AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard Review

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The AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard may be worth considering if you’re invested in AAA’s products and services. But you can’t get a AAA credit card unless you’re a member, and the rewards program’s main value proposition is somewhat limiting.

AAA Dollars® Plus Mastercard®

Overall Rating
3.0
AAA Dollars® Plus Mastercard®
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 14.99% - 23.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate 3% cash back on travel and AAA Membership purchases, 2% on net gas stations, grocery store and drug store purchases, and 1% back everywhere else.
INTRO PURCHASE APR 0% for 12 Billing Cycles
Foreign transaction fee (%) 0%
Ratings Breakdown
for Interest
3.4
for Fees
3.5
for Rewards
2.3
for Credit
3.7
Current Offer

Earn $150 cash back after spending $1,500 in qualifying net purchases within the first 90 days.

Who Is This Credit Card Best For?

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    Savvy Saver

The AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard, issued by ACG Card Services, offers decent cash-back rewards and may be worth considering if you spend a lot on travel or at gas stations, grocery stores, and drugstores. But its limitations make it less appealing than other cash-back credit cards

To carry a AAA credit card, you need to be a member of the association. Even then, AAA is made up of regional clubs and not all AAA clubs offer this card. It can provide some extra value if you’re willing to jump through hoops, but look elsewhere if you want a simpler option. Also, the card isn’t a good fit for business owners because AAA may block or reverse the rewards you get from business transactions.

The AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard is available to AAA members in: Florida, Georgia, Iowa, most of Illinois, a portion of Indiana, Michigan, most of Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, Wisconsin, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and the Canadian province of Quebec.

Pros
  • Bonus value when you redeem rewards for AAA Rewards Cards

  • No foreign transaction fees

Cons
  • Limited availability

  • Low base rewards rate

  • Rewards expire

Pros Explained

  • Bonus value when you redeem your rewards for AAA Rewards Cards: Each AAA Dollar you earn is worth 1 cent with most redemption options. But if you redeem your rewards for a AAA Rewards Card, you’ll get up to 40% more value, increasing your effective rewards rate.
  • No foreign transaction fees: The card doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee, which is commonly charged by other cash-back credit cards.

Cons Explained

  • Limited availability: While the card doesn’t charge an annual fee, you’re required to be a AAA member to apply. The annual cost of membership can vary based on where you live and the membership tier you choose. Even if you are a member, not all AAA clubs offer the card.
  • Low base rewards rate: You can earn as much as 3% back on select categories, but you may end up earning just 1% cash back on most of your purchases with the card. Several cash-back credit cards offer 1.5% or higher on every purchase you make.
  • Rewards expire: Unused rewards will expire roughly five years after you initially earn them. While that may not be an issue if you plan to redeem often, many other cash-back rewards programs don’t have an expiration date as long as your account is open. 

Bonus for New Cardholders

Once your account is open, you can earn up to $150 in cash back. You’ll receive an 150 AAA Dollars after you spend $1,500 in the first 90 days from the day AAA approved you for the card.

The welcome bonus amount is on par with what many cash-back credit cards offer, but the minimum spend requirement is higher than what you’d have to spend to get it. With some cards, you only have to spend $500 to get the same bonus—or even a higher one.

The 90-day clock starts when your account is opened, not when you receive the card. So if it takes 10 days to get the card in the mail, you’ll only have 80 days to complete the minimum spend requirement.

Earning Rewards

The card offers 3% cash back on AAA and travel purchases; 2% back at gas stations; grocery stores, and drugstores; and 1% back on everything else. 

There is no cap on how much you can earn in bonus rewards, which is an advantage over some cash-back cards with bonus caps.As for rewards rates, the card’s ongoing, no-cap rewards for travel, gas and groceries are generous. However, if most of your spending is done in the 2% and 1% categories, a card with a 2% rate on all purchases could earn you more cash back each year.

AAA clubs in Northern California, Nevada and Utah do not earn 3% on AAA purchases.

