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- Many credit cards offer free purchase protection as a cardholder benefit. This coverage can reimburse you for all or part of the purchase price if an item is damaged or stolen within a specific time frame, usually up to 120 days.
- how you compare rewards credit cards and their benefits, be sure to understand which cards offer a higher level of this type of coverage.
- For example, while the absence of annual fees Chase Freedom®
offers purchase protection up to $500 per incident, Amex Platinum Premium Card offers up to $10,000 of an item’s purchase price.
- Other cardholder benefits to look out for include extended warranties and price protection.
- See Business Insider’s list of the best rewards credit cards »
Rewards credit cards offer many great benefits, from airport lounge access at bonus points on your main spending categories annual statement credits for travel. Some of these cards also offer perks which, while less glamorous, can help you save money or get a refund for certain products.
Purchase Protection is one such credit card feature that protects consumers when purchasing eligible products with their card. This coverage allows you to receive a refund if a product is stolen or damaged in most cases, although the amount of coverage may vary. Coverage can easily be worth up to $1,000 per item, although annual caps of up to $50,000 may also apply.
Keep in mind that we’re focusing on the rewards and benefits that make these credit cards great options, not things like interest rates and late fees, which will far outweigh the value. points or miles. It’s important to practice financial discipline when using credit cards by paying your balance in full each month, making payments on time, and only spending what you can afford to repay.
How Credit Card Purchase Protection Works
Say, for example, you buy a laptop for $900 and pay with a credit card that offers purchase protection. If your laptop is stolen from your car or damaged during your credit card’s purchase protection coverage period, you could be reimbursed – the amount depending on your card’s specific coverage.
Most credit cards that offer purchase protection provide coverage for 90 to 120 days after you make a purchase, and the amount of coverage may vary depending on the state you live in.
The Best Cards for Purchase Protection in 2020
When exploring credit cards that offer purchase protection, keep in mind that many offer other benefits such as cash back or travel rewards, travel credits, lounge access, airport, etc
Here are some of the absolute best cards for purchase protection available in 2019, 2020 and beyond:
How purchase protection works among payment networks
The credit cards above offer some of the most valuable purchase protection coverage available today, but keep in mind that different credit card networks set coverage standards that most credit cards adhere to. In other words, Visa sets rules for Visa credit cards that offer purchase protection, while Mastercard and American Express also set their own.
The following table outlines the rules that most cards from each credit card network tend to follow:
Other cardholder protections to watch out for
When looking for credit cards that offer purchase protection, keep in mind the similar benefits offered by some credit cards. You might want to look for credit cards that also offer extended warranties or price protection, for example.
With credit card extended warranties, you can get an additional year or more of warranty protection after the manufacturer’s warranty expires on eligible items.
Say you buy a refrigerator that comes with a two-year warranty, for example. If your refrigerator stopped working a month after the end of the manufacturer’s warranty, a credit card offering an additional year of extended warranty coverage could pay for the costs necessary to repair or replace your refrigerator.
Some of the best cards that offer extended warranties include:
Credit card price protection works differently, but it can be just as useful. With price protection, you can usually get your money back for the difference if you pay for an item and the price drops within a specific time frame, usually up to 120 days.
This type of coverage can be beneficial if you want to buy an expensive item, but are worried that the price will drop in the future for any reason, including a pending sale.
that provide price protection coverage include:
The bottom line
Since credit cards offer lucrative rewards programs that get you cash back, free travel, and more, it can be easy to overlook all the other perks they offer.
However, purchase protection and similar perks can pay off big time over time if you end up having to use them. And since they are offered for free as a cardholder benefit, it may be a good idea to choose a card that offers as many benefits as possible.