist deal-seeking shoppers looking for a no-annual-fee card

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average credit score needed to get approved for USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card?
Does USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card report to all three credit bureaus?
Is the USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card application process lengthy? Can you prequalify?
What information is needed to apply for USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card?
Does USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card have good customer service or satisfaction?
Does USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card have a mobile app or the option to pay or manage your account online?
Does USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card raise credit limits automatically or charge for limit increases?
Does USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card offer the option to freeze your credit/account or have other security features?
Does USAA Savings Bank offer other credit cards besides, USAA® Cashback Rewards Plus American Express® Card?

About Doug Milnes, CFA


Doug Milnes, CFA headshot

Doug Milnes is a CFA charter holder with over 10 years of experience in corporate finance and the Head of Credit Cards at MoneyGeek. Formerly, he performed valuations for Duff and Phelps and financial planning and analysis for various companies. His analysis has been cited by U.S. News and World Report, The Hill, the Los Angeles Times, The New York Times and many other outlets.

Milnes holds a master’s degree in data science from Northwestern University. He geeks out on helping people feel on top of their credit card use, from managing debt to optimizing rewards.


sources
*Rates, fees or bonuses may vary or include specific stipulations. The content on this page is accurate as of the posting/last updated date; however, some of the offers mentioned may have expired. We recommend visiting the card issuer’s website for the most up-to-date information available.
Editorial Disclosure: Opinions, reviews, analyses and recommendations are the author’s alone and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. Learn more about our editorial policies and expert editorial team.
Advertiser Disclosure: MoneyGeek has partnered with CardRatings.com and CreditCards.com for our coverage of credit card products. MoneyGeek, CardRatings and CreditCards.com may receive a commission from card issuers. To ensure thorough comparisons and reviews, MoneyGeek features products from both paid partners and unaffiliated card issuers that are not paid partners.