Gap Credit Card: Are the Benefits Worth It?

Popular clothing retailer The Gap offers two credit cards for its customers to earn rewards on their purchases: The GapCard and The Gap Visa Credit Card. Are these worth it for qualified applicants, or are there better options available in alternative cash back programs?

As one of the more stylish clothing retailers, Gap offers apparel that’s both unique and classic at the same time. And as the Gap brand has grown to encompass its family of brands (like Old Navy, Athleta, and many more), it’s no surprise that the company has offered its loyal customers’ retailer credit cards that rewards those for shopping: The GapCard and the Gap Visa Credit Card.

In this article, we’ll take a look at the many benefits that come with being a Gap-branded card holder, how Gap’s unique rewards program works, and the drawbacks that may make you consider other viable credit card options.

Overview | Gap Credit Cards

To begin, Gap offers applications for its line of credit cards in-store and online issued by Synchrony Bank. Approval is usually instantaneous, though some applicants may have to wait for 7 to 10 days for approval depending on creditworthiness and which type of store-branded credit card they are offered (basic or Visa-branded cards).

The GapCard

The GapCard is the basic store-branded credit card issued by The Gap. While many store-branded credit cards can only be used in the specific store it is branded with, The GapCard goes the extra mile and enables users to use this credit card across Gap’s family of brands. These brands include:

  • Gap
  • Gap Body
  • babyGap
  • Gap Kids
  • Gap Maternity
  • Gap Outlet
  • Gap Factory Store
  • Athleta
  • Banana Republic
  • Banana Republic Factory
  • Old Navy
  • Old Navy Outlet

Of course, the main reason why you should sign up for the GapCard are the many benefits that come with being a cardholder, including:

  • Earn 5x points per dollar spent across Gap family of brands
  • 20% off your first purchase
  • Extra 10% off every day at Gap/Gap Factory (excludes online purchases and a Gap-branded card must be used to receive this reward)
  • Invitations to special events, discounts & promotional offers
  • Receipt-free returns
  • Bonus point shopping days
  • Free Birthday Gift if you’ve made one purchase with the GapCard within the last 12 months

The Gap Visa Card

This Gap Visa card offers a step up from the GapCard, enabling the card to be used anywhere Visa cards are accepted. In addition to the benefits that regular GapCard cardholders receive (see above), the Gap Visa credit cards also come with:

  • Earn 1x point per dollar spent anywhere Visa is accepted
  • Special Visa cardholder offers/promos
  • 3,000 bonus points for new Visa card members w/ qualifying purchase made within 30 days of opening an active account in good standing.

Gap Silver Credit Card

If you’re a regular user of your GapCard or Gap Visa card, you may be eligible for Gap’s “status” cards. To earn Gap Silver status, cardholders must:

  • Earn 5,000 reward points within a calendar year (excluding bonus points/returns)
  • Make the minimum payment by the due date once the account has reached the 5,000 points threshold
  • Maintain a GapCard/Gap Visa account in good standing

Once these requirements are met, cardholders will be upgraded to Gap Silver status within 90 to 120 days after qualifying–which cardholders must re-qualify each year to remain in the rewards program.

Silver status comes with all of the benefits relevant to each card, while also offering:

  • 20% bonus points per each quarter
  • Free 3-5 business day shipping across Gap’s family of brands (enter MYCARD on checkout)
  • Choose your own sale day
  • Free basic alterations on Banana Republic purchases
  • A dedicated Gap Silver card holder hotline

And just to reiterate, the basic GapCard upgraded to a Gap Silver Card still can only be used at The Gap, the Gap family of stores and online purchases for those brands.  

Gap Silver Visa Credit Card

Just like the GapCard Silver credit card, the Gap Visa Silver contains all of the aforementioned benefits while it can be used to make purchases anywhere Visa cards are accepted.

Earning Points with Gap Credit Cards

The Gap Rewards program is pretty simple to use and understand, no matter which of the 4 Gap-branded credit cards you use. Points can be earned on in-store purchases, online orders, or on purchases by phone. Rewards points can be used at any of the Gap Family stores issued to the cardholders’ account at the end of each billing cycle. Once a Rewards member earns 500 points, a $5 Reward will be issued.

It should also be noted that you can earn two 500-point-bonuses by:

  • Connect with EBILL – signing up for paperless statements via the online portal
  • Connect with EMAIL –  submitting a valid email address and account number

There are a few limitations to spending your Gap Rewards points. While there is no limit to the number of points a member can earn, the maximum reward that will be issued in any one billing cycle is $250. Additionally, points that are less than the number required for the lowest reward denomination (less than 500 points total) are carried over into the next billing cycle.


