Amazon Store Cards vs. Amazon Visa Credit Cards: What’s the Difference?

CREDIT CARDS - CASH BACK CREDIT CARDS
An Amazon credit card could reward you for your Amazon purchases. Find out which one would be the best fit in this Amazon store card vs. Amazon Visa card comparison.
Updated May 13, 2024
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Amazon Store Cards vs. Amazon Visa Credit Cards

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Amazon store cards, issued by Synchrony Bank, are store-only cards that solely work at Amazon and, as such, might offer rewards only for Amazon purchases.

On the other hand, Amazon Visa credit cards, issued by Chase, are traditional credit cards that work at Amazon and any other business or merchant that accepts Visa credit cards. This means that they could offer rewards on Amazon and non-Amazing spending.

Let’s explore how Amazon store cards versus Amazon Visa credit cards compare to help you understand which type of Amazon card would be a better fit for you.

In this article

Key takeaways

  • Amazon store cards are restricted to Amazon purchases, while Amazon Visa credit cards are usable anywhere Visa is accepted.
  • One example of an Amazon store card is the Amazon Prime Store Card, which helps you earn 5% back at Amazon.com.
  • One example of an Amazon Visa credit card is the Prime Visa, which helps you earn 5% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Amazon store cards typically have fewer benefits, focusing on financing options for qualifying Amazon purchases. Whereas Amazon Visa credit cards provide a range of benefits, including financing for eligible Amazon purchases, travel perks, and purchase protection.

Amazon store cards vs. Amazon Visa credit cards comparison

Amazon.com Store Card Amazon Prime Store Card Amazon Visa Prime Visa
Issuer Synchrony Synchrony Chase Chase
Annual fee $0 $0 $0 $0
Welcome offerEarn an Amazon gift card upon approval, typically worth $10 to $100 Earn an Amazon gift card upon approval, typically worth $10 to $100 Earn a $50 Amazon gift card upon approval of credit card application Earn a $100 Amazon gift card upon approval
Rewards rate None 5% back on Amazon purchases 3% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; and 1% cash back on all other purchases 5% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; 1% cash back on all other purchases
Redemption options
  • None
  • Amazon purchases
  • Statement credits
  • Amazon purchases
  • Cash back
  • Gift cards
  • Travel
  • Amazon purchases
  • Cash back
  • Gift cards
  • Travel
Benefits
  • Financing options
  • Financing options
  • Financing options
  • Travel and purcahse protection benefits
  • Financing options
  • Travel and purcahse protection benefits
Prime membership required No Yes No Yes
Recommended credit score Fair Fair Good Excellent, Good

Our verdict

We prefer Amazon Visa credit cards, especially the Prime Visa, as they offer more versatility and enable rewards earning on spending at any retailer that accepts Visa cards. They also come with additional benefits like travel perks and purchase protection. However, Amazon store cards, such as the Amazon Prime Store Card, can be a great fit for frequent Amazon shoppers, offering a 5% return on Amazon.com purchases and financing options.

Note on Amazon cards vs. Amazon Prime cards

It can get confusing talking about Amazon store cards or Amazon Visa credit cards as a whole because each category actually includes two different cards for a total of four cards. Where it gets more confusing, though, is that you can only apply for the Amazon.com Store Card or the Amazon Visa credit card.

To get the Amazon Prime Store Card or the Amazon Visa Prime credit card, you have to already have the standard Amazon Store Card or Amazon Visa credit card as well as an eligible Amazon Prime membership. This will qualify you for an automatic update to the Prime version of each card.

If you’re approved for the Amazon Store Card and don’t have a Prime membership, you’ll end up with the non-Prime Amazon.com Store Card, which doesn’t offer any earning potential. If you're approved for the Amazon Visa credit card and don't have a Prime membership, you'll get the non-Prime version, which offers fewer rewards and benefits.

Amazon store cards benefits and drawbacks

The Amazon Store Card and Amazon Prime Store Card are two cards offered by Amazon and Synchrony Bank. They provide a way for frequent Amazon customers to pay for their purchases from Amazon.com and access financing options.

Amazon Store Card

The Amazon Store Card is a no-annual-fee store card that offers financing for purchases made on Amazon.com.

Its benefits include:

  • Financing options: The Amazon Store Card offers financing for purchases of $150 or more, which can be a great benefit if you need to make a large purchase and want to pay it off over time.
  • $0 annual fee: This card has a $0 annual fee, making it easy to keep year after year for your Amazon shopping needs.

Its drawbacks include:

  • Limited use: The main drawback of the Amazon Store Card is that it can only be used on Amazon.com. You can’t use this card at any other retail store.
  • No rewards: The Amazon Store Card doesn’t offer rewards for Amazon.com purchases. To earn rewards on your purchases, you need to join Amazon Prime.

Amazon Prime Store Card

The Amazon Prime Store Card is similar to the Amazon Store Card but is exclusive to Amazon Prime members, and it helps them earn rewards on their purchases.

