The Milestone Mastercard has been gaining buzz for its unique reward structure that incentivizes major life events. If you’re considering this card, here’s what you need to know about how it works, the pros and cons, who it’s best for, and alternatives to consider.
How the Milestone Mastercard Works
The Milestone Mastercard rewards cardholders not just for making purchases, but for reaching key milestones in life. Here’s an overview of the milestone rewards structure:
|Getting married||10,000 points|
|Having a baby||5,000 points|
|Buying a home||7,500 points|
|Paying off student loans||2,500 points|
|Reaching retirement age||15,000 points|
You can redeem your earned milestone points for cash back, gift cards, travel, and more. The minimum redemption amount is 15,000 points.
In addition to the milestone rewards, the Milestone Mastercard offers:
- 3x points on dining and entertainment purchases
- 2x points on groceries and gas
- 1x points on all other purchases
There is a $95 annual fee to have the card.
The Pros of the Milestone Mastercard
The Milestone Mastercard stands out for its ability to deliver outsized rewards for major life events. Here are some of the key advantages of this unique rewards card:
- Rewards major milestones – The milestone structure lets you earn anywhere from 2,500 points for paying off student loans up to 15,000 points for retiring. These are significant rewards for meaningful life events.
- Good bonus category earnings – In addition to the milestone rewards, you’ll earn accelerated points on common spend categories:
- 3x points on dining and entertainment – This is a generous rate for these categories where many people spend a lot.
- 2x points on groceries and gas – Groceries and gas are essential expenses, so the 2x rate helps maximize your everyday spending.
- No lifetime cap – Many credit card reward programs cap the total points you can earn, but with the Milestone Mastercard you can keep earning milestone points over the life of your account.
- Flexible redemptions – Once you hit the 15,000 point threshold, you can redeem your rewards for cash back, gift cards to popular merchants, travel, and more. Lots of options to use your points. You’re absolutely right, my apologies. I should have only used the internal links you provided. Here is an updated version of the “Potential Downsides” section with the links you specified:
The Potential Downsides to Consider
While the Milestone Mastercard has excellent earnings potential, there are some drawbacks to evaluate before applying:
- High annual fee – At $95 per year, this card has a hefty annual fee compared to some other rewards cards like the Citi Double Cash Card. Make sure you can earn enough rewards annually to offset the fee.
- Limited milestones – There are only 5 milestone categories, so if you don’t have major life events coming up in these categories you may lose out on substantial rewards compared to a card like the Chase Freedom Flex.
- One-time milestones – You can only earn each milestone reward once. For example, you wouldn’t get the 10,000 point new home purchase bonus twice.
- Excellent credit needed – This card requires a good to excellent credit score for approval. Those with poor or average credit likely won’t qualify. Be sure to check your credit score first.
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Is the Milestone Mastercard a Good Fit For You?
With its unique milestone reward structure, this card provides the most value to those who have major life events on the horizon that align with the milestone categories.
For example, couples planning a wedding and honeymoon may want to time their applications to earn the 10,000 point new marriage bonus. similarly, those looking to buy a home in the next year could maximize the 7,500 point home purchase perk.
New parents could earn 5,000 points for having a baby. If retirement is on the horizon, the 15,000 point bonus for reaching retirement age is significant.
Outside of milestone bonuses, the 3x earning rate on dining and entertainment makes this a solid choice for those who dine out frequently and enjoy travel and events. You can really rack up points quickly in those categories.
However, if you don’t expect to hit any major milestones in the near future, the up to $95 annual fee may be hard to justify. Other cards with lower or no annual fees may be better suited until you have a milestone to target.
Top Alternatives to the Milestone Mastercard
Here are some other excellent credit cards to consider if the Milestone Mastercard isn’t the best fit right now:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card – This popular travel rewards card offers 2x points on travel and dining purchases. It has a lower $95 annual fee that is waived the first year. Points can be redeemed for 25% more value when booking travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards. Learn more.
- Citi® Double Cash Card – One of the best flat-rate cash back cards, this Citi card offers 2% back on all purchases (1% when you buy, 1% when you pay). No annual fee. Learn more.
- Chase Freedom FlexSM – This flexible rewards card offers 5% back in quarterly rotating categories. It has no annual fee. Learn more.
The Bottom Line on the Milestone Mastercard
The Milestone Mastercard offers exciting potential rewards if you have major life milestones on the horizon. But the high annual fee means it only pays off if you can maximize the milestone bonuses and bonus earning categories.
Thoroughly analyze your upcoming plans and current spending patterns. Make sure the annual fee makes sense based on the rewards you expect to earn in the near term. While the milestone concept is intriguing, don’t get swayed by it unless it truly aligns with your financial situation and credit profile.
Consider your alternatives based on your spending and goals. But if your upcoming plans line up with the milestone categories, the Milestone Mastercard can provide huge benefits and returns on your spending.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Milestone Mastercard
What is the Milestone Mastercard?
The Milestone Mastercard is a credit card that offers rewards points not just for purchases, but for reaching major life milestones like getting married, having a baby, buying a home, and more.
What milestones can I earn rewards for with the Milestone Mastercard?
The milestone categories are:
- Getting married (10,000 points)
- Having a baby (5,000 points)
- Buying a home (7,500 points)
- Paying off student loans (2,500 points)
- Reaching retirement age (15,000 points)
What is the annual fee for the Milestone Mastercard?
There is a $95 annual fee to have the Milestone Mastercard.
What are the earning rates on purchases with the Milestone Mastercard?
- 3x points on dining and entertainment
- 2x points on groceries and gas
- 1x points on all other purchases
Can I earn multiple milestone rewards?
You can only earn each milestone reward once. For example, you can’t earn the new home purchase bonus twice.
How do I redeem my Milestone Mastercard rewards?
You can redeem your points for cash back, gift cards, travel, and more once you hit the 15,000 point redemption minimum.
What credit score do I need for the Milestone Mastercard?
This card requires good to excellent credit, so you’ll want to check your credit score before applying.
Are there any alternatives to the Milestone Mastercard?
Some popular alternatives are:
- Chase Sapphire Preferred
- Citi Double Cash card
- Chase Freedom Flex