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The Best Cash Back Credit Cards, April 2014

This article was written by in Credit. 168 comments.


Cash back credit cards can help consumers practice responsible spending while earning a little extra for their efforts when used properly. It wasn’t long ago that the best cash back credit cards were offering rewards as high as 5% for purchases, and we are seeing a return of those types of offers. Certain cash back credit cards are offering rewards as high as 5% for purchases in categories that change each quarter when you enroll and are usually subject to quarterly maximums.

Today’s cash back credit cards generally offer 1% cash back on purchases. However, if you look hard enough, you’ll find a number of credit cards with higher cash rebates than just 1%. This article lists a selection of cash back credit cards you can find today, and I update the article when there is new information to share. Keep in mind that in order to make credit card with rewards programs worthwhile, you must avoid interest charges and late fees by paying your bill on time and in full every single month.

Editor’s choice

Citi® Dividend Platinum Select® Visa® CardCiti® Dividend Platinum Select® Visa® Card In addition to offering 1% cash-back on regular purchases, with this card you can earn $100 cash back after $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. It also features a 0% introductory APR offer for 12 months on purchases* and 12 months on balance transfers* -- an attractive feature for borrowers who may be planning to buy a large item soon -- and carries an annual fee of $0 *. After the introductory period ends, the APR will be 12.99% - 22.99%* variable, based on your creditworthiness. There is a 3% ($5 min. ) fee for each balance transfer, and the maximum you can earn in cash back with the card each calendar year is $300, excluding the $100 cash back available with today's offer. See Citi Dividend Card Reward Program Information for more details.

Discover it®Discover it® Discover has done it again with the Discover it Card, and its new offer could shake up your entire wallet. In addition to its 0% introductory offer on balance transfers for 18 months, the card also boasts cash back up to 5% in categories that change* and 1% on all other purchases* -- and all for an annual fee of just $0 .

Discover it® cardDiscover it® card Discover has a history of making bold moves in the credit card marketplace, and the new Discover it® card Card follows that tradition. Offering cash back of up to 5% in categories that change* and 1% on all other purchases*, plus an introductory APR of 0% for 14 months on purchases and balance transfers and an annual fee of $0 , this card aims to provide more benefits than any card you've had before.

PenFed Platinum Cash Rewards Visa® CardPenFed Platinum Cash Rewards Visa® Card The PenFed Platinum Cash Rewards Visa® Card features some very competitive cash-back offers -- see the official terms for details -- but the catch is that you have to be a member of the Pentagon Federal Credit Union to obtain it. That means you must be a United States government employee, member of the United States Military and Uniformed Services, employee or volunteer of the American Red Cross, or a family member/housemate of a current PenFed member. You may also establish your membership eligibility by becoming a member of the National Military Family Association, or Voices for America’s Troops (there is a low one-time fee to join these organizations).


Mutual of Omaha Bank Platinum Rewards MasterCard®Mutual of Omaha Bank Platinum Rewards MasterCard® While not strictly a cash-back offering, this card is ideal for the consumer with excellent credit who is looking for a card with no annual fee, no balance transfer fee and a basic rewards program. This can make it an enticing alternative to ordinary cash-back cards, particularly since you can redeem your points for cash. The interest rate, which is currently at 9.99% - 20.99% variable, may also sweeten the deal for users with strong credit who carry a balance month to month.

If you’re holding on to a cash back credit card that you feel deserves to make this list, let me know by leaving your thoughts in the comments below. If the offer is good, I’ll add it to this best cash back credit cards list.

Updated April 1, 2014 and originally published January 25, 2012. If you enjoyed this article, subscribe to the RSS feed or receive daily emails. Follow @ConsumerismComm on Twitter and visit our Facebook page for more updates.

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About the author

Luke Landes, also known as Flexo, is the founder of Consumerism Commentary. He has been blogging and writing for the internet since 1995 and has been building online communities since 1991. Find out more about him and follow Luke Landes on Twitter. View all articles by .

{ 168 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Investor Junkie

I just did a review of Fidelity’s Investment Rewards Visa Card

http://investorjunkie.com/fidelity-investment-rewards-visa-card-review

At least for me the 1.5% return up to $15k and 2% after that is perfect for my family. Plus it deposits directly into a Fidelity account.

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avatar Sumflow

Just what I wanted , with this one, part of all I spend on food, fuel and entertainment will be put to work buying assets. Thanks for the tip. Where I go, hardly anyplace takes American Express,

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avatar SoccerCore11

You missed the Schwab Visa, which has unlimited 2% cash back on all purchases.

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avatar Michael

I was thinking you were missing the Schwab Visa too … but that card is no longer accepting new applicants.

Program was closed a few months ago. Dang

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avatar Investor Junkie

Yea the Schwab was a good deal for a card. Fidelity has one with 2% but it’s AMEX only.

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avatar Flexman

I still have mine, but they took away the Schwab name, and it’s operated by FIA SIGNATURE VISA. They don’t offer this anymore!

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avatar Lowell

Yeah… I have a Schwab card with 2% and have just been informed by FIA Card Services that I will be converted to a 1% cash back Bank of America Card… I informed them that I will be closing the card within a couple months once I have converted to a new card.

avatar MC

I have this card. It’s issued by Bank of America and they are cutting it down to a 1% cash back on up to $1500.00 per month max. $15.00 cash back maximum…hardly worth it and the interest rate is high so it doesn’t make sense to ever carry a balance.

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avatar Flexman

They don’t offer this anymore!

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avatar Disappointed

The Schwab Visa with 2% cash back is being cancelled. It will be replaced with a Bank of America card that offers the same old stupid, worthless point rewards.

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avatar Ron Willems

They just junked this program, which makes me very disappointed. FIA Card Services is handing the Schwab card program over to Bank of America as of November 1, 2011 and is cutting the cash back from 2% to 1%.

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avatar Ron Willems

Schwas unfortunately got rid of the 2% cash back card about 18 months ago.

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avatar Anthony

It’ll probably take some good management skills, but the best rewards would come from:

1. Using the Chase Freedom Visa first, when specific categories are in rotation. Getting 5% on those.
2. If the categories are not active, using Citi Dividend Platinum Select MasterCard. Getting 2% on those.
3. Then falling back on 1% from either card.

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avatar kaio

1. Use Chase Freedom and Discover for their 5% categories (Discover has one month grocery ones too)
2. Amex Costco card for restaurant (3%) & travel (2%)
3. Discover card for online shopping (LLBean – 5%, Sears 5%)
4. Chase rewards for the rest – 3% back on Groceries, Gas & pharmacy – 1% everywhere else

Discover also gives the best rewards use options: $20 rewards gets you a $25 LLBean card.

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avatar Sal Mallian

Investor junkie missed that Fidelity Rewards also has a card from American Express that pays 2% cash back into your fidelity account on all purchases with no caps or annual fee. I just signed up yesterday in fact!

Visit my blog for mostly non-credit-card related rants, except one about Discover Card in 2008 about their lame process of lowering your credit card rates when you ask.

