Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Restaurants, Entertainment, Daily use
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Best Cash Back Credit Cards of January 2023

The popularity of rewards credit cards is growing and there are more and more of them on the market. Among all types of rewards credit cards, cash back credit cards seem to be the people’s favorite. According to a consumer study, even 80% of them choose cash back when it comes to redeeming rewards. So, what are cash back credit cards, and what’s so great about them? Well, as their name implies, cash back rewards are literally cash you get back from your purchases. Of course, it’s not that simple since they come with many other features, benefits and fees. So, the better you understand them, the more value you’ll get out of them. We recommend to do your research before deciding, to be sure you’re making the right choice. This article is a great start for that!

By Hanna Volkava
Updated January 30, 2023

Best Credit Cards for Cash Back in January 2023

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Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card best for Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Restaurants, Entertainment, Daily use

SavorOne Rewards Capital One
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
19.24% - 29.24% Variable
Our Rating:
4.3
scorer
Credit score
Excellent (740-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 3% Cash Back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores.
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Cash bonus once you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Introductory APR for the first 15 months that your account is open
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    19.24% - 29.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Capital One SavorOne Rewards Credit Card offers 3% Cash Back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores, plus 1% on all other purchases. Earn a one-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.

    The SavorOne Rewards Card doesn't charge an annual fee.

    The Card has a 0% introductory APR period for 15 months on purchases and balance transfers. After that, the variable APR is 19.24% - 29.24%. The card has a balance transfer fee of 3%.

  • Pros:
    • High rewards rates on dining, entertainment, and grocery stores
    • One-time bonus
    • Introductory 0% APR on purchases
    • No annual fee
    • No foreign transaction fees
  • Cons:
    • No rewards for travel purchases
    • Excellent credit score needed
  • Benefits:
    • $200 cash bonus (once you spend $500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening);
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases;
    • No Foreign Transaction Fees;
    • Complimentary Concierge Service;
    • Extended Warranty;
    • Travel Accident Insurance;
    • 24-hour Travel Assistance Services.
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Capital One Walmart Rewards® Mastercard® best for Walmart purchases

Capital One Walmart Rewards®
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
17.99% - 28.99% Variable
Our Rating:
4.09
scorer
Credit score
Fair to Good (580-739)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 5% Cash Back at Walmart.com, including pickup and delivery.
    • 2% Cash Back in Walmart stores, at restaurants and on travel.
    • 1% Everywhere else Mastercard® is accepted.
  • Intro Offer:
    • 5% Cash Back in Walmart stores for the first 12 months after approval when you use your Card with Walmart Pay.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    17.99% - 28.99% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Walmart Rewards® is a card for people who regularly shop at Walmart.

    The Card's APR: 17.99% – 28.99% (Variable). The card has a balance transfer fee of 3% (none for balances transferred at the Transfer APR).

    The Walmart Rewards® Card earns 5% Cash Back on in-store purchases for the first 12 months when using Walmart Pay. The card offers 5% Cash Back at Walmart.com, including pickup & delivery; 2% Cash Back in Walmart stores, at restaurants and on travel; 1% Cash Back everywhere else Mastercard is accepted.

    The Walmart Rewards® Card charges no annual fee and no foreign transaction fee.

  • Pros:
    • No annual fee
    • No foreign transaction fee
  • Cons:
    • No 0% intro APR period
  • Benefits:
    • 5% Cash Back in Walmart stores (for the first 12 months);
    • 5% Cash Back at Walmart.com;
    • 2% Cash Back in Walmart stores, at restaurants and on travel;
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases;
    • $0 Fraud Liability.
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Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card best for Cash Back, No Annual Fee, Daily use

Quicksilver Capital One
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
19.24% - 29.24% Variable
Our Rating:
4.52
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Cash Bonus once you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Introductory APR for the first 15 months that your account is open, 17.99% - 27.99% variable APR after that
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    19.24% - 29.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Quicksilver Credit Card from Capital One® offers 1.5% Cash Back on all purchases with a $0 annual fee. It also offers a 0% intro on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, followed by the standard APR of 19.24% - 29.24% (Variable). The card has a balance transfer fee of 3% (none for balances transferred at the Transfer APR).

    New cardholders will have the opportunity to earn a bonus: One-time $200 cash bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

  • Pros:
    • No minimum redemption is required
    • No annual fee
    • No foreign transaction fees
    • Intro APR period on Purchases
    • Generous sign-up bonus
  • Cons:
    • No bonus rewards categories
    • Other cards offer longer intro APR periods and/or lower APR
    • You need a good credit score to get this card
  • Benefits:
    • $200 Cash Bonus (once you spend $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening);
    • Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase;
    • $0 Fraud Liability;
    • Complimentary Concierge Service;
    • Travel Accident Insurance;
    • 24-hour Travel Assistance Services;
    • Capital One Shopping;
    • Shop With Your Rewards.
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Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card best for Fair credit

QuicksilverOne Capital One
Annual fee:
$39 annually
Regular APR:
29.74% Variable
Our Rating:
3.61
scorer
Credit score
Fair to Good (580-739)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    29.74% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The QuicksilverOne Credit Card from Capital One gives you 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase. The Card has an annual fee of $39.

