Shell MasterCard From Citi Review
Shell Mastercard Review
Summary - The Shell Mastercard will appeal to those who use Shell gas stations for their gasoline purchases. The 5% rebate you get is the highest you can get for any gas credit cards. The apr is also reasonably low. Read further.....
Gas Rebates - The Shell Mastercard pays 5% rebates for Shell gasoline purchases (excluding diesel and aviation fuel). Your rebates will be automatically redeemed against your next purchase at Shell stations. Hence, you do not have to wait for any annual rebate checks. You can earn up to $20 in rebates each month, which means up to $400 in Shell gasoline spending.
While you can earn 5% on Shell gasoline purchases, you can only earn 0.5% rebates on other regular stuff that you buy on the card.
How Are Rebates Credited Back To You? - Rebates are credited back into your next months statments in increments of $25. But since you can only earn up to $20 in rebates a month, that means that you do not exactly get back your rebates every month. Instead, the excess over $25 is rolled over. Also, once you have accrued $25 in rebates, you must make at least $25 in qualifying Shell purchases in a future billing cycle for your rebates to be redeemed!
Fees - There is no annual fee for the first year.
Manage Shell Credit Card account online - You can also manage your Shell credit card account online, including your Shell credit card payment online.
Shell MasterCard Peer Comparison
Let us now compare this card with it's peers. Firstly, the 5% rebates paid out for Shell gasoline purchases is at the top end of the range for gas credit cards. For example, it matches the rebates paid bt BP and Marathon (also 5%). And it certainly beats others like Hess (3%) for example. The negative aspect of this card is that you only earn 0.5% rebates on other regular purchases. Most other gas cards pay 1% rebates. Also, this card caps how much rebates you can earn a month.
Now let us compare it with other cash back cards that pay rebates on gasoline you buy from any station.
Versus Amex Blue Cash EveryDay - The Blue Cash EveryDay pays 3% on groceries, 2% on gasoline and department stores and 1% on everything else. So while it loses out to the Shell credit card on gasoline rebates, it covers up by allowing you to earn more than 1% rebates on groceries and department stores and for other regular purchases, it beat this card (1% versus 0.5%). The Blue Cash also allows you to earn unlimited rebates versus the Shell MasterCard, which caps you at $20 a month.
Verus the Costco Credit Card - Amex also has a Costco credit carrd which pays 3% rebates on gasoline and 2% on travel and dining. So once again, while the 3% loses out to Shell, it makes up for it by offering 2% on travel and dining expenses as well. And with regular purchases, Costco's 1% handily beats the paltry 0.5% from Shell.
Versus Discover OPEN Road Card - The Discover OPEN Road Card offers 2% rebates on gasoline and restaurant purchases. Like the Shell card, you are capped at earning rebates for up to $200 of monthly spend on these items. So in this respect, the Shell card is better. But once again, it makes up by allowing their cardholders to earn 5% to 20% rebates by shopping with their online partners.
Verus PenFed Gas Rebate Card - The PenFed VISA Platinum Gas / Cash Rewards Card pays 5% on gasoline, 2% on groceries and 1% on everything else. So from the rebate perspective, it matches the Shell in gasoline and beats it in everything else. You can earn rebates for up to $50,000 in spending. So even though this is considered a cap, it would not affect the majority of card holders.
Shell MasterCard - Should I Get It?
Pros - The good thing about this card is that 5% cash back on gasoline is at the upper end of range in terms of rebates.
Cons - However, despite paying 5% rebates on Shell gasoline purchases, you are limited to only $20 in rebates a month. And for other regular purchases, you can only earn 0.5% in rebates (versus 1% for most other cards). The way you earn your rebate also has some irritating kinks in it. What I mean is that insteading of rolling all your rebates into the next statement credit, Shell has comes up with rules like you can only get your rebates in increments of $25. Since you can only earn $20 in rebates every month, it means it takes more than one month for you to get back your rebates. Though this is better than cards like Amex Blue Cash or the Costco credit card where you get your rebates after every calendar year, it does not compare well with other gas cards that simply credit you regardless of how much rebates you have earned.
Verdict - The Shell MasterCard will appeal to those who fill their gas with Shell. If you only fill up your gas at Shell stations, then you can consider getting this card. But to be honest, this card falls short in many areas (like earning only 0.5% on purchases, caps on monthly rebates you can earn). If you do get this card, you should also have other cash back cards in your wallet to earn extra rebates on things like groceries and even regular purchases (remember, Shell only lets you earn 0.5%!).
Instead of getting this card, I would actually get the PenFed VISA Platinum Gas / Cash Rewards Card because not only does it match Shell's 5% for gasoline, you can actually earn 5% at any gas stations and earn 2% on groceries and 1% on everything else. You also do not face the ridiculous monthly cap that Shell has imposed.
|Shell Mastercard from Citi|
No annual fee for first year
$20.00 if you use the card less than 9 times at Shell stations the previous calender year
If you use more than 9 times, then there is no annual fee
|Purchase APR||Prime Rate plus 7.99%|
|Cash Advance APR||Prime Rate plus 14.99%, min is 19.99%|
|Penalty/Default Rate||Prime Rate plus 23.99%|
|Min Finance Charge||$0.50|
|Grace Period||20 days|
|Balance Calculation Method||Average Daily Balance (including new purchases)|
|Cash Advance fee||5% ,min $5.00|
|Balance Transfer fee||
3% ,min $5.00, max $75.00
No balance transfer fee for the introductory offer
|Late Payment fee||$39.00|
|Over the Credit Limit fee||$35.00|