GapCardGap Visa CardGap Silver Credit CardGap Silver Visa Card
Cash Back Benefits5x points in-store and online across Gap family of brands

20% off first purchase
5x points in-store and online across Gap family of brands

1x point per dollar spent anywhere Visa is accepted

20% off first purchase

3,000 bonus points for new Visa cardmembers w/ qualifying purchase
5x points in-store and online across Gap family of brands

20% off first purchase

20% bonus points each quarter

Choose your own sale day
5x points in-store and online across Gap family of brands

1x point per dollar spent anywhere Visa is accepted

20% off first purchase

20% bonus points each quarter

Choose your own sale day

3,000 bonus points for new Visa cardmembers w/ qualifying purchase
Annual Fee$0$0$0$0
APR28.24% (variable)28.24% (variable)28.24% (variable)28.24% (variable)
Average FICO Score to Qualify650 and above700 and above650 and above700 and above

The Drawbacks of Gap Credit Cards

If you’re thinking about all the benefits that you can reap by using the GapCard and the Gap Visa, you should understand that these perks come with some significant drawbacks. First, with an APR of 28.74%, carrying a balance can come with some steep interest payments. Therefore, it pays to be a responsible cardholder and pay more than the minimum payments each month to chip away at even the smallest purchases.

Next, while these credit cards are accepted at the Gap Family of stores–and quite a variety of clothing and apparel retailers–cardholders don’t earn any other types of benefits, including cash back, travel, dining, and so forth. Instead, the points you earn by using these cards, even the Visa card that’s able to make purchases anywhere it is accepted, still can only spend through Gap’s Rewards program. For these reasons and more, qualified applicants may want to consider looking at some alternative credit cards out there.

How Gap’s Credit Card Compare to Alternative Programs

Before applying for Gap’s credit cards you should explore all-purpose cards that will offer more spending flexibility and favorable rewards programs. Three we recommend are:

Chase Freedom Unlimited:

New cardholders can earn 3% cash back on all purchases in the first 12 months of account opening, up to $20,000 spent, thereafter receive 1.5% cash back on all purchases. The cash back value is close to $600 on the Freedom Unlimited card.

The points on your Freedom Unlimited card can be redeemed for gift cards or as statement credits or use it to shop on Amazon.com. The points can be combined with another Chase card and can also be transferred to airline & hotel partners.

You receive an intro APR at 0% interest on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months. At the end of 15 months, variable APR rates apply.

The purchase protection offered is up to 120 days and you get an additional year of extended warranty that comes along with this card. The fraud protection and zero liability protection are available to safeguard your transactions. The biggest benefit of a flat cash back card is that it can be used for all purposes such as travel, dining, entertainment without having to evaluate the reward each time the card is used.

QuicksilverOne from Capital One:

Quicksilver One is simple to use and to earn rewards, you can get 1.5% cash back on every purchase.

The points don’t expire and can be redeemed for cash, check, a statement credit, against a purchase or for gift cards.

If you are on the lookout for better APR offers then this card has a 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months as part of the introductory offerings. Beyond the 15-month timeframe, variable APR rates begin to apply.

You don’t get charged a foreign transaction fee for purchases that you make outside of the US.

You must have an average credit score to apply for this card.QuicksilverOne is helpful if you are looking to build your credit. By making five monthly payments on time with Credit Steps you may qualify for a higher credit line. In addition, using CreditWise you can monitor your credit score. The card has a low annual fee of $ 39.

Capital One Savor:

Capital One Savor is not a flat cash back card but the different categories listed are not complex to remember.

  • You earn 4% cash back on dining
  • You earn 4% cash back on entertainment
  • You earn 2% cash back on grocery shopping
  • You earn 1% on all other purchases.

To receive a one time bonus of $300 you have to spend $3000 on purchases within 3 months of account opening.

As part of limited time offers you can earn 8% cash back on tickets for concerts or theatres by booking via vivid seats, offer available till May 31, 2020.

The membership fees can be covered for Postmates Unlimited if the payment was done using a Savor card, offer available till December 2019.

The first year fee is $0 as part of the intro offer. You have to pay a $95 annual fee from the second year.

There is no foreign transaction fee and the points collected on the card do not expire.

All three recommended cards provide benefits such as travel and accident insurance, auto rental insurance, travel and emergency assistance services. Chase Freedom Unlimited has Lost luggage reimbursement as an add-on benefit and Savor has Baggage Delay Insurance & Concierge services as additions.

The Bottom Line

To wrap up, Gap’s line of store-branded credit cards are an excellent way to earn rewards throughout at the Gap and the Gap-family of stores. For loyal shoppers, this card is a no-brainer. However, the steep drawbacks–particularly the high APR–can easily outweigh the benefits. And for those that are shopping around for cards that offer more versatile rewards programs than Gap’s credit cards, make sure to investigate stronger alternatives available.

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