Rewards credit cards are not alike and definitely not equal – finding the right one for your lifestyle can be frustrating. Remember that you want to choose a card with rewards which closely match your spending habits. Here we’ve broken down our favorite cash back credit cards into three common rewards categories: groceries, gas and rotating categories.
1) Groceries – Blue Cash American Express
If a significant amount of your money goes towards grocery purchases, it’s hard to beat Blue Cash American Express. This card offers 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets with a cap of $6,000 per year. After that, grocery transactions will earn 1% cash back for the remainder of the year. Members also earn 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and select department stores and 1% cash back on all other purchases.
New members can earn a $150 cash back bonus after spending a minimum of $1,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months that your account is open. Blue Cash American Express is currently offering new account holders a 0% introductory APR on both purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 billing cycles. After this time, your variable APR will be between 12.99% and 21.99% based on your creditworthiness at the time of approval. Additionally, a balance transfer fee of $5 or 3% of the total amount of the transfer (whichever is greater) will be applied to any transfer that posts to your account.
There is an annual fee of $75 for the card which is not waived.
2) Gas – BankAmericard Cash Rewards Visa
If gas purchases take a hefty bite out of your budget each month, you might want to consider the BankAmericard Cash Rewards Visa. This card offers a generous 3% cash back on gas and 2% cash back on groceries (with a combined limit of $1,500 per quarter). Once you’ve met the spending threshold, additional purchases will earn 1% cash back for the remainder of the quarter. All other purchases earn 1% cash back also.
Bank of America customers receive an additional 10% bonus when you redeem your cash back into a BOFA checking or savings account. Plus, if you are a Bank of America Preferred Rewards client, you can increase the bonus to 25% to 75% depending on your account balances.
This card currently has an online exclusive offer for new account holders. To qualify for the $100 cash rewards bonus, you must make at least $500 in eligible purchases on the card within the first 90 days that your account is open. Plus, new members can enjoy a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 billing cycles. Note: Balance transfers must post to your account within 60 days from the date your account is opened to qualify. After this promotional period ends, your variable APR will be 12.99% – 22.99% depending on your creditworthiness at the time of approval.
There is no annual fee for the BankAmericard Cash Rewards Visa.
3) Rotating Categories – Chase Freedom
If you’re looking for a rewards card that offers more generous cash back in specific rotating categories, Chase Freedom may be a perfect fit. Cardholders get 5% cash back in bonus categories which change every three months (capped at $1,500 in combined purchases per quarter). For example, the current bonus categories include Amazon.com, Audible.com, Zappos.com, and Diapers.com. (Chase Freedom is now offering 10% cash back on purchases made at these online retailers until the end of 2015 but you must activate the bonus categories by December 14th.) All other purchases earn unlimited 1% cash back.
New members can earn a $150 cash back bonus after spending $500 on eligible purchases within the first three months that your account is active. Additionally, new account holders receive a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 billing cycles. After this time, your variable APR will be 13.99% – 22.99% based on your creditworthiness at the time of approval. A balance transfer fee of 3% of the total amount of the transfer or $5 (whichever is greater) will be applied to each transfer that posts to your account. New members will receive a $25 cash back bonus after adding an authorized user and making a purchase within the first three months of account opening.
There is no annual fee for Chase Freedom.