Its benefits include:

  • 5% back on Amazon purchases: As a Prime member, you can earn 5% back on your Amazon.com purchases when you use the Amazon Prime Store Card.
  • Financing options: Like the regular Amazon Store Card, the Amazon Prime Store Card also offers financing for purchases of $150 or more.
  • $0 annual fee: You won't be burdened by an annual fee with the Amazon Prime Store Card, making it a hassle-free choice for your Amazon shopping.

Its drawbacks include:

  • Limited use: Just like the non-Prime version, the primary limitation of the Amazon Prime Store Card is its exclusive usability, which is restricted solely to Amazon.com.
  • Prime membership required: As its name suggests, the Amazon Prime Store Card requires an Amazon Prime membership, which comes with an annual fee. Keep in mind that this store card itself has a $0 annual fee.

Amazon Visa credit cards benefits and drawbacks

The Amazon Visa and Prime Visa are two credit cards offered by Amazon and Chase. They enable you to earn rewards on your purchases at Amazon and elsewhere, as you can use them anywhere Visa is accepted.

Amazon Visa

The Amazon Visa is a credit card that helps you earn rewards on your purchases while benefiting from a $0 annual fee.

Its benefits include:

  • Rewards on purchases: The Amazon Visa helps you earn 3% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Financing options: With the Amazon Visa, you can access financing opportunities for purchases totaling $50 or more.
  • $0 annual fee: This card charges a $0 annual fee, making it a cost-effective choice for regular Amazon shoppers.

Its drawbacks include:

  • Lower rewards than the Prime cards: While this credit card helps you earn rewards on your Amazon.com purchases, both the Amazon Prime Store Card and the Prime Visa enable you to earn more rewards.

Prime Visa

The Amazon Prime Visa is similar to the Amazon Visa but offers additional benefits for Amazon Prime members.

Its benefits include:

  • Increased rewards on Amazon purchases: As a Prime member, you can earn 5% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; 1% cash back on all other purchases.
  • Elevated rewards on rotating items and categories: The Amazon Visa Prime enables you to earn an additional 5% back on select Amazon products with the Prime Card Bonus.
  • Financing options: You can finance eligible purchases of $50 or more with the Amazon Prime Visa.
  • $0 annual fee: The Amazon Visa Prime comes with an annual fee of $0, which makes it a good fit for people looking to earn rewards on their Amazon purchases but don’t want to worry about yearly costs.

Its drawbacks include:

  • Prime membership required: The main drawback of this card is that it requires an Amazon Prime membership, which comes with an annual fee.

What Amazon store cards and credit cards excel at

Amazon store cards and Amazon Visa credit cards are both solid choices for people who typically go to Amazon for their online shopping needs. They offer a range of benefits, some of which overlap, including:

  • Rewards on Amazon purchases: Amazon Prime Store Card, Amazon Visa, and Amazon Prime Visa are three cards that help you earn rewards on your Amazon.com purchases. The only card that doesn’t offer rewards is the Amazon Store Card.
  • Financing options: Amazon store cards and Amazon Visa credit cards both offer financing options for your eligible Amazon.com purchases.
  • Exclusive benefits for Prime members: Amazon store cards and Amazon Visa credit cards both offer special benefits for being a Prime member.
  • Co-branded with reputable banks: Synchrony Bank offers Amazon store cards, while Chase provides Amazon Visa credit cards. Both banks are reputable and well-established financial institutions.

5 important differences between Amazon store cards and Amazon Visa credit cards

While Amazon store cards and Amazon Visa credit cards share some benefits, they differ in several essential ways.

1. Usability

You can only use Amazon store cards at Amazon.com, which means that you won’t be able to use them at any other online store or physical merchant.

On the other hand, you can use Amazon Visa credit cards anywhere Visa is accepted. This means that you can use these credit cards in the U.S. and abroad, and you don’t have to worry about foreign transaction fees either, as both Amazon Visa credit cards don’t charge them.

Winner: Amazon Visa credit cards since you can use them in more places than Amazon store cards.

2. Earning rewards

The Amazon Store Card doesn’t offer rewards, while the Amazon Prime Store Card offers 5% cash back on Amazon.com purchases.

The Amazon Visa helps you earn 3% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; and 1% cash back on all other purchases. The Amazon Prime Visa helps you earn 5% cash back at Amazon.com, Whole Foods Market, and on Chase Travel purchases; 2% cash back at restaurants and gas stations, and on local transit and commuting; 1% cash back on all other purchases.

Winner: Amazon Visa credit cards since they help you earn rewards at more places than Amazon.com.

3. Welcome Offers

The Amazon Store Card and Amazon Prime Store Card help you earn an Amazon gift card upon approval, typically worth $10 to $100.

The Amazon Visa helps you earn a $50 Amazon gift card upon approval of credit card application.

The Amazon Prime Visa helps you earn a $100 Amazon gift card upon approval.

Winner: Tie. Amazon store cards and Amazon Visa credit cards both help you earn Amazon gift cards of varying values upon approval.