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avatar Sal Mallian

Hey there is a new up and comer the, Citi Forward Visa card that I just signed up for. Looks like it pays 5% cash back on all restaurants and movie purchases (when you redeem 10,000 points at a time for gift cards), you get a about $85 of points up front for using it and signing up for paperless. There are also a few other perks. And if you have good credit, the APR is 12.99%, but 0% for a year!
Click my name to visit my blog and go to the summer of 2008 to read a complaint against Discover Card.

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avatar Lindsey

I have this card, and I like it so far. Technically a points-based rewards card isn’t really cash back though (although you can redeem for cash). Basically you get 5 points for books, movies, music, and restaurants and 1 point for other purchases. 14,000 gets you $100 statement credit (there are lower denominations as well, for worse value), which is .7% if all your purchases were 1 point and 3.5% if all your purchases were 5 points. In reality you’re probably somewhere in between. If you get gift cards, on the other hand, a $50 gift card is 6,000 points, so .83% for 1 point purchases and 4.2% for your 5 point purchases. You get a full 5% if all your spending is on 5 point purchases and you get a $100 gift card – however, not all the gift cards are available for the $100, best value option.

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avatar gil

The Fidelity deal is total bait and switch. If you want cash back, you only get 1% and that is after the hassle of setting up accounts with them. This is their fine print:
Customers earn 2 points for each $1 in net retail purchases. Once you reach 5,000 points, they can be redeemed automatically or on demand for cash at a 1% exchange rate into an eligible Fidelity account (i.e. 5,000 points = $50 deposit). The ability to contribute to an IRA or 529 college savings plan account is subject to IRS rules and specific program policies, including those on eligibility and annual and maximum contribution limits. Additional restrictions apply. Full details appear in the Program Guidelines new card customers receive with their card.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

I’m always one for pointing out bait and switch tactics when I see them, but with the Fidelity card, it’s fully disclosed you need to open an account to receive the cash back. At the very top of Fidelity’s offer page it says, “Turn 2% of purchases into a deposit in your eligible Fidelity account.” There should be no confusion.

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avatar gil

That is not the issue I have problems with. Their deal is that you get 2% in “points” NOT cash. If you want cash, they use an “exchange rate” and you actually get 1%. THAT is the bait and switch. They advertise 2 and you get 1.

I called them to confirm this and that is their deal.

The Schwabb card was king. Hopefully an offer like that will come up again.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

Let me illustrate:

Spend $10,000, earn 20,000 points (2 points for every dollar). Trade in 20,000 points for $200 cash back (the 1% exchange rate).

Your *result* is 2% cash back. $200 is 2% of $10,000. This is pretty straightforward in terms of points-based cash back programs.

avatar gil

Are you calling me stupid? I think you are right! OK, just couldn’t get it to make sense, and when I called them, they didn’t help me make sense of it either. Thanks!

avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

Not at all, Gil. These things can be tricky sometimes, and the CSRs who answer the phone often can’t make it clear for their customers.

avatar Tom

Gil:
Yes, you do have to open a Fidelity account to take advantage of this offer, but it certainly is not bait and switch. I have used it exclusively to get consistent 2% back every month for the last year. I spend $2500, I get 5000 points which equates to $50 (2% of my purchases) deposited into my Fidelity account. Once it’s in my Fidelity account, I am free to do whatever I want to do with it, spend it, invest it, or save it.

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avatar Dan

I recall reading somewhere about that PenFed card that to join, all you need to do is make a one-time payment of $20-30 to some military organization to become a member. Then you can join PenFed and get the card.

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avatar NerdWallet

You’re absolutely right Dan, it’s about $25 to join the union, and they have some of the best cards out there. We profile them all the time on our blog because they’re one of our favorites

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avatar Claudia Cargill

It’s a $15 one-time fee to join Voices for American Troops.

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avatar Albireo

You are correct.

I joined PenFed last year by the one-time membership payment to NMFA and have been VERY PLEASED with PenFed’s offerings.

Since joining, I have been using the PenFed VISA Platinum Cashback Rewards Card for nearly 100% of my credit purchases. This month, they reduced their grocery cashback rewards to 1% from 2% (with little-to-no warning) and that was a rather big disappointment (chalk it up to inflation and the Fed’s monetary policies I suppose [is anyone else noticing the crazy prices at the supermarket these days?]). But, I still find their card to be well worthy of this list and highly recommended.

Also of note, PenFed offers incredible loan deals that you often won’t find anywhere else. Since joining, I have refinanced my home and car loans through PenFed and am saving a bundle on interest. I highly recommend PenFed!

Lastly, I would like to extend my gratitude to Flexo for maintaining this very informative blog.

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avatar Rob

Albireo,
Are you able to view the ‘closing date’ on your credit card bill on the website? I just joined a few weeks ago and cannot for the life of me figure out where they show the closing date. I like to keep track of when my credit cards close and the new billing period begins.
Thanks!

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avatar Albireo

Hi Rob,

My PenFed VISA Platinum Cashback Rewards Card has its cycles tied to the month (e.g. April 1 through April 30 would be a billing peroid). I’m not certain, but it may be that way for all of their credit accounts.

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avatar Kim

Rob,

No, Penfed’s online banking site only gives you the due date, not the cycle date. You can contact thier member service department though and they can tell you that.

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avatar Sanjay

Yes, Penfed Visa is a great card. YOu can become member by donating $10, that is what i did, and got their visa card. it has 5% back on gasoline, 3% on grocery and 1% all.

SO, overall
For gasoline and grocery, i use this card – 5 and 3% cash back respectively.
For all other purchases, i use fidelity card (2%)

Can anyone suggest a better reward program to beat this 5, 3 and 2% cash back. I am dying to find one.

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avatar liebezeit

I think you are right on the PenFed Visa for 5% off gas/3% off groceries.
I would add a US Bank Cash+ Visa for 5% off two chosen categories. (restaurants/electronics stores or restaurants/cell phone let’s say)
Then Fidelity AMEX for 2% off everything else.

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avatar liebezeit

Oh, and the 3% off Amazon card, which doesn’t need to be carried around.

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avatar David C

Chase Freedom:
I’ll have to investigate if your description of the Chase online mall is accurate. I’m still on the older 3% on top 5 catagories plan until June 2nd, and at least on the older plan when you shopped online with Chase Rewards Plus it was a straight percentage cash back. So, for example when I bought some sneakers at JCPenny with 4% cash back, I literally received a bonus of 4% on top of the standard 1%. *BUT*, this newer “Ultimate Rewards” program could be different and may be exactly as you described… I’m supposed to receive a welcome package sometime this month, so perhaps I’ll know more then.

Pen Fed Visa Platinum Gas / Cash Rewards Card:
Like Dan said, anyone can join the PenFed credit union by a one-time $20 donation to the National Military Family Association. It’s harder, though, to be approved for the credit card itself because PenFed is a very conservative lender. You might want to search around the ficoforums for advice before trying to obtain the Pen Fed Visa.

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avatar NerdWallet

I actually got taken by Chase on the Freedom card when they changed the rewards scheme. I’m not at all impressed with the way they handle it now, since the categories are kind of random, they rotate quarterly, and you have to “opt in” to get the 5%. Here’s my rant: link

Plus, realistically speaking since they rotate, you’re really only averaging 1.25% on an annual basis, which is not impressive at all. You’re better off with a straight 2% cashback card like the Fidelity Amex.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

Just to clarify, as a representative from Chase pointed out privately, the bonus is an additional (up to) 20% back on the purchase price, not on the points *for* the purchase. In other words, you can earn up to 21% cash back by shopping in the mall… not a bad benefit, indeed, if you prefer shopping with your money rather than tucking away your rewards into a savings account. So as you described, you earned 4% cash back for shopping in addition to the 1% built-in cash back.

