Best rewards and cash back

Sometimes you can choose to change the categories, picking from a list. The payoff for dealing with that hassle? Bonus categories in the past have included things like restaurants, grocery stores, gas stations, Amazon.

com and more. Compared with flat-rate cards, here are typical advantages and disadvantages of bonus-category cards. Higher rewards rates on some purchases.

Cash-back credit cards for small businesses come in the same types: flat-rate, fixed bonus categories and changing categories. In choosing a type of card, know yourself. Are you a person who will use credit cards strategically? And if others in the household use the same card, will they use it strategically?

If you don't remember to use the right card for specific purchases, the higher rewards rate on a bonus-category card may not pay off.

And you might do better overall with a flat-rate card. After you know which type of cash-back card is right for you, choose based on these criteria to get the most cash back:.

High rates for certain categories are great, but all categories aren't created equal. Consider how much you spend in the category regularly. Minimum goals:. A one-time cash bonus is nice because it essentially boosts your rewards in the short term if you can meet the required spending to earn it.

But the rewards rate is more important over the long term. A card without a bonus could still be the right one for you. And some do. If a cash-back card has an annual fee, it has to be so good that it easily makes back that fee every year. Think of it as a reduction in your annual cash-back total.

One way to compare the monetary value of cards is to examine them over three years, using the factors above. Figure your annual cash back on a card for three years, add any sign-up bonus and subtract three years of annual fee.

Consider how complicated one card is versus another. That will mostly be decided by the type of card — flat-rate cards are easier to use than bonus-category cards. But cards in the same category can offer different hassles.

For example, some cards with excellent cash-back rates come from credit unions. In applying, are you willing to join a credit union? Related articles. Which cash back credit cards offer a sign-up bonus?

A multi-card strategy allows you to earn more cash back by using two or more cards together. Bonus-category card s to earn accelerated cash back on certain purchases. In choosing cards, the advice is the same.

Pick bonus-category cards based on where you spend a lot of money and cash-back rates. Then, choose a flat-rate card for all other spending. Terms apply. Terms Apply. Sign-up bonus: INTRO OFFER: Unlimited Cashback Match for all new cardmembers — only from Discover.

If you want cards from the same issuer — so you can see your accounts on a single app or webpage:. The Chase Freedom Unlimited® earns at least 1. Citi Double Cash® Card : Which is better for you?

Some cards technically earn points that can be used as cash back. The Chase Freedom Unlimited is another no annual fee card that combines rotating categories with flat cash back for a solid potential max value. You can transfer your cash back as points between different card accounts to get even more value when you redeem for travel.

Cash-back credit cards can carry a wide range of rewards, but they tend to fall in one of three categories. Flat cash-back cards earn a standard amount of cash back on everything. Tiered cash-back cards may be what you imagine when you think of a cash-back credit card.

These cards earn cash back at different rates across different spending categories. Tiered cash-back cards can be great for maximizing your spending if you choose a card with great rewards where you spend most. Rotating cash-back cards are unique among rewards credit cards , since your top rewards categories are constantly changing.

The rotating categories can differ year-to-year, but they tend to center around everyday spending. You may, for instance, see categories like groceries , gas, and dining, as well as specific retailers like Target, Walmart, and Amazon.

The rewards caps are important to remember with this type of card. Many cash-back cards charge no annual fee. However, if you are willing to pay an annual fee for your cash-back card, you may get boosted cash-back rates in return.

When we calculated average cash rewards earnings, all the cards with annual fees far outpaced their annual fees in rewards value. The good news is that many of the best cash-back cards available charge no annual fee at all — making it easy to find one that works with any budget.

Cash-back credit cards often offer cash sign-up bonuses after you meet a spending threshold within a certain amount of time after opening your account. Like with any new card, avoid spending more than you usually would just to meet the bonus threshold.

The potential interest charges could quickly eliminate any added value if you have to carry a balance. Here are a few common bonus categories offered today:.

Review your receipts and statements from the past several months to get an idea of where you spend most. Do you tend to eat at restaurants or order takeout most nights? Or do you stick to a weekly grocery shop for most of your meals?

