PerkStreet Financial Cash Back Debit Card Review | CreditShout

PerkStreet Financial Cash Back Debit Card Review

By Dawn Allcot / July 20, 2010

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Verdict:

PerkStreet.com is an online-only bank, with a good cash back debit card rewards program. You can earn a variety of rewards, including coffee, music downloads, gift cards to popular retailers or cash back. You can use PerkStreet.com as your primary bank, or as a secondary bank for online transactions. You can even earn up to 5% cash back at certain retailers. One major drawback? To enjoy 2% cash back (or the equivalent) on any non-pin purchase, you must have a current account balance of $5,000 or more.

Overview:

Competition is getting heavy in the debit card rewards arena, and another contender steps up to the plate in the form of PerkStreet.com, a new online-only bank garnering acclaim for its generous rewards, friendly service and ATM machines on nearly every corner. (If you have a CVS, 7-11, Hess Gas Station or any STAR ATM near you, you can access money using your debit card free of surcharges from the ATM machine or the bank.)

How this card works:

The Perk Street Financial Cash Back Debit Card — and the bank’s online-only checking account — works essentially the same as a debit card from your brick-and-mortar bank.

To make a deposit, you can transfer funds electronically from Paypal, Google checkout or another online payment program, or from your brick-and-mortar bank, or even from an online savings account. You can also mail in a check or money order to PerkStreet to make a deposit.

Once the money’s in your account, it’s even easier to access. PerkStreet has partnered with STAR, one of the oldest and most reputable ATM networks. If you use a STAR ATM, you can withdraw money with no surcharges from the ATM machine or from your bank.

Rewards:

When you use your Perk Street Financial Cash Back Debit Card for non-pin transactions, though, you’ll really begin to rack up the rewards points.

If you have less than $5000 in your checking account at the start of the day, you’ll get 1% cash back on every purchase. You’ll get 2 % cash back if your account balance is more than $5,000.

If you choose “perks” instead, you can earn free coffee from a number of popular coffee chains, free music downloads or gift cards.

Perk Street translates this into terms you can easily understand:

  • If your account has more than $5,000, you’ll earn 2 song downloads or 2 cups of coffee for every $100 in purchases.
  • If your account balance is less than $5,000, you’ll earn 1 song or 1 cup of coffee for every $100 in purchases.
  • Shop at selected retailers and earn 5 songs, 5 cups of coffee (you’ll need more energy for all that shopping!) or 5% cash back for every $100 spent (if your account balance is more than $5,000).
  • For the first 90 days after you open your account, you’ll get 2% cash back or 2X Perks regardless of your account balance. You need a minimum of $25 to open an account.
Pros:
  • Easy, secure online banking
  • A network of 37,000 surcharge-free ATMs to withdraw money
  • No expiration date on perks
  • Change perks at any time with no penalty
  • Earn up to 5% cash back
  • Cons:
    • Other debit cards, like Chase, have more generous rewards programs, like 2% cash back on every day purchases
    • Other debit cards have a wider range of rewards you can enjoy
    • Minimum balance of $5,000 to enjoy the maximum level of rewards
    • The editorial content on this page is not provided by any of the companies mentioned and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Opinions expressed here are the author's alone. Additionally, the opinions of the commenters are not necessarily the opinions of this site

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