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KBugNC

RC Rewards credit card

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I have it. I'm told there are better cards out there for rewards. It serves it's purpose for me so it's fine but maybe do a little research on a card that gives you better rewards to use. I use it as a side card to collect points for future OBC.

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I have the equivalent card for Celebrity, but each is usable with the other and gets the same double points for purchases on either line (same parent company).

I only use it for the cruise-related charges -- cruise fare, airfare if I'm using Air2Sea / Flights By Celebrity, any Cruise Planner purchases, and on-board purchases. That's it, because that's all that gets you double points. I wouldn't recommend it as a general-use card because nothing else gets you bonus points and the rewards are completely locked to Royal / Celebrity / Azamara cruises.

If the email you got included an offer of 10,000 bonus points ($100 OBC equivalent), that can make it more worth it up front; I got that offer on my card and easily qualified for the bonus points since the very first purchase was a cruise booking deposit that more than met the required spend in the first 90 days. Without an up-front offer, especially if you're only using it for an already-cheap cruise, you may not get enough points to earn a reward all that fast. Like any rewards card, you have to figure out how best to "game" the rewards system and get the max benefit for the least effort / expense.

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4 hours ago, KBugNC said:

Anyone have this card and can give me your opinions? I just got that email about it from RC yesterday and thought I would check it out.

Concur that it is an OK card, usually with an upfront bonus, and thereafter the 2x points for Royal purchases is useful.  As mentioned by@JLMoran , we use it only for cruise-related stuff.  Oddly enough, when we booked a trip to Australia and NZ our other card got snagged on a fraud alert but the Royal card worked smoothly.   I keep the Bank of Armerica/RCL card because I hate paying the fees for the airline cards.  If you like e-banking, Royal's card fits in nicely.

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Wife has it, she's not into the points game so besides her Discover, it's her only rewards earning credit card. So, outside of Discover 5% stuff she uses that. We do use it for cruises as well but not every purchase. Example, just booked a cruise and put the deposit on my Sapphire Reserve (3% and some travel benefits). We will use it for other cruise purchases but I was in the middle of YOLO-Book-it LOL. Also 3% towards flights is better than 2% towards an OBC. So, in our situation it's more of a way to get some OBC with everyday (and some cruise) spend.

Like @JLMoran she got the 10k bonus too. It's too easy not to get LOL.

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In terms of rewards, it's not the most lucrative credit card in the world. It's best for someone that wants to earn OBC and/or free cruises and that's it.

Personally, I prefer other credit cards that give me flexibility to earn cash, travel rewards, gift cards, etc. 

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21 hours ago, ellcee said:

I have it. I'm told there are better cards out there for rewards. It serves it's purpose for me so it's fine but maybe do a little research on a card that gives you better rewards to use. I use it as a side card to collect points for future OBC.

+1. However, only useful if you pay it completely off every month.

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I've had the card for about 15 years and managed to get 3 free cruises during that time.  Well the cruises aren't exactly free.  In all free cruise cases (125K points), you need to pay port charges and taxes.  They change the rules as they see fit, so you have to deal with that.  The basic free deal is this:  You can get a RCL 7 day Ocean View Caribbean cruise for two at a value up to $2500.  That's about a 2% return if you do the math (assume you book a room close to $2500 in value, some of your points are doubled from RCL purchases, and minus the port charges and taxes you have to pay).  This is tricky, takes patience, and not an exact science.

Also, if you use that card for only RCL purchases you will find that exchanging points for OBC will yield a 2% return. 

These days, I use the Citi Double Cash Card (2% for every purchase!).  I find this is just easier to deal with for the same return.

NOTE:  During the time I booked my second free cruise, RCL's policy had changed and they made me pay more for the cruise than I could actually purchase it for!  They had some sort of lookup table that they were required to book the complimentary cruise using.  Needless to say, that free cruise netted me less that a 2% return and I was NOT happy.

My 201101 Harmony cruise is a free BOA RCL card reward.  I upgraded to a Balcony from the standard Ocean View and our total cost was around $650.  An OK deal, but the old C&A balcony upgrade for diamond was $175 and they used to honor that upgrade deal - back in the old days...  🙂

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We signed up for the RCI card a few years ago, got the bonus points, exchanged it for onboard credit, and never used it again.   It was a great way to get a couple hundred dollars for OBC, but better cards out there give you greater flexibility for travel rewards (or cash!).

 

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My wife and I have separate RC card accounts (based on SSAN not physical address). I use mine for all RC transactions and high dollar purchases for our house. Over the past few years new appliances, hardwood flooring, landscaping, etc. My wife uses hers also for high dollar purchases.... hair maintenance, finger and toe nail stuff and of course shoes! :27_sunglasses:

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In general, its not that great. I have carried one for ... I dunno ... 12 years or more maybe. I accumulated enough points for 2 for 1 cruises at least three times and cashed in points for OBC from time to time or used the cash value to help offset cost. It basically amounts to $100 for every $10,000 you put on the card.

I can not complain about that but that is all it is good for. RCCL credit. If you could channel your mortgage, car payments and every thing else through it and pay it off monthly AND you just really want to build RCCL cruise dollars .... it just may be just right for you.

