TJX Rewards® Credit Card vs. TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®: Which card is best for the Maxxinista® in you?

Two young women try on hats while shopping.Image: Two young women try on hats while shopping.

In a Nutshell

If you’re a disciplined cardholder and a frequent shopper at T.J. Maxx or one of its sister stores, the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard® or TJX Rewards® Credit Card might be a winning addition to your wallet. However, you’ll want to watch out for the higher-than-average APR attached to both of these cards.

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Are you a Maxxinista?

You know you are if you’re always on the hunt for style and a great deal at T.J. Maxx, a major player in the discount department store market. And if you are a frequent shopper at the popular discount store or its sister stores, you may be wondering if a T.J. Maxx® store credit card is right for you.

Store loyalists can apply for the TJX Rewards® credit cards offered through Synchrony Bank that allow you to earn rewards at the TJX family stores, including T.J. Maxx, Marshalls, HomeGoods, Homesense and Sierra.

If you’re interested in taking your relationship with T.J. Maxx and TJX stores to the next level, you might want to consider the TJX Rewards® Credit Card or TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®. But which card is better? Read on to get our take.


At a glance: TJX Rewards® Credit Card vs. TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®

  TJX Rewards® Credit Card TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®
Annual fee $0 $0
Sign-up bonus Coupon for 10% off your first purchase at a TJX store Coupon for 10% off your first purchase at a TJX store
Rewards 5 points for every $1 you spend at TJX stores (points never expire) 5 points for every $1 you spend at TJX stores and 1 point per $1 you spend everywhere else (points never expire)
Point value Redeem every 1,000 points for a $10 reward certificate to spend at TJX retailers (certificates expire two years from date of issue) Redeem every 1,000 points for a $10 reward certificate to spend at TJX retailers (certificates expire two years from date of issue)
Variable purchase APR 26.99% 26.99%
Where you can use it Only at TJ Maxx, HomeGoods, Homesense, Marshalls, Sierra, tjmaxx.com and sierra.com Anywhere Mastercard is accepted
Cash advances Not available Available at 29.99% APR and for a fee (4%, min. $10)
Other benefits  
  • No foreign transaction fees

  1. The winner: Why we prefer the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®
  2. Counterpoint: Why you might want the TJX Rewards® credit card instead
  3. Heads up: What to consider when applying for a TJX Rewards®
  4. Bottom line: Is a TJX Rewards® credit card right for you?

The winner: Why we prefer the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®

Simply put, the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard® gives you everything the TJX Rewards® Credit Card includes and more. With both cards, you earn identical rewards from the TJX family of stores and operate under the same variable purchase APR.

But while the TJX Rewards® Credit Card can only be used in TJX stores, the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard® gives you the freedom of a globally accepted credit card (and without foreign transaction fees). With the platinum card in your wallet, you can swipe anywhere Mastercard is accepted. Plus, the card may come with some additional perks and protections afforded to certain Mastercard holders.

Plus, in addition to earning 5% rewards for every TJX purchase you make with either TJX Rewards® card, your TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard® can earn you 1% on every non-TJX purchase you make with your card. And there’s no limit to the number of rewards points you can rack up on your card.

Counterpoint: Why you might want the TJX Rewards® Credit Card instead

If you qualify for the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®, why would you want to downgrade to the TJX Rewards® Credit Card? After all, if you want a card you can use to earn store rewards at your favorite TJX retailers, both cards accomplish that goal equally well.

But what if you’re worried that you’ll use your plastic to spend unwisely at other retailers? Getting the TJX Rewards® Credit Card instead could be a way to keep your impulses in check. You can’t make purchases at non-TJX stores with your TJX Rewards® Credit Card even if you want to, which could help curb your spending.

Heads up: What to consider when applying for a TJX Rewards® card

If you decide to apply for a TJX Rewards® card, you’ll notice right away that there’s no option for choosing the specific TJX Rewards® card you want to apply for. In fact, which card you receive isn’t up to you at all.

Darrell Owens, SVP and general manager at Synchrony Financial, notes that Synchrony uses your credit scores and its own underwriting guidelines to determine which of the two cards you’ll be approved for.

If your application qualifies you for the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®, that’s the one you’ll get. And you’ll be considered for the TJX Rewards® Credit Card if you’re not approved for the platinum card. As a result, it’s possible that you’ll receive the TJX Rewards® Credit Card even if what you really want is the more versatile TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard®.

And, as with many retail credit cards, both TJX Rewards® cards come with higher APRs than the national average. So if you plan to get one of them, make sure you can avoid carrying a balance month-to-month to avoid high interest fees.

Are retail cards the easiest credit cards to get approved for?

Bottom line: Is a TJX Rewards® credit card right for you?

If you’re a regular shopper at the TJX family of stores, it could be worth taking a look at each of the TJX Rewards® cards. Both cards allow you to earn five points for every $1 you spend at a TJX store every day of the year — a rarity in the world of rewards cards. But it’s important to remember that your rewards can’t be converted into cash. So if you don’t visit the TJX stores often, you may find yourself sitting on unused rewards or unredeemed points.

Plus, while the TJX Rewards® Platinum Mastercard® does let you earn points for non-TJX purchases, the one-point-per-$1 rewards rate isn’t the best out there. So if your aim is to maximize your overall rewards, we recommend you consider one of our favorite cash back rewards cards (see some of our picks below).

Finally, there’s no getting around the massive APR that’s attached to both TJX Rewards® cards. If you do choose to carry a TJX Rewards® card, make sure you’re prepared to pay your balance in full and on time every month to avoid costly interest fees. Otherwise, you may find that the sky-high interest rate quickly surpasses your rewards (and then some).

Cash back cards to consider 

Chase Freedom Flex℠   5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in quarterly rotating rewards categories each quarter you activate (1% after that)
 Citi® Double Cash Card 2% cash back on every purchase (1% unlimited cash back when you buy and 1% as you pay for those purchases)
 Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card 1.5% cash back on every purchase you make

Chase Freedom Flex℠

Looking for cash back beyond the doors of TJX retailers? The Chase Freedom Flex℠ offers 5% cash back on up to $1,500 in combined purchases in quarterly bonus categories, and 1% cash back after the cap. Keep in mind that these categories change every three months, and you’ll have to activate the bonus categories each quarter to earn 5% back. You’ll also earn 5% back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, 3% back on restaurants and drugstore purchases, and 1% back on all other purchases.

From our partner

Chase Freedom Flex℠

From cardholders in the last year

See Details, Rates & Fees

Citi® Double Cash Card

If you want consistent cash back on every purchase with no limit, the Citi® Double Cash Card is hard to beat. You earn 2% cash back: 1% for every $1 you spend and an additional 1% back as you pay off those purchases.

From our partner

Citi® Double Cash Card

From cardholders in the last year

See Details, Rates & Fees

 Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card

Want a no-hassle cash back card? The Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card gives you 1.5% cash back on every purchase with no limits.

From our partner


About the author: Megan Nye is a personal finance writer with a decade of experience in the insurance industry. Her writing has been published by Business Insider, Citi, LendingTree and others. Megan has … Read more.