What is the Nordstrom Credit Card?
Debating whether or not to grab a Nordstrom credit card? Stick around, and we’ll give you some background information surrounding it. We’ll give you both the Visa card and the retail store card.
Nordstrom’s shoppers love the brand, so it is not surprising that the retailer created a store credit card for them.
There are two different types of cards for Nordstrom’s customers to pick. You have two Visa versions that can be used wherever Visa cards are accepted, and then you have the basic store credit card that will only be accepted at Nordstrom stores. Whatever you spend on either card will net you rewards. Rewards will be handed out as gift cards for Nordstrom.
The question is: do either of these cards stack up to the non-branded rewards cards you can receive?
Nordstrom Cards Overview
You have a selection of three different cards to choose from Nordstrom: the Platinum Visa, the Signature Visa, and the regular store card. Here’s a break down of each:
Retail Card: This card is only viable to use at Nordstrom stores. You receive double the points for every dollar spent.
Visa Platinum: This card has use anywhere Visa’s are accepted. Like the regular card, you get double the points with every dollar spent (Nordstrom stores only). You only get one point everywhere else.
Visa Signature: This card is the same as the Platinum with the only difference being that this one gives you special benefits–you’ll be given access to events and travel promotions.
- You receive rewards
Every available Nordstrom card gives you double the points with every dollar you spend at Nordstrom related stores, Trunk Club, and Haute Look. The Visa will also give you one point for every dollar spent elsewhere. As a bonus, you will be mailed a 20 dollar Nordstrom gift card when you hit 2000 points. The two points per dollar earned at Nordstrom is equivalent to a two percent rewards rate. On the other hand, the one point you receive for every dollar spent elsewhere is the equivalent to one percent.
- You receive level perks as a cardholder
You get better deals the more you spend with your card. There are four different tiers for cardholders that depend on how much they spend at Nordstrom using their card. This is throughout the year.
Here are the levels:
From between zero to 1900, you are a level 1.
For one day of your choice, you receive triple the points with free alterations capped at 100 dollars.
From between 2000 and 4999 dollars you are a level 2.
For two days of your choice, you will receive triple points with free alterations capped at 200 dollars and an invite to a holiday event.
From between 5000 and 9999 dollars, you are a level 3.
For three days of your choice, you will receive triple points with free alterations capped at 300 dollars, an invite to an exclusive holiday event, and will be offered experience packages for purchase.
From 10000 dollars and beyond, you are a level 4.
For four days of your choice, you will receive triple points, infinite free alterations, an invite to an exclusive holiday event, experience packages, and free VIP treatments to any dining experience or spa.
- You receive triple points days
On these days, you will receive three times your standard points for things you buy using the Nordstrom credit card, so you’ll get six points per dollar. You are free to choose what days you want to activate this—the number of point days you have various on your level.
To get the most out of these rewards, use point days whenever you have a lot of purchases to make. You need to spend 334 dollars to reach 2000 points for a 20 dollar note. That’s not bad.
- You can experience bonus points events
Along with your triple points days, you also have the chance to participate in bonus point events that happen throughout the year. On these days you will gain more points for you Nordstrom purchases (up to around 10x). Look out for these events on their calendar.
It should be noted that your triple points days are only viable with Nordstrom, Nordstrom Rack, and HauteLook. They don’t work with Trunk Club.
- You will be given access to the annual anniversary sale early
Everyone with a card will gain access to this event. It’s the biggest Nordstrom has to offer. You will get in early though if you’re a level four cardholder–one day earlier to be exact.
- You will be rewarded on your first day with the card
If you spend 100 dollars at a Nordstrom store on your first day with a card, you will receive a 20 dollar note. This isn’t very good compared to other rewards card intro offers, but 20 dollars is 20 dollars.
- These cards have no reward limits
You have no cap on the rewards you can receive or redeem by way of a time limit. You will, however, have to maintain your spending amount every year to retain your level.
- You need to be wary of your cards APR
This is common with store credit cards, and Nordstrom is no different. Its APR can be high. If your credit is emasculate you can qualify for low rates around 11.4 percent on Nordstrom purchases. But if your credit is iffy, you may be looking at a percent around 23.4–so over double. If you know you will be carrying a balance, you may find a low-interest card better for you.
- The rewards outside of Nordstrom aren’t great
The two percent rewards packages for Nordstrom purchases may be good, but the one percent earned everywhere else is less than what you get for most rewards cards.
- These cards don’t offer much reward flexibility
You get a 20 dollar Nordstrom Note automatically mailed to you whenever you achieve 2000 points. This is nice in terms of quick turn-around redemption. But other rewards offer better versatility in choosing how, when and what form you redeem your points in.
Are These Nordstrom Credit Cards Worth It?
Depends on you. Do you think of yourself as a regular Nordstrom shopper? If the answer is “yes,” then this card will probably be a nice tool to have in your wallet. You may find yourself stacking up some Nordstrom Note gift certificates every year. The two percent rate of rewards is actually greater than what you’ll find with most credit cards.
The regular store version of the card should be enough for loyal Nordstrom shoppers. If the Visa is nudging your interest, just know that you’ll only receive one percent on everything you buy outside of Nordstrom (this is worse than what you would get for most non-store cards). So, if you end up getting the Visa, you should avoid using it as your primary card. Use it to spend on Nordstrom items while using another card for everything else.
To rack up the most rewards with this card, use it on your triple-points day or bonus events and when you have plans to buy a lot of items. You rate for rewards will skyrocket. Remember to also take advantage of the free alterations that come with it too. Even if you are a low-level member, it’s still possible to receive 100 dollars worth of alterations.
You can apply to every card for free and there are no annual fees. With that being the case, if you want, you can shop only on the days you want to use your triple points and alterations and you would be getting pretty good use out of the card.
If you find that you look more than you shop in Nordstrom, this card may not be the one for you. You will want to find an alternative in this case. Again, the right fit for you depends on how you like to shop.
If you like to travel then…
Travel cards give you a load of miles or points as a reward for your purchases. It’s always nice to be rewarded for spending money. You can redeem whatever points or miles you have for airfare, hotel rooms, and other things. It’s a pretty nice view to see all of those points add up on your excursions.
If you want cashback…
Cash back credit cards might be perfect for you, especially if you always pay off your balances in full and on time, even after big shopping sprees. These cards give five percent cash back rewards on cycling categories, and one percent on everything else. If you organize your spending to conform to the categories you’ll be set.
If you tend to carry a balance…
It’s always recommended that you pay off your balance when its time to pay off your balance but that’s not always possible, so if you normally carry a balance, store credits are not the right ones for you. The high-interest rates will hurt you. Try and find cards with low rates. There won’t be any store perks attached to them but they’ll definitely save you from high interest.
David is a financial expert who graduated from the University of Fordham (Master in Finance) in 2001. He has 10+ years of experience in private equity and wealth management. With strong expertise in senior-level financial planning, personal financial analysis, and mortgages, David knows his way around personal finance. Before working at CCR he used to be a financial analyst at McKinsey.
- Cash Management
- Trade Finance
- Working Capital Finance
- Student Loans
- Wealth Management