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The outdoor brand L.L. Bean is a favorite for folks who need comfortable camping or hiking clothes, outdoor gear, and eco-friendly equipment. But there’s a price to L.L. Bean’s quality, and it’s reflected in every product’s price tag!
However, you can make the most of L.L. Bean’s excellent equipment and get special rewards for shopping here frequently by picking up an L.L. Bean Mastercard.
This specialized credit card offers a decent rewards rate for frequent L.L. Bean shoppers, plus a handful of extra perks to make it worth your while.
Let’s take a closer look at this credit card and break down what makes it so special before you apply.
The co-branded L.L. Bean Mastercard is a credit card designed for frequent shoppers at its titular retailer, L.L. Bean.
The more you use this card, the more you’ll earn so-called “Bean Bucks,” which are essentially L.L. Bean rewards points you receive with all the purchases you make.
As you use this card, you’ll be able to redeem the points for regular rewards, plus benefit from other perks and bonuses, including free shipping for your purchases and more.
The card is only accessible to those with credit scores of 670 or above. However, there is a balance transfer fee of $10 minimum.
Note that you must have an existing L.L. Bean account to apply for this credit card.
Let’s take a look at the L.L. Bean Mastercard’s rewards system in more detail, so you know how it fully works.
The L.L. Bean Mastercard’s reward system is generous and easy to grasp. As mentioned, you’ll learn Bean Bucks based on how much you spend.
Every Buck is equivalent to $1, which you can then use to take money off your purchases later on. Even better, though, the L.L. Bean Mastercard rewards or cash back rate is 4%.
In other words, spend $100 at L.L. Bean, and you’ll get $4 in rewards to use at this retailer or elsewhere. That’s a much higher than average rewards rate when you look at some other cash back cards.
You can also learn rewards at a rate of 2% for gas purchases and dining out, as well as 1% cash back for any other purchases.
Naturally, the card’s focus on L.L. Bean Mastercard shopping means that you should really only use it for purchases from this retailer.
Your Bean Bucks, once you’ve accumulated them, can only be redeemed through this retailer.
Fortunately, you can redeem your Bucks in any amount (there isn’t a minimum you have to reach before you can get rewards). You can also redeem your rewards over the phone, in person, or online,
Every Buck, as mentioned, is $1 off your L.L. Bean purchase. So, if you have 100 Bean Bucks saved up, you could potentially get a $100 item for free! There isn’t any way to transfer your Bean Bucks to another person or retailer, however.
The rewards program alone is enough for many people, but the L.L. Bean Mastercard comes with a few other aspects to keep in mind before applying.
There’s no annual fee to worry about with this MasterCard, making it a relatively affordable card to add to your wallet so long as you trigger any of the fees.
It’s also nice that you can earn rewards for any other purchases you make with the L.L. Bean Mastercard, even if the points accrual rate isn’t particularly high.
The fact that each Bean Buck is worth $1 off a future L.L. Bean Mastercard purchase could still make this a great choice for gas or restaurant purchases if you don’t have a card with a better cash back or rewards program or system.
Once you become a cardholder, you’ll get access to special privileges and benefits for your L.L. Bean Mastercard shopping.
For example, use this card to purchase things from L.L. Bean’s online store, and you’ll benefit from free shipping.
This can actually save you quite a lot of money, as shipping heavier items or lots of things can easily add $30 or more to your total cost for an online order.
Another nice benefit is the free monogramming that you can add to appropriate items.
For example, if you want to add your initials to your backpack or double that, you can get that done for free so long as you use the L.L. Bean Mastercard to make the purchase.
On the downside, the L.L. Bean Mastercard does require a relatively good credit score of 670 or above to qualify. As a result, this card will not be available to those with subpar credit.
Since the L.L. Bean Mastercard is explicitly focused on L.L. Bean purchases and regular shoppers, let’s take a look at some other cards that provide more variable or versatile rewards systems.
The Discover it® Cash Back card does carry a potentially high cash back rate – up to 5% cash back for everyday purchases.
But you have to make purchases within rotating categories, like Amazon shopping, groceries, and more. It comes with a number of other benefits, like a 0% APR rate for 14 months and no annual fee.
Bottom line: the Discover it card is a better all-around card, but the L.L. Bean Mastercard will provide a more consistent rewards experience for regular shoppers at this retailer.
The Citi® Double Cash Card is an easy-to-use card that gives you a flat 2% cash back rate for any purchase you make.
There’s no limit to the points you can earn, making this a great general use or “swipe and forget” cashback rewards card for people who don’t shop at one particular retailer or company.
If you don’t like keeping track of which card you use and where consider this option.
The Chase Sapphire Preferred® card is a go-to choice for frequent diners and travelers, as you’ll learn 2 points per dollar spent from purchases in these categories, as well as 1 point per dollar spent for any other purchases.
However, it’s not as good as the L.L. Bean Mastercard at all when it comes to the consistent rewards the latter offers for frequent sports gear shoppers.
It might be. A credit score of 670 isn’t unachievable for those who practice good financial habits. But it is most likely out of reach if your credit score is less than 670. Even those with credit scores of 670 may have a hard time getting approved for the card.
That depends – do you shop at L.L. Bean frequently? If so, this card is a no-brainer given its fast points accrual rate, lack of annual fee, and other L.L. Bean-focused perks.
This is the best card use to make L.L. Bean purchases just because you might get tons of cash off your next order. Plus, who doesn’t like free monogramming?
Citibank issues the L.L. Bean Mastercard. Citibank is a well-respected financial institution, although its customer service scores could certainly be higher.
But since you likely won’t use the L.L. Bean Mastercard for your regular credit card purchases, you may never need to interact with their customer service team and experience this possible downside.
The interest rate is variable and ranges between 14.99% and 23.99%. Which interest rate you receive depends on things like your credit score, credit history, and more.
As you can see, the L.L. Bean Mastercard is a stellar credit card for regular L.L. Bean shoppers. However, it’s outdone when it comes to rewards points for other areas like regular shopping or dining.
All in all, the L.L. Bean Mastercard is best used as an L.L. Bean-specific credit card – pair it with a more general-use card in your wallet, so you have all your bases covered.