Do you have a car that takes a lot of miles on for your weekly commute? Or do you rely more on public transportation, supplemented by Uber and Lyft rides? Knowing the details of your own spending habits can help you make the best choice of rewards.

These can be among the most lucrative options, especially if your spending falls outside common categories. But some cash-back options do offer extra benefits that can help you save even more throughout the year. Often, cash-back credit card benefits come from brands that partner with credit card issuers.

For example, you may get a small monthly credit toward a subscription or membership. But if you are already a member or subscriber, they may give you an extra savings boost over time. Make sure you keep regular track of the cash rewards you earn. You may even be able to set up automatic redemptions once you meet a certain amount of rewards earned.

Cash-back cards can be ideal for pairing with other cash-back cards or travel rewards cards to maximize your earnings. For example, say you already have a travel card you use to earn bonus points on flights, hotels, and rental cars when you travel. You can also open a cash-back card for savings on dining at restaurants, your favorite streaming services, and supermarket shopping.

Now, between both cards, you can optimize the majority of your spending while traveling and at home. If you prefer the simplicity of only cash back, you could do something similar with two cash-back cards. Strategizing card use like this can take some time, but it will help you earn a lot higher cash-back value in the long run.

Just remember to pay your balance off in full and on time each month to get your maximum value. Otherwise, the high interest rates these cards carry could wipe out the amount you earn in rewards — and leave you with mounting debt balances. Among different types of reward cards , cash-back credit cards can be some of the simplest to use.

Instead, you can simply redeem the cash back you earn for statement credits, a deposit into your bank account, or a check. Cash-back cards are also perfect for saving on everyday purchases.

But cash-back cards tend to reward purchases in essential categories for many Americans: gas, groceries, streaming services, and more. Despite their simplicity, cash-back cards can also be powerful tools.

No categories to track or remember and cash rewards don't expire as long as your account remains open. Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card. at Chase's secure site. Rewards rate 1. Pros No annual fee. Cons High spend to receive sign-up bonus.

No conversion to Chase points without holding the Chase Sapphire Reserve, Chase Sapphire Preferred or Ink Business Preferred.

Earn rewards faster with employee cards at no additional cost. Set individual spending limits for greater control. Round-the-clock monitoring for unusual credit card purchases With Zero Liability you won't be held responsible for unauthorized charges made with your card or account information.

Citi Custom Cash® Card. at Citi's secure site. Pros Choice of bonus category. No annual fee. Cons Cap on bonus earning. Foreign transaction fees. After that, the variable APR will be No rotating bonus categories to sign up for — as your spending changes each billing cycle, your earn adjusts automatically when you spend in any of the eligible categories.

No Annual Fee Citi will only issue one Citi Custom Cash® Card account per person. Limited Time Offer. Best for business card with unlimited cash back. Capital One Spark Cash Plus. at Capital One's secure site.

No foreign transaction fees. Best for balance transfers. Citi Double Cash® Card. To earn cash back, pay at least the minimum due on time. Now that you have the ability to convert rewards to ThankYou points with an eligible card, your redemption options are even more flexible.

After that, the variable APR of Balance Transfers do not earn cash back. Intro APR does not apply to purchases.

If you transfer a balance, interest will be charged on your purchases unless you pay your entire balance including balance transfers by the due date each month. Best for bonus categories. Chase Freedom Unlimited®. Intro Offer Open Intro bonus Earn an extra 1.

That's 6. Why We Chose It The Chase Freedom Unlimited is a surprisingly powerful card that earns at least 1. Pros At least 1. There is no annual fee - Perfect for everyday, non-bonused spending - incredible value when paired with a premium Chase card.

Cons There is a foreign transaction fee so the card shouldn't be used abroad. Limited card perks and benefits. INTRO OFFER: Earn an additional 1.

Enjoy 6. No minimum to redeem for cash back. You can choose to receive a statement credit or direct deposit into most U. checking and savings accounts. Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open! No annual fee — You won't have to pay an annual fee for all the great features that come with your Freedom Unlimited® card Keep tabs on your credit health, Chase Credit Journey helps you monitor your credit with free access to your latest score, real-time alerts, and more.