    The QuicksilverOne Card has an APR of 29.74% Variable.

  • Pros:
    • Unlimited high rewards rate
    • Average credit score required
    • Automatically considered for a higher credit line after 6 months
    • No foreign transaction fees
  • Cons:
    • Annual fee
    • High APR
    • No bonus rewards categories
  • Benefits:
    • 1.5% Cash Back;
    • No Foreign Transaction Fees;
    • Autopay;
    • $0 Fraud Liability;
    • Card Lock;
    • ATM Location Services.
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Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card best for International students

Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Capital One
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
17.99% - 27.99% Variable
Our Rating:
3.52
scorer
Credit score
No Credit History
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $50 Cash bonus once you spend $100 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    17.99% - 27.99% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card is a good option for earning Cash Back on general spending. The Card earns 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase.

    The Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card has a high interest rate of 17.99% - 27.99% (variable APR). The Card has no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees. The card has a balance transfer fee of 3% (none for balances transferred at the Transfer APR).

  • Pros:
    • No Annual Fee
    • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • Cons:
    • High APR
    • No 0% intro APR offer
  • Benefits:
    • $50 bonus (once you spend $100 on purchases within 3 months from account opening);
    • 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase;
    • Fraud Liability;
    • Extended Warranty;
    • Travel Accident Insurance;
    • Capital One Shopping;
    • Complimentary Concierge Service;
    • 24-hour Travel Assistance Services.
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Journey Student Rewards from Capital One best for Without SSN

Capital One Journey Student
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
29.74% Variable
Our Rating:
3.75
scorer
Credit score
Fair (580-669)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1% Cash Back on all your purchases. Pay on time to boost your Cash Back to a total of 1.25% for that month.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    29.74% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    Build credit history with Journey Student Credit Card. Earn 1% Cash Back on all your purchases. Pay on time to boost your Cash Back to a total of 1.25% for that month.

    The Journey Student Card has no annual fee or foreign transaction fees. The Card's APR: 29.74% Variable.

  • Pros:
    • Rewards program with bonus points
    • No annual fee
    • Automatic credit limit increase reviews
    • No foreign transaction fees
    • Reports to three major credit bureaus
  • Cons:
    • High APR
    • No bonus categories
  • Benefits:
    • 1% Cash Back on every purchase;
    • 1.25% extra Cash Back;
    • No Foreign Transaction Fees;
    • ATM Location Services;
    • Emergency Card Replacement;
    • Travel rewards cards;
    • Fraud Coverage.
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Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® best for Good credit score

Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa®
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
14.99% - 29.99% Regular
Our Rating:
4.35
scorer
Credit score
Fair to Excellent (580-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1.5% Cash Back on payments.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Bonus when you open a Rewards Checking account and make 3 debit card transactions. *
  • Details:

    The Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® offers 1.5% Cash Back on payments.

    Earn a $200 welcome bonus when you open a Rewards Checking account and make 3 debit card transactions (within 60 days of your Upgrade Card account opening).

    The card's APR: 14.99% - 29.99% (Regular APR).

    Read full review

  • Pros:
    • No Foreign Transaction Fee
    • No Annual fee
    • No extra fees
  • Cons:
    • No Intro APR reriod
  • Benefits:
    • $200 bonus;
    • 1.5% Cash Back;
    • Сontactless card technology.

    *To qualify for the welcome bonus, you must open and fund a new Rewards Checking account and make 3 qualifying debit card transactions from your Rewards Checking account within 60 days of the date the Upgrade Card account is opened. To qualify, debit card transactions must have settled and exclude ATM transactions. Please refer to the applicable Upgrade VISA® Debit Card Agreement and Disclosures for more information. Your Upgrade Card and Rewards Checking account must be open and in good standing to receive a bonus. If you have previously opened a Rewards Checking account or do not open one as part of this application process, you are not eligible for this welcome bonus offer. Welcome bonus offers cannot be combined, substituted, or applied retroactively. The bonus will be applied to your Rewards Checking account as a one-time payout credit within 60 days after the 3rd qualifying card purchase.

View all Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa® details
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Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card best for International students

SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Capital One
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
17.99% - 27.99% Variable
Our Rating:
3.96
scorer
Credit score
No Credit History
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 3% Cash Back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services & at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®).
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $50 Cash bonus once you spend $100 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    17.99% - 27.99% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card earns 3% Cash Back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®), plus 1% on all other purchases.

