While we often talk about the Chase Disney Visa card like it is a single card, there are actually two versions of the card - the Disney Premier Visa Card and the Disney Rewards Visa Card. Before getting into which of these cards is better for you, let's break down the differences.
Premier v. Rewards: Annual Fee
As its name suggests, the Disney Premier card comes with a heftier annual fee than the Disney Rewards - $49 vs. $0. That $49 is still among the lowest annual fees out there, but we'll cover in a bit whether it is worth it.
Premier v. Rewards: Signup Bonus
The Disney Premier card has a signup bonus of $200 statement credit after spending $500 in the first three months. The Disney Rewards card has a $50 statement credit after your first purchase.
Premier v. Rewards: Reward Program
The two cards share the same basic reward program - you earn 1% back on purchases in the form of Disney reward dollars. These dollars can be used at pretty much any Disney location or destination.
The Disney Premier has two additional perks as part of the rewards program. First, you'll earn 2% (instead of 1%) at "gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants and most Disney locations." Second, you can redeem your earned rewards for the cost of airline tickets (in addition to being redeemable at Disney locations).
Premier v. Rewards: Other Perks
Beyond the two aforementioned differences in the reward program, the two cards share identical perks. You can find our post on the best perks here.
Which to choose?
Assuming you have decided to get a Disney Visa card, which should you get?
1. If you can put $500 on the card in the first three months, sign up for the Disney Premier Visa Card and plan to downgrade later.
The $200 statement credit means you'll net $151 in your first year after the $49 annual fee. That's better than netting $50 by getting the statement credit for the Disney Rewards card. After having the card for a year, you will an all likelihood be able to downgrade the Premier to the standard Rewards card. If by some strangeness you cannot do so, you could cancel the card (which we don't advise because of the negative impact on your credit). However, for some people it will be worth it to keep the card. How do you know if you're one of them?
2. If you spend $4900 or more each year at "gas stations, grocery stores, restaurants and most Disney locations," and you spend at least an average of $49 per year on Disney products (including vacations) or flights, you should keep the Disney Premier Visa Card.
This is simple math. The extra 1% on the quoted categories will offset the annual fee if you spend enough and can actually redeem the $49.
3. If the Premier makes sense for you, consider other cards.
The awkward part of this analysis is that if getting the Premier makes sense, you'll probably still find better value in other cards:
- The Citi Double Cash Card earns 2% on all purchases (1% when you spend, 1% when you pay your bill)
- The Amex Blue Cash Preferred Earns 6% on up to $6,000 at Supermarkets and 3% at Gas Stations
- The Chase Freedom and Discover it regularly earn 5% on gas stations and groceries one quarter a year
- The Chase Sapphire Reserve and Preferred earn 3x and 2x points (respectively) on both dining and travel (which will include Disney resorts and packages)
Moreover, as we've discussed, the Disney Visa is not our favorite card to use for Disney vacations. Finally, you'll want to consider whether Chase's 5/24 rule will play into your decision to get the Disney Visa. I didn't even know about that rule when I signed up for the card, and it was a big loss for me in the long run.
Want to use the Disney visa for a Disney cruise? Check out the things we love about the Disney Dream!