Member FDIC. Best for flat-rate cash back. Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card. Terms apply 1. Why We Chose It The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card is a decent option for those in need of a straightforward cash back card.

Pros Unlimited 1. Cash back doesn't expire. Cons Limited card perks and benefits. Other cards offer more potential and upside when it comes to redeeming cash back. BEST FOR CASH BACK. Best for entertainment cash back. Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card.

Why We Chose It The Capital One SavorOne is a great cash-back credit card for beginners looking for a solid cash back structure and no annual fee. The intro APR offer that comes with this card makes it a solid choice for those looking to finance a large purchase.

Cons If you spend a lot on dining and entertainment each year, there are cards that provide better value with higher rewards potential. Best for small businesses. Ink Business Cash® Credit Card. Why We Chose It The Chase Ink Business Cash is an excellent no annual fee card for small business owners.

There is no annual fee which is perfect for small business owners. No Annual Fee Redeem rewards for cash back, gift cards, travel and more through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.

Best for beginner cash back. Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express. Why We Chose It The Blue Cash Everyday card is a good option for people who want a simple cash-back structure with no annual fee.

supermarkets No annual fee. online retail purchases. Amex Offers, which earn you statement credits or extra points on purchases with a wide variety of merchants.

supermarket bonus category, which may not work for those with larger annual grocery spend. Balance Transfer is back! After that, Comparing the best cash-back credit cards Credit card.

Apply Now. gas and supermarkets. simple cash-back. Open Rewards rates 1. business card with unlimited cash back. balance transfers. bonus categories. flat-rate cash back. entertainment cash back.

small businesses. beginner cash back. Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives.

Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives. Ink Business Unlimited® Credit Card What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives.

Citi Custom Cash® Card What we love Who it's for Why it should be in your wallet Alternatives. Capital One Spark Cash Plus What we love Who it's for Why it should be in your wallet Alternatives. Citi Double Cash® Card What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives.

Chase Freedom Unlimited® What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives. Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives.

Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card What we love Who it's for Why it should be in your wallet Alternatives. Ink Business Cash® Credit Card What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives. Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express What we love Who it's for Why it's in my wallet Alternatives.

Read our review. Once you understand your spending habits, you can choose a card that best fits your lifestyle. Read: How to choose a cash-back credit card.

Consider multiple cash-back cards After you have identified your major spending categories, you will be able to choose a cash back card that offers the most rewards for your spending. What is a cash-back credit card? Go from points and miles newbie to booking your first award trip in just one month with this email series.

Types of cash-back credit card rewards Flat rate The simplest cash-back credit cards are the ones that earn the same percentage of cash back on all purchases.

Tiered Many cash-back credit cards offer different amounts of cash back on various categories or purchases.

Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card

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Canada's Best Cash Back Credit Cards 2024 - These cards will reward you with the most cash back! Add at least 2 cards to compare. EBst Bank of Rewzrds Customized Cash Rewards credit card Bfst you a Credit score monitoring more Best rewards and cash back annd your credit card rewards by letting rewwrds choose which category earns the highest cash-back rate, from a list that includes gas stations, restaurants, travel, home improvement and more. Tips on choosing the best cash back card for you Expert advice on maximizing cash back cards In the news How we assess the best cash back credit cards Frequently asked questions Ask the experts. And if you accidentally miss a payment, Discover waives the fee the first time. Sorry, we couldn't access your approval odds. Annual Fee.

