Gemini and BlockFi Crypto Credit Card Waitlist

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Contributor, Benzinga
April 15, 2021

If you’re unsatisfied with the current rewards that you’re receiving from your credit card company, you might want to consider signing up for one of the many upcoming cryptocurrency credit cards set to debut soon. Cryptocurrency credit cards help you invest while you spend by offering you rewards paid out in crypto when you use your card at qualifying retailers.

Both Gemini and BlockFi have announced they will open cryptocurrency credit cards in the near future, and you can now join the waitlist for each card. Our guide to the Gemini and BlockFi crypto credit card waitlist options and future offerings will help you decide which card is the right choice for you. 

Disclosure: eToro supports the following currencies: BTC, ADA, DASH, DOGE, EOS, ETH, LTC, NEO, XLM, XTZ, TRX, ZEC. eToro USA LLC; Investments are subject to market risk, including the possible loss of principal. T&Cs apply. *The bonus is available to Benzinga readers in the US for open states only. Served by eToro USA LLC.

What is a Crypto Credit Card?

Though cryptocurrencies are a relatively new financial tool, most crypto credit cards work using the same basic structure as a regular credit card. First, you’ll apply for the card through the company offering the credit card. In this case, we’ll be looking at the upcoming credit offerings from crypto brokerage platforms Gemini and BlockFi. 

Though a broker will track and offer your rewards, transaction processors (including Visa and Mastercard) still provide transfer requests and services. This means that no matter if you have a traditional Visa card offered directly by Visa or a Gemini cryptocurrency credit card serviced by Visa, you can use your card everywhere that accepts Visa. From shopping online to checking out of a hotel, you can use a crypto credit card everywhere that you would expect to be able to use a normal credit card.

Also like a typical credit card, you’ll receive a credit line when you apply for a crypto credit card. The total credit line you’ll be issued is determined by factors like your income, credit score and items on your credit report. You can spend up to the limit on your credit line, and you must pay back anything that you charge to your card, potentially with interest.

The biggest difference between traditional credit cards and crypto credit cards is the reward system. Most credit cards now offer rewards to cardholders to encourage them to use their cards more often. 

For example, you might open a Visa account that pays you 1% cashback at the end of the month on all of your purchases. You can then use this cashback towards your balance or to redeem for another reward (like airline miles or gift cards).

Cryptocurrency credit cards instead reward you with Bitcoin or another major crypto. When you receive cryptocurrency rewards, the brokerage issuing your rewards will deposit your crypto into your trading account or a new savings account you set up before you receive your card. 

Just like when you deposit cryptocurrency into a new wallet, you can freely withdraw and sell the cryptocurrency you receive as you please. These cards offer you an easy, automatic way to invest in cryptocurrency without thinking to set aside money every month to buy crypto. 

BlockFi Bitcoin Rewards Visa Credit Card
Best For
  • Bitcoin rewards
securely through BlockFi Bitcoin Rewards Visa Credit Card's website

BlockFi Crypto Credit Card Waitlist

BlockFi plans to release its crypto credit card at some point in 2021. If you’d like to be the first to hear when card applications are released, you can enroll in BlockFi’s card waitlist by using your email address. 

The broker says that waitlist applicants will be offered card applications on a “first sign up, first served” basis. Joining the waitlist is not a guarantee that you will be approved for a card.  

Gemini Crypto
Best For
  • New Investors
securely through Gemini Crypto's website

Gemini Crypto Credit Card Waitlist

Like BlockFi, Gemini also soon plans to release its own crypto credit card. You can join the waitlist for Gemini’s upcoming card offering using your email address. Like BlockFi, signing up for Gemini’s waitlist is not a guarantee that you will be approved for a card in the future. 

BlockFi Rewards and Crypto Points

BlockFi’s most impressive credit card reward is its instant Bitcoin rewards. When you use your BlockFi credit card, you’ll receive 1.5% of the value of your transaction back in Bitcoin. 

This Bitcoin will be deposited into a savings account, which will then accrue monthly interest on top of the returns that you earn when using your card. Bitcoin rewards are paid out monthly and deposited into your BlockFi account. There is no limit on the amount of Bitcoin that you can earn each month.

