Like many stores these days, Gap Inc. also has its own financial products including a credit card program. The Gap credit card is a step up from the typical “rewards” card that you can get from almost any store at no cost. With traditional rewards cards, you can sign up for as many as you want without worry or consequence.
The Gap Inc, credit card, however, is a true credit card. Many places offer one, however, it’s unwise and often impossible to sign up for many store credit cards. This poses an important question: Is the Gap Card worth signing up for? There are many things that will factor into your decision. Use this Gap credit card review to gain a full understanding of the product before deciding whether or not to sign up.
Gap Credit Card Overview
Whether you are new to credit cards or have a long credit history and want to add the Gap Card to your list, the rewards or rewards points are always an important factor. What can you stand to gain from the Gap credit card that might make you consider signing up?
The Gap card, which is issued by Synchrony Bank, uses a rewards points system to reward its holders. Currently, The Gap owns a number of other brands, all of which are included in the Gap credit card rewards program. These stores include:
Gap Credit Card Benefits in Nutshell
For every $1 a Gap credit cardholder spends at any of these stores — using the Gap credit card — they get five points in their card account. Every 500 points are equal to $5 of store credit. This equates to 5% back on your purchases.
Reward points are issued in increments of $5 depending on what you spend, though one rewards certificate cannot be more than $50. So, they do limit the reward gain a little bit.
However, it’s important to note that this rate only applies to the Gap and its family of brands. The Gap credit card is a regular credit card and can, therefore, be used anywhere Visa is accepted. Outside of the aforementioned stores, the rewards are lower. You will earn only one point for ever dollar you spend with the card.
You are also eligible to receive a sign-up bonus of 20% off your first purchase, with free online shipping if you’re buying online.
Gap Credit Card APR & Interest Rate
The interest rate is another important factor when considering the Gap credit card. Credit card interest rates are never low, but The Gap, as a card issuer, is particularly hard on those who can’t pay their balance in full each month.
On average, credit cards charge about 23% interest to those with fair credit. The Gap card has a high APR of 28.74%. This is steep, even for credit card service providers. It will be important that you stay on top of the balance and ensure you make your full Gap credit card payment every time.
This plus other specifications are the same across all versions of the Gap credit card:
- APR: 28.74%.
- Grace period: 23 days.
- Annual fee: $0.
- Maximum late fee: $39.
Minimum Credit Score Necessary
Gap offers a few different credit cards, which we will cover in more detail later.
These different cards have different credit score requirements each. The minimum credit score you will need for any Gap card is 600. However, for more benefits and rewards, a higher credit score — near the 700s — will be required.
Most credit cards from similar stores also require higher credit scores around the 700s as well.
How to Get a Gap Credit Card
To apply for a Gap Card, you just need to go to Gap’s website and complete the account opening application form. You will be asked some personal information such as full name, address, social security number, phone, and annual net income.
Once you submit your application and receive the approval, you will need to activate your new Gap Card. You can do that by calling 866-450-5289 or by visiting gap.com/activate.
How to Make Gap Credit Card Payments
There are three ways to make your credit card payments: online, by mail, or by cell phone/phone using a mobile app. The easiest and safest way to pay your credit card is online. You just need to use your Gap credit card login information to access your account on their website and click on the “Pay Your Bill” option.
- Use your Gap credit card login information to access your Gap online account at the Gap website. To create a Gap login, click “Register” on the login page. You’ll need to provide your credit card number, ZIP code, email address, Social Security number and date of birth.
- Click on the “Pay Your Bill” option once you are logged in to pay online. You’ll need to enter your bank name, checking account number and bank routing number.
- Select the amount you want to pay. You can make the minimum payment due, or pay the balance from your previous statement, your current balance or any amount up to your current balance.
- Allow up to a week to process your first online payment. For subsequent online payments, allow up to 72 hours for payments to post.
Activate your new Gap Visa® Card by calling 866-450-5289 or by visiting gap.com/activate. If your card is a replacement for a previous Gap Visa Card, log in to your account to update any recurring payment information.
The card also comes with some redemption limitations:
- Regardless of how much you spend, there is a limit of $250 in rewards in a single billing cycle. This is pretty generous, but still, something to consider. If you reach or exceed this limit, existing points will remain and extra points will carry over. So, you don’t lose any points, but there is a limit to how many they will give you at once.
- Points will expire after 24 months if your account goes inactive. They will start counting after your last purchase. So, if you plan on discontinuing your use of the card, make sure you use the points you have built up because there will be no balance transfer or cash back.
- They limit the number of rewards card members can use at once. In-store, you are limited to three rewards certificates per purchase. A rewards certificate cannot exceed $50. So, the most you can save at one time is $150.If you’re shopping online, this limit is raised to five rewards certificates per purchase. On the bright side, rewards certificates can be used in conjunction with other sales or offers. So you can redeem your points and get an additional discount during a regular, store-wide promotion.
While these stipulations are not unreasonable, it’s important to know what you’re getting into when you sign up for the card.
Gap Credit Card Types
Within the Gap credit card, there are three types of credit card offers or versions you can sign up for. The first is the regular Gap credit card which is issued by Visa. It can be used anywhere a Visa card is accepted and functions like a regular credit card.
However, you must have a good credit score in order to qualify for this card. If your credit is only fair at the time of application, you won’t be able to get the Visa Gap card. Instead, you will be considered for the Gap store card — known simply as the GapCard.
While they will tell you upon receiving your application if you qualify, you can check and monitor your credit yourself with a service like Credit Karma or Credit Sesame. If you already have a lot of debt – such as high student loans – your chances of qualifying are lower. If this is a problem, consider making a bigger effort to pay off your student loans faster.
The in-store Gap card is similar to the regular Gap credit card but has a few limitations.