The Citi Double Cash takes our spot for the best flat cash-back card for several reasons. For one, it offers up to 2% cash back on every 11 best cash-back credit cards of February · Browse by card categories · Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express · Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card Why We Like It: The best cash back credit card is the Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card because it offers 2% cash rewards on purchases – one of the: Best rewards and cash back





















com, Amazon Fresh, Whole Foods Market, rewafds on Chase Travel purchases with an Best rewards and cash back Reards membership. Category activation can be a hassle, but if your spending aligns with those categories and for most households, it probably willyou can rake in serious rewards. Enjoy 6. Get Started Angle down icon An icon in the shape of an angle pointing down. Wedding expenses are usually wide-ranging, with very few falling into common bonus categories. Best for flat-rate cash rewards. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is ideal if you're looking for a cash rewards card that offers a long intro APR for purchases and balance transfers. Earn an additional 1. Finally, ensure that the card's bonus categories match your everyday spending. Chase Freedom Unlimited®. Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. If you're looking for an American Express cash back card, especially if you have a large family Best cash back credit cards compared $ Online Cash Rewards Bonus Offer & Earn 3% Cash Back In Your Favorite Choice Category Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card: Best for Flat-rate cash back: High ongoing rate + incentives ; Chase Freedom Unlimited®: Best for Bonus rewards: 5 11 Best cash back credit cards for February ; Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card · Rating: stars out of 5. ; Bank of America® Customized Discover it® Cash Back: Best feature: Cash back on everyday purchases. Instacart Mastercard®: Best feature: Grocery rewards. Chase Freedom Unlimited®: Best Best rewards and cash back
When you use a cash back card responsibly, cadh helps build your credit profile by not only bacck to your bakc credit Best rewards and cash back, but improving your xash utilization with increased access to Debt relief for seniors. Intro APR does not apply to purchases. Best for grocery rewards. They might be worth more or less than a penny depending on the credit card you have and the way you redeem rewards. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money. As "The Credit Queen" on social media, Martin works to simplify complex financial topics, making her a go-to authority. The offers that appear on this site are from companies from which Bankrate. The scoring formula incorporates coverage options, customer experience, customizability, cost and more. See our methodology for more information on how we choose the best rewards credit cards. View card list Collapse Caret Up. To determine which cards will put the most money back in your pocket, CNBC Select evaluated 50 cash-back credit cards offered by the biggest banks, financial companies and credit unions that allow anyone to join. The Citi Double Cash® Card is a straightforward no-annual-fee cash-back card. Her tech interests include Tesla, SpaceX, The Boring Company and Neuralink. Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card Why We Like It: The best cash back credit card is the Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card because it offers 2% cash rewards on purchases – one of the Winner / best cash back credit card. Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card 11 Best cash back credit cards for February ; Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card · Rating: stars out of 5. ; Bank of America® Customized Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card Best rewards and cash back
To maximize your cash back earnings, carry rewaards tiered cards that Rewardw your most common purchases at high rates. Find my match. Share icon An curved Score monitoring services pointing right. Reards asked ans about cash back credit cards Do cash back cards actually give you cash? No one from the bank is likely to walk up and hand you some crisp bills after using your cash-back credit card, but you will earn cash back in the form of a statement credit, a deposit in your bank account, a check or another method. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit. Tiered cash-back cards can be great for maximizing your spending if you choose a card with great rewards where you spend most. It should not be used by frequent international travelers while abroad as it does have a 2. Each card is individually evaluated through a formula which reflects the standards and expectations of the contemporary market. You could use it to knock out existing credit card debt by transferring your balance and paying it down while it accrues no interest and then continue to use it to earn rewards afterwards. This included every card from major issuers that earn cash back, as well as student and secured options with cash rewards. Pros Choice of bonus category. For example, I pair my Wells Fargo Active Cash with the Blue Cash Preferred to earn strong cash rewards for my most frequent purchases. Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card $ Online Cash Rewards Bonus Offer & Earn 3% Cash Back In Your Favorite Choice Category After your first year or $20, spent, enjoy 5% cash back on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% cash back on drugstore A good example is the Citi Double Cash® Card. It earns an unlimited 2% cash back: 1% back on every dollar you spend, then another 1% cash back for every dollar Chase Freedom Unlimited® Card. The Chase Freedom Unlimited card is CNBC Select's best overall cash-back card because of its solid earning rate The Citi Double Cash takes our spot for the best flat cash-back card for several reasons. For one, it offers up to 2% cash back on every 11 best cash-back credit cards of February · Browse by card categories · Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express · Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card Best rewards and cash back
Learn more: Why expert Margaret Rewardds chose the Chase Freedom Aand card. The Discover it® Student Cash Back No application fees tops backk student cards by offering andd high rewards and low costs with no credit history required. simple cash-back. Citi Custom Cash® Card. One of the few premium rewards cards to come with an intro purchase and balance transfer APR offer. I even had a spreadsheet I used to track my purchases and cash back earnings. Always remember that you should never overspend on a cash back card to earn more money back, as interest charges can eclipse your earnings if you carry a balance. No foreign transaction fees. Some credit cards reward you with airline miles, hotel points or flexible travel points that can be used in different ways to book that next trip. To make the most of cash back cards that have rotating categories, however, you have to pay a bit more attention. Our top picks of timely offers from our partners More details. Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card Share: If you travel often, you're likely to get more value out of a rewards card that offers points instead of cash back. But if traveling 11 best cash-back credit cards of February · Browse by card categories · Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express · Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card $ Online Cash Rewards Bonus Offer & Earn 3% Cash Back In Your Favorite Choice Category Why We Like It: The best cash back credit card is the Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card because it offers 2% cash rewards on purchases – one of the After your first year or $20, spent, enjoy 5% cash back on Chase travel purchased through Ultimate Rewards®, 3% cash back on drugstore Cash-back credit cards can offer a solid return on your most frequently made purchases, but don't overspend just to earn more Best rewards and cash back
Best Cash Back Credit Cards of January 2024