In addition to ongoing Bitcoin rewards, you can also earn ongoing rewards within the first few months of opening your card. Some rewards for new members include:

  • $250 worth of Bitcoin if you spend at least $3,000 within your 1st 3 months
  • 3.5% Bitcoin rewards on all purchases in months 4 to 6 up to $100 in Bitcoin
  • 2% extra APY on your average daily stablecoin balance up to $200
  • A maximum of $500 additional cashback paid out in Bitcoin on eligible trades each month

Gemini Rewards and Crypto Points

Gemini has not yet revealed many details of its card reward program. We do know that card holders will be eligible to earn up to 3% cashback in the form of Bitcoin or another major cryptocurrency offering of their choice. The Gemini crypto card will also be available in all 50 states and will include no exchange fees on cashback deposits. 

Traditional Credit Card vs Crypto Credit Card

Should you sign up for a traditional credit card or a cryptocurrency credit card? The answer will vary depending on how you’d like to earn rewards. Both crypto credit cards and traditional credit cards are serviced by the country’s major payment processors, which means that you can use either type of credit card anywhere that accepts Visa, Mastercard or your payment processor of choice.

There’s no doubt that cryptocurrencies have been in the spotlight in the past year, but the future of these assets is still up in the air. If you believe that an investment in cryptocurrency will rise in value (and you know how to buy and sell cryptocurrency assets), a crypto credit card might be the right choice for your needs. If you prefer straightforward cash rewards or you don’t want to go through the hassle of transferring and selling your coins and tokens, you might be better off with a traditional credit card. 

Gemini vs BlockFi

Gemini and BlockFi are both cryptocurrency trading platforms which allow you to buy, sell and store cryptocurrency assets. However, both platforms offer unique advantages and disadvantages. 

In addition to credit cards benefits, you might want to consider trading account benefits and drawbacks as well when you decide where you’d like to open an account. View the chart below for a summary of the strengths and drawbacks of each platform — for more information, check out our full Gemini review and BlockFi review

GeminiBlockFi
ProsRange of platform options for users of all trading skill levelsWide selection of cryptocurrency offerings
Platform includes built-in “hot wallet” storage with private keys
Up to 8.6% interest on cryptocurrency and stablecoin holdings
Offers crypto-backed loans
Quick and intuitive mobile trading platform
ConsCharges both a commission and a “convenience fee” for users on mobileLimited education support for new crypto investors

Advantages of a Crypto Credit Card

Some of the advantages that come with opening a crypto credit card can include:

  • Earnings returned to you in cryptocurrency: Unlike dollars or gift cards, cryptocurrency can become significantly more valuable over time. If the price of cryptocurrency goes up, any crypto you receive as a bonus will also increase in value.
  • Automatic investment and savings: When you earn returns on your crypto, the investment is automatically transferred to a savings account that builds interest.
  • Can use it like a normal credit card: You can use your crypto credit card anywhere that you could use a standard Visa or Mastercard because they share the same payment processing system. 

Disadvantages of a Crypto Credit Card

Crypto credit cards also come with disadvantages:

  • The price of cryptocurrency can also go down: If the value of your cryptocurrency decreases while you’re holding it, your rewards could potentially end up worthless.
  • You cannot apply it to your balance: Some credit card holders automatically apply their cash back to the balance of their card. This is not possible when you’re paid out in crypto — you’ll need to sell the crypto and use the profits to pay off your card balance. 

Should You Open a Crypto Credit Card?

Considering opening a crypto credit card of your own? You may want to enroll in both BlockFi and Gemini’s waitlists. There is no fee or penalty to join the waitlist, and you’ll be the first to know when more details on fees, rewards and benefits are released.  

Disclosure: ²Sum of median estimated savings and rewards earned, per user in 2021 across multiple Coinbase programs (excluding sweepstakes). This amount includes fee waivers from Coinbase One (excluding the subscription cost), rewards from Coinbase Card, and staking rewards. ³Crypto rewards is an optional Coinbase offer. Upon purchase of USDC, you will be automatically opted in to rewards. If you’d like to opt out or learn more about rewards, you can click here. The rewards rate is subject to change and can vary by region. Customers will be able to see the latest applicable rates directly within their accounts

Frequently Asked Questions

Q

Can you buy crypto on BlockFi?

A

Yes. You can buy Bitcoin and a range of altcoins using BlockFi’s trading platform.   

Q

Is Gemini a good crypto exchange?

A

We awarded Gemini a total of 4.5 out of 5.0 stars in our Gemini review. The beginner-oriented platform is ideal for new investors, while its range of supported assets will appeal to more active traders.

Related content: BLOCKFI VISA CREDIT CARD PREVIEW

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About Sarah Horvath

Sarah is an expert in the insurance, investing for retirement and cryptocurrency space.