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avatar SavingEverything

Honestly, i think people have to price around or shop around to get the most cash back bonuses ontop of whatever your card gives you for regular purchases (ie. 1%). Shopping online at the credit cards’ shopping malls: DiscoverCard’s ShopDiscover, Chase’s Ultimate Rewards Mall, AmericanExpress’ BonusPointsMall, Citibank’s ThankYou Network, BankofAmerica or FIA’s AddItUp, Sovereign Bank (Santander) CashRewards, and others can vary with the same retailer or merchant. For one, I saw DiscoverCard give 5% bonus + whatever tier level you are in; Chase gave 3% +1%regular cashback; BankofAmerica gave 3%. Maybe you can enroll your FIA Schwab card with BankofAmerica’s additup, and get the 2% plus the bonus % cashback (not sure if this card and other affiliate/ co-brand cards are applicable; any1 know??) Alternately, you can price around if you are a Frequent Flyer Miles junkie; some airlines gives 10 miles per $ you spend by shopping from the airline’s webmall site, and you’ll get your normal cashback % from your card issuer. Side

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avatar JoeTaxpayer

The Chase card at 5% looks worth the effort if you have the patience to track what card to use when and where. I have the older Fidelity 529 MasterCard, 2% into the kid’s college account. Amex Open gives 5% on Office supply store and certain hotels. So I use that for those specific purchases.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

For those who mentioned the Fidelity card… I will add that to the list. Thanks for the feedback!

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avatar Nester

Under a different category – spending money you actually possess instead of credit: PayPal Debit Card offers 1.5% on all purchases made using ‘credit’ as an option (instead of debit).

Understandably this is a different category debit vs credit (existing money vs borrowed). Might be a different feature idea. Local credit unions probably blow this benefit out of the water, but far less flexible in moving money around accounts.

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avatar Daniel

I have the True Earnings card and it has been huge because there is no cap, no minimum, and I have the business one which gets 4% back on gas as opposed to 3% that is listed here. Plus with the open network I save up to 10% in additional savings off of places like Hertz, Hyatt, FedEx, and Marriott. This year I’m averaging 2.3% back on my card across all expenditures when you figure the open network and the annual rebate from Costco for the executive membership. If you travel and eat out a lot, this card is definitely worth it.

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avatar Jacob

I think a lot of the cards have great potential for earning a lot, but I would rather have flat % back on purchases and not need to go online to ‘enroll’ for the extra % back. I also dislike changing categories, I really do not wish to time my purchases according to their rewards schedule (chase freedom!).

The penfed looks great as does anything that offer more than 1% on all purchases with no threshold nor limit.

At the moment I am using a chase amazon card. I buy a lot of stuff from amazon and it offers no limit 1% on all purchases and 2% on gas, dining, office supply and drugstore purchases, also with no limit nor threshold. Since I use amazon a lot it offers 3% on those purchases, which is nice. I do not need to log on to do anything but pay my bill and redeem my rewards. The way you redeem rewards with chase has been far superior to any other card I have used (BoA, TD, Discover).

I think the number 1 card on the list should be the one that requires the highest average % back with the least amount of ‘work’ on the user’s side.

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avatar 4hendricks ♦248 (Cent)

I love my Discover card for cash back. I then use the cash back to save 10-20% on gift cards

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avatar Jack

Update: PenFed is offering 2% cashback on supermarkets only until Feb 28, 2011. So not a hot deal anymore.

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avatar Scott

The Citi Cashreturns card “does” have a limit. I’ve had this card for two years and just discovered the $300.00 maximum limit on cash back. I think it was just instituted.

I’m replacing it today with something higher up on the list. Hopefully the information on the alternatives is correct.

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avatar vincent coates

Chase has just started a requirement for their 10% feature that you open a checking account a keep a 1500$ minimum balance.

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avatar Rob

Thanks for the advice! I had never heard of the PenFed card, but I just signed up for it to use for my gas purchases going forward. For the people who do have this card, what’s the deal with the Regular Share account? It made me deposit $5 into it (I guess opening a savings account is a requirement?). Can I just leave this account alone from now on? I really only applied for the credit card and don’t want to have to manage a savings account as well.

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avatar Kim

Rob,

Penfed is a credit union and are therefore goverened by the National Credit Union Association which requires membership into the credit union and a share savings account with at least $5 deposited into it in order to take advantage of any of thier banking products such as credit cards, checking account, mortgage loans, car loan, etc. You dont have to manage that share savings account, you just have to make sure you keep at least $5 in that account as per PEnfed’s membership requirement.

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avatar Rob

Thanks Kim!

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avatar Justin

I went though paying the $20 membership fee/donation in order to be eligible to apply for the “Pen Fed Visa Platinum Gas/Cash Rewards Card” – my credit score’s 728, limited history, but spotless record with zero debt. Didn’t matter, REJECTED IMMEDIATELY…If you don’t have long standing, perfect credit – don’t waste your time, money, or inquiry on Pen Fed…for a select few, that 5% cash back on gas will cover the membership fee, then exceed it 5x – but, even if you have above average credit – don’t get your hopes up…also, their website is really confusing, and bit scammy as well – READ THE FINE PRINT BEFORE YOU SUBMIT ANYTHING!

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avatar lol

“READ THE FINE PRINT BEFORE YOU SUBMIT ANYTHING!”
Duh?

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avatar Kim

Justin,

If you were denied for the credit card at Penfed you didnt meet thier strict lending guidelines. Penfed is a credit union and therefore very conservative which is why they can offer such wonderful rates, products and services to those who qualify. They are not a high risk lender and therefore do not have the delinquency and bad loans that other less conservative lenders do. Because of this they are able to pass on lower interest rates to thier borrowers and wonderful products like the Visa card that gives you 5% back on gas and 1% on all other purchases with no annual fee. I’m sorry you didnt have a very good experience.

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avatar AlyB

Although not as “flashy” as some of the offers in this article, I have been very happy with the PNC CashBuilder® Visa® Credit Card (formerly National City Bank Cashbuilder Visa). Here are the current terms from their website:

PNC CashBuilder Visa is a card that earns a 1.25% competitive cash back rate on all net purchases.*

•Earn 1.75% cash back on all your net purchases for the first billing cycle after account opening.*
•Variable purchase and balance transfer Annual Percentage Rate (APR), currently 12.99% to 20.99%, based on credit worthiness.** This APR varies with the market, based on the prime rate.
•No Annual Fee**

For more info and to read the “fine print” go to:

https://www.pnc.com/webapp/unsec/Solutions.do?siteArea=/pnccorp/PNC/Home/Personal/Credit+Cards/PNC+CashBuilder+Visa+Credit+Card

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avatar Debbie C

I love my Nordstrom Visa Card – the points earned get converted into redemption vouchers that are sent automatically and can be used like cash at Nordstroms. I save my $20 and $40 vouchers and then when I’ve accumulated $200 in vouchers, I go shopping!

