Can I Upgrade My Amazon Store Card to Visa?
Amazon shopping has a ubiquitous presence in our lives. Whether you want to buy clothing, tools, electronics, or even groceries, it's tough to beat the e-commerce giant's wide selection and speedy shipping. If you spend a lot of time and money on Amazon, it's smart shopping to determine the best way to make your purchases. While you can pay with any credit or debit card on Amazon, you may wish to use an Amazon store card or a co-branded Visa for your purchases.
Amazon Store Card vs. Amazon Visa
If you shop a lot at Amazon, having an Amazon store card or an Amazon Visa credit card could help you earn rewards, segment out your Amazon shopping or plan for your purchases more effectively. You may not be sure which one to choose, and if you already have an Amazon store card, you may wonder whether you can convert or upgrade the card to an Amazon visa.
So, can you upgrade a credit card? In short, the two cards are provided by different issuers, so you can't exactly upgrade an Amazon store card to a Visa. However, Amazon makes it easy to apply for either of the cards, and you can easily replace your Amazon store card with a Visa upon approval. Amazon offers instant approval for both its store cards and its co-branded Visa, so you can find out right away if you've been approved for the card of your choice.
While you can't upgrade your Amazon store card to a Visa, you can apply for the Visa and add it to your Amazon account at any time. You don't lose out on the opportunity to get approved for the Visa because you have a store card already. In general, it's easier to get approved for the Amazon store card, which could help you build credit for later approval for a Visa — or, you could apply for a Visa from the beginning if you choose.
Understanding Amazon's Credit Cards
Amazon has several credit card offerings. Its Amazon store cards are provided by Synchrony Bank and are similar to the store-branded credit cards offered by many retailers. Of course, because of the breadth of Amazon's inventory, an Amazon store card can be much more useful than many such "closed-loop" cards, which can only be used for purchases from one company.
The Amazon store card has a counterpart for Amazon Prime members, the Amazon Prime Store Card. In general, Prime members get the best deals associated with both types of Amazon cards. For example, both the Prime Store Card and the Prime Visa offer 5% back on purchases at Amazon.
Some of the additional benefits of the Amazon Prime Store Card include:
Financing over time (upon approval), including 6-month, 12-month and 24-month periods
Zero liability for fraud
Promotional rewards from 5% to 15%
Zero annual fee
Depending on when you apply and the promotions Amazon is running at the time, you may be eligible for a sign-up bonus for either the Amazon Store Card or the Amazon Visa credit card. In general, these are gift cards for Amazon.com, and the gift card for a Visa signup is larger than that of the store-branded card.
On the other hand, the Amazon Visa credit card is offered by Chase. While Synchrony Bank makes approval decisions for the store card, Chase determines your eligibility for the Amazon-branded Visa.
Like the store card, you receive 5% back on Amazon purchases with your Amazon Prime Visa. Other benefits of the Visa card include:
5% back at Whole Foods Market
3% back at Amazon.com and Whole Foods for non-Prime members
2% back at drugstores, restaurants and gas stations
1% back on all other purchases
Zero annual fee
Access to promotional financing, including 6-month, 12-month and 18-month periods
No foreign transaction fees
Other Visa benefits, including car rental insurance and roadside dispatch
Differences Between Amazon Credit Cards
The Amazon Store Card and the Amazon Visa credit card offer different experiences. While the Amazon Store Card offered by Synchrony Bank can only be used at Amazon, the Visa offered by Chase can be used anywhere Visa is accepted. It is a general rewards card, with percentage-back rewards on all purchases. Because of this, many people may prefer the Visa option.
The rewards you receive from the Amazon Store Card can only be used on Amazon purchases, while the rewards from the Amazon Visa credit card may be redeemed as a statement credit, cash back and travel, as well as Amazon purchases. While interest rates may vary and you should check at the time of application, store cards generally have higher interest rates than regular Visa cards.
However, there are reasons to apply for the Amazon store card. For example, you can qualify for the store card with a fair credit score, but Chase will likely require a good credit score at minimum for approval for an Amazon Visa. The Amazon Store Card offers pre-qualification on the Amazon website, but the Visa card does not. However, you can get an instant approval decision for both cards on the Amazon website. If you are not approved for the Visa card, you may still be approved for the store card, and different banks underwrite the approval process for the different cards.
If you are not approved for either the Amazon Store Card or the Visa, you can also still open an Amazon Secured Card, which you can later upgrade to a regular Store Card after a solid record of paying your bill in a timely fashion. This may be an option for people with credit issues or those who are new to applying for credit. The Secured Card is also offered by Synchrony Bank, which provides the Amazon-only Store Cards.
Choosing Your Amazon Credit Card
In short, you cannot upgrade your Amazon Store Card to a Visa. But if you already have a Store Card, you can apply on the Amazon website and receive instant approval for a new Amazon Visa. If you are determining which card to apply for, consider your credit score and the likely use of the card, and make your decision about which application to complete. If you are a major Amazon shopper and want to finance your purchases, either of these cards may offer a convenient choice to earn rewards and plan your Amazon shopping.