Plastiq.com lets you pay bills and invoices with a credit or debit card, even if they don’t usually accept them. The standard service fee is 2.5% for credit cards and 0% for Visa and MasterCard debit cards. However, they run limited-time promotion with lower fees. They will charge your card and send out a paper check to the payee (direct bank transfers to a few), so you’d want to plan ahead for any snail mail delays. They recommend 10 business days to be safe.
Current promotion. Runs until October 13th, 2015 and lets you make payments with a 1.5% fee for both one-time and recurring MasterCard payments of $500 or more. Here is their blog announcement. No special promotional code or sign up required. Recurring payments would be for example your monthly rent – if you schedule them now before 10/13, then you can get the 1.5% rate well into the future on those payments. You can’t edit them after the promo period, though, or you lose the 1.5% rate. You can still cancel them. Selected fine print:
And now you can get even more with each payment made through Plastiq! Starting today till October 13, you’ll receive a 1.5% rate for both one-time and recurring MasterCard payments of $500 or more. This also means that you can set up recurring payments during the promotional period to secure the 1.5% rate for payments that are even a year out!
Please note that all payments are subject to review and additional information may be requested in order to complete your transaction. Additionally, editing a payment after the promotional period will cause you to lose the promotional rate for that payment.
Why would I want to pay a 1.5% service fee?
Sign-up bonus spending requirements. Sign-up bonuses often having spending requirements. For example, you might get a $500 value bonus but need to spend $5,000. Well, that’s effectively 10% back so if you need a little help to get over that hurdle, it’s okay to pay a 1.5% fee. Here are some recent cards with big $500 value bonuses but also spending requirements:
- British Airways Credit Card
- Southwest Airlines Credit Card
- Chase Ink Plus Business Card
- Citi ThankYou Premier Card
- Citi Prestige Card
2% cash back credit cards, or similar. If you have a rewards credit card that offers 2% cash back (or equivalent value in points), then you can still make a slight profit by putting them on your credit card. A current example is the Citi Double Cash Card. For example, if your rent is $2,000 a month and you earned 2% cash back while paying a 1.5% fee, your net 0.5% is $10 a month. If you scheduled recurring payments out for a year (12 months), that would be $120. Also applicable to bigger bills like tuition or income taxes.