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March 2017 Barclays Sallie Mae Card Changes

March 2017 Barclays Sallie Mae Card Changes

Old Dec 15, 16, 9:37 am
  #1  
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Join Date: Apr 2002
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March 2017 Barclays Sallie Mae Card Changes

Hi all, looks like the Sallie Mae card as we know it is going to die at the end of February 2017. The 5% cash back on gas, groceries, and bookstore purchases will be replaced by 2% back on grocery and utility purchases and 1% back on everything else (per letter received by mail).

Anyone know if Barclays allows card product conversions ? If I cannot convert this card to Arrival or something else at the end of February, I will have to cancel it since I'm already getting 2% back on all purchases via the Cap One Spark Business and Double Cash cards.
steve4 is offline  
Old Dec 17, 16, 4:34 pm
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I called their customer service number. They told me it is not possible.
amitnj is offline  
Old Dec 17, 16, 10:11 pm
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That sucks. I love that card.

What are people's thoughts for alternatives for groceries, gas, and amazon?
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Old Dec 18, 16, 4:35 pm
  #4  
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Originally Posted by shuom View Post
That sucks. I love that card.

What are people's thoughts for alternatives for groceries, gas, and amazon?
For the gas purchases: I plan to use Discover and Chase Freedom whenever the 5% gas category is active. I was also just approved for the Pen Fed Cash Rewards Card which gives 3 - 5% back on gas purchases depending on your relationship with them (regular member or has additional products).

I am currently trying to figure out what to do with groceries and amazon categories. Once again, Discover and Chase Freedom will be rotated for these. Blue Cash and Amazon cards are also under consideration.

Another possibility for some is the Bofa Cash Rewards card (3-2-1). The Pen Fed 5% back beats this for gas which was why I went that route.
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Old Dec 19, 16, 7:36 am
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One of the best categorical cards out there when you factored in the fact that it didn't have an AF. Oh well, the writing was on the wall when they discontinued applications months ago.
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Old Dec 19, 16, 12:45 pm
  #6  
mia
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Originally Posted by steve4 View Post
... amazon categories.
1. Apply for an Amazon Store Card which earns 5% cash.

2. Use a Chase INK Plus or INK Cash card to buy Amazon giftcards at an office supply store. This will earn five Ultimate Rewards points per dollar. Points are worth $0.01 each if redeemed for cash, but if you are on Flyertalk you probably prefer to achieve greater value by redeeming for travel or transferring to an airline or hotel partner.
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Old Dec 19, 16, 1:45 pm
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Originally Posted by mia View Post
1. Apply for an Amazon Store Card which earns 5% cash.

2. Use a Chase INK Plus or INK Cash card to buy Amazon giftcards at an office supply store. This will earn five Ultimate Rewards points per dollar. Points are worth $0.01 each if redeemed for cash, but if you are on Flyertalk you probably prefer to achieve greater value by redeeming for travel or transferring to an airline or hotel partner.
So true.
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Old Dec 23, 16, 3:07 pm
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This card was almost too good for me as the bonus categories and their limits for this single person met my needs 95% of the time.

I keep Barclaycard at arm's length due to their poor customer service and prior handling of some of my business so it is little more than a change of ~$30/month in cash back to something more like $17 for that spend. I tried to add that little bit extra into my savings but it didn't always happen that way.

I do agree that the new card is not competitive with other cards that most of us have in our lineup. This card will most likely be relegated to the vacuum where other past-their-prime cards go with a bi-annual charge in order to keep the account "active."
Oreto is offline  
Old Dec 30, 16, 1:57 pm
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Join Date: Nov 2014
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I'm going to miss this card. It's been very good to me. After the conversion, I'll transfer the credit line to another Barclays card and close the Sallie Mae account.

Then a proper Viking funeral for the Sallie Mae card.
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Old Dec 31, 16, 9:19 pm
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Originally Posted by NYCRuss View Post
I'm going to miss this card. It's been very good to me. After the conversion, I'll transfer the credit line to another Barclays card and close the Sallie Mae account.

Then a proper Viking funeral for the Sallie Mae card.
Why close the account?
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Old Jan 1, 17, 1:31 pm
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Originally Posted by exarkun View Post
Why close the account?
I have 19 open accounts. My Sallie Mae card is less than two years old. When it falls off my credit report in ten years, my AAOA will go up.

Also, I have three open cards with Barclays. I'd like to make it easier to open more cards with them. I believe that it will be easier with fewer open accounts.
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Old Jan 1, 17, 7:31 pm
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Originally Posted by shuom View Post
That sucks. I love that card.

What are people's thoughts for alternatives for groceries, gas, and amazon?
Gas, Groceries - Amex EDP or Freedom (when 5x)
Amazon - Chase Ink Cash/Plus (buy GCs at OSS).
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Old Jan 17, 17, 2:41 pm
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As we approach the end, I think I've come up with a good alternative points earning plan:


Gas: Pen Fed Cash Rewards or Chase Freedom/Discover (5% back)

Groceries: Chase Freedom/Discover (5% back), otherwise Starwood AMEX

Amazon: Starwood AMEX


In my experience Starpoints are more valuable than 2% cash back or UR points, making the AMEX a good card for miscellaneous purchases. In addition, the 1:3 Starpoints to Marriott transfer helps provide a greater choice of redemption opportunities.
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Old Jan 17, 17, 3:54 pm
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Originally Posted by amitnj View Post
I called their customer service number. They told me it is not possible.
On myfico, one user reports that she was allowed to PC to the Arrival (the non-plus version). Not sure that is particularly worth it but it does mean that at least one PC was allowed
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Old Jan 18, 17, 12:54 pm
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Originally Posted by steve4 View Post
As we approach the end, I think I've come up with a good alternative points earning plan:


Gas: Pen Fed Cash Rewards or Chase Freedom/Discover (5% back)

Groceries: Chase Freedom/Discover (5% back), otherwise Starwood AMEX

Amazon: Starwood AMEX


In my experience Starpoints are more valuable than 2% cash back or UR points, making the AMEX a good card for miscellaneous purchases. In addition, the 1:3 Starpoints to Marriott transfer helps provide a greater choice of redemption opportunities.
We don't know how much longer the Starwood Amex will be available. So while it works for short range planning, not necessarily for long range.

The Amazon store card from Synchrony, if you have Amazon Prime, offers 5% back from Amazon. An advantage of this card over the one from Chase is that the credit limit doesn't count against the credit exposure that Chase is willing to provide.
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