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avatar Debbie C

I use my Target VIsa card when I shop at Target in order to get the 5% discount on purchases.

I use the Amazon Visa for amazon.com purchases in order to earn their 3%.

I use the Costco AMEX for gasoline purchases at Costco to get 3% back on that.

For all other purchases, I use the Nordstrom Visa Card in order to earn their same-as-cash vouchers.

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avatar Rob

you may want to consider the Citi Forward card for your Amazon purchases. You get 5 points for every dollar spent at restaurants, movies and bookstores (they consider Amazon a bookstore for some reason), and 1 point for everything else. The 5 points comes out to roughly 3.1% – 5% in the form of gift cards, and you can get a Visa gift card too, which is basically cash.

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avatar Debbie C

Wow; good deal! Thanks for the feedback; I don’t see it on your list, so I’ll Google it.

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avatar Tammy

My favorite card was formerly the chase 5% card but I hate the rotating categories and am searching online for a replacement. I still have the former Schwab now FIA 2% card, and the beauty of it is that there’s no minimum to redeem the cash back, and it’s auto-deposited into my acct. As an Amazon shopper, I am aware of the Amazon card (3% on Amazon, 2% for everything else) and so far that is my leading contender to replace the Chase card. I just want cash back — not gift cards.

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avatar Alex

What about PNC’s cards? The Cashbuilder card offers 1.25%-1.75% cash back on all purchases! Higher tiers can be gained by having a checking account or just by spending more!

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avatar KDU8

Last year on my Freedom card, I averaged 2.9% cash back between the rotating 3% and bonus 5% and a significant amount of shopping through their rewards shopping site, accompanied by only cashing in for the $250 checks. With that bonus $50 for rewards accumulation, that makes your effective earning rate 1.25% at the bare minimum. It should be higher always, simply because you have the rotating 3% categories.

However, I have recently applied for the Fidelity AMEX as well, and since the card uses the WorldPoints program, you can play it similarly to the Freedom card, in that if you wait until you hit 25,000 points, you CAN redeem for a 1:1 cash check for a full $250. Up until that point, the checks are fractional (because they WANT you to open a Fidelity account); however, a Fidelity account isn’t REQUIRED to take advantage of the 2% base earnings rate… just a little patience, that’s all.

When I ran a comparison between my Freedom card and the FIA card using the current available earning levels in the Chase Rewards Shopping site and the WorldPoints Mall, about 75% of the stores I use frequently online will produce a higher NET cash return using the FIA card than the Freedom card. In my book, the FIA card could be easily propelled up on this card list. It’s usefulness is being underestimated by the illusor tie to Fidelity.

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avatar Slam

Thank you for doing the comparison. This article is a joke, it just updates every month with the same information so people think its current. The FIA is the best no annual fee cash back card around. I have the Chase Freedom as well, but only use when some place doesn’t take Amex.

I also think the Citi forward visa should be on the list. You get 5 points for every purchase on books, movies, music, and restaurants. And guess who is largest bookstore? Amazon. So you get 5 pts for every amazon purchase. You cant redeem them 1:1, so its not exactly 5% cash back, but I think it comes out to 2-3% cash back, slightly better than FIA. Oh, and the categories don’t change very few months, and you don’t have to opt in like the Chase Freedom.

I’m not sure why this editor is on love with the Chase Freedom, There are at least 2 better cards out there.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

Each month I evaluate the current offers — in fact it’s updated on a more than monthly basis. The cards listed on this page change depending on what offers are available.

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avatar Deb

On the American Express website, their description of the Blue Cash card says: Get 3% cash back at supermarkets, 2% back at gas stations and department stores, and 1% everywhere else. The woman from Money Magazine that was on the Today Show yesterday said 5% on three categories: gas, groceries & pharmacies and 1.25% on everything else once you hit $6500. Why the discrepancy?

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avatar Seng

Hi Deb,

John is right about the card you are looking for. It’s the AMEX Blue Cash card which they stopped offering in May/June of 2011. I did an analysis on all these cards and that card, although no longer availabe, paid back the most for the normal single consumer, especailly with gas at where it is today. What I also concluded was that the AMEX Preferred was the second best card for my needs even with the $75 annual fee taken out the cashback.

For a family that spends alot on groceries that 6% could make a huge difference. If the AMEX Blue Cash was not availabe when I was doing my research, the AMEX Preferred would have been my second choice. Take a look at the AMEX Preferred.

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avatar Ron

Be careful thoughh as the new AMEX Blue Cash cards (I have the older one with the $6,500 threshold limit) have a $6,000 Cap on the higher percentages; after you hit the Cap you start to earn lower percentages. The older Blue Cash cards had a $6,500 threshold before the higher percentages kicked in but thereafter were unlimited.

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avatar jojo

I have the old Amex Blue and it is 5% on pharmacy, Gas, Grocery. I’m not sure when they changed the terms but its a shame as it really is a great cashback card for a family. They did force a change from 1.25% on everyday down to 1% on everyday. Other than that all remains in tact for the older customers.

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avatar John

Deb,

I just got off the phone with AMEX. I have been using the Blue Cash card for a few years now. I average about $1,000 back annually. The latter description is correct; 5% on gas, groceries & pharmacies and 1.25% on everything else – after $6,500. I make a habit of saving some major purchases for July when my card cycle resets, thus I hit the $6,500 in two billing cycles. One CATCH, Walmart is the largest retailer of groceries in the World, but AMEX does not recognize this and will only give you 1.25% back. The same is true for Sams and Costco.

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avatar tony

Hi,

I have the Capitol One No Hassle Cash Rewards card but do not have to spend $6k to get 2% on gas and groceries. I don’t see where you get that or the 3%??? From Capital One site:

No Hassle Cash Rewards Credit Card

Rewards 2% cash back on purchases at gas stations and major grocery stores

1% cash back on all other purchases

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avatar B

Now that I have been approved for the PenFed VISA, I now own 12…yes, 12 credit cards. I have recently in the past few months been heavily researching the new products and utilizing rewards. I have been diligent to maintain superb credit (has taken a bit of a hit lately with the three new cards and other hard hits). PenFed probably loves a clean payment history, not the credit score alone. So, if ANYONE cares to know the reason I have that many cards; it is simple. I have the following cards with the most utilized rebate potential out of all 12. Here we go. I will even list them alphabetically. :) OH! NONE of these cards carry an annual fee.

American Express Delta Skymiles Options – I use to book flights only.
Capital One Business Platinum VISA – Well, business expenses. Good bank, too.
Capital One (formerly Chase) Sony Card VISA – All things Sony. Plus you get a website benefit.
http://www.sonyrewards.com/en/home/base/
Chase Freedom MC – I utilize the 5% on the revolving promotions up to $1500.
Choice Privileges VISA – GREAT if you are a fan of Choice brand hotels.
Citi Hilton HHonors VISA – See above except apply to Hilton hotel family.
Discover More – Categories are similar to Chase Freedom. Cap on 5% is less than $400 usually.
Macy’s Department Card – What can I say? Everyone needs one retailer card. Great coupon kickers.
Wachovia Platinum VISA – Nothing. Big limit and low interest for a bad pinch.
WorldPoints VISA – Worthless.
Upromise World MC – This card is cool. It offers great online savings AND you can sign up for a free account with Upromise, link it to Sallie Mae Savings and…poof. Savings are swept into a savings account.

