Jump to Main Content

The Best Little Money Book

Tip of the Month

Credit Cards and Their Price Matching Plans

Recently there was a news segment on TV about price matching by credit card companies. Some companies call it price protection. These programs have been around for several years but few consumers know about them. We will give you basic information about price matching but you may need to research the plan for the credit card you use.

A price matching program means a credit card company will refund some of the purchase price if you buy an item and then find the exact same item at a lower price. Citi, MasterCard and Discover offer this, and it is likely that Visa does as well, but we cannot confirm this.

The refund can be as much as $500, depending on your card. The amount of time you have to apply for the refund varies from 30 days to 90 days.

We believe very few consumers know about this feature. In addition, some credit card users may know, but they find that using this perk is just too much trouble. For example:

  • Jewelry, art, antiques, motorized vehicles, food, animals, closeouts and many travel plans are excluded from most programs.
  • There is a limit on the amount of refunds you can receive annually. It ranges from $1,000 to $2,500.
  • To get the fund you have to show proof of the price difference plus you must have complete documentation, such as a sales receipt and an ad with the lower price or a written statement from the store manager.
  • Citi is an exception because they will do the price check for you. However, you have to register and the item has to be at least $25 less expensive.

Our advice: Whenever you purchase a large ticket item, continue to check ads. If you find the item at a lower cost, call your credit card company and ask about price matching.

The Money Team