PenFed Pathfinder Rewards Visa offering 50K points + $50

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The PenFed Pathfinder Rewards card has re-launched as a Visa card and it comes with a nice bonus of 50,000 points after $3K spend in the first 90 days (worth ~$425). Opening the card through a referral link will put another $50 in your pocket. This card may certainly be worth opening for a bonus, though it is a snoozer long-term that you won’t want to keep beyond year 1 in most instances.

The Offer & Key Card Details

Click the card name below to go to our Frequent Miler card-specific page where you’ll find more information and an application link.

Card Offer and Details
PenFed Pathfinder Rewards

FM Mini Review: Meh. Points are only worth about 0.85 cents each. I recommended this card when it used to be fee-free, but not for $95 per year.


Card Type: Visa Signature

Base
Travel

Earning rate: 4X Travel for PenFed Honors Advantage Members ⚬ 3X travel otherwise ⚬ 1.5X everywhere else. Advantage membership is available to anyone who opens an Access America Checking account, or to military members.

Noteworthy perks: $100 Domestic Airline Fee Credit ⚬ $100 Global Entry credit ⚬ Priority Pass Membership ($32 per visit)

Quick Thoughts

Doctor of Credit lists the following sample point redemptions, which point to a redemption value of approximately 0.85c per point:

  • $50 Prepaid Visa card = 5,880 points
  • $25 Southwest gift card = 2,940 points
  • $100 Delta gift card = 11,760 points
  • $10 Amazon gift card = 1,170 points

Assuming you could redeem 50K points at exactly 0.85c per point, that’s $425 in gift cards. Of course, since gift card redemptions are those wacky numbers of points, I imagine using exactly 50K (or however many points you have) will be nearly impossible or require a PhD in calculus, making the points worth a bit less than face value to me (not to mention that gift card redemptions are already questionable to value at face value since there are opportunities to get some of them discounted in the first place).

Still, if you could pull off even $350 or $400 worth of gift cards before hitting your breakage point, the bonus could still be worth a look as that’s a decent return on $3K spend.

Long-term, the card doesn’t offer much value given that it awards 3x on Travel and 1.5x everywhere else for general members (returns of less than 2.83% on travel and 1.275% everywhere else) and it has a $95 annual fee. It may be a bit more interesting for honors members (which must be active duty military or members of Access America based on my understanding), though even then it’s not terribly exciting.

Still, picking up somewhere near $500 for $3K spend is a good enough deal to consider if you’re looking for a new card to flex.

H/T: Doctor of Credit

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