BlockFi Drops Annual Fee From Crypto Credit Card Plans
Even as the cryptocurrency market experiences some major volatility, the race to bring a crypto credit card to market continues. In fact, it now looks as though a battle in the space is heating up as BlockFi has announced some revisions to their card plans.
The most notable change is that the BlockFi Rewards Visa will no longer charge an annual fee. Originally, when the card’s waitlist was opened late last year, it was to carry a $200 annual fee that was not waived for the first year. Additionally, BlockFi has now stated that the card will not charge foreign transaction fees, which could be a big benefit for globetrotters as international travel eventually returns.
As for other adjustments, BlockFi has also updated its welcome offer for the card. Now, new cardholders will earn a Bitcoin rewards rate of 3.5% on purchases for their first 90 days (with the bonus arriving in the fourth month). However, this bonus is capped at $100. While that is less than the $250 in Bitcoin the company planned to offer once customers spent at least $3,000 on their card, the removal of the annual fee more than makes up for the difference.
In terms of what’s not changing, the BlockFi Rewards card will continue to offer 1.5% back in Bitcoin for every purchase cardholders make. Also, cardholders with stablecoin assets in their BlockFi Interest Account (BIA) can earn a bonus of up to 2% APY on their holdings while cardholders who trade crypto on the platform can earn up to 0.25% of their trading volume back in Bitcoin. This particular benefit is capped at $500 a month. Lastly, in yet another new twist, cardholders will be able to earn 2% back in Bitcoin in purchases they make after they spend $50,000 on the card annually.
BlockFi’s change of course comes as competition in the crypto credit card niche intensifies. Last month, Gemini revealed more details about its upcoming credit card offering, which included 3% back on dining, 2% back on groceries, and 1% back on everything else. What’s more, earned rewards will be deposited in real-time. Most notably, the Gemini card will have no annual fee.
While it’s hard to say for sure whether Gemini’s card announcement influenced BlockFi’s latest update, it definitely seems likely. Anecdotally, once Gemini’s details were revealed, it wasn’t hard to find those comparing the two proposed products in a way that was unfavorable to BlockFi. Nevertheless, the changes to BlockFi’s card may make it more appealing — especially to those who are already using the BlockFi platform. With that in mind, the waitlist for the Block Rewards Visa is currently still open.
Also published on Medium.