Apple Card Review

Are the benefits and rewards worth it for Apple Fans?

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If you’re among the Apple faithful, it’s worth taking a look at the Apple Card. The card, issued by Goldman Sachs, reserves its best rewards for Apple purchases and transactions made using Apple Pay, which makes it less of a physical card than it is an incentive program for using Apple’s proprietary technology. 

Apple Card

Overall Rating
3.6
Apple Card
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
Poor - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 10.99% - 21.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 3% cash back at Apple and select Apple pay partners, 2% on other Apple pay purchases, and 1% on everything else.
Foreign transaction fee (%) 0%
Ratings Breakdown
for Interest
2.0
for Fees
3.5
for Rewards
3.3
for Credit
4.4

Who Is This Credit Card Best For?

  • Avatar for Deal Seeker Persona
    Diligently searches for the best products and delights in a good bargain See more cards
    Deal Seeker
  • Avatar for Savvy Saver Persona
    Prioritizes sticking to their budget while buying what they want and need See more cards
    Savvy Saver

The minimal fees make this a good, low-cost addition to your Apple Wallet, and that’s the only place you should keep it. When making purchases outside of Apple or without Apple Pay, you’re better off with one of the many no-annual-fee cards that pay 1.5% or 2% cash back on all purchases and have a variety of benefits. For example, there’s no promotional purchase APR, which other cash-back cards often offer.

That said, with Apple Card Monthly Installments, you will get up to 24 months to pay off Apple products purchased from Apple interest-free—while sill earning 3% cash back. If you bought a MacBook Air at $1,000, you'd earn more than $30 in Daily Cash for one purchase and still get two years to pay it off without paying interest.

Pros
  • Exceptional rewards for Apple and partner-merchant purchases

  • Interest-free payment plans on Apple products

  • Great rewards rate on Apple Pay purchases

  • Financial-management tools

  • Low end of APR range is among the best

Cons
  • Only worth it for Apple users

  • Sub-par rewards rate on non-Apple and non-Apple Pay purchases

  • Few benefits

  • Limited integration with budgeting apps

  • Doesn't allow authorized users

Pros Explained

  • Exceptional rewards for Apple and partner-merchant purchases: In addition to the top earning rate on purchases at Apple, you'll also get the 3% Daily Cash rate at partners that include Uber, Uber Eats, Walgreens, Nike, and in-store purchases at T-Mobile.
  • Interest-free payment plans on Apple products: Get up to 24 months to pay for Apple products purchased through Apple and charged to your card, with no interest. Even better: installment purchases still earn 3% cash back. Monthly installments will be added to your card's minimum monthly payment automatically. Just be aware not all Apple products are eligible, and installment periods vary by product.
  • Great rewards rate on Apple Pay purchases: A wide variety of major brick-and-mortar retailers, websites, vending machines, and transit systems accept Apple Pay. The card’s rewards rate on Apple Pay purchases is on par with and sometimes better than the best flat-rate rewards cards on the market.
  • Financial-management tools: Apple brings its signature design standards to a product that lacks visual excitement—credit card statements. The interactive features offer a new way to understand credit card interest and how your payment behaviors affect it. The in-app messaging makes it refreshingly simple to talk to customer service. Goldman Sachs even offers tools to help non-cardholders improve their finances and get approved for the card. (See more on that below.)
  • Low end of APR range is among the best: If you can qualify for it, the Apple Card APR is one of the lowest out there, especially compared the average cash-back credit card rate. The high end of the range is relatively low, too, but you still don’t want to get caught paying that rate.

Aim to pay your credit card statement in full, even if you qualify for the Apple Card’s best terms. It’s not a good idea to carry a balance on a card with a double-digit APR, no matter how relatively low it is.

Cons Explained

  • Only worth it for Apple users: The card’s value comes from Apple Pay, which you can’t use without an Apple device.
  • Sub-par rewards rate on non-Apple and non-Apple Pay purchases: The physical Apple Card may look cool, but there’s no reason to carry it with you if you’re open to having more than one credit card. Cards like the Capital One Quicksilver or Chase Freedom Unlimited offer a better rewards rate on all purchases.
  • Few benefits: As a financial tool, this card offers little beyond the rewards on Apple purchases and Apple Pay. If you’re looking for a welcome bonus or features like a free credit score or rental car insurance, this isn’t the card for you.
  • Limited integration with budgeting apps: If you use a third-party app to keep track of your expenses, it won't be able to automatically ingest your Apple Card spending. You can export your transactions and upload that file to your money management app, but that's not the seamless connection most credit cards offer.
  • Doesn't allow authorized users. It's extremely uncommon for a credit card issuer to not allow you to add another user to your credit card.