Lastly, I cannot wait to save 5% on gas ALL the time. Thank you for the advice from all blogs and commentary.

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avatar B

Quick note. Chase allows to redeem rewards as small as $20-$25. Discover is $50 min. If it is one or the other, Chase Freedom is much better.

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avatar Larry

i just applied for the Penfed card to get 5% back on gas. I will also apply for the AE Blue Cash :Preferred to get 6% back on groceries – the AE card costs $75 per year but we spend $600 per month on groceries so it will be well worth it. Lastly i got the Chase Freedom Card where i will get back $150 after my first $500 in purchases.

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avatar epd21084 ♦698 (Dime)

I’ve shopped through the Ultimate Rewards Mall and they never gave me the points (I think it was 5% of the purchase sub-total). I contacted them and they said they had no record of the transaction and would not give me the points that I earned by shopping through the “Rewards Mall.”

Total scam in my opinion… will never do that again. CapitalOne Venture card is far better for the Miles you get and Perk Central actually gives you the miles earned through their system.

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avatar Tracy

I am deciding between two cash back cards: The Chase Freedom, as mentioned above, and the Bank of America Cash Rewards 1% back on everyday, 2% on groceries, 3% on gas. Any thoughts on the latter one?

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avatar aerosgal ♦0 (Newbie)

A bit off subject, but does anyone know if/where I can get a current code for the $100 cash bonus for opeing a Chase checking account (not the one with the dd attached)? Thanks!

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avatar Diannah Campbell

Your website rates this card very highly. I will admit, at a glance it is very appealing. We spent a good bit of time and several phone calls to the card issuer and discovered some information that we are not sure that you are aware of. Did you realize that to get just a $10 cash back reward(true check in the amount of $10), using the 1% cash back, you would have to spend $100,000 in credit card purchases? So to earn the 2,000 points and a $20 cash back reward that they advertise, you would need to spend $200,000 in credit card purchases! I feel their advertising is misleading and thought you should check into this to see if you still want to rate their product so highly.

Thanks!

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

Your math is incorrect. For Chase Freedom, you earn 1 point for every dollar spent. You need to spend $1,000, earning 1,000 points, to redeem $10 in rewards, but you may need to earn more to qualify or a minimum payout. 1% cash back means it works out to $1 for every $100 you spend. It’s that simple.

“Rewards are earned as points, which can be redeemed for cash back. 1% cash back equals 1 point. If you choose to redeem for cash back, 1 point equals $0.01 cash back. For example, 2,000 points can be redeemed for a $20 check.”

The 5% bonus opportunity improves this offer

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avatar Lindsey

1 point for $1 in purchases… to get a 1,000 points, you charge $1,000. Not sure where you’re getting your numbers.

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avatar Petesea

True Earnings® Card from Costco and American Express offers 3% for Restaurants as well.

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avatar Lindsey

I don’t have it, but why not Bank of America Cash Rewards card? I keep getting ads when I go on the BofA website – 3% gas, 2% groceries, 1% else (and $50 back bonus offer). Sounds competitive to me.

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avatar Dan - BankVibe

@ Lindsey,

B of A cards are generally not competitive for rewards by any means. If you’re looking for low apr, then yea, you may want to see what BA is offering. But those rewards you claimed are actually beaten significantly by several other card offers, both Discover and Citi regularly offer 5% cash back on the gas and grocery front and also have the 1% cash back on all other purchases. You can also get a $50 bonus from those cards as well if you keep you’re eyes peeled for ‘em…sometimes even more.

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avatar Lindsey

Hmm, I don’t really understand how it’s possibly not competitive with the Capital One No Hassle. And as far as I know, Citi and Discover only do that on a rotating basis. For someone like myself, who’s essentially only spending money on groceries and very little else, it doesn’t help much to only have that a few months out of the year. I wouldn’t regularly be spending much in most of the other categories. I think I’d earn more cash back with a steady 2% groceries all year. But regardless, this is Capital One No Hassle with better rewards on gas. There are some flat 1% cash back cards on that list, so I don’t see why B of A wouldn’t be included.

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avatar S

Check out the new B of A cash rewards Visa. Straight 3% on gas 2% on groceries and 1% on everything else. No need to opt and no rotating categories.

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avatar liebezeit

Why not one of the AMEX Blue Cash cards? 3% off groceries (or 6%-%75AF)

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avatar liebezeit

Sorry, make that “or 6% – $75 AF”

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avatar Lindsey

And actually, it looks like Capital One did away with their no fee version of the card. So if their $39 a year No Hassle card makes the list, makes no sense why the no fee B of A card wouldn’t. In my opinion.

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avatar joe

BOA’s card is not unlimited. see their T&C:

“You will earn total cash rewards of 2% (consisting of 1% bonus cash rewards and 1% base cash rewards) for net purchases at eligible grocery merchants and 3% (consisting of 2% bonus cash rewards and 1% base cash rewards) for net purchases at eligible gas merchants (the “Bonus Categories”), for the first $1,500 of combined net purchases made during each calendar quarter in the Bonus Categories”

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avatar Lindsey

Good point. I’m low income, so that wouldn’t apply to me unless I was spending way more than I could afford. But for many people that may be a point of interest.

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avatar Anon

THE CHASE CARD HAS QUARTERLY POINT LIMITS on the bonus 5% cash back offers (I think $75). I just got one and got screwed!

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avatar Beatrice

How about this one?
Capital One Cash

Load up on cash back with a 50% bonus every year
Summary of Key Benefits:
Enjoy a 50% bonus on the cash back you earn every year
Earn 1% cash back on all purchases
Get your cash back how you want it, when you want it
Save with a low intro APR on purchases and no annual fee
New account holders can earn a one-time $100 bonus

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avatar Love2shBack

Just want to say Chase freedom no longer offers 200 signup bonus. It is cut half to $100.

I am also interested to know what people think about the CapitalOne Cash with 50% bonus. Sounds okay, still not as good as having 2%, god i still have my FIA card but knowing that i will be losing the 2% end of october, i already miss the card!!!

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

The $200 Chase Freedom bonus is definitely still available (September 18, 2011). Just follow the link in this article.

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avatar Love2shBack

haa, you are right, the link in this article still says 200, but according to this link it is 100:
https://creditcards.chase.com/credit-cards/chase-freedom.aspx

I did call Chase and they told me its no longer 200, whatever, i hate inconsistencies, i should just go for the capital one.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

The offers we present on Consumerism Commentary aren’t necessarily open to “the public” (that is, they are unadvertised except for on Consumerism Commentary and possibly a small number of other websites). Phone CSRs may not necessarily know about them. The information provided here is current.

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avatar josh

BP has a good rewards card if you travel a lot and buy BP fuel. Unlimited Rewards. 5% cash back on ALL BP purchases (including snacks, beer, etc.) 2% on dining and travel, 1% on everything else, excluding online purchases. Apply for the card on BP’s website, but it is administered through Chase. I have had this card for just over a year now and have close to $500 cash back. I buy a lot of BP fuel.

