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The Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® card is aimed at people who enjoy taking cruises frequently with Royal Caribbean International or its sister brand, Celebrity Cruises.
The $0-annual-fee card, issued by Bank of America®, earns decent rewards on Royal Caribbean purchases and features bonuses for new cardholders. However, limited redemption options and lack of lucrative benefits make the card of little value for even the most loyal Caribbean customers.
Here are five things to know about the card.
1. Ongoing rewards are lackluster
The Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® card earns rewards known as MyCruise® points at the following rates:
2 points for every $1 spent on qualifying purchases with Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises.
1 point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
If you’re not sailing frequently with Royal Caribbean or Celebrity Cruises, it’ll take you some time to rack up valuable rewards. Other no-annual-fee travel credit cards offer higher point-earning potential as well as rewards in everyday spending categories — like dining and groceries — which makes it easier to accrue points.
2. Points values vary and redemption is inflexible
Redemption of MyCruise points starts at 1,000 points for a $10 donation to the World Wildlife Fund's ocean conservation project. Beyond that, points can be redeemed for a variety of cruise-related options, including room upgrades, discounts and onboard credit used for purchases made at the ship's spa, gift shop, bar and so forth. You can also redeem for merchandise on Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean's other sister brand, Azamara.
Points are generally worth a penny each, but can be worth more for certain cruises. There are other limitations, too: cardholders can only earn up to 540,000 points per year and points expire after five years.
If you're looking for something more flexible, general travel credit cards typically don't have rewards that expire and don't limit the amount of rewards you can earn. The $0-annual-fee Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card, for example, is not tied to any specific brand and offers more flexible rewards. The card earns a flat 1.5 points per dollar spent on all purchases, and those points can be redeemed for travel, restaurant purchases and cash back.
Bank of America® issues another cruise line credit card, the Norwegian Cruise Line® World Mastercard®. It earns 3 points for every $1 spent on Norwegian purchases, 2 points per $1 for eligible air and hotel purchases, and 1 point per $1 for all other spending. Points are worth a penny each and can be redeemed for Norwegian cruise-related options as well as for airline tickets and cash back to your account.
3. It comes with a welcome offer
As of April 2023, the Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® card comes with this intro offer: Earn 10,000 bonus points when you make your first purchase with the card within 90 days of account opening. At the rate of a penny per point, this bonus is worth at least $100 in onboard credit.
4. It’s light on fees
The card doesn’t charge an annual fee, which is typically the case for similar cruise line cards.
There are also no foreign transaction fees, meaning you won't pay additional costs when you make purchases overseas. This could prove especially useful when your cruise ship docks at its destination.
5. Carrying a balance can be expensive
There’s no introductory interest-free offer for the Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® card. The ongoing APR is 17.74% - 27.74% Variable (as of April 2023), which is higher than the average rates charged for credit card accounts that incur interest.
To avoid interest-rate charges, pay the balance on time and in full every month if you are able.
Information related to the Royal Caribbean Visa Signature® card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.