Credit Cards Credit Card Reviews

Shop Your Way Mastercard

overall rating
3.3

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The Shop Your Way Mastercard from Citibank is designed to reward cardholders who regularly shop at Sears and Kmart stores. This card also offers generous rewards on everyday purchases, including gas.

Shop Your Way Mastercard®

overall rating
3.3
Shop Your Way Mastercard®
On Citi's Secured Site.

Current Offer:

Earn $40 statement credit when you spend $50 on eligible purchases in the first 30 days after you are approved for a new Shop You Way Mastercard.

Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 25.24% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate 5% in points on eligible gas station purchases and 3% in points on eligible restaurant and grocery store purchases on your first $10,000 of combined purchases each year, 2% in points on eligible purchases at Sears and Kmart, 1% in points on other eligible purchases.
Balance Transfer Fee Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
Foreign transaction fee (%) 3%
how this card stacks up
When compared among all rewards cards in our database:
Rewards
Benefits
Low Fees
Security/Customer Experience
Low Interest
worst best

The Shop Your Way Mastercard is not one of our top-rated rewards credit cards. You can review our list of the best rewards credit cards for what we think are better options.

Full Review of Shop Your Way Mastercard

Pros
  • Very competitive rewards for everyday purchases

  • Bonus rewards for restaurant purchases

  • No annual fee

Cons
  • Rewards earnings are capped

  • Rewards points can expire

  • Redemption options are limited

Pros Explained

  • Very Competitive Rewards for Everyday Purchases: The Shop Your Way Mastercard is exceptionally rewarding when it comes to everyday purchases. The 5% back in points you can earn on gas purchases and the 3% back in points available for dining and groceries are among the most competitive rewards rates around. 
  • Bonus Rewards for Restaurant Purchases: Shop Your Way is a free membership rewards program that allows you to earn points when you shop at Sears, Kmart, and partner merchants. When you sign up for Shop Your Way and link your Shop Your Way Mastercard to your account, you can earn up to an extra 5% back at participating restaurants, on top of the 3% you're already earning with your card. 
  • No Annual Fee: Annual fees can detract from the value of any points, cash back, or miles you earn with a rewards card. This card has no annual fee, however, so you don't have to worry about that.

Cons Explained

  • Rewards Earnings Are Capped: One important thing to know about this card is that rewards are not unlimited in every category. The 5% back on gas and 3% back on dining and groceries is limited to the first $10,000 in combined purchases in those categories each calendar year. Once you hit the $10,000 spending mark, you'll continue earning rewards on those purchases, but at a rate of 1% back. 
  • Rewards Points Can Expire: Unlike some rewards cards that allow you to rack up points until you decide to use them, the Shop Your Way Mastercard sets a deadline for redemptions. Points earned with this card expire after 12 months. 
  • Redemption Options Are Limited: With some rewards cards, you can redeem points for travel, cash back, statement credit, gift cards, or merchandise. This card offers only one way to use points: for merchandise from brands sold by Kmart and Sears. That's a drawback if you're looking for more flexibility in how you can put rewards to work. 

This Card is Best For

  • Avatar for Rewards Strategist Persona
    Seeks to maximize points or miles earnings across spending categories
    Rewards Strategist
  • Avatar for Frequent Diner Persona
    Dines out regularly while traveling or in home city
    Frequent Diner
  • Avatar for Head of Household Persona
    Primarily responsible for household grocery and other major purchases
    Head of Household
  • Avatar for Driver/Commuter Persona
    Incurs gasoline or other commuting expenses each month
    Driver/Commuter

The Shop Your Way Mastercard is best for someone who regularly shops at Sears and Kmart and charges their everyday purchases, such as gas and groceries. This card may be suited to you if you're looking for rewards that you can apply to future shopping trips at Sears or Kmart, versus other uses, such as travel or statement credit. Depending on how frequently you shop and charge everyday spending, you could easily save a decent amount of money by earning a percentage of what you charge back in points. 

Shop Your Way Mastercard One-Time Offer

The Shop Your Way Mastercard does offer a one-time offer but it's structured differently than what you might expect with a typical rewards card.

Instead of earning a set amount of points for meeting a minimum spending requirement, you can earn a $40 statement credit. To qualify for this credit, you need to spend $50 or more on eligible purchases within 30 days of being approved for a new account. 

