JCPenney Credit Card: Is It Worth It Signing Up? [Review]

JCPenney Credit Card: Is It Worth It Signing Up? [Review]

With many department stores in the market, it became a necessity for these businesses to start offering incentives to encourage customer loyalty. JCPenney credit card is one of the ways that the company found to make you stick around.

The question is: Is it worth it? There are a few things that go into answering this question. Let’s dive in and explore the details of this card:

JCPenney Overview

With more than 100 years of tradition, JCPenney is one of the largest department stores in the USA — there are more than 849 branches across the country. The retail giant sells clothing from fashion brands to items for the home.

The store’s popularity among consumers remains strong, with statistics from 2018 ranking JC Penney as the fifth most popular department store in the USA. 

It’s nothing new that JCPenney offers excellent products, but what about cards?

JCPenney Credit Card Basics 

If you’re an employer, then you know the importance of offering your workforce a competitive benefits program. However, there are so many department store credit cards available, can JC Penney hold its own against the competition? Let’s look at the basics of the JCPenney credit card. 

What Are The Options?

JCPenney offers three types of credit cards: 

  1. Standard 
  2. Gold
  3. Platinum

As a first time user, you’ll receive the standard card. The incentive works on a reward-based scheme, which means that the more you spend, the quicker you’ll be upgraded. If you spend $500 or more in the first year, you’ll be eligible for the Gold Card. 

The Platinum card offers the best incentives, but you must spend $1000 to receive the upgrade. One drawback of the scheme is that if you want to retain your membership status, your spendings are limited to JCPenney stores. 

Members that have a platinum card but spend under $1000 in a year, end up having their Platinum Card downgraded to the Gold Card. While this is a slight drawback, there are plenty of items available at JCPenney, so the membership levels work well, depending on how much you shop at the store. 

JCPenney Credit Card Basics 

JCPenney offers some fantastic incentives to their cardholders, including: 

  • Exclusive offers
  • Points for each purchase
  • 100 special savings days
  • No interest on purchases 
  • Extra benefits for gold and platinum cardholders 

Let’s explore these incentives further. 

Exclusive Offers 

If you’re a member of JCPenney rewards, you’ll receive exclusive offers, including money off coupons, information about upcoming products, and a special birthday reward each year. The company also offers its loyal customers up to 100 days of exclusive deals each year. 

Points For Each Purchase

For each dollar you spend at JCPenney, you receive one point. While this doesn’t seem like much, you can accumulate points and use them on future purchases. Keep in mind that non-cardholders earn one point for each $2 they spend.

First Purchase Discount 

If your application for a JCPenney credit card is successful, you’ll get a discount on your first purchase. The discount is equivalent to 15% on clothing, jewelry, and accessories, or 5% on electrical appliances. 

Exclusive Interest Options 

Loyal customers can take advantage of the store’s financing options, which include no interest on purchases and special financing for up to 60 months. It’s important to note here that some offers are only valid if you pay the purchase amount in full. 

How Does The JCPenney Credit Card Work? 

Before taking advantage of the JCPenney credit card rewards, you must go through the application process. You can do this online or in-store, and the approval process usually takes 7-10 days. 

Using Your Account 

Once you receive your credit card, you can immediately start using it. All of your personal information will be located on the website or app, which you can access with your JCPenney login. This includes: 

  • Account information and recent activity 
  • Billing and statements 
  • Options to set up paperless billing 
  • Point and Reward tracking
  • Special offers available
  • Outstanding JCPenney credit card payment information

Claiming Your Rewards 

JC Penney makes claiming your rewards simple by offering automatic bonuses when you reach 200 points. Once you reach this number of points,  the store will issue an electronic coupon worth $10 — which you can spend online or in-store. 

If you decide to redeem your points in-store, you can download the JC Penney mobile app to show your rewards certificate. The app is available for Apple or Android and has a rating of 4.7 on the iTunes store. 

The Drawbacks of JC Penney Credit Cards

As we’ve seen, JCPenney offers plenty of rewards to their credit cardholders, and regular shoppers can take advantage of some fantastic benefits. These include access to special offers, large discounts on the eligible items you purchase and an automatic points system. 

However, JCPenney’s credit card is not all about advantages — there are drawbacks as well. Are they severe enough to make you think twice? The main issue people have is the number of fees associated with the card:

 

Annual Fee……………………………………………$0

Purchase APR……………………………………….27.99% (fixed)

Minimum Interest Charge………………………$2

Late Fee………………………………………………..$38

 

As you can see, the 27.99% interest rate is high, and carrying a JCPenney credit card means you must pay off your purchases quickly to avoid getting into debt. Failure to pay your outstanding amounts in time means you’ll be responsible for the late fee, so financial planning is vital if you have this card. 

The Basic JC Penney Card 

One disadvantage of a JCPenney card is that you can only use it at JCPenney, Rite Aid, and Sephora. However, it’s important to note that Sephora discounts only apply if you visit one of their stores inside JCPenney or make a purchase online. 

If you’re not a regular shopper at JCPenney, then you won’t accumulate many points. However, if you’re happy to receive discounts with your standard card, then it’s still beneficial to have. 

Is The JCPenney Credit Card Worth It? 

There are plenty of customer reviews regarding the JCPenney credit card, and overall they have a high rating. Common issues surrounding the card include unresponsive customer service teams, address mix-ups, and long waits when you reach the JCPenney credit card phone number. 

Trust Pilot gives the card an overall rating of 1.7 out of 5 stars, while WalletHub rates the card at 3.3 stars out of 5. The fact is that JCPenney’s credit cards are most beneficial for regular shoppers at the store. If you plan to make frequent purchases, then it’s a great option with plenty of benefits. 

With so many store credit cards available, it’s hard to know which is right for you. FutureFuel has reviewed many store credit cards, so you can make the best decision. Customer loyalty cards are always subject to personal experience, so consider how much you plan to shop at JC Penney before applying for a card.