Published On: Sat, Aug 26th, 2017

Best Rewards Credit Cards to Use with Plastiq


PHOTO: Best travel rewards cards to use with Plastiq. (photo via Pixabay/TheDigitalWay)

Plastiq.com is a service that lets you use credit to pay bills that are traditionally difficult to pay with plastic. This includes car payments, mortgage payments or taxes where the merchant doesn’t voluntarily accept credit cards on their own.

Why would you want to pay bills with a credit card in the first place?

For many, this option makes it easier to earn valuable credit card rewards for travel. Since most travel credit cards require a minimum spending requirement to earn a signup bonus (e.g. Spend $3,000 within 90 days), paying larger bills like a mortgage with credit cards can help people get there faster.

Of course, there are notable disadvantages that come with using Plastiq.

First off, the service quit letting people pay their mortgage or rent with Visa several months ago, which leaves only American Express, Discover and MasterCard as options.

Second, Plastiq.com charges a fee of 2.5 percent for every bill you pay, which negates the value of any rewards you earn that equal less than that. For that reason, it rarely makes sense to pay bills through Plastiq unless you are going after a signup bonus you can’t earn through regular spending.

With that in mind, here are a few of the best travel credit cards to use with Plastiq:

Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard

If you’re angling for a signup bonus and want to use Plastiq to pay your mortgage or other big bills, the Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard is a smart option. You’ll earn 2x points for each dollar you spend plus a 50K signup bonus after you use your card for $3,000 in purchases within 90 days.

If you used your new Barclaycard Arrival Plus World Elite MasterCard to make $3,000 in mortgage payments, you would pay $75 in fees to Plastiq in exchange for 56,000 points worth $560 in travel.

READ MORE: Your Home Remodeling Project Can Build Free Travel

Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express

The Starwood Preferred Guest Credit Card from American Express is another smart option. It doles out 25,000 starpoints after you spend $3,000 within three months of account opening.

While the value of your points will vary depending on how you redeem them, most experts agree these points are worth at least 2 cents each. This means you’ll once again pay $75 in fees to Plastiq to earn at least $500 in travel.

Discover it Miles

The Discover it Miles is one of the only cards that makes sense to use with Plastiq for an entire year.

While this card doesn’t offer a signup bonus, it does give you 1.5 points for each dollar you spend. The kicker is, Discover promises to double the points you earn for your first 12 months, bringing your total earnings to 3 percent.

If you pay a 2.5 percent fee on your payments and earn 3 percent cash for travel in return, you will come out ahead.

Keep in mind, however, there is a serious opportunity cost that comes with not pursuing cards that offer signup bonuses instead. For every $10,000 in bills you pay through Plastiq with this card, you’ll only come out $50 ahead, for example. That’s because you’ll have to pay $250 in fees for every $10,000 you spend through Plastiq while only earning $300 in travel credit in return.

READ MORE: How Good is Your Credit Card’s Travel Insurance?

While Plastiq.com makes it easier to pay certain bills with credit, using this service only makes sense if you’re going after a big signup bonus you can’t earn through regular spending. Also keep in mind that, if you carry a balance on your credit card, the interest you’ll pay will wipe out your rewards and actually leave you worse off.

Before you use rewards cards or fancy apps to earn more miles, make sure to weigh the pros and cons and ask yourself if it’s worth the trouble.


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