This is a limited time offer and is currently good through Jan. 30, 2021. And it’s only for new cardholders who apply for the card online. 

Rewards Earning Details

When you use this card, you earn a percentage of your purchases back as points. There are four different rewards tiers, based on what you charge:

  • 5% back on gas
  • 3% back at restaurants and grocery stores
  • 2% back at Sears and Kmart
  • 1% back on all other purchases

There are a few things to remember here about earning rewards with this card. First, the 5% and 3% back categories are capped to the first $10,000 in combined purchases each calendar year. So once you hit that limit, your rewards rate will revert to 1% back until the next year begins. 

Also, not all purchases qualify for the 5% or 3% rewards rates. For instance, gas purchased at superstores or warehouse clubs earns 1% back instead. The same goes for groceries purchased at warehouse clubs or superstores. 

You do, however, have the potential to boost your rewards earnings by shopping through the Shop Your Way Card Link program. This program allows you to use your card to earn additional rewards at partner merchants, including GasBuddy, Uber, and Hotels by Shop Your Way. 

Shop Your Way is free to join, and if you aren’t already a member you’ll be automatically enrolled when you sign up for the Shop Your Way Mastercard. 

Rewards Redemption Details

Redeeming rewards is simple, since there's only one option. When you log into your Shop Your Way Mastercard account, you can browse available merchandise and redeem your points to shop. Options range from everyday items like paper towels to major appliances and electronics. 

Again, remember that you only have 12 months to redeem points after earning them or else they'll expire. 

How to Maximize Your Rewards

Maximizing rewards is all about being strategic with how you spend and taking advantage of opportunities to earn additional points as a Shop Your Way program member. With that in mind, here's a quick look at two different scenarios for making the most of this card. 

Average Case

In the average case, let's assume that you spend $2,000 a year on gas and $3,000 combined on groceries and dining out. You'd earn 19,000 points on those purchases. Add in $3,000 in purchases at Sears and Kmart and $1,000 in miscellaneous purchases and you’d increase your rewards total to 26,000 points, worth $260 based on our valuation of $.001 of Shop Your Way points.

Aspirational Case

Earning 26,000 points isn't bad. But say you spend $3,000 per year on gas and $7,000 on groceries and dining out. You'd earn 36,000 points on those purchases alone. If you spent $10,000 a year at Sears and Kmart and $5,000 on miscellaneous purchases, you'd bring your rewards total to 61,000 points, worth $610 based on our points valuation.

Standard Benefits

  • Exclusive coupons through the Shop Your Way program
  • Online and mobile account access
  • Zero liability for fraud

Cardholder Experience

The Shop Your Way Mastercard is issued by Citi, which received a score of 799 out of 1,000 in J.D. Power's 2019 U.S. Credit Card Satisfaction Study. For perspective, the average among national card issuers was 806. 

Managing your account is as simple as logging in online or through the Shop Your Way mobile app. You can also manage your account by phone at 1-800-991-8708.

Security Features

This card comes with the standard security features you'd expect in a rewards card. That includes chip security protection and a zero fraud liability guarantee. 

Fees to Watch Out For

The fees associated with the Shop Your Way Mastercard are typical of other store-branded rewards cards. There's no annual fee, but there is a 3% foreign transaction fee. You'll also pay a fee for cash advances and balance transfers. 

In addition to fees, it's important to consider the regular variable APR for purchases and balance transfers. This card's relatively high APR could make carrying a balance from month to month expensive. 

Our Verdict

The Shop Your Way Mastercard could be a good choice for someone who is loyal to Kmart and Sears and wants to earn rewards they can use toward future purchases at those stores. This card is also attractive if you spend regularly on gas, dining, and groceries and want to earn a competitive rewards rate on those purchases. Because of its relatively high APR, however, it would not be your best choice if you regularly carry a balance.

The biggest catch, however, is that you can only use your rewards toward Sears and Kmart shopping. For that reason, you may want to consider keeping a regular cash back rewards card as backup so you have more wiggle room when it comes to redeeming rewards. That's also a good idea if you spend more than $10,000 per year on gas, dining, and restaurants and want to earn more than 1% back on those purchases.