Earning Points & Rewards

The Apple Card offers what it calls Daily Cash, its own version of cash-back rewards. Cardholders earn 3% Daily Cash on Apple purchases, 2% on purchases made with Apple Pay, and 1% on purchases made at merchants that don’t accept Apple Pay. (The physical card, like many cards going for a high-end look, is made of metal—in this case, titanium.)

Apple also has a few partner merchants where cardholders can get 3% Daily Cash when using Apple Pay, including Uber, Uber Eats, Walgreens, Nike, and T-Mobile (in-store purchases only).

Apple Card does not limit the amount of Daily Cash you can earn, and Daily Cash does not expire. If you have unredeemed Daily Cash if and when you close the account, Goldman Sachs will either credit it to your account, send it to you electronically, or mail you a check.

Redeeming Rewards

Daily Cash automatically accrues on your Apple Cash card, which you can then use on anything that you pay for with Apple Pay. Users without an Apple Cash account can redeem Daily Cash as a statement credit. You accrue and can use your Daily Cash within a day of the transaction clearing, so you can use rewards more quickly than you can with other cash-back credit cards.

How to Get the Most Out of This Card

Use the Apple Card for purchases directly with Apple, including music and apps, and with partner merchants where you can also earn 3% Daily Cash. Also take advantage of Apple Card Monthly Installments to spread the cost of your Apple product purchases over several months (up to 24 for iPhones), interest-free and while still getting 3% cash back. Keep in mind that if you buy Apple products through another retailer, even one authorized to sell Apple products, the 3% rate doesn’t apply, and neither does the monthly installment plan.

Other than that, use it at retailers that accept Apple Pay, unless you have a rewards card that earns a higher rate at that type of vendor. For example, if you have a card that gives you more than 2 points per $1 spent on entertainment, even if the movie theater you go to accepts Apple Pay, use the other card to buy your tickets.

Maximize rewards by redeeming Daily Cash as a statement credit. Using Daily Cash via Apple Cash means you’re not earning rewards on those purchases, when you could get 2% back using Apple Card with Apple Pay.

Apple Card’s Other Features

  • Budgeting tools
  • Credit card debt tool that shows how the amount you pay each month affects the amount of interest you owe 

Customer Experience

Apple Card is Goldman Sachs’ first credit card, so this is unknown territory, and the customer experience remains to be seen. On a positive note, you can ask for help and receive support via text, though it’s unclear if this service is available 24/7. The Apple Card does not offer a free credit score, unlike most of its main competitors.

Customer Experience Even for Non-Customers

You don't have to actually have the card to benefit from it. If you apply, and are not approved, you may be asked to enroll in Goldman Sachs' "Path to Apple Card" program to improve your finances. The program tracks your progress through several "customized" steps such as making on-time bill payments, reducing overall debt levels, and resolving any past due accounts. After successful completion of the plan, you will be invited to reapply for the card.

Security Features

  • Number-less credit cards: Both the physical and virtual Apple Cards have no numbers on them. For non-Apple Pay transactions on apps or websites requiring a card, the Wallet app or Safari web browser autofill a virtual card number.
  • Integrated map data: Tap a transaction you don’t recognize to pull it up in Maps and see where it occurred.

Fees

Apple Card has very few fees, partially because it doesn’t offer things like cash advances or balance transfers. Late or missed payments don’t carry a fee but will result in additional interest accruing on your balance. Merchants in dozens of countries accept Apple Pay, so if you find Apple Pay acceptance abroad, you’ll be happy to know the Apple Card doesn’t charge a foreign transaction fee.

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CURRENT CARD
Apple Card
overall rating
3.6
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
Poor - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 10.99% - 21.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 3% cash back at Apple and select Apple pay partners, 2% on other Apple pay purchases, and 1% on everything 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

The Balance requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
  1. Apple. "Apple Card Monthly Installments." Accessed June 16, 2020.

  2. Apple. "Buy 13-Inch Macbook Air." Accessed June 16, 2020.

  3. Apple. "Apple Card." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  4. Apple. "Products You Can Buy With Apple Monthly Installments." Accessed June 16, 2020.

  5. Apple. "Apple Pay." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  6. Apple. "See Your Apple Card Spending History." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  7. Goldman Sachs. "Apple Card Agreement," Accessed May 12, 2020.

  8. Apple. "Countries and Regions That Support Apple Pay," Accessed May 12, 2020.