Barclays offers game-changing crowd-sourced cards

Tuesday, December 10th, 2013

Barclays is trying to shake up the habitual credit card world by allowing consumers to have input on everything associated with their card: from the card’s look to its interest rate.

They have already launched two crowd-sourced credit cards: the Ring and Arrival credit cards. These cards may become a big change for the credit card industry, but more importantly they may become a good choice for consumers.

Let’s dig deeper and find what the credit card crowd-sourcing trend is.


Traditionally, the world of credit is dominated by banks which barely leave a room for discussion or feedback from consumers. That is what Barclays was trying to change when it first introduced its Ring credit card.

Working with Lithium Technologies, a software company, the bank created an online group to work together in order to set terms of the Ring card, voting on everything from interest rates to fees policy.

The card attracted a great deal of consumers who wanted to experience a more open and interactive credit card. After the success of ring card, Barclays launched a second crowd-sourced card, the Arrival.

The bank created its own community for this travel rewards credit card which is called Barclaycard Travel. Unlike Ring card, the community of the Arrival card is open to both members and non-members.

Input & Profit

Barclays constantly asks for public input on cards terms and the structure of the rewards program. Thus regular consumers participate in the process of setting their credit card’s terms and conditions. The participation is not obligatory and consumers may any time take part in any discussion or just look through it.

But there is another perk consumers will like a lot: using a Barclays crowd-sourced credit card not only allows consumers to vote about card’s terms, it also allows them to share the profits. The Barclays claims to share 70% of any additional earning with Ring cardholders, if the bank clears a 3% annual return on the card.

That is a good incentive for card holders to set good policies regarding interest rates and fees.

The crowd-sourced credit cards from Barclays offer some advantages over regular credit cards. Cardholders get some benefits not available to those with traditional credit cards. But it is still vague whether crowd-sourced credit cards will be less costly for consumers in the end.

It is not clear whether the crowd-sourced credit cards are the cheapest on the credit card market. But if it is important for you to have a say in your credit card’s terms and policy, a Barclays crowd-sourced card may be the thing you are looking for.

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