Apply Now
For Shop Your Way Mastercard®
on Citi's Secured Site.
Compare This Card
See how this card compares to similar cards
CURRENT CARD
Shop Your Way Mastercard®
overall rating
3.3
Recommended Credit Score Our recommended ranges are based off of the FICO® Score 8 credit-scoring model. Credit score is one of the many factors lenders review in considering your application.
350 579
580 669
670 739
740 799
800 850
Good - Excellent
Regular APR (%) 25.24% variable
Annual Fee $0
Rewards Earning Rate 5% in points on eligible gas station purchases and 3% in points on eligible restaurant and grocery store purchases on your first $10,000 of combined purchases each year, 2% in points on eligible purchases at Sears and Kmart, 1% in points on other eligible purchases.
Investopedia Credit Card Rating Methodology
Investopedia is committed to delivering the best credit card recommendations in the industry. We’ll tell you when a card is good, we’ll tell you when a card is bad, and we’ll only call a card the best if we would recommend it to our friends or family members.
Overall Star Rating Explained
To rate credit cards we objectively assess, score and weight nearly 100 individual card features which roll up into five major feature sets: fees, interest, rewards, benefits and security/customer service. Here’s how we weighted those feature sets for the overall star rating of a card:
We have applied our proprietary rating methodology to every generally-accepted credit card in the U.S. domestic market to allow consumers to make fully informed choices. It’s important to note that for our overall score that we make a number of assumptions about how you would be using your credit card:
  1. While we make no assumption as to whether balances are carried on a given card we do assign varying weights to all credit cards’ introductory APR (if present) in addition to the regular, long term purchase and balance transfer interest rates.
  2. We utilize BLS (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics) income and average category spending data to calculate annual earnings rates for rewards cards that offer cash back, points or miles rewards at a set rate on all spending or in consideration of bonus rewards for certain spending categories, like gasoline, groceries, restaurants or travel.
  3. We determine the maximum points value of rewards cards by dividing the points, cash back or miles required to exchange for the retail price of the most valuable redemption option (for example, in the case of a card that offers a domestic roundtrip airline ticket as a redemption option vs. another redemption option of lesser value that requires the same amount of points or miles to acquire, we would base the rewards value on the airline ticket).
  • Cards that are selected best overall in their respective categories generally feature most if not all of the following attributes:
  • Low or Reasonable Fees Credit card fees come in many forms but the primary ones involve those for annual card membership and balance transfer. There are a myriad of reward and non-reward card options that charge no annual fee but for the many that do assess an annual fee the cost is often justified by their lucrative ongoing rewards and initial signup bonuses. Balance transfer fees are occasionally waived during introductory periods with certain cards, a factor which is heavily and positively weighted in our scoring model for cards offering this benefit. When charged, balance transfer fees range between 3% - 5%, which we grade accordingly. Other standard fees can generally be avoided, such as those for paying late or taking cash advances but we rate those relative to other cards in the market for reference, though with less weight assigned
  • Competitive Interest Many cards offer 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for varying lengths and then revert to a permanent or regular APR (based on a variable rate tied to the prime rate) that applies to any balances not paid in full. We rate both introductory APR percentage and length (in months) along with the midpoint of the variable regular APR interest rate range.
  • Valuable Rewards Credit card reward programs can be based on cash back, points or travel rewards (which can be generic or travel partner-specific, as with airline and hotel co-brand card programs). For cards that offer rewards we determine the value per dollar spent along with average redemption values and assign more favorable ratings to cards that offer superior consumer value. We also assign value to sign-up bonus offers and their initial spending requirements, when present.
  • Excellent Benefits Credit card benefits cover a range of offerings like concierge service, TSA Pre-check, auto rental coverage, travel accident insurance, lost luggage assistance and free credit scores. We rate cards on the number and level of over a dozen standard and upscale benefits and provide extra weighting emphasis for those travel-related perks that apply to premium travel cards when present.
  • Solid Security/Customer Service Security and customer service features like lost or stolen card replacement, being able to lock one’s card from an issuer app and 24 hour customer support are becoming more standard across the card market and we provide a significant amount of weighting to features in this area.
  • You can also read the full version of our methodology for a more in-depth look at how we assess cards and award them the best in various categories.