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avatar jerm

Navy Federal offers a cash rewards VISA card that gives you 1.5% after you make $10k in purchases. It’s 1% before you reach $10k in purchases.

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avatar Cath

The new Bank of America cash back Visa is pretty good. 3% on gas, 2% on groceries and 1% on everything else. I like that I get more cash back on the categories I spend the most in and I know some cards offer up to 5% but I like the simplicity of not having the categories change or having to opt in every few months.

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avatar Richard

I have been trying to find a replacement card for my Charles Schwab (FIA) card ever since I found out it was being replaced with the pathetic BofA reward program. I saw this offer from Household Bank (HSBC): https://www.householdbank.com/ecare/cards?docId=Cards_Tab_data_cards_hb_sp5_xml&WT.svl=400 and wanted to see what others thought of it as a possible replacement before I took the plunge. It looks promising, but I wanted to see if anyone out there as had any experience with this card.

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avatar Petesea

I have a 2% rebate, no annual fee HSBC card that is capped at $400 back per year. Your link does not say anything anything about a cap, but you should double chack on that.

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avatar Charles

I just starting using my Fidelity Visa 1.5% cash back card and found two issues:

1. No e-mail balance/bill/activity alerts. Perhaps this would change if I did not get a paper statement.
2. No ability to auto-pay the entire balance in full each month without intervention. You can auto-pay a fixed amount or manually pay the balance at a date in the future. But I am bound to get busy and forget to do this.

Were are my scissors…

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avatar William Tedeschi

You omitted the CAPITAL ONE cash rewards card. 1% on all purchases plus at the end of one year you get a 50% bonus. This equals 1 1/2% of all purchases. No annual fee. $100 bonus for opening the account. If you pay off your balance each month, the only card that beats it is the Fidelity card that gives you 2% but requires you to open an brokerage account with them. I opened an account with them for $50 then applied for and got the 2% Fidelity card. Only problem Is that it is an American Express card. Bottom line: I get 2% unless the merchant doesn’t accept American Express, then I get
1 1/2%.

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

I’ve listed the Capital One No Hassle Cash Rewards, but the Capital One Cash Rewards offers a lower cash back percentage for the benefit of no annual fee. I’ll add a note about the new card.

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avatar a

I use the Chase Freedom and the Discover cards for cash back and as presented above the AXP card has a substantially higher tier to receive any cash. I had accumulated approximately 150,000 with membership rewards paying $40/month over 25 years (1,000) and then found that the conversion rate is so poor that the points are really about 75,000 with a 1/1 conversion instad of the typical 1/2 conversion. So I gave up on point cards or what I call “funny money” because of the huge loss during the conversion/redemption process. The best cash back account that I found is Chase freedom for the following reasons: 1) 1% cash back with no tier; 2) 2% more or a total of 3% on the top 3 or 5 of 15 category purchases (3 of 15 for non checking account customers and 5 of 15 for checking customers) 3) 5% more or a possible total of 8% for quarterly promotions. For the 4th quarter of 2011 the promotions are dining, movie theaters, department stores and charitable contributions totaling $1,500 and a separate $1,500 for Khols. They seem to me to have the best cash back program as they have no tier and the give the maximum or 8% on selected quarterly promotions 1% + 2% + 5% = 8%. The Discover card has a 3,000 tier before earning 1% and charges at Walmart or Sams club do not contribute to the tier and always have a cap of 0.25%. The benefit of this card is at redemption where there is a little price improvement on some gift cards at selected merchants. Their disadvantage compared to Chase is that the maximum ever benefit is 5%. The 5% quarterly benefit is not added to the tier level. Wheras with Chase it is added to a maximum of 8%. The 5% quarterly bonuses are often similar with Chase and Discover and each program requires that the customer sign up for each quarterly benefit. Both Chase and Discover had gas at 5% for the summer months. Also I have found that most of the time the dollar amount eligible for the Chase card is almost always higher than the Discover card for the similar quarterly promotion. This quarter the maximum charges for the Discover quarterly promotion (restaurants, department stores and clothing stores it only up to 300 in charges whereas the Chase card is $,1500 in charges (dining, movie theaters, charitable donations, department stores)

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avatar Gary

go with Capital One’s new Spark for small Business, an obvious answer to Schwab’s termination of its 2% cash back card. 2% Cash back across the board. They are obviously going for all the disgruntled former Schwab card holders like me. It worked.

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avatar gil

Yes, there is a $65 fee for the spark card after a year however, and my experience with capital one is that they’ll change the program eventually and somehow make it not as good. This happened to me with the last capital one card I had when they went to their own tiered point system for paying for travel. It is lame.

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avatar Dan

I have an LLC so this could work, but are there any implications to putting all purchases on a “business” card?

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avatar Laura

Love the PenFed card so far – we’ve had it for 6 months now. The one thing that wasn’t mentioned in the article (but is important to note) that you don’t have to be a member of any of the organizations or military – they will allow you to join for a $20 donation (which is tax deductible). We use the card for all of our everyday expenses and pay it off each month, so the rewards have FAR outweighed the cost to join.

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avatar jacksono

I will cancel my B of A switchover asap now that Schwab/FIA is gone – it looks like CapitalOne’s Cashback MasterCard with 0% annual fee & 50% cash back bonus every year, 1% cash back on purchases, plus earn a one-time $100 bonus will be best for me, doing the math with the amount I put onto a card, will come out to be pretty much equivalent to the 2% cash back I got with Schwab/FIA.

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avatar Ming Hsueh

Does anyone have the history of the rotating categories of the Citi® Dividend World MasterCard.

I’m interested if the #$&*! categories aren’t in perfect alignment with other cards using the “Category Rotation” methods.

However, if they rotated their 5% and the categories are different, I could easily determine which card to use based on a particular month. (ie. if one card offered 5% in gas Jan- Mar and another offered 5% from Jun-Aug) I’d just switch the card I used to pay for gas based on the one that paid me the most cash back.

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avatar Ming Hsueh

A comment about the Chase Freedom Card. (At least for me when I applied) If you have a Checking account with them, they will give you an additional 10% of the 1% for a total of 1.1% back. Plus for each transaction they give you an additional tiny amount back. (like $.01 for each transaction)

I didn’t see the Bank of America card which offers 3% for gas(with a spending cap), 2% for groceries(with a spending cap), and 1% for everything else. If you have a Bank of America checking account they pay an additional 10% of your reward if you deposit the money into your BAC checking account.

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avatar B Young

HSBC has a credit card that pays 2% flat rate, no restrictions or annual fee. I recently set up all my recurring monthly bills to be paid automatically with this card. It makes a lot more sense to earn 2% cash back paying with that than it does paying straight out of my checking account.

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avatar jacksono

do you have a link to this offering? I can’t find that particular card paying 2% & no annual. thanks

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avatar Ming Hsueh

I can’t find the HSBC card you’re referring to. The only thing HSBC offers is the first 6 months at 2%, afterwards it falls to 1%.

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avatar Jeff

Household Bank Rewards Card.

They have closed sign-ups. (no word on when or if they will re-open; but, this isn’t the first time they’ve closed sign-ups) You can only sign up for their non-rewards cards.