Gap Store Card
The Gap store card functions much like a credit card, but only The Gap or a Gap Inc. brand. This is the biggest difference – you can’t use or benefit from this card anywhere else. However, there are a few other things to consider.
With this card, the rewards will take a long time to build up. You will need to spend $100 just to earn that $5 reward. If you’re doing a lot of spending at The Gap or a Gap brand anyway, this is still a good deal. For example, you’re a large family with several growing kids who need new clothes frequently.
If you’re spending a few hundred dollars anyway, the Gap Card will come in handy for you over time. However, it’s not a good idea to adjust your spending habits just to earn a small reward or bonus reward points. If you weren’t going to spend the $100 anyway, don’t spend it just for a free $5.
It’s important that you make this distinction when presented with the option of the in-store GapCard rather than the full-fledged Gap credit card.
The last option within the Gap credit card is Silver Status. This is a higher level of status that is attached to the regular Visa Gap credit card.
You achieve Gap Silver Status by earning 5000 points on your credit card in one calendar year. This does not include points you gain from bonus reward campaigns or returns.
If you meet this goal your card is given Silver Status which comes with a few extra bonuses. You can view your card activity by accessing your account through the Gap credit card login which is managed by a company called Synchrony.
The Gap credit card login allows you to manage several other aspects of your account as well:
- Manage account preferences.
- Check your FICO score.
- Make a Gap credit card payment.
- Sign up for paperless billing.
- Download the app for even faster and more convenient management on the go.
Once you qualify for the Silver status, you’ll enjoy several additional benefits.
First, you will receive a 20% quarterly bonus on your reward points. This means you are given an extra 20% on top of what you earn each quarter – or every four months. For example, if you earn 1000 points in a certain quarter, you will be given an extra 200 points as a Silver status cardholder.
With Silver status, you can also enjoy free priority shipping on all your online orders. This means your order will ship for free and you’ll get it fast. You are also able to choose your own sale dates, have the return receipt policy waived, and receive free alterations from the Banana Republic.
5000 points is a lot to earn in a year. It would take a dedicated Gap shopper to get there. But, if you do, there are a lot of bonuses to enjoy and take advantage of.
Gap Credit Card Rewards and Benefits Comparison
Here is an easy look at all the benefits, rewards, and perks of each card.
|GapCard||Gap Visa Credit Card||Silver Status Credit Card|
|Save 20% on your first purchase after signing up for the card. Enjoy free shipping if buying online.||Save 20% on your first purchase after signing up for the card. Also, enjoy free shipping if buying online||All the benefits of the regular Visa card, plus more.|
|Earn five points for each dollar spent at The Gap and their associated brands. Earn a $5 reward for every 500 points accrued.||Earn five points for each dollar spent at The Gap and Gap Factory stores.||20% quarterly bonus on all points earned.|
|Get an extra 10% off whenever you shop at The Gap and their associated brands. This offer is currently valid through 4/30/2020.||Earn one point for each dollar spent at any other store where Visa is accepted.||Free shipping on all online orders, no minimum purchase needed.|
|Earn an instant 500 points when you sign up for their email list.||Receive a $5 reward for every 500 points accrued.||Free basic alterations on Banana Republic clothing purchases.|
|Earn an instant 500 points when you sign up for paperless statements.||Earn an instant 500 points when you sign up for their email list.||Special events exclusive for Silver card members.|
|Special savings on your birthday.||Earn an instant 500 points when you sign up for paperless statements.|
|Bonus points on certain days.||Receive a birthday gift.|
|Access to exclusive discounts and special events.||Get access to exclusive discounts and special events.|
|Earn 5000 points in a calendar year and become eligible for Silver status.|
Each card has it’s own set of advantages. Many prefer the Visa Gap credit card for the ability to earn points everywhere. Others like the permanent 10% discount offered at Gap stores for holders of the more basic GapCard.
Who Benefits Most from Gap Credit Cards
Overall, this card offers a solid list of benefits and perks, especially when compared to other retail credit cards. These cards demonstrate how much the company values customer loyalty.
That being said, not everyone will truly benefit from this card. It’s designed to reward those who are dedicated Gap shoppers. This can include families or anyone who does a lot of shopping at The Gap and their family of brands. If this is already you, you stand to gain a lot by signing up.
However, it’s important to analyze your shopping habits and trends before you make a decision. Do you do most of your shopping here? If not, could you get what you need from just these stores? If the answer is yes, this card might be a good fit for you.
That being said, don’t let the attractive benefits and perks cause you to change your spending habits just because you want to earn those points. Even worse is strategizing to spend more money than you otherwise would have, just to meet these milestones.
If you know you want the full Visa card but struggle to qualify, try using some student loan grants to get rid of your school debt faster. For other issues, you can consider refinancing or loan consolidation options.
If you’re considering this card, it’s safe to assume that you like to shop at The Gap and their affiliated brands. However, If wouldn’t consider yourself a brand loyalist and you have a lot of variety in your clothing purchases, this card may not do you any good. It’s true that with the Visa card you can earn rewards from shopping outside The Gap, but only a few.
The Gap Credit Card: Is it Worth Signing Up?
In short, yes. Whether you’re going with the basic, in-store-only Gap Card or the full Visa Gap credit card, you’ll enjoy a solid points collection system and a long list of other perks. Those who shop at the Gap and their associated brands on a regular basis stand to gain the most.
This includes people like:
- Passionate brand loyalists.
- Parents shopping frequently for many children.
- Big spenders who like a good deal.
If you fall into these categories, you’ll reap many benefits of this card.
However, if you’re not one to frequent The Gap, this card may not be for you. It’s also important to remember the high-interest rate. Don’t go for this card if you plan to carry a balance. The high rates are not worth it.