Consumer Payment Card News

Debit Rewards

Incentives to use VISA and MasterCard debit cards are getting sweeter. U.S. Bank and Northwest Airlines launched a VISA Check Card this week that offers airmiles for purchases. Two years ago Chase Manhattan introduced the first co-branded debit card and the first debit card to offer air mileage rewards from a major carrier. The new WorldPerks VISA Check Card offers one Northwest Airlines mile for every $2 spent. However, the new U.S. Bank/NWA debit card carries a $20 annual fee. Customers who open a new U.S. Bank checking account will receive a one-time award of 4,000 bonus miles. Account holders may have up to four cards per account. Miles are not earned on ATM transactions, checks, balance transfers or purchases made with a PIN number. The new VISA Check Card also offers ATM access for up to five checking accounts, five savings accounts, and five credit card or credit line accounts. Under the program, customers who earn 20,000 miles may receive a free round trip ticket during the off-peak season anywhere in the continental USA, including Alaska. At 25,000 miles, customers earn a free round trip ticket peak season anywhere in the continental USA including Alaska. U.S. Bank also offers two credit card versions of the program including the WorldPerks VISA Card and the WorldPerks VISA Business Card. Chase Manhattan teamed with Continental Airlines in 1999 to offer the Chase/Continental MasterCard Banking Card which offers one air mile for each $2 charged. The Chase/Continental debit card carries a $30 annual fee and offers bonus miles upon sign-up and additional bonus miles each year upon renewal of the card. Last year Chase introduced Gold and Platinum versions of their Continental MasterCard debit cards. The Platinum version of the debit card offers one air mile for each dollar of debit card purchases. For more information on the Northwest Airlines VISA Check Card visit www.usbank.com. for more information on the Chase Continental MasterCard banking Card visit www.chase.com.

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