Plus, the required credit score was pretty low for the decent rewards.

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avatar Cheryl G

HSBC is now with Capital One. That might be why you are not finding it. I have cards with both & I just received notice a couple of weeks ago.

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avatar B Young

good article too by the way

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avatar adriano wallin

As for the Penfed 5% Gas cash back CC, you must be a member of their union. However, to become a member, all you need to do is make a $15 donation to their organization serving troops and invest $5 into your own share account as the minimum. From their, your entitled to all of the credit union’s benefits including some amazing loan rates. I just got my card 2 weeks ago : )

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avatar David

Another great benefit to this card is they pay you your cash back each month as a credit to your account statement.

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avatar Chuck

Yup, I had this card for one year – and just got a mailing from them saying they are cutting their cash-back rate on non-gas purchases from 1% down to 0.25%.

Time to find another card and cancel this one.

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avatar Sarah

Yes Chuck,
Same thing just happened to us. All the reasons we chose this card are now gone. And…we’ve mentioned a number of times how you can’t download your transactions so you can plug them into quicken or your choice software & they basically said you can download a pdf of the statement or you need to download them right before the new cycle. I’m sure the troops overseas keeping track of their money sit at their computers so they can download their transaction history. Our relationship with Pen Fed will soon be over.

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avatar Barry

I plan on getting this card and only using it for gas purchases. There’s nothing wrong with 5% back. Use another card for other purchases, or use cash. Without cash there is no freedom.

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avatar Joshua

Maybe this is new, but you may want to update the Citi Dividend World Mastercard details. You have on there that you get a $100 bonus after $500 in the first three months, well I applied and got approved about a week ago for that card, but with a $200 bonus after $500 in the first three months. Anyways, I’m looking forward to getting that card!

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avatar Jonathan

Good article, I am looking to switch my everyday use card.

I am currently have Pentagon Federal Credit Union card, and just got a notice yesterday. They are lowering the interests rate (useless for me as I payoff every statement) and LOWERING the 1% rebate to 0.25% starting Feb 2012.

So you might need to drop it from your list.

Jonathan

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avatar Shawn

Extremely helpful article as I am looking for a new everyday use card. Here is my dilemma: I spend most of my money on groceries, gas and misc shopping items at either Sams Club or Wal-Mart. According to many of the card offers, Sams Club does not qualify as a grocer due to their Merchant Category Code. In fact, my wife’s Sam’s Discover Card only gives her.25 % back on purchases. Any recommendations on the best card if your primary purchases are from these outlets on a routine basis?

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

You generally can’t find good cash back deals at warehouse stores because the prices are generally lower per unit. The AmEx Costco TruEarnings card could be a good option if you shop at Costco stores, free for Costco members.

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avatar Jim

I pay the $100 Plus member fee to get up to 2% back on my Sam’s Club Discover; the deal has annual spending levels where the % back increases whenever you pass a level threshold. I pay for almost everything with that card and pay off the balance each month to avoid interest. I’m honestly not sure it’s the best deal available, but I typically get back over $400 at the end of the year, so it’s been worth the extra $70 over a standard individual membership to me

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avatar Dave in Aberdeen

PenFed is cutting their cash back for general purchases to .25% as of Feb. 1. Still get 5% at the pump though.

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avatar Jeff Crews

I just signed up for the $200 cash back Chase Freedom card. I spent $500 on some much needed things (i.e. new tires, car maintenance), and now I can receive my $200 cash back. Not to mention….I am getting 5% cash back on all these purchases.

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avatar Ceecee ♦796 (Dime)

This is great info. I was switched by Chase to the Freedom card a few months ago. My original card with them always paid 5% back on gas, groceries and drugstores. That was a slammin’ good deal. They cut that back before changing to the Freedom card. It’s not bad, but I sure miss that original deal.

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avatar Mike

My card is the best. 6% groceries, 3% gas & department, 1% everything else.

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avatar Lindsey

And what would that be?

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avatar Jordan

It’s the AMEX with the annual fee, like $95 or $75 or something.

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avatar EllieHu

He is probably talking about Blue Cash Preferred from AMEX

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avatar Nick

Which cards would be best “longterm” once the signing bonuses have been used?

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avatar Brajesh

I have my wife delivery expenses coming up in this month, any idea which card would give maximum cash back on hospital / medicines expenses. I did get my Chase Freedom today, is it advisable to apply another card immediately, or it might hurt my credit real bad. thanks.

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avatar Dick Etter

Pen Fed is changing the Platinum Cash Rewards card which is why I was on this site.

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avatar Jamie

Fidelity AMEX card is the best deal going. 2% unlimited into a Fidelity Investment account. Can’t beat that. To all of you deal seekers out there. If you’re not getting at least $.01 / Point you’re getting taken.

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avatar David Handlos

The “Fidelity Investment Rewards” American Express card can give a 2% cash back return, which can be redeemed $50 at a time. The perks aren’t as huge as some other cards, but a card that gives back 2% with no limits sounds promising.

Are there any major shortcomings on this card that I’m not seeing?

Thanks!

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

That’s a good card. The only shortcomings as I see it are the requirement to have a Fidelity investment account of some type. If you already have one, that works out well. Fidelity does have some low-cost investment options, and you could likely just use a money market account/fund for collecting your 2% savings. Personally, I prefer cards that do not restrict your rewards to a certain account… but that might only be a small concern for some. With 2% cash back for all purchases, you don’t need to worry about enrolling in quarterly cash back programs and other nuisances.

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avatar bob dole

I have this card. It requires $2500 to sign up for a new fidelity account. Then you apply for the card and link it to the account. As long as you maintain $2500 in your fidelity account (in cash or stocks), you won’t get slapped by an investment account annual fee. You can redeem your points monthly to your account and withdraw them from your account whenever you like.

It is my “workhouse card”. while I might be getting only 2% cash back for gas or restaurants, I’m getting 2% for everything else as well. I shop at costco and get 2% on warehouse spending. (I think) the costco amex only gives you 1%.

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avatar Ana Nicole

$2500 restriction is partially true. Yes, initial deposit has to be over $2500, but once it’s open, there’s no fee even the balance falls below $2500. However, if you have securities like mutual funds, yes, there are fees for them. I have investment and short-term cash management accounts with $0 on both. I pretty much use the accounts for redeeming the cash back.

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avatar Joey

PNC Bank has a card that offers 1.75% cash back on all purchaes, no caps.

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avatar Don

I’ve discovered some cards tout their points earnings, but when you cash them in for a specific purpose, they require more than a point for point exchange. For example I have a Choice Rewards card with the primary purpose of earning hotel/motel points. They also allow you to use the points for gasoline cards etc… A room rate of $80 costs 8,000 points/cents OKAY, but to purchase a $50 gas exchange requires 16,000 points/cents or $160 worth of points. If a member has a CHASE AARP card, they can cash in their points as one-for-one. Each point returns 1cent. How do the above mentioned cards stack up on cashing in the points?

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avatar Luke Landes ♦127,386 (Platinum)

Don,

That’s the case sometimes with cards offering “points,” but these cash back cards earn cash back as indicated above. 1% cash back means you can cash in $1 for every qualifying $100 you spend. You may have to reach a certain level before receiving the cash back, but 1% means 1%.