4. Redemption methods

The Amazon Prime Store Card enables you to redeem your rewards toward Amazon purchases or in the form of statement credits.

The two Amazon Visa credit cards enable you to redeem your rewards toward Amazon purchases or as cash back, gift cards, or travel.

Winner: Amazon Visa credit cards since they offer more redemption options for the rewards you earn.

5. Card benefits

The two Amazon store cards offer financing options for your eligible Amazon.com purchases.

The two Amazon Visa credit cards also offer financing options for certain Amazon.com purchases. But they also offer additional perks, including:

  • Travel and emergency assistance
  • Lost luggage reimbursement
  • Baggage delay insurance
  • Travel accident insurance
  • Auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Roadside dispatch
  • Purchase protection
  • Extended warranty protection
  • Visa Signature Concierge Service

Winner: Amazon Visa credit cards since they offer more benefits, including several travel protections.

Additional Amazon card options

If these cards don’t seem like the best fit for you, there are other Amazon card options from other credit card issuers. These include:

  • Amazon Secured Card: This card is issued by Synchrony Bank and provides you with a way to build or rebuild your credit. It has no annual fee, can be used for Amazon purchases, and requires between a $100 to $1,000 refundable security deposit.
  • Amazon Business American Express Card: Has a $0 annual fee and helps you earn 3% back in Amazon Rewards points or no interest for 60 days on U.S. Amazon Business, AWS, Amazon.com, and Whole Foods purchases (on up to $120,000 in purchases per calendar year, after that 1%); 2% back at U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, and purchases with U.S. wireless providers; and 1% back on all other eligible purchases. (Terms apply.)
  • Amazon Business Prime American Express Card: Has a $0 annual fee and helps you earn 5% back in Amazon Rewards points or no interest for 90 days on U.S. Amazon Business, AWS, Amazon.com, and Whole Foods purchases (on up to $120,000 in purchases per calendar year, after that 1%); 2% back at U.S. restaurants, U.S. gas stations, and purchases with U.S. wireless providers; and 1% back on all other eligible purchases. An eligible Amazon Prime membership is required for this card. (Terms apply.)

FAQ about Amazon cards

What is the difference between the Amazon store card and Amazon Visa?

The Amazon store cards can be used only for Amazon purchases, whereas the Amazon Visa cards can be used anywhere Visa cards are accepted. In addition, the Amazon Visa cards have more benefits than the Amazon store cards, including different types of travel insurance and purchase protections. However, it’s likely easier to qualify for the Amazon store cards because they have less strict requirements.

What credit score do I need for an Amazon card?

You likely need a fair credit score to qualify for the Amazon.com Store Card, but the Amazon Visa typically requires a good credit score. A 580 FICO Score would be considered fair and a 670 FICO Score would be considered good.

Is the Amazon Store Card worth it?

The Amazon.com Store Card could be worth it if you frequently shop on Amazon and can’t qualify for the Amazon Visa card because of your credit. However, it doesn’t earn you rewards unless you have an Amazon Prime membership. 

If you are a Prime member, that qualifies you to earn rewards on your Amazon purchases with the Amazon Prime Store Card, which makes having this card far more worthwhile.

Amazon store cards vs. Amazon Visa credit cards: bottom line

Amazon credit cards can make sense if you frequently shop on Amazon. But depending on your shopping habits, you might get better value from a more versatile credit card like the Chase Freedom Flex℠ or Citi Double Cash® Card, which are often included as two of the best rewards credit cards available.

The Chase Freedom Flex can be an excellent card to use for everyday expenses. It offers bonus cash back in multiple categories, including 5% cash back on rotating quarterly categories you activate (on up to $1,500 spent) and travel purchased through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal and 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants (including takeout and eligible delivery service). When combined with a Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, the Freedom Flex can be powerful for earning both cashback rewards and travel rewards.

To learn more about this card, read our Chase Freedom Flex review.

The Citi Double Cash makes earning rewards simple and straightforward because you get the same earning rate on every purchase. Earn 2% on every purchase with unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases; plus, for a limited time, earn 5% total cash back on hotel, car rentals and attractions booked on the citi travel℠ portal through 12/31/24.

To learn more about this card, read our Citi Double Cash review.

Lucrative, Flat-Rate Cash Rewards

5.0

Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card

Current Offer

$200 cash rewards bonus after spending $500 in purchases in the first 3 months

Annual Fee

$0

Rewards Rate

Earn 2% cash rewards on purchases

Benefits and Drawbacks
Card Details

Author Details

Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI® Ben Walker, CEPF, CFEI®, is credit cards specialist. For over a decade, he's leveraged credit card points and miles to travel the world. His expertise extends to other areas of personal finance — including loans, insurance, investing, and real estate — and you can find his insights on The Washington Post, Debt.com, Yahoo! Finance, and Fox Business.
Yahia Barakah, CEPF Yahia Barakah, CEPF, is a Senior Editor at FinanceBuzz and has created finance-focused content since 2011. As a Certified Educator of Personal Finance, he has a background in institutional investment and asset management, as well as a deep passion for financial literacy.

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