New Uber Visa Offers Cell Phone Protection and Rebate for Netflix, Spotify

Details on the new Uber Visa credit card are now available. Applications won’t open until November 2.

Top line: There’s 4% back on restaurants. $100 signup bonus. Cell phone protection and a rebate on Netflix or Spotify. This is an interesting no fee card with no foreign transaction fees but it’s missing premium benefits from Uber.

It is a no annual fee card with no foreign transaction fees. That puts it in a limited set of inexpensive cards that’s usable for travel.

The signup bonus is $100 (“10,000 points”) after $500 spend within 90 days of account opening.

  • 4% back at restaurants and UberEATS
  • 3% back on airfare, hotels, travel agencies, and Airbnb
  • 2% back for online purchases and Uber
  • 1% back on everything else

Note that PayPal, Venmo, Apple Pay, Samsung Pay and Android Pay do not earn the ‘online purchases’ 2% bonus, and online payments for utilities and government services don’t either.

The card earns points worth a penny apiece. So 4% back on restaurants means earning 4 points per dollar. Points can be redeemed for Uber travel, gift cards, or cash (statement credit or ACH to your bank account).

There’s no benefit to redeeming for Uber or gift cards vs. cash so you might as well take cash other than minimum redemption rules you can redeem points for $5 in Uber credit but the minimum for other redemptions is $25.

I think what I find most fascinating about the card is that $5000 spend in a year earns a $50 statement credit for online services like Spotify, Sirius XM, Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime. That encourages you to put these services on the card, and once you do these are “set it and forget it” sorts of billings. It takes effort to change. So you’ll leave your online services billing to the card, giving you a reason to keep the card that should be fairly sticky considering that it’s a no annual fee card. (Why switch when the card is free and you’d have to change your billing information with these providers?)

Along the lines of getting you to use the card for recurring bills, the card offers cell phone protection if you charge your monthly cell bill to it.

They cover “stolen and damaged cell phones as well as involuntary and accidental parting of your cell phone.” The coverage is secondary to other insurance you may have and will provide up to $600 in coverage after a $25 deductible. There’s a maximum of 2 claims and $1200 in reimbursements per 12 months.

Ultimately it’s surprising that the Uber Visa isn’t close to the most rewarding card for Uber, Chase Sapphire Reserve earns 3 points per dollar and those points are worth far more than a penny apiece.

And it’s surprising that the Platinum Card by American Express offers cardmembers UberVIP status and Uber’s own co-brand doesn’t.

This seems like an interesting card especially for a no fee product, 2% back for online and 4% for restaurants especially, but there are premium Uber-specific benefits which are missing. Perhaps they need to offer a premium version of the Uber card.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community InsideFlyer.com, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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Comments

  1. One thing worth noting…

    And I suspect I’m not alone…

    My phone hasn’t been worth $600 for years…

    My new phone is going to be an iPhone X ($1200).

    $600 phone coverage is weak.

  2. Am I missing something? Isn’t 4% back on restaurants kind of a big deal? Wasn’t the Savor card giving 3% a week ago supposedly its selling point?

  3. I kinda have to agree with @Sean – am I missing something? 4% back on restaurants is solid – especially for no fee. Feels like we are just dogging on this because its only cash back? 4% back at restaurants kinda got me interested.

    Of course – I do agree its a miss not to offer more in Uber savings vs. just straight cash. But I imagine their cost of revenue is pretty high right now so there isn’t an opportunity to really a financial opportunity to give more back in Uber credits vs. cash back.

  4. Will they pay the approximately $33 in fees to temporarily unfreeze my credit reports so I can apply for their card?

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