Redeeming Rewards

You can use your AAA Dollars to get a AAA Rewards Card, a statement credit or a deposit into your bank account. If you choose a statement credit, your points are worth 1 cent each. However, if you redeem your AAA Dollars for AAA Rewards cards, you’ll get 20%-40% more value (1.2 cents to 1.4 cents per point.) Here’s a breakdown of your options:

  • 50 AAA Dollars converts to a $60 AAA Rewards Card
  • 100 AAA Dollars converts to a $120 AAA Rewards Card
  • 200 AAA Dollars converts to a $250 AAA Rewards Card
  • 500 AAA Dollars converts to a $700 AAA Rewards Card

You can use a AAA Rewards Card at participating AAA Clubs to purchase AAA Memberships and other products and services, such as travel, cruise, and tour packages, gift cards, attraction tickets, and more.

You can redeem your rewards through your online account or by calling 800-328-4859.

You cannot use your AAA Rewards Card to make purchases at AAA.com.

How to Get the Most Out of This Card

When you first get the card, plan to use it everywhere to make sure you spend the minimum amount required to get the welcome bonus. Also, plan to always redeem your rewards for AAA Rewards Cards to take advantage of the bonus value. Just remember that the more AAA Dollars you convert, the more value you’ll get when you make the redemption.

Also, note that the card has an introductory 0% APR on both purchases and balance transfers for 12 billing cycles. If you need to make a big purchase or move a high-interest balance from another card, you could get hundreds of dollars in interest savings.

Keep in mind that the card charges a balance transfer fee of 3% of the transfer amount, with a $10 minimum.

Customer Experience

While it’s branded a AAA credit card, the card’s issuer is ACG Card Services, which is owned by U.S. Bank. ACG offers 24/7 customer service via phone. You can manage your account online, but the card issuer doesn’t offer a mobile app, which is standard among major credit card issuers.

Security Features 

The security features for the AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard are standard for the credit card industry.

AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard’s Fees

Other than not charging a foreign transaction fee, which many cash-back credit cards do charge, the AAA Dollars Plus Mastercard’s fees are on par with industry standards.

Next Steps
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CURRENT CARD
AAA Dollars® Plus Mastercard®
overall rating
3.0
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 14.99% - 23.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate 3% cash back on travel and AAA Membership purchases, 2% on net gas stations, grocery store and drug store purchases, and 1% back everywhere else.
Our Methodology
At The Balance, we are dedicated to giving you unbiased, comprehensive credit card reviews. To do this, we collect data on hundreds of cards and score more than 55 features that affect your finances.
  • Our Reviews Are Always Impartial: No one can influence which cards we review, the way we present them to you, or the ratings they receive. The scores and reviews come directly from the data we collect and our editorial expertise, and we focus on three areas:
  • How Much Does It Cost? With credit card debt at an all-time high, we believe you should know the cost of carrying a balance. Because of that, we give regular purchase APRs significant weight in overall scores, and cards receive low marks if they have an array of pricey fees.
  • What Are the Rewards Worth? Cards accumulate rewards in different currencies—points, miles, cash back—and their values vary widely. To simplify the problem, we built a system that fairly compares rewards and gives them a dollar value. We do this by looking at the ways you can earn and use rewards, which includes evaluating Americans’ typical spending habits and analyzing common travel patterns.
  • Does It Make Your Life Easier? Our scoring system favors cards that accept a wide range of credit profiles and offer simple solutions for things like checking your credit score or contacting customer service. Finally, we give preference to credit cards that have several tools for dealing with fraudulent charges.
  • For every review on The Balance, we hold the credit cards to these standards, and we set the bar high. While we recognize the appeal of splashy features like six-digit sign-up bonuses, our approach ensures that credit cards with the best combination of value, affordability, and accessibility receive the highest scores. See our full methodology for more details.

Article Sources

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  1. AAA. "AAA Credit Card Promotion." Accessed July 28, 2020.

  2. AAA. "AAA Dollars Plus World Mastercard Terms and Conditions." Accessed July 28, 2020.