acb550 wrote:I'm confused exploring the mastercard site. I know standard is the lowest level followed by gold. I know World Elite is their premium card. I can't figure out where/how the platinum and world cards (non-elite) fit into their hierarchy. I had platinum plus and Bank of America said I could get a World card. Is that really an upgrade?
Yes, it is an upgrade. As David wrote, MasterCards are Standard, Gold, Platinum, World and World Elite.
Typically World cards offer concierge, buyer protection, higher insurance and usually a no pre-set spending limit. What that means is that you have a "credit access line" (as Chase calls it) which is your revolving credit line. For example, you may have a $10,000 limit and lets say you charge $12,000 one month. You will be able to utilize the amount above the revolving credit line; however, you will owe the entire balance above the revolving credit line. So you would pay the 5% min due of $10,000 ($500) plus the full $2,000 over the revolving credit line. So the min due that month would be $2,500. I don't think many people use their World MasterCards (or Visa Signatures) that way.
Banks and credit unions earn a percentage from every merchant that you use your card at. The higher level the card (Standard, Gold, Platinum , World, World Elite) the higher the bank's percentage is. So essentially, World and Signature used to really mean something but now almost anybody can get one with decent credit and a $5,000 credit line. Almost all reward cards these days are World or Signature and that helps the bank pay for the reward.
If you do accept the upgrade from BofA know that your credit line will no longer report. Most World/Signature cards do not report a credit line because of the no pre set spending limit feature. This is not entirely a bad thing, but you do want to make sure you have a few cards that report credit lines to help your credit to debt ratio.