GapCard Review

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The GapCard, issued by Synchrony Bank, is a store credit card with limited utility outside of the Gap brand’s family of stores. Since you earn rewards for your spending and qualify for special discounts, however, this card can be a boon for heavy shoppers who spend a lot at Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, or Athleta.

GapCard

overall rating
2.2
GapCard
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
Fair - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 25.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 5 points for every $1 spent on Gap brands.
Ratings Breakdown
for Interest
1.9
for Fees
3.1
for Rewards
2.2
for Credit
3.0
Current Offer

Open a new Gap Card online to receive a 20% off your first Gap or Gap Factory product purchase with your new card.

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 Family Shopper Persona
    Looks for good quality at a fair price while buying for the household See more cards
    Family Shopper
  • Avatar for Trendsetter Persona
    Loves being the first to try something new See more cards
    Trendsetter
  • Avatar for Brand Loyalist Persona
    Frequently shops with a particular merchant and wants to be rewarded for their loyalty See more cards
    Brand Loyalist

Since the GapCard is a store credit card that only works for purchases at Gap family stores, it’s best for someone who spends a lot of money—at least $1,000 each year—at Gap, Banana Republic, Old Navy, or Athleta. Spending that much on this card each year ensures you’ll qualify for Gap Silver status, which is how you get extra points and a slew of shopping benefits (more about that below). If you don’t spend that much, this card is pretty bare bones. 

Like most store cards, this card is also best for those who can pay off their balance each month. This card’s high interest rate will quickly negate the value of any earned rewards otherwise. 

Pros
  • Competitive rewards earning rate

  • Lower recommended credit score

  • Access to special discounts and shopping perks

Cons
  • Card can only be used at Gap stores

  • High APR

Pros Explained

  • Competitive rewards earning rate: The GapCard lets you earn 5 points for each $1 spent at Gap family stores, which include Banana Republic, Athleta, and Old Navy. That’s in line with what many other clothing store-branded cards offer these days, and a decent store card rewards earning rate overall. 
  • Lower recommended credit score: Store credit cards are usually easier to qualify for than traditional credit cards because they can only be used at select stores and often have lower credit limits so aren’t a huge financial risk for the issuing bank. If your credit score is low or you have a limited credit history, this card may be in reach and with responsible use can help boost your score and help you qualify for a more traditional rewards credit card later.  
  • Access to special discounts and shopping perks: The GapCard gives you 20% off and free shipping for the first purchase made with your card, and you’ll be able to enjoy periodic bonus point shopping days. If you can earn Silver status, you’ll get even more brand perks.

Cons Explained

  • Card can only be used at Gap stores: While the GapCard works well for purchases at Gap family brand stores, you can’t use this card anywhere else. That’s typical for a store credit card, but it’s still something to keep in mind if you want a credit card you can use for emergency purchases. 
  • High APR: The ongoing interest rate for purchases on this card is above average, even for a store card. If you’re someone who frequently carries a balance on your credit card, you should plan on forking over a lot of money in interest payments over time. 

Earning Points & Rewards

With the GapCard, you’ll earn 5 points for every $1 you spend at Gap family stores, either in-person or online. That’s in line with what similar cards offer right now, although store card value really comes down to whether or not you like the brand. 

Remember, since it’s a store credit card, you cannot use it anywhere else—not at grocery stores, gas stations, or in other areas of your life where you may spend more money each month. That means you can only earn points at Gap stores. 

However, right now you can earn up to 1,000 extra points just for doing the following: 

  • Sign up for paperless billing (500 points) 
  • Add an email address to your rewards account (500 points) 

Gap Silver Status

If you earn 5,000 reward points in a calendar year with this card (which means you spend at least $1,000 each year within the Gap family of stores), your account will be upgraded to Gap Silver status, which comes with more rewards and shopping perks. 

