Q: I’m debating whether or not to apply for the credit card from Ashley Stewart, a plus size clothing store I shop at a lot. I don’t see a rewards program for it so do you think the coupons alone will be worth it?
A: I get asked this question a lot when it comes to retail cards. The Ashley Stewart credit card’s main (and possibly only) noteworthy selling point is the coupons that come with it. The site for it doesn’t give a lot of details other than the following:
- After the application is approved and the account is open, there is a 20% savings for the first purchase made with the card.
- For the accountholders birthday, a coupon for 15% is mailed out.
- Lastly, it says that “up to” 6 times per year there are coupons giving for 20% or more.
So in a nutshell, it basically sounds like if you were to apply for the card, you would be doing so to get the coupons. Unfortunately this card doesn’t earn you any points or rebates. So that means the spending on your account won’t be earning you anything.
The funny thing is that with a simple Google search, I was able to find all sorts of coupons that anyone could access. Here are a couple examples which I saw on Retail Me Not:
As you see above, the offer is for 30% off your entire purchase and it is printable, so you can use it in stores too. I guess you have to ask is it worth the headache of getting yet another credit card from Ashley Stewart for offers, when it appears you can find good deals even without the credit card.
However my main beef with the Ashley Stewart card and other similar retailers is that they charge crazy rates – 24.99% when I looked. Furthermore the cards are issued through Comenity (formally known as World Financial Network Bank) and they don’t exactly have the best reputation when it comes to customer service.
Final verdict for 2013?
Obviously I’m not too keen on store cards since they are useless outside that specific store. However sometimes I like them if they allow you to earn massive cash back on purchases (which Ashley Stewart unfortunately doesn’t appear to offer).
If you would rather spring for a major credit card, then get one with rewards and use it in conjunction with the coupons you can score on your own (like the example pictured above).
Written or last updated for 2016