Bank of America’s Preferred Rewards Program

I’m going to start off by saying that it’s crap. For the price of locking up a minimum of $20k, you get such fabulous perks as:

  • a 5% interest rate booster on your money market account: which equals up to a hefty 0.04% a year – aka $8 a year for every $20k that’s locked up doing nothing.
  • “Priority” Client Service with a special number that connects to the same customer service reps that serve everyone else only now they greet you by saying, “Hello, Preferred Rewards Customer!”
  • No fees on “select” banking services (but the most useful fee discounts start at people with 50k in the bank or higher)

And other such worthless nonsense. Starting at $50k to $100k they add in a limited number or ATM fee refunds and give you some “free” investing trades at the attached investment firm.

When I tell people about the stipulations to get these so-called bonuses, the first thing they usually say is something to beat of, “I guess only millionaires can bank there.” Not quite, but when I opened my account, she put a flag on it for the investment company to contact me. However, it wasn’t until several months later, when I had a certain amount of money in the bank that they bothered to finally reach out. Suspicious. It was also too late.

Anyway, for one thing, there is no amount of an interest rate booster that is going to make 0.025 percent attractive. And yes, it’s 0.025%, not the 0.03% that they advertise. And I know this because I can do math. Which mean the 0.04% after the first level “booster” is really along the lines of 0.0375. Rounding up to 4, doesn’t make it 4. It’s only a 50¢ difference at the end of the year, but the bold faced lies! #shadyshady

They think that by telling people that they’re special, people will, in turn, actually feel special and do more banking with them, thus locking up more money in order to get a few extra pennies a year. They’re not idiots, and fortunately for them, a lot of their customers are. Because as I’ve probably already discussed on the topic of credit card marketing, this kind of insipid marketing ploys work on most people.

And it’s actually directly related to the reason why I left. Because I contacted my “special” client service one afternoon, and the wait just as long as normal. There were no special perks. There was only them telling me that I was sooo special when in reality they just wanted to lock up more of my money. 😐

Call me paranoid, but I felt like they were trying to pull one over on me. It was disgusting, and I found a replacement bank that weekend – a bank that tells me I’m special regardless of how much money they think I’m keeping in their bank, which actually does make me feel a little special. 😛

Hi ^_^