Ally Bank Credit Cards An Insider’s Guide: Ally Bank, a subsidiary of Ally Financial, is a revered player in the online financial services arena, offering a comprehensive portfolio of financial products, ranging from conventional checking and savings accounts to more sophisticated options such as mortgages, auto loans, and investment services. With roots dating back to 2009, this dynamic institution is headquartered in the bustling city of Sandy, Utah.
Recently, Ally Bank has taken its commitment to innovation to new heights, with the unveiling of three credit cards – the Ally Unlimited Cash Back Mastercard®, the Ally Everyday Cash Back Mastercard®, and the exclusive Ally Platinum Mastercard®. Currently, these cards are by invitation only, so you must receive an offer from the bank to apply.
So, if you have received an offer and are pondering over whether to take advantage of it, allow us to enlighten you on the features and drawbacks of each card and some of the alternatives you might consider.
Ally Bank credit cards
Ally Bank, known for their innovative approach to finance, presents a unique portfolio of credit-oriented and rewards-based cards. Each one of these offerings is equipped with an array of features that are not only standard but also provide peace of mind. Zero fraud liability, free access to your FICO score, and the power to lock your card in case of loss or theft are just a few examples. Additionally, Ally is dedicated to keeping their clients financially stress-free by not imposing fees for foreign transactions, going over your limit, or penalizing you with unjustifiable APRs.
Ally Unlimited Cash Back Mastercard® details and benefits
The Ally Unlimited Cash Back Mastercard reigns supreme among cash back credit cards with its unparalleled offering of a flat rate of 2% cash back on all purchases, outpacing competitors such as the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card which only provides 1.5% cash back.
This card stands out not only for its exceptional cash back rate, but also for its lack of fees. There’s no annual fee, no foreign transaction fees, and – in a refreshing twist – no penalty APR. In contrast, missing a payment with the Citi® Double Cash Card could skyrocket your interest rates up to a staggering 29.99%.
Although the Ally Unlimited Cash Back Mastercard delivers where it counts, it falls short in terms of additional features that could elevate it to become one of the premier flat-rate cash back cards. There’s no sign-up bonus, and not all applicants will be eligible for an intro APR offer on purchases and balance transfers. Meanwhile, top cash back cards like the Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card boast cash rewards bonuses of $200 and offer introductory APR rates to help reduce interest charges.
Ally Everyday Cash Back Mastercard® details and benefits
The Ally Everyday Cash Back Mastercard® presents an intriguing proposition for savvy spenders. With a cash back rate of 3% on gas, groceries and drug stores, and 1% on other purchases, it could provide an excellent return on investment, especially for those with a tendency to spend heavily in these categories. However, the creditworthiness of an applicant will play a crucial role in determining the annual fee, which could range anywhere from a modest $0 to a steep $39.
For those with good credit, the rewards card market is teeming with options offering 3X points on everyday purchases without the burden of an annual fee. However, the Ally Everyday card may still hold its own as an attractive choice, particularly for those with fair credit who are looking to capitalize on unlimited 3% cash back on gas and groceries.
While it may not offer the same level of benefits as other rewards cards for good credit, such as sign-up bonuses, intro APR offers, and more, the Ally Everyday Cash Back Mastercard® remains a viable option for those seeking to optimize their spending. On the other hand, for those with good credit, the Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express may be a more compelling choice, with its suite of benefits, including credits for the Disney bundle (including Disney+, Hulu, and ESPN+) and Home Chef online meal solutions.
Ally Platinum Mastercard® details and benefits
The Ally Platinum Mastercard could be a great fit for credit-builders. It’s an unsecured credit card that gives you access to credit and a chance to improve your credit score without having to deal with secured cards and the hassle of having to put down a security deposit.
The card’s best perks include charging no penalty APR if you make a late payment, free access to your FICO credit score and a higher credit limit after your first five on-time payments. These features are similar to those you’ll find on some of the best credit cards geared toward people with no credit, bad credit or fair credit. In fact, the Ally Platinum card’s credit limit policy beats out that of one of the most popular credit-building cards, the Capital One Platinum Credit Card, which requires at least six months of on-time payments and doesn’t guarantee a credit line increase. Instead, Capital One only promises to review your account.
The Capital One Platinum Card also has a high variable APR of 29.74%, which applies to all cardholders, while the Ally Platinum Mastercard’s carries an APR range of 17.99% to 28.99%. While not all cardholders will qualify for the lower interest rate, it’s great that Ally at least gives you a chance at a low rate based on your credit history.
How to qualify for an Ally Bank card
Exclusive access to Ally Bank credit cards is currently limited to only those who have received a personalized invitation, rendering it inaccessible to the general public. Securing eligibility to apply is contingent upon receipt of a pre-screened offer. Despite the fact that pre-screening typically indicates a high probability of approval, approval is not guaranteed. In instances where negative entries have marred your credit report causing a dip in your credit score or if your income has decreased since the offer was sent by Ally Bank, the chances of denial increase.
Are Ally Bank Credit card worth it?
Ally Bank cards are a viable option, if your credit score and financial objectives align. While there are more lucrative cash back cards available, such as the likes of the Ally Unlimited and Ally Everyday cards, the Ally Bank card options, including the Ally Platinum Mastercard, can still be a practical choice for those seeking to enhance their credit score. This is especially true for individuals who have difficulty obtaining approval for other unsecured cards and prefer to avoid security deposit requirements but still wish to build their credit.
An invitation to apply for one of the new and coveted credit cards offered by Ally Bank may pique your interest, especially if you’re in the process of fortifying your credit standing. However, it’s imperative that you conduct a thorough comparison of credit card options before submitting an application. Doing so will allow you to assess your eligibility for a card that boasts a plethora of enticing features.