Best rewards and cash back - Discover it® Cash Back: Best feature: Cash back on everyday purchases. Instacart Mastercard®: Best feature: Grocery rewards. Chase Freedom Unlimited®: Best Best overall cash back card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card; Best cash back card for those who want the most value: Chase Freedom Unlimited Best Flat-Rate Cash-Back Card: Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card. [ jump to details ]. The Wells Fargo Active Cash® Card is a solid option for those Best for everyday spending: Chase Freedom Unlimited® · Best for rotating bonus rewards: Chase Freedom Flex℠ · Best for simple cash back: Citi Double Cash® Card

The downside: There's an annual fee. Our pick for: Amazon Prime shoppers. There's no annual fee, but you have to be a Prime member, and that does have a fee.

Our pick for: Bonus rewards — high rates on dining, at grocery stores and more. Love the night life but dead-set against paying an annual fee? Consider the Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card. It pays a lower cash-back rate on dining and entertainment than the regular Savor card, but the rewards are nevertheless quite good see rates and fees.

The sign-up bonus is smaller than on the annual-fee version, too, but it's still solid see rates and fees. Category activation can be a hassle, but if your spending matches the categories — and for a lot of people, it will — you can rack up hundreds of dollars a year. The Discover it® Cash Back earns bonus cash back in quarterly categories that you activate.

In past years, those categories have included common spending areas like grocery stores, restaurants, gas stations and specific major retailers. Category activation can be a hassle, but if your spending aligns with those categories and for most households, it probably will , you can rake in serious rewards.

You also get the issuer's signature "cash-back match" bonus in your first year. And unlike with its competitors, there's no activation schedule or bonus calendar to keep track of.

The Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card gives you a little more control over your credit card rewards by letting you choose which category earns the highest cash-back rate, from a list that includes gas stations, restaurants, travel, home improvement and more. You also get bonus rewards at grocery stores and supermarkets, plus a great new-cardholder bonus offer.

Our pick for: Customizable rewards — wide selection of categories. If you don't mind putting some work into your rewards, check out the U. It might be the most customizable cash back card available.

There's a good bonus offer for new cardholders, too. By Gregory Karp , NerdWallet. Cash-back credit cards offer the most useful and flexible rewards currency there is: cash. Points and miles can have squishy value and limited flexibility when redeeming.

But a dollar in cash back is a buck you can spend anywhere. Also, cash-back cards are typically the simplest rewards cards: You get a certain amount of cash for every dollar you spend. You might get more cash back for certain types of spending — at restaurants or gas stations, for example.