Other cards give you similar rewards in the form of cash that can be used for anything you want, not just RCCL cruises. Some offer 0% interest for a year or more or bonus cash if you charge "x" amount in the first few months etc.

There are cards that cater to different types of travelers and provide other perks if you travel a lot for business and so on. Some cards just suit some people better than others.

Do a simple Google search for "best credit cards". Take what you read with a grain of salt because some sites appear to put the "best" based on being paid to do so. Read what at least 3 o 4 different "review" sites have to say. You will see at least a couple of cards that seem to always be in the top 10 if not the top 5. Decide what suits you best.

Odds are it will not be RCCL.

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As someone who was VEHEMENTLY opposed to annual fee charge cards or credit cards... I did A LOT of research on rewards cards. 
 

It’s 1) all about how many points you can earn and 2) the value of return on those points. (Conventional wisdom indicates that a 100:1 point return, as is the case with the RCCL card, is NOT a good return).  When you start researching options, you may find a RCCL Credit Card does not provide that flexibility you may seek. (Sometimes you may want to splurge on first class airfare, or find a great point conversion for other cruise lines <gasp>) 

Some of the “best” cards out there come with many amazing benefits (Amex Platinum and Chase Saphire Reserve come to mind), but these cards have a high annual fee. There are middle of the road cards with lower annual fees (and some with none, but high interest), but they offer more points for things like gas and groceries. 
 

Bottom line, if you want to get the card for the quick $100 OBC, it may be an easy and affordable option (provided you can purchase and pay off the minimum purchase to get the credit). If you want a card that can be used for your family to accrue great rewards with lots of options and benefits, there may be WAY better options! Check our the guy below who breaks down major rewards cards and definitely weigh most online advice with the notion these guys run for profit websites based off what people sign up for from their sites. 
 

https://thepointsguy.com/

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2 hours ago, S0nny said:

As someone who was VEHEMENTLY opposed to annual fee charge cards or credit cards... I did A LOT of research on rewards cards. 

I fell into this category, and I think you breakdown is pretty spot on.  ...almost @monorailmedic worthy!

Back in the day, annual fees were a lame thing the credit card companies used, but today there is value in one of the top tier cards if you can maximize it.

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53 minutes ago, Matt said:

Back in the day, annual fees were a lame thing the credit card companies used, but today there is value in one of the top tier cards if you can maximize it.

100%. With the $300 dollar travel credit the Sapphire Reserve has an effective yearly fee of $150, which I feel is modest for all the additional benefits that I utilize. 

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On 10/18/2019 at 6:40 AM, YOLO said:

@KBugNC  Just wondering what did you decided about the credit card?

I do get 10,000 points when I make a qualifying transaction.  Not sure what that amount is yet. I think I will try it this year with the bonus points We do plan on booking another cruise soon so I will get double points. I mostly use a Disney card but we are thinking of changing our rewards to something different. I use my credit card like a debit card and so it gets paid off regularly. If I don't like the rewards from RC, I can always cancel it.

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2 minutes ago, Hagar said:

I know not everyone has a Costco Visa but 3% for all travel related expenses caused my only Pinnacle customer to put his Royal card away for the last few years ;>)

Yeah, I agree for booking if it is a sure 3% with Costco vs an iffy 2% with the RCL card.  But, what if you buy anything on the Cruise Planner?  Maybe then the RCL card is worth it.  But if you have another 2% card (like Citi Double-Cash or Synchrony Bank) then it may be a moot point.  Me personally, I use the RCL card for all Cruise Planner purchases...

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11 minutes ago, YOLO said:

Yeah, I agree for booking if it is a sure 3% with Costco vs an iffy 2% with the RCL card.  But, what if you buy anything on the Cruise Planner?  Maybe then the RCL card is worth it.  But if you have another 2% card (like Citi Double-Cash or Synchrony Bank) then it may be a moot point.  Me personally, I use the RCL card for all Cruise Planner purchases...

Cruise Planner purchases show up as a charge from Royal for me (travel category) so I get my 3% as travel is my choice category for one of my cashback cards.

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With AMEX platinum (as of now) you get 2x the rewards point for booking through the AMEX travel website, or with an authorized TA. We also "will be getting" a bottle of champagne and secured $200 OBC through their current promotion. The AMEX TA also had a "free" 4 night stay at an all inclusive Mexican resort to be used anytime next year. (not sure if it's really free or if I'll have to say "no" 8,000 times to a timeshare sales pitch... but my will is strong... and my drive for free food, booze, and accommodations is strong!!) 

Total Point Value: ($4500 x2 points rewards) = 9,000 points = $90

OBC = $200 

Champagne = $30

AMEX Monthly Uber Credit = $15

Airline Credit = $200 (you have to be sneaky to get this credit... it's only meant for incidentals but can be worked around to use for your airfare purchase)

TSA Precheck (included with card) = $85 x2 people/3yrs = $56

Delta Lounge Access x2 people = $56

Total Value = $647 - $550 annual fee = POSITIVE $97! + possible timeshare sales-pitch vacay worth....time will tell? lol 

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