Macy’s credit card review

Our ratings

Macy’s store card

2.5/5

Macy’s American Express

3.5/5

See a breakdown of this card’s rating

See explanation of our ratings system

The Macy’s credit cards have undergone some changes in recent years. To make sure either version of the card is still rewarding for you, check out our updated review.

Two versions

There are Macy’s credit cards available:

Macy’s Store Card –
Because this card isn’t co-branded with a major card network, it can be used only for purchases at Macy’s department stores. You get the following benefits:

  • Thanks for Sharing event: Between Aug. 31 and Dec. 31 each year, you can join the Thanks for Sharing Event (cost: $25 charged to your Macy’s card) and earn 10 percent back on your Macy’s purchases.
  • Star passes: You’ll get Macy’s coupons sent to you throughout the year (via mail or the Macy’s My Wallet app, if you have it). How often they arrive depends on your spending level on your card. $1-$499 per year: 3 mailings/year; $500-$1,199 per year: 6 mailings per year; $1,200+ per year: 12 mailings per year. Your loyalty level goes into effect Feb. of each year and is based on your December -November spending the previous year.
  • Ability to earn Plenti points: Plenti is a loyalty program created by American Express (a CreditCardForum advertising partner). By linking your Macy’s credit card to your Plenti account, you’ll earn 1 Plenti point per dollar spent at Macy’s (with the card) and 2 points per dollar spent on beauty and fragrances. Plenti points can then be redeemed at partner retailers, including AT&T, Chili’s, Exxon, Harveys, Macy’s, Mobil and Rite Aid.

Macy’s American Express – This card can be used anywhere American Express is accepted, but you can apply only at the register (not online). It comes with some additional benefits (in addition to those above):

  • Access to Amex Offers: This is American Express’s card-linked deals program. Sign up to get savings at partner restaurants, gas stations and stores.
  • More Plenti rewards: In addition to earning what you’d otherwise earn with the Macy’s Credit Card (1X at Macy’s, 2X on beauty and fragrances at Macy’s), you will earn 2X Plenti points at gas stations and super markets and 1X anywhere American Express is accepted. Remember, you must first start a Plenti account (it’s free) and link it to your Macy’s American Express.

    When you fill out an application at Macy’s, this is the credit card you will get. While you do receive coupons simply for being a cardholder, unfortunately these cards don’t earn you rebates/rewards for your spending.

    Macy’s American Express –
    This is a card they recently started offering and replaces the Visa version which was discontinued. It can be used at Macy’s and anywhere AmEx is accepted. You first have the store card version before you can apply for this.

Should you apply?

Things have gotten a little muddled now that the Macy’s Card rewards program is through Plenti. But, for some shoppers, it may make the cards more attractive. That’s because you can redeem and earn Plenti points at several retailers (not just Macy’s). If Macy’s is your favorite place to shop, you can still redeem your points there (at a value of 1 cent each). Plus, carrying a Macy’s card gets you Macy’s coupons. As well as the yearly Thanks for Sharing event. Although you’d need to spend at least $250 at the event to earn back the admission charge of $25.

Even so, know your options. For example, the Blue Cash Preferred ($95 annual fee) card from American Express (a CreditCardForum advertising partner) gives you 3 percent cash back at U.S. department stores, including Macy’s. The Blue Cash Everyday (no annual fee) gives you 2 percent at U.S. department stores. The advantage is that the rewards on the Blue Cash cards can be redeemed as cash back – so no need to find a Plenti-compatible retailer when you want to redeem.

You may still want to go for a Macy’s card, though, if you have bad credit and can’t get approved for something better.

Why we gave them 2.5 and 3.5 out of 5 stars

Our rating is based on our standards for store credit cards. Both cards were docked for their high interest rates, as well as the entry charge for the annual cardholder event. The store-only card was docked an additional star for the fact that it can’t be used outside Macy’s.

Star criterionMacy’s store cardMacy’s American ExpressExplanation
Offers introductory financingNeither card offers intro financing.
Offers ongoing rewards/discountsBoth cards offer ongoing rewards via the Plenti program, as well as coupons regularly sent to cardholders.
Fair interest termsThese cards have APRs above average for store cards, according to CreditCards.com’s most recent retail card survey).
Consumer-friendly incentivesThe cards offer access to Macy’s annual Thanks for Sharing event, but we subtracted half a star because this event costs $25.
Can be used anywhereMacy’s store card: Can be used only at Macy’s.

Macy’s American Express: Can be used anywhere