Each quarter you’re a Gap Silver status holder, a 20%-point bonus will be added to your rewards balance. That means if you have 1,000 points in your account at the end of the first quarter, you’ll get 200 more points just for holding Gap Silver status.

Whether or not you have Silver status, there’s no limit to the number of reward points you can earn with the GapCard each year. Better yet, points only expire if you don’t make a purchase for 24 months.

Redeeming Rewards

On the redemption side of the equation, the GapCard is narrow in scope. You can only redeem points earned with the GapCard for one thing: money off future Gap purchases. Points can be redeemed in increments of 500 for a $5 reward certificate that can be used toward a future Gap purchase. 

If you’ve racked up a bunch of points, you can get multiple reward certificates each billing cycle, but no more than $250 back in any given month. If you hit that limit, leftover rewards will roll over to the next month. 

Redeem your GapCard rewards in stores by presenting your certificate, or redeem online or on the phone by sharing the reward code. You can’t use rewards for statement credits or cash back, or to purchase gift cards. 

Reward certificates each come with an expiration date, but to give shoppers more flexibility during COVID-19, Gap has extended those expiration dates. Certificates that expired in March and April are now good for three more months. If you had a reward that would have expired on March 31, 2020, it’s now good until June 30, 2020, and if it was set to expire on April 30, it’s good until July 31, 2020.

How to Get the Most Out of This Card

Go for Silver.

If you earn 5,000 points in the Gap rewards program within a calendar year, you can qualify for Silver status and more perks and discounts. You’ll need to spend $1,000 with your credit card at Gap family brand stores to qualify, but if you do, you’ll receive a 20% quarterly bonus on your rewards points, a sale on a day of your choice, free shipping on online purchases with a special code, and free basic alterations on Banana Republic purchases. You’ll also get access to special cardmember events and priority access to the rewards hotline. 

Since this card is limited in terms of how you can use it and the rewards you earn, we recommend pairing it with a cash-back card to earn money back on routine purchases such as gas and groceries. This will never be your go-to everyday card.

GapCard’s Other Features

Unless you reach Silver status, this card only comes with one other perk on top of occasional bonus point shopping days: 

  • Birthday Gift: Receive a birthday gift if you’ve used your credit card for a qualified purchase in stores or online within each calendar year.

Customer Experience

The GapCard is issued by Synchrony Bank, and you’ll deal with this bank directly if you have issues with your card. J.D. Power ranked Synchrony 10 (out of 11) in its 2019 U.S. Credit Card Satisfaction Study, putting it behind all the major card issuers. For the sake of perspective, Synchrony earned 780 out of 1,000 possible points, whereas the industry average was 806. 

Synchrony Bank does offer a mobile app that can help you monitor your transactions and pay bills from a mobile device, so that’s a plus.

Security Features

Don’t expect many bells and whistles security-wise with this card. You can set up alerts to remind you to make a payment or notify you whenever a purchase is made. You won’t be liable for unauthorized use of the card. Other security features that have become standard in the industry—card lock, access to credit scores, credit report monitoring, and the like are not available.  

GapCard’s Fees

Because the GapCard is a store credit card and not a regular credit card, many common credit card industry fees just don’t apply—for example, there are no foreign transaction fees, overlimit fees, or cash advance fees. The late payment fee on this card is standard with other credit cards. The main “gotcha” to be aware of with this card is the pricey interest you’ll pay if you carry a balance from month to month.

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CURRENT CARD
GapCard
overall rating
2.2
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
Fair - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 25.99% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate Earn 5 points for every $1 spent on Gap brands.
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. Gap. "GapCard: The perfect fit." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  2. Gap. "Frequently Asked Questions." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  3. J.D. Power. "Credit Card Rewards War Reaches Inflection Point as Competition Grows, J.D. Power Finds." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  4. Synchrony Bank. "Credit Card Agreements." Click on "Gap Inc. Credit Card" link to pull up PDF. Accessed May 12, 2020.