American Eagle points are worth 0.4 cents each, on average. For example, 10,000 American Eagle points have a dollar value of roughly $40. As a result, American Eagle points are less valuable than the average clothing store's rewards points, which are valued at 3.23 cents each.
The easiest way to calculate the value of a retailer’s rewards points for any redemption method is to determine the dollar value of what you’re redeeming for, minus any taxes and fees that you’ll still have to pay, and then divide that amount by the number of points you’re required to redeem. For your convenience, here’s the formula for American Eagle points:
Dollar Value of Redemption Item / Number of American Eagle Points Needed = American Eagle Point Value
How to Earn More American Eagle Points
It’s important to remember that while you can’t change the redemption values of American Eagle points, you can increase the rate at which you earn them. One of the best ways to increase the number of American Eagle points that you earn is to apply for either the American Eagle Visa or the American Eagle Store Credit Card. That can also help you reach a higher status tier in the Real Rewards program, further boosting your earning potential.
Yes, the American Eagle Store Card will do a hard pull. You will need a credit score of at least 640 to get it, which is on par with what most store cards require.
There is no way to pre-qualify for the American Eagle Store Card. A hard pull usually causes an applicant's credit score to drop by 5-10 points. Most people’s scores bounce back within 3-6 months with responsible credit management, but it can take up to 12 months. You can learn more about how to minimize the credit score damage … read full answerhere.
The difference between cash back and points is that the former is the most versatile type of credit card rewards, as it can be redeemed for anything, and there’s never any doubt about how much it’s worth. Points, on the other hand, have a value set by the credit card company and tend to be worth the most when redeemed for travel. Credit card companies won’t always clearly disclose points values, and those values can change over time. It’s possible that points could be worth 1 cent apiece one day and 0.8 cents each the next.… read full answer
You can spend points for many different things. Usually, you can trade them for travel, gift cards, unique experiences, charitable donations or even cash. There are no restrictions on what you can use cash for. You can typically redeem cash back for a statement credit, paper check, or direct deposit to a bank account. One thing credit card shoppers should watch out for are cards advertised as offering cash back that really provide points. For example, the Chase Freedom Flex℠ offers “5% cash back” in certain bonus categories. But what it actually gives is 5 Chase Ultimate Rewards points per $1, which cardholders can then trade for cash back at a rate of 1 cent each.
Earning rate: Usually at least 1% cash back or 1 point per $1 spent.
Devaluation: Points can be devalued by the issuer, while cash back can’t.
Redemption options: Statement credit, check or deposit for cash. Travel, merchandise, gift cards, cash and more for points.
When it’s the best choice: Points for frequent travelers. Cash back for everyone else.
Let’s take a look at two high-profile cards in a battle of cash back vs. points.
Citi Double Cash Card tops the cash back offerings with 2% cash back on all purchases and an introductory APR of 0% for 18 months on balance transfers, with a 3% (min $5) balance transfer fee. It also chases a $0 annual fee and requires good credit to get.
But if you’re a frequent traveler, Chase Sapphire Preferred is a more attractive option. It gives 2 points / $1 spent on travel and dining purchases and 1 point / $1 on everything else. It has an initial bonus of 100,000 points for spending $4,000 in the first 3 months. This card’s points are worth 1 cent each toward cash back or gift cards or 1.25 cents each toward travel. There’s a $95 annual fee and the card requires good credit.
For both cash back and points cards, you can expect to lose your rewards if your account closes for any reason. Most cards don’t let your rewards expire over time. But Citi Double Cash Card’s cash back expires if you don’t use your card for 12 months. And on points cards alone, your points can be devalued if the issuer decides to charge more points for its rewards. So, frequent redemption is essential.
So, the bottom line is that frequent travelers should check out points cards. Otherwise, cash is king.
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