Think of it this way: A cash-back rewards card is like getting a discount on everything you buy with the card. The fun comes when you use the card everywhere and your cash back piles up.

Even the best cash-back credit cards probably aren't as flashy as travel rewards credit cards, but as with the hare and the tortoise, sometimes slow-and-steady wins the race. Cash-back credit cards come in three basic types that determine how you accumulate cash rewards.

Flat-rate cash-back cards give you a set percentage of cash back regardless of what you buy with the card. A good benchmark is 1. Citi Double Cash® Card. Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card. It pays unlimited 1. With some cards, you get to choose which categories earn the higher rewards.

Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express. gas stations and on transit. Terms apply. Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card. You have to "opt in" or "activate" the bonus categories online each quarter. Discover it® Cash Back. Many cash-back cards earn a higher rewards rate for certain purchases.

So it applies to groceries, cleaning supplies, toiletries, prepared meals and anything else bought at the supermarket. You can often buy a gift card for a restaurant or retailer at the supermarket, and it counts as a supermarket purchase.

Often warehouse clubs and superstores, like Target and Walmart, are excluded. For larger households, this can be one of the most valuable categories to get accelerated rewards.

Sometimes called "dining" this usually includes everything from fast-food restaurants and pizza delivery to white-tablecloth fine dining. Gas stations. This is often described as "gas" and usually applies to traditional gasoline service stations, such as Mobil, Shell and BP.

It usually doesn't extend to gas stations affiliated with supermarkets or warehouse clubs. Often, it counts everything you buy in the associated convenience store, too, although a few cards count only gas paid for at the pump.

That last point hints at the key to cash-back categories — the best ones are where you spend the most money regularly. Other bonus categories you might see include entertainment, drugstores, home improvement stores, wholesale clubs and mobile wallet purchases.

Rotating bonus category cards sometimes designate specific retailers for bonus rewards for a quarter, such as Amazon or Walmart. Which type of cash-back credit card is right for you depends on how you spend money and your patience for tracking rewards categories.

If you spend a lot in certain categories, such as gas or groceries, consider a tiered or bonus category card. The key is to make sure paying the annual fee is worthwhile mathematically.

Think of the fee as a reduction in your annual cash-back total. A cash sign-up bonus is nice to get — if your regular spending will be enough to earn it. Or, for a card with an annual fee, it might compensate for the annual fee for a few years.

Bonuses are less common with cash-back cards, and bonuses are low compared with those on travel credit cards. A higher rewards rate on one card could be a better deal than a card with a bonus and a lower rate, depending on how much you spend and where you spend it. What are the rules for getting your cash back?

Some cards allow you to take the cash back as a statement credit, which can lower your next credit card bill. Others allow you to redeem cash directly into your bank account, while some offer to mail you a paper check. Some issuers allow you to redeem rewards for more than cash back — for merchandise or gift cards, for example.

And others might allow you to transfer cash-back points to another card program where strategic use might yield better value. Carrying a balance from month to month incurs interest charges that can eat up the value of your rewards.

If you expect to carry a balance, look for a low-interest credit card instead. Cash-back cards are easy to understand and use, but they can also seem boring. And co-branded travel cards for airlines and hotel companies might give you perks no other card will.

For example, airline cards often offer free checked bags and priority boarding. Many of the best hotel credit cards give you a free night's stay each year. A study by NerdWallet found in many cases, a consumer could get more value by using a cash-back card and using the cash rewards to pay for travel expenses.

A big exception: Americans who travel overseas an average of at least once per year are often better off with a travel rewards credit card because of higher point values and no foreign transaction fees.

Cash-back cards are great for many people, but not everybody. Best rewards currency. Cash is king for flexibility. Nobody can change the value of it, and you can spend it anywhere.

No or low annual fees. You can find plenty of choices with no annual fee or reasonable fees if you want superior cash-back rewards. Low bonus requirements. Relatively low sign-up bonuses. No outsized value. Points earned with travel cards can sometimes be parlayed into huge value, far exceeding the value of any cash-back card.