    The SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card has a high interest rate of 17.99% - 27.99% (variable APR).

    The Card has no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees.

  • Pros:
    • No Annual Fee
    • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • Cons:
    • High APR
    • No 0% intro APR offer
  • Benefits:
    • $50 Cash bonus (once you spend $100 on purchases within 3 months from account opening);
    • 3% Cash Back on dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®);
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases;
    • Fraud Liability;
    • Extended Warranty;
    • Travel Accident Insurance;
    • Complimentary Concierge Service;
    • 24-hour Travel Assistance Services.
View all SavorOne Student Cash Rewards details
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Upgrade Triple Cash Rewards Visa® best for Low income

Upgrade Triple Cash Rewards Visa® Upgrade
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
14.99% - 29.99% Regular
Our Rating:
3.53
scorer
Credit score
Fair to Excellent (580-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 3% Cash Back on Home, Auto and Health categories.
    • 1% Cash Back on everything else.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Bonus when you open a Rewards Checking account and make 3 debit card transactions (within 60 days of your Upgrade Card account opening). *
  • Details:

    The Upgrade Triple Cash Rewards Visa® Credit Card offers 3% Cash Back on home, auto and health purchase and 1% Cash Back on everything else.

    Earn a $200 welcome bonus when you open a Rewards Checking account and make 3 debit card transactions (within 60 days of your Upgrade Card account opening).

    The card's APR: 14.99% - 29.99% (Regular APR).

    Apply online and get a credit line from $500 to $25,000 with your Card.

    Read full review

  • Pros:
    • Every Purchase Earns You Cash Back
    • Increased Cash Back for Three Categories
    • Forget About Fees
    • No Limits Abroad
  • Cons:
    • You Can’t Withdraw Cash
    • Cash Back Doesn’t Satisfy Your Monthly Payments
  • Benefits:
    • $200 bonus;
    • 3% Cash Back on home, auto and health purchase;
    • 1% Cash Back on everything else;
    • Сontactless card technology.

    *To qualify for the welcome bonus, you must open and fund a new Rewards Checking account and make 3 qualifying debit card transactions from your Rewards Checking account within 60 days of the date the Upgrade Card account is opened. To qualify, debit card transactions must have settled and exclude ATM transactions. Please refer to the applicable Upgrade VISA® Debit Card Agreement and Disclosures for more information. Your Upgrade Card and Rewards Checking account must be open and in good standing to receive a bonus. If you have previously opened a Rewards Checking account or do not open one as part of this application process, you are not eligible for this welcome bonus offer. Welcome bonus offers cannot be combined, substituted, or applied retroactively. The bonus will be applied to your Rewards Checking account as a one-time payout credit within 60 days after the 3rd qualifying card purchase.

View all Upgrade Triple Cash Rewards Visa® details
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On Upgrade‘s website
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WebBank Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® best for Beginner, No history

Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® WebBank
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
17.24% - 31.24% Variable
Our Rating:
3.8
scorer
Credit score
No Credit History to Excellent (0-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1% - 1.5%:
    • Cash Back after making 12 on-time monthly payments.
    • 2% - 10%:
    • Cash Back from select merchants.
  • Issuer name:
    WebBank
  • Details:

    The Petal 2 Card has no fees of any kind and is designed to help you build credit.

    The credit limit is from $300 - $10,000.

    Grow your credit score with responsible spending and on-time payments.

    Get 1% cash back right away. Earn up to 1.5% when you pay on time. Plus 2% - 10% bonus cash back at select merchants.

    Freeze your card at any time to protect your account. And rest easy knowing your data is safe and encrypted.

    Read full review

  • Pros:
    • No annual fee
    • No returned payment fee
    • No foreign transaction fee
    • You can apply even if you have no credit history
    • No late fees
  • Cons:
    • No signup bonus
    • Cash advances are not permitted
    • Those who filed for bankruptcy may be rejected
    • Balance transfers are not allowed
    • No intro APR offer
  • Benefits:
    • No foreign transaction fee;
    • Petal 2 reports to all 3 major credit bureaus;
    • Qualify with average credit.
View all Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa® details
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WebBank Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa® best for For bad credit

Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa® WebBank
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
24.24% - 33.74% Variable
Our Rating:
4.34
scorer
Credit score
No Credit History to Good (0-739)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 2% - 10%:
    • Cash Back at select merchants.
  • Issuer name:
    WebBank
  • Details:

    The Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa® Card earns 2% - 10% Cash Back at select merchants.

    The Card has a variable APR ranging from 24.24% - 33.74%.