That’s not always the case with cards where you earn points, like 1 point for every $1.

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avatar Ripoffagain

Amex was good, not so much any more. High tier $6500 to get off the .25%. Used to be 2% after that plateau. They have continued to lower it and now are down to 1.0% after $6500. Will not be with them much longer. Also they charge vendors the highest fee,s for any credit cards. Can you say corporate greed so the boss gets a bigger Christmas bonus.

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avatar Randi Brown

I am looking for a cash back rewards credit card primarily to use for fuel. My husband is an owner operator of his own trucking business and we will typically spend around $100,000 annually in diesel fuel. The PenFed Visa card looks the most promising, however I was wondering if the cash back rewards for gas included diesel fuel, if there was a maximum amount that can be received in cash back rewards from the PenFed card, and if there are any other cash rewards credit cards with a higher % gas cash rewards?

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avatar Joshua

Randi, I’m fairly certain the card companies can’t distinguish between gasoline and diesel.As long as you pay at the pump, it shows up on your statement the same therefore you should be good on diesel.

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avatar Jason

Fidelity American Express Investment Rewards Card. 2% on everything, no limit and no annual fee. You do need a Fidelity account to convert your points into cash. If you convert points via other methods provided, you will not get the 2%. I just have a small Fidelity account so I can get the 2%. Best card by far!

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avatar EllieHu

If I am spending about avg $3000 a month by credit card, which card will I get the most cash back minus the annual fee if there’s any?

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avatar Heronva

I too like the Fidelity AmEx Investment Rewards Card at 2% on purchases or more if you decide to purchase an airline ticket within 21 days of your travel. Does anyone know about the the new U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Siganature Card? It lets you choose up to two rotating categories every quarter. It additionally pays you an extra $25 when you redeem in increments of $100 or more at a time. However, I think there is a $2.50 per month charge for some facet of it. I can’t seem to find the fine print for it to fully understand its benefits and losses. Anyone aware of this card?

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avatar Gomoall

Be aware not all purchases qualify and it is impossible to get a list of locations that charges will not qualify as a valid purchase for the earnings.

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avatar Bill

I recently got a US Bank Cash+ Visa Signature card which is a great rewards card to complement the ones I already had like Chase Freedom and Discover. This is a brand new card that seemingly hasn’t been widely touted.

$50 new card member bonus when you spend $500 in your first 90 days

5% cash back on two categories that you choose
2% cash back on gas, groceries or drug stores – choose one
1% cash back on everything else
$25 bonus each time you redeem $100 or more cash back in a single redemption.

You must use the link below to get the $50 bonus after spending $500 in 90 days.

This is a credit card that is giving me 5% back on 2 categories of my choosing each quarter. My 2 are bill payment (such as cable, phone, Internet, satellite, & insurance) which is normally a huge expense for most people; and home improvement, such as Home Depot, Menards, Lowes, hardware stores.

http://www.usbank.com/splash/credit-cards/cashplus/94154.html?redirect=facebookcash

More info: http://www.usbank.com/cashplus

A friend of mine has a US Bank mortgage and then got this card in addition to his US Bank checking account. This qualified him for their platinum checking package. A surprise bonus came on his first credit card statement: platinum checking customers get a 50% bonus each month on their credit card rewards (e.g., if you earn $10/month in rewards, you actually get $15). This can amount to a lot of extra money, since the rewards are not capped, and since you get an additional $25 bonus if you wait to redeem the rewards once you’ve accumulated $100.

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avatar liebezeit

Bill Pay and Airlines categories are disappearing, unfortunately. This card is still good for 5% categories like restaurants, cell phone bills, and various categories of retail.

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avatar Kenda

The Discover card that said you get money back at warehouses is not accurate because Costco only accecpts American Express.

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avatar Cinelliman

American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card (listed as #1 Cash Back card by Consumerism Commentary) just announced, via monthly statement notice, a $6,000 annual limit on grocery purchases effective January 2013. The 3% cash back on groceries had previously been unlimited.

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avatar B R

I have the penfed cashback card and use it ALL the time for gas only. At 5% back I cannot afford NOT to use it. Its a great card and iv told all my friends about this one!

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avatar Scott

you missed one of the best if not the best US bank cash +

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avatar autum

I’m staying clear of any chase card. We disputed a bill once. We bought a lottery subscription online and they coded it as cash advance. They charged a $10 cash advance fee on the $50 subscription and they up us interest rate to 200% on the balance if we didn’t pay it off. We never had any credit issues before this. All I wanted to find out was why they coded it cash advance and not a merchandise purchase. Never again.

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avatar Chris

Td cash rewards offering 5% cash back first 6 mos at grocery, gas, utility bill, and cable, restaurants too. I estimate a $100 a month cash rebate for myself.

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avatar Olivia Miller

I love my Chase Freedom card! I have earned about $600 last year by just using it on all my purchases. I buy everything on my credit card then pay it off at the end of the month… Then whoa! I have earn cash back! It’s easy and if your responsible has good perks!

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avatar Jonathan

This looked pretty good from Pentagon Fed Credit Union:
PenFed Defender American Express® Card
1.5% back on everything and low apr for those people don’t pay off their bill very month.
https://www.penfed.org/Defender-Cash-Rewards/?intcid=ad-defender-veterans-home-mainAd-01012013

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avatar Julie Joehlin

I don’t see Capital One Cash Rewards. They offer straight cash back, no gimmicks, no points, no categories, etc. 1% cash back on all purchases, bonus $100 back when you spend $500 in the first 3 months, and the best part is an additional 50% bonus on the cash back that you earned in a year. So, if you earn $500 total cash back over the course of a year, they give you an additional $250 back after that year’s time. Just got my bonus and it put a smile on my face!

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avatar Mike

Fidelity is the best by far— 2% aft u spend the first 1500

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avatar KS2

I do well with:
Discover and Chase Freedom for only the quarterly categories, 5%.
Costco Amex for Costco purchases only, 3%.
Chase Ink Business for restaurants, office supplies, home improvement, and gas, 3%.
I just opened a Fidelity Amex for everything else, 2% (into a Roth IRA acct I already had with them).

Charge everything I can on credit cards, pay off balance each month.

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avatar carrie

Just gotan invite from Bank of America Visa. Currently offering 3% on gas, 2% on Groceries and 1% on every other puchase. Up to $100 cash back on the 1st $1500 in gas and grocery purchases.

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avatar Joel

I have the starwood preferred guest card and love it for the sign-up bonus and the ability to convert starwood points into most airlines’ frequent flier mile at a rate of 20K starwood points to 25K frequent flier miles. To help with the math of picking the best rewards card you might want to try the rewards calculator at creditcardtuneup. com – it tries to calculate the best card and best combinations of cards for your normal spending.

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avatar joda

Pen Fed Platinum cash back now has a $25 annual fee (I’ve had the card for a year and they just sent a notice in the mail).

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avatar mrs D

get a card from penfed for gas- they promise 5% back for gas purchase- if u are not military member- u can pay one time fee of $5 and join, it’s excellent- we have mortaggae with them( 5 years /arm-free refinancing), excellt car loan and very good service

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