Delta Points had an interesting post this afternoon, arguing that because the Barclaycard Rewards MasterCard is being discontinued (or maybe just his application link — it isn’t clear), the Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard may also be on the chopping block.
I completely disagree.
First, the two cards cater to different audiences. The Rewards card is a cash-back card with no annual fee, and the Arrival card has an $89 annual fee (waived the first year) and earns “miles” that can be used as statement credits against travel purchases. One is a cheap, effective way to charge purchases with plastic, and the other is targeted to an upscale demographic.
Second, the Arrival World MasterCard is a very recent addition to Barclays’ product lineup. This is why I think Delta Points was more likely referring to the loss of his application link and not the card itself. When my application link for the Priceline Rewards card disappeared, you could still apply through other channels, and I try to keep such non-affiliate links updated. Just because I don’t get paid doesn’t mean a card is no longer a good deal.
Finally, changes to the availability of one card application link rarely seem to affect other cards. I have an affiliate link for the Citi ThankYou Preferred card, but not the Citi ThankYou Premier card. Why? I don’t know. Sometimes a link disappears with no explanation and just returns a couple weeks later. This happened recently with Barclays’ Virgin America card, although with a lower offer.
What I can say is what I was told when the 40,000-mile bonus for the Barclaycard Arrival World MasterCard was first announced — It’s a limited time offer. No duh. Previously it was only 20,000 miles, then 10,000. But 40,000 miles are worth $400 when you redeem them for a statement credit after purchasing a flight. Plus you get 10% of your miles back to redeem again, making it effectively a $440 sign-up bonus after spending $1,000 in the first 90 days.
Beyond the sign-up bonus, this card really stands apart from some alternatives because you earn two points on every purchase. With the 10% back on travel I told you about, this card has potential to earn 2.2% cash-back on everything. The annual fee of $89 is waived the first year, and you get a free subscription to TripIt Pro. It’s not a bad card for a frequent traveler, and one of the few cards from Barclays I’d recommend holding on to after the bonus.
I got lots of clicks when I first announced the 40,000-mile sign up offer. I am very grateful for your support, but I also think it is a good card, which is why I’m reminding you to consider it if you have any applications planned in the next week or two. The offer will go away eventually. I’m sure it will be back, but I don’t know when.