Review: Disney’s Premier Visa Card

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Disney offers a credit card that earns rewards and offers discounts. But should you carry a mouse in your wallet?

With reward credit cards, consumers can snag perks related to airline travel, hotels, and cash back. But if you have children, it’s likely you’d trade all of these things for a trip to a Disney theme park.

Enter Chase’s Disney Premier Visa Card. The card features promotional financing on Disney vacations and up to 2 percent back in Disney Dream Reward Dollars, which can be used toward theme park tickets, resort stays, Disney cruise vacations, and Disney merchandise. Cardholders can also redeem Disney Dollars toward airline travel to any destination on any airline with no block-out dates. Sounds like a family-friendly bargain, but compared to other cards that offer a wider variety of rewards, is this one worth it?

Advantages:

  • Sign-up bonus. New applicants will receive a statement credit of $100 after their first use.
  • Interest-free financing on Disney vacation packages. New cardholders who purchase a qualifying Disney vacation package will receive six months of interest-free financing on their purchase. After that, the standard interest rate is 14.24 percent.
  • Earn Disney Dollars. Cardholders earn 2 percent back in reward dollars from purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants, and most Disney locations. One percent is earned on most other purchases. Reward dollars can then be used for Disney purchases online or at stores and theme parks. In addition, cardholders can redeem reward dollars for statement credits toward any airline purchase.
  • Receive savings on Disney purchases. Card members enjoy 10 percent savings on purchases from Disney stores and theme parks over $50.
  • Special cardholder events with Disney characters. Cardholders and their children are eligible to participate in exclusive character “meet ‘n greet” events at Disney theme parks.

Disadvantages:

  • Fees. There’s a $49 fee the first year and a 3 percent foreign transaction fee on all charges processed outside the United States. It certainly is counterintuitive – and confusing – to charge a $49 fee and offer a $100 sign-up bonus at the same time.
  • Rewards are (mostly) in-store credit. This is clearly a marketing ploy that encourages cardholders to continue spending on Disney products. Fortunately, rewards can be redeemed for airfare as well.
  • So-so reward rates. The 2 percent categories are fine, but 1 percent on everything else is the bare minimum that reward card users should expect. Other competing cards like American Express Blue Cash Preferred offer as much as 6 percent cash back at grocery stores.
  • Promotional financing only good on Disney vacations. While most promotional financing offers apply to all new purchases and balance transfers, the Disney card is clearly a tool for selling Disney packages.

Bottom line:

Get it if: You are a die-hard Disney fan who knows you’ll purchase their products.

Forget it if: You can find a better reward card that offers superior returns that are usable on a variety of goods and services.

Stacy Johnson

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