Exxon Mobile MasterCard Review
Executive Summary - ExxonMobils' card has an interesting hybrid formula which allows you to earn rebates based on cents per gallon formula, while earning percentage based cash back on non-gasoline purchases. You actually need a very good credit to get approved for this card and if your credit is average (say in the 600s), the Barclays Rewards MasterCard is a better alternative as a gas credit card.
Rebate Formula - The ExxonMobil credit card pays a rebate of 15 cents for every gallon of gasoline that you purchase from Exxon or Mobil stations. You will earn 2% rebates for every dollar that you spend up to $10,000 (for non Exxon gasoline purchases) and 1% rebates once your expenditure exceeds $10,000. Rebates gets automatically credited towards your next purchases and are valid for six billing cycles.
Annual Fee and APR - The ExxonMobil credit card has no annual fee. The apr is prime rate plus 5.99% for the platinum MasterCard version and prime rate plus 9.99% for the normal MasterCard. The ExxonMobil credit card uses the average daily balance method (including new purchases) to compute balances. New cardholders get a 0% introductory apr for balance transfers for six months from the date of the first balance transfer. You are allowed six months to transfer your balances and there is no balance transfer fee during the introductory period.
Other Card Features - The ExxonMobil MasterCard has several features like allowing you to pay your Exxon Mobil credit card payments online. You can also check the history of your Exxon Mobil credit card account online for the last six months.
ExxonMobil MasterCard Break Even Analysis
Due to the nature of the rebate formula, which is a fixed amount and not percentage, I though it is good to start looking at some raw calcalations as to at what price of gasoline to do you earn a certain rebate.
Break Even for 2% - To earn 2% rebates, the price of gasoline has to be $7.50. OK - so that is an easy hurdle to meet.
Break Even for 3% - To earn 3% rebates, the price of gasoline has to be $5.00.
Break Even for 4% - To earn 4% rebates, gasoline prices have to be $3.75.
Break Even for 5% - To earn 5% rebates, gas prices have to be $3.00.
ExxonMobil MasterCard Peer Comparison
It is hard to really compare gas cards. On the one hand, it does not really matter what other gas station cards are offering because if you use only one station, then you simply have to accept that card as it is. The other thing that complicating the comparison is the fact that while most gas cards use a cents per gallon discount, some still stick to the old percentage of gasoline spending formula. So in many instance, we are comparing apples and oranges.
ExxonMobil vs Other Gas Station Cards - Most other gas cards have very similar rebate formula. For example, the Chase BP Visa also lets you save 15 cents per gallon. Some other cards impose spending tiers. For example, the Shell MasterCard® allows you to save 20 cents per gallon if you spend more than $2,499 a month. The Chevron Texaco Card lets you earn 10 cents per gallon.
Hence, I would consider the ExxonMobils' 15 cents per gallon savings to be right in the ballpark among it's peers. But there are other gas cards and cash back cards that offer a percentage cash back based on spending. For example, HESS and Gulf give you 3% cash back. Other cards like the Blue Cash Everyday give 2% cash back on gas and the Costco card gives 3% cash back on gasoline. Given current gas prices ($3.50 to $4.00), 15 cents per gallon would be quite comparable to these other cards.
There is one great feature the ExxonMobil Card has that none of it's peers have. And that is that it gives you the ability to earn 2% rebates on regular purchases for up to the first $10,000 in spending. No other cards have this feature today.
Is The ExxonMobil MasterCard Good?
The Exxonmobil credit card will appeal to those who use Exxon or Mobil stations frequently. If you use this station exclusively, then this card will help you save money when you fill up your gas tank. If you use other gas stations as well, then you should consider other cards that lets you earn cash back on any gas stations (rather than just one). For those of you who are thinking of applying for this because you have average credit, then you might want to consider a card like the Barlcaycard Rewards MasterCard, which pas 2X for gasoline, grocery and utilities and gives you your FICO score every month for free.
Update - Citi has stopped accepting applications for this card.