Inappropriate for carrying a monthly balance. Few perks. Foreign transaction fees. Some cash-back cards charge you a percentage of every purchase you make abroad. Such fees are rarer on travel and luxury cards. But if you never carry a balance, try to pile as much spending as you can onto your cash-back card to pump up your rewards.

For example, you can get one card that offers extra cash back for dining, another that offers extra for shopping at Amazon, and another that gives extra for gas and groceries.

Make sure you meet the minimum spending requirement to qualify for the bonus, otherwise you could miss out on hundreds of dollars. Online credit card malls , accessible through your credit card login, can help you earn extra cash back on your web-based purchases, sometimes up to 10 times as much.

If you carry a balance from month to month, the interest can quickly gobble up more than you're earning in cash back. In that case, a low-interest card is probably a better choice. If you need to transfer a balance, look for a balance-transfer credit card. Still not sure? See our best rewards cards for a range of credit cards that earn cash, points or miles.

To view rates and fees of the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express, see this page. NerdWallet's Credit Cards team selects the best cash-back credit cards based on overall consumer value, as evidenced by star ratings, as well as their suitability for specific kinds of consumers.

Factors in our evaluation include each card's cash-back earning rates, rewards structure such as flat-rate or tiered categories , annual fee, redemption options including minimum redemption amounts , promotional APR period for purchases, bonus offers for new cardholders, and noteworthy features such as loyalty bonuses or the ability to choose one's own rewards categories.

Learn how NerdWallet rates credit cards. Every time you use a cash-back credit card, the card issuer "pays you back" a certain percentage of the purchase amount.

With most cash-back cards, you can see your accumulated earnings on your monthly statement or through your online account portal, and you can decide when and how to redeem your cash back. Some cards automatically apply your cash back to your account as a credit.

But the rewards do ultimately leave you with more cash in your pocket. Many cards also allow you to redeem cash back as a direct deposit into a bank account, and some will even mail you a paper check if you request it.

Every card issuer has its own rules for how you can redeem cash back. Others let you redeem any amount at any time. There are three basic kinds of cash-back credit cards:. Some cards let you pick which types of merchants earn the higher rates, but most have set categories.

Depending on the card, cash back rewards can be a flat rate e. Some cards may also offer promotional periods with higher cash back percentages or bonuses for spending certain amounts within a specified timeframe. Learn more about how cash back cards work. Yes many credit cards offer cash back, where you earn a percentage of your purchases back as a reward.

Over time, these rewards add up and can be redeemed in various ways, such as a statement credit, check, or deposit into a bank account. Learn more about maximizing cash back rewards.

If you rely on credit cards to manage your expenses, using a cash back card is a smart way to earn money back on the spending you have to do anyway. There is no downside to earning cash back. Missing payments results in late fees and harm to your credit. To bring you our top picks for the best cash back credit cards, the Fortune Recommends TM team compared approximately 40 cash back rewards cards available from major issuers.

Keep in mind that the rewards, interest rates, and fee structures for the cards mentioned are available for limited periods and subject to change, which could impact how much cash back you earn.

Additionally, only cards with an explicit cash back rate were considered; cards offering points or other non-cash back rewards were excluded from our rankings. Please note that card details are accurate as of the publish date, but are subject to change at any time at the discretion of the issuer.

Please contact the card issuer to verify rates, fees, and benefits before applying. Follow Fortune Recommends on Facebook and Twitter. This content has not been reviewed or endorsed by any of our affiliate partners or other third parties. We may earn affiliate revenue from links in this content.

Learn more. Home Page. BY Casey Bond. REVIEWED BY Dia Adams. Best cash back credit cards. Best overall Best for value Best for the household CFO Best for students Best for foodies Best for big-ticket purchases Best for customer experience.

Cons Foreign transaction fee High balance fee after first days. Chase Freedom Unlimited ® Intro bonus An additional 1. Pros No annual fee Easy-to-earn welcome bonus Earns at least 1.

Pros No annual fee Generous rewards on dining out or eating in No foreign transaction fee.

By Nat

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