Most people know about purchase protection, car rental insurance, and the extended warranty benefits which are included free-of-charge on some cards. But there is another benefit that can be just as useful but is often forgotten about and that is credit card price protection. In a nutshell, if you make a purchase and the price drops afterward, you may qualify for a refund of the difference.
Not all cards offer price protection. In fact, just under half (48 percent) do, according to our most recent benefits survey. Be sure to read the fine print — lots of price drops and items aren’t covered. In some cases, Internet advertisements aren’t covered.
Here’s a run-down of popular issuers and what kind of price protection they offer.
Who offers it and who doesn’t?
Being that they’re known for their premium benefits and support, one would think that they would offer price protection. Well they use to, but sadly this is no longer the case.
Several years ago their cards included the “Best Value Guarantee” program – if you bought an item and the advertised price dropped by more than $10 during the following 60 days, American Express would refund the difference up to $250 per item/$1,000 annually. Savvy shoppers would milk this all the time for airfare purchases, which I’m guessing is one of the reasons AmEx nixed the benefit. Being that it’s been gone since ‘06 – over 5 years ago – I think it’s unlikely they will be bringing it back.
Barclaycard extends price protection on of its World and World Elite MasterCard products (such as the Barclaycard Arrival+). If you find a lower price for something you bought with the card within 60 days, you can get up to $250 per claim (up to 4 claims per year).
Cards offered at the World Elite MasterCard tier offer price protection. You’re covered for up to $250 per item (and up to 4 claims per year). Coverage extends to 60 or 120 days after the purchase is made, depending on the card.
Chase offers price protection on various cards — up to $500 per item and $2,500 per year. Cash-only, close-out and liquidation sales are subject to limits of $50 per item and $150 per year. Some items are also restricted.
To qualify, you need to call within 21 days of the price change and a printed ad is necessary. Internet and a few other types of purchases don’t qualify but all in all, it sounds like Chase is being fair with how they structured this benefit. You’ll need to also fill out a claim form.
Citi is notable in that it provides automatic reimbursement via its Price Rewind program. The program does a 60-day search for lower prices (from various retailers) on purchases you made with the card. If it finds one, you’ll be credited back the difference. You do have to register your purchases, though, which you can do via online banking. That’s still less time-consuming than trying to find price drops yourself and filing a claim.
The benefit covers up to $500 per item and $2,500 per year.
If you find a lower price within 90 days of a purchase, contact Discover by phone to get up to $500 back per item.
Wells Fargo offers price protection on some of its cards. You can get up to $250 back per item and up to $1,000 per year. You must submit a claim and the advertisement that has the sale price within 10 days of the advertisement of the discounted price.
Last updated March 2017.