The Limited Credit Card Review: An Important Warning

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CreditCardGirl
 
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The Limited Credit Card Review: An Important Warning

Postby CreditCardGirl » Sun Mar 03, 2013 5:26 pm

Should you apply for The Limited store credit card? Read my review to find out the what's good and bad about their credit card program. It's not always worth getting.

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One of my favorite things about The Limited stores are their prices... you get good stuff for a good price! But if you think their credit cards are a good deal, there are some drawbacks I would like to warn you about...

First of all, let's compare the 2 card levels
What are the differences between The Limited Classic and Couture card?

  • The Classic Card - When you apply this is the card level you will start out with. Like most credit cards you earn 1 point per $1 spent. However the points carry above-average value because every 300 pts = $15 gift coupon. This is the equivalent of a 5% rebate on spending.
  • The Couture Card - You can upgrade to the Limited Couture card after spending $800 annually. In fact, the upgrade is automatic as far as I know. With this level there is also 1 point per $1 but to get a $15 gift coupon it only takes 250 pts. It's like getting a 6% rebate. (In order to stay at this level you have to continue to spend $800+ per year.)
How do these rewards measure up? Quite good actually. Although it's not that unusual to see a store card that gives 5% rewards, it is rare to see on that gives higher than that, as is the case with the The Limited credit card at the Couture level. But the question is how much do you spend per year at The Limited stores? Because if you only spend $500 per year, that's like earning a $25 rebate. Is that worth another credit card or not? I will let you decide that for yourself.

If you don't spend a lot at their stores, than there are other major credit cards (Visa/MasterCard/Discover) that give 5% cash back with $200 signup offers (click to see the current sponsored promotions). Some give 5% at clothing stores so those can be a good option if you want the freedom of not being restricted to a single store.

What's the interest rate?
Now this is the #1 drawback I would like to warn you about... the APR! Sure, the rewards are stellar but the interest rate is extremely high; 24.99% was what the application listed when I looked. This isn't that unusual for a store card though... since they have lower credit score requirements, they tend to have much higher APRs.

So only apply for The Limited card if you are disciplined with your credit card bills and always pay them off. Because if not, then earning 5-6% is not worth it when the APR is almost 25% if a balance is carried.

What else do their cards offer?
There are some noteworthy benefits that come with The Limited credit card. If you use them regularly than these perks definitely increase the attractiveness.

For starters, both the Classic and Couture card get a discount offer to use during the month of the cardholder's birthday. Secondly, there's free hemming for pants (but it only applies to regular-priced pants). Lastly, there are the typical coupons/savings events which you typically get with store credit cards. However I'm not sure how special that last benefit is, since I see TONS of codes and coupons online for The Limited.

Now for benefits exclusive to the Couture version, there's free shipping, a gift each year (but they don't specify what that is), and a different customer support phone number.

Verdict?
If you do the majority of your clothes shopping at The Limited, then consider their credit card. But this is a bad choice for those who don't pay 100% of their statement balance each month.

Want more ways to earn 5% cash back or 5x points? Here are reviews of some major credit cards to consider. These have no annual fee:

  • Discover It - Brand new for 2013, this one gives 5% and you can end up with even more than that by redeeming for gift cards. This is my top choice!
  • Chase Freedom - 5% cash back opportunities every quarter

Company History: The first “The Limited” was opened in Ohio in 1963. Their store aimed to provide upscale casual clothing geared towards a younger female demographic… outfits which are perfect for both a day at the office or a night on the town. The Limited grew exponentially and over the past few decades. The company has founded or acquired other retailers like New York & Co, Bath & Body Works, Victoria’s Secret, Lane Bryant, and Abercrombie & Fitch. Eventually, some of those were spun off to be separate publicly traded companies themselves. Today they are still headquartered in Columbus Ohio, The Limited has approximately 200 stores across the country and one of their flagship locations is at Easton Town Center (the high end Columbus-based mall which Arnold Schwarzenegger is reportedly a co-owner of). Arnold is said to be close with the founding family behind The Limited, which explains why he would build this expensive mall so far away from his home!


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