Upgrade Bitcoin vs. BlockFi Bitcoin – Which is Better?

Updated: Oct 25, 2023

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Comparing the BlockFi Bitcoin Rewards Visa Signature Card and Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Visa Card

Reward credit cards can be incredibly valuable to those who qualify for them. They can earn you cashback rewards that you can spend or add to your balance. They can earn you miles and get you cheaper flight tickets or points that you can spend at shops, hotels, restaurants, and more. However, until recently, none of the credit cards in the US offered cryptocurrency rewards. BlockFi is among the first companies on the market to offer Bitcoin rewards, but it’s not the only one. In July 2021, Upgrade launched its own version of a Bitcoin reward card with various benefits that allow consumers to use their credit responsibly. If you’re interested in earning Bitcoin rewards, take a look at this brief comparison of Upgrade vs BlockFi to ensure that you make an informed decision.

  • BlockFi Bitcoin Card – a unique Bitcoin program offered by BlockFi that allows you to earn rewards for your Bitcoin investments.
  • Upgrade Bitcoin Card – offers a comprehensive Bitcoin program with a range of additional benefits and rewards.

Upgrade Bitcoin vs. BlockFi Bitcoin

Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Visa Overview

The Upgrade was established in 2017 by a team of professionals that’s been in the fintech industry1 for over 15 years. Aiming to offer better value and more flexibility than traditional banking institutions, Upgrade offers affordable financial services, including personal loans, Upgrade credit cards, and rewards checking. The newest financial product from Upgrade is the Upgrade Bitcoin card which boasts lower costs than conventional credit cards and earns Bitcoin rewards every time you pay back your dues. All Bitcoin services and accounts through Upgrade are provided by the New York Digital Investment Group2 (NYDIG).

BlockFi Bitcoin Rewards Visa Overview

BlockFi entered the market around the same time Upgrade did, being established by Zac Prince and Flori Marquez in 2017. Its aim was to provide convenient credit services to markets that have limited access to them. In BlockFi’s offer, you’ll find financial products like interest accounts, trading accounts, and crypto-backed loans. As a crypto-oriented fintech, BlockFi is the only independent lender with institutional backing from Fidelity, Valar Ventures, Coinbase Ventures, and Galaxy Digital, to name but a few.

Upgrade Bitcoin vs BlockFi Bitcoin Comparison Table

BlockFi Bitcoin RewardsUpgrade Bitcoin Rewards
IssuerEvolve Bank & TrustCross River Bank
Annual Fee$0$0
Regular APR14.99% – 24.99% (Variable)8.99% – 29.99% (Fixed)
Intro Offer3.5% Intro Rewards for 90 days$200 Bonus2
Bitcoin RewardsUp to 3.5% (Capped) 1.5% Unlimited Rewards
Available Credit LineUp to $25,000$500 to $50,000
Foreign Trans. Fees$0$0
Min. Credit NeededGood CreditFair Credit
Instant Virtual CardNot DisclosedNO
ReviewsBlockFi Bitcoin Visa ReviewUpgrade Cards Review
Learn MoreMore InfoMore Info
ApplicationPre-Qualify, Now!Pre-Qualify, Now!

Upgrade and BlockFi Offer Details

Upgrade Bitcoin and BlockFi Bitcoin cards are more than simple credit cards. Take a look at what each lender offers with their Bitcoin financial products.

Upgrade Bitcoin Card

  • $200 Bonus2 rewards (terms apply)
  • Unlimited 1.5% cashback in Bitcoin on card purchases (once you’ve made a payment);
  • No annual fees;
  • No maintenance fees;
  • No activation fees;
  • Credit lines from $500 to $50,000;
  • Affordable, fixed-rate monthly payments.

BlockFi Bitcoin Card

  • 1.5% cashback in Bitcoin on all eligible trades;
  • 2% cashback in Bitcoin after spending $50,000;
  • 3.5% cashback in Bitcoin in the first 90 days (up to $100 in Bitcoin);
  • No annual fees;
  • No foreign transaction fees;
  • Get $30 in Bitcoin for referring a friend;
  • $25,000 credit limit.

The right card for you depends entirely on your needs and preferences. If you want predictable, affordable credit, the Upgrade Bitcoin has everything you need. However, if you’re more interested in earning Bitcoin, BlockFi does provide you with more opportunities to do so.

5 Key Advantages

BlockFi Bitcoin Visa ProsUpgrade Bitcoin Visa Pros
Upgrade Bitcoin rewards card presents several advantages, including:On the other hand, the BlockFi Bitcoin card offers these advantages:
1. No security deposit is needed;
2. No prepayment penalty or penalty APR;
3. Fixed interest rates;
4. Equal monthly payments;
5. Transfer funds to your bank account.
1. Variable APR from 8.99% to 29.99%;
2. Reporting to Equifax and Experian;
3. Considers applicants with lower credit scores;
4. Pre-approval without impact on your credit score;
5. No over-limit fee.

3 Main Cons

No financial product is perfect for all users, so both Upgrade and BlockFi do have some drawbacks that you should consider before applying for their cards.

Upgrade Bitcoin Rewards Cons:

  1. No welcome bonus is available;
  2. The card isn’t available in every state;
  3. Bitcoin cannot be transferred to a separate wallet.

BlockFi Bitcoin Rewards Cons:

  1. Rewards aren’t available for every purchase;
  2. Bitcoin rewards aren’t available in real time;
  3. You cannot convert Bitcoins to other cryptocurrencies.

Competing Crypto Reward Cards

Upgrade Bitcoin vs Nexo Crypto Mastercard

The Upgrade Bitcoin Card and Nexo Card are two of the most popular crypto cards on the market. Upgrade offers up to 1.5% in BTC, while Nexo Card lets you keep your crypto, rather than sell it and earn 2% in NEXO. Both cards offer competitive credit line rates, making them an attractive option for those who want to maximize their crypto earnings. The Upgrade has a 20-cryptocurrency limit, while Nexo supports over 20 cryptocurrencies. Ultimately, the choice between these two cards depends on which features are most important to the user. While Upgrade Card is ideal for those looking for a high credit line (up to $50,000) and intro bonus, Nexo Card is best suited for those looking for a card that allows them to keep their crypto funds.

Bottom Line

Making a decision about which platform to use for your Bitcoin investments can be tough since both Upgrade and BlockFi offer great benefits. Here are a few questions to help guide your decision-making process: How often do you want to trade? If you’re an active trader looking for speed and convenience, Upgrade might be the choice for you. If you’re a long-term investor focused on growing your investments, then BlockFi could be the better option for you. Do you want access to other cryptocurrencies apart from Bitcoin? Upgrade offers more trading options, boasting over 30 cryptocurrencies. On the other hand, BlockFi only offers Bitcoin and Ethereum. BlockFi stands out with a boosted introductory offer for new account holders and multiple cryptocurrency wallet. However, if you aren’t interested in accumulating and selling Bitcoin, these cards might not be the best choice for you. You have access to other rewards credit cards that might be better suited for your needs. Ultimately, it’s up to you to decide which platform best suits your investing needs.

Frequently Asked Questions

Upgrade Bitcoin vs BlockFi Bitcoin Article Reference List

  1. Fintech (Financial Technology) Definition, Fintech Weekly
  2. New York Digital Investment Group, NYDIG


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