MasterCard, Discover and Citibank all offer price protection: if you buy an item with your card and its price falls during a certain time-frame, they’ll refund the difference.
However, exclusions apply (of course). Read on for the details of each program.
All 3 programs have some basic exclusions:
- pre-owned items,
- motorized vehicles and their parts,
- living things,
- consumables and perishables,
- closeout or liquidation sales,
- travel/tickets, and
- auctions (including eBay and the like).
However, they have slightly different terms. The best is Discover:
- Minimum price drop: None
- Maximum refund: $500 per claim, $2,500 per year
- Time-frame: 90 days
- Other exclusions: Digital downloads; Buy One, Get One Free & similar offers
How it works?
Price matching is actually a pretty good deal.
It means you can buy an appliance, laptop or other big-ticket item in early November, and then get a price match on Black Friday deals — no waiting in line at the crack of dawn.
Now, that said, it’s not perfect: MasterCard and Discover put the onus on you, the consumer, to notice the price match and submit a claim.
This means you’ll need:
- to take careful inventory of items you’ve recently purchased and
- keep track of their sale prices as they pop up; And
- with Citi, while Citi will notify you if you’re eligible for a price drop, you have to register your purchase on the Price Rewind site beforehand.
Typically, you have to submit:
- the original receipt,
- your credit card statement, showing the purchase, and
- a dated ad or a note from the manager on store stationery - to prove the lower price.
Some folks also think the per-item claim limit, $250-$500, is a hassle for larger sales.
Still, for all those caveats, it’s a great way for consumers to save money.
by Anisha Sekar