    Read full review

  • Pros:
    • $0 Annual fee
    • No foreign transactions fee
    • No credit score needed to apply
    • Earn rewards with Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa®
    • Increase your credit limit in 6 months
  • Cons:
    • No Intro APR
    • High purchase APR
    • No signup bonus
    • Cash back only with select merchants
  • Benefits:
    • 2% - 10% Cash Back at select merchants;
    • Zero liability fraud protection;
    • $300 - $5,000 credit limits;
    • Petal reports to all 3 major credit bureaus.
View all Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa® details
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The Owner’s Rewards Card by M1 Celtic Bank
Annual fee:
$0 annually (for active M1 Plus customers)
$95 annually
Regular APR:
17.99% - 27.99% Variable
Our Rating:
3.91
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 10% You’ll get up to 10% Cash Back with select brands you hold in an eligible portfolio.
    • 1.5% Cash Back on everything else.
  • Issuer name:
    Celtic Bank
  • Details:

    The Owner’s Rewards Card by M1 earns up to 10% Cash Back on purchases with eligible brands. All other spending earns 1.5% Cash Back.

    Spend $4,000 with your new Owner’s Rewards credit card in the first 90 days and earn a $300 statement credit.

    The Owner’s Rewards Card by M1 comes with a $95 annual fee (the fee is waived for Plus members).

    Read full review

  • Pros:
    • No Foreign Transaction Fee
    • High rewards rate
  • Cons:
    • No Intro APR period
    • $95 annual fee (for non-plus members)
  • Benefits:
    • Up to 10% Cash Back on purchases with eligible brands;
    • 1.5% Cash Back on everything else;
    • Visa® Zero Liability.
View all The Owner’s Rewards Card by M1 details
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Capital One® Spark Cash Plus
Annual fee:
$150 annually
Regular APR:
None *
Our Rating:
3.62
scorer
Credit score
Excellent (740-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 5% Cash Back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.
    • 2% Cash Back for your business on every purchase.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $1,000 Earn up to $1,000 in the first 6 months, $500 once you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months and $500 once you spend $50,000 in the first 6 months.
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    None *
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    None *
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Capital One® Spark Cash Plus Credit Card earns 5% Cash Back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 2% Cash Back on every purchase.

    The Card has no APR because your balance is due in full every month.

    Earn up to $1,000 in the first 6 months, $500 once you spend $5,000 in the first 3 months and $500 once you spend $50,000 in the first 6 months.

    The Card's annual fee is $150.

  • Pros:
    • No foreign transaction fees
  • Cons:
    • Annual Fee
  • Benefits:
    • Up to $1,000 in the first 6 months;
    • $200 cash bonus every year you spend $200,000 or more;
    • 5% Cash Back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel;
    • 2% Cash Back on every purchase;
    • Roadside Assistance;
    • Free Employee Cards;
    • Extended Warranty;
    • $0 Fraud Liability.
View all Spark Cash Plus details
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Capital One® Spark® Cash Select
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
16.24% - 22.24% Variable
Our Rating:
5
scorer
Credit score
Excellent (740-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 5% Cash Back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.
    • 1.5% Cash Back for your business on every purchase, everywhere, no limits or category restrictions.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $500 Cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    16.24% - 22.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Capital One® Spark® Cash Select Credit Card earns a $500 cash bonus once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening. The Card offers 5% Cash Back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel, 1.5% Cash Back for your business on every purchase.

    The Spark® Cash Select Card doesn't charge an annual fee.

    The card's APR is 16.24% - 22.24%.

  • Pros:
    • No Annual Fee
    • No Foreign Transaction Fee
  • Cons:
    • No Intro APR period
  • Benefits:
    • $500 cash bonus (once you spend $4,500 on purchases within the first 3 months from account opening);
    • 5% Cash Back on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel;
    • 1.5% Cash Back for your business on every purchase;
    • $0 Fraud Liability;
    • Free Employee Cards;
    • Roadside Assistance.
View all Spark® Cash Select details
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American Express Blue Cash Preferred best for Gas, Groceries, Streaming services, Daily use

Blue Cash Preferred® American Express
Annual fee:
$0 intro annual fee for the first year
$95 for the rest years
Regular APR:
18.24% - 29.24% Variable
Our Rating:
5
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 6% Cash Back at U.S. Supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
    • 6% Cash Back on streaming (select U.S. streaming subscriptions).
    • 3% Cash Back on transit. Transit includes taxis, rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses, and more.
    • 3% Cash Back at U.S. Gas Stations.
    • 1% Cash Back on other purchases.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $250 Back after you spend $3,000 in purchases on the Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership. You will receive the $250 back in the form of a statement credit.
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Introductory APR for the first 12 months from the date of account opening
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    18.24% - 29.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    American Express®
  • Details:

    The Blue Cash Preferred® Credit Card provides high rewards at U.S. supermarkets and U.S. gas stations, and for streaming services (select U.S. streaming subscriptions), and transit expenses. It has a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.

    The Blue Cash Preferred® Credit Card from American Express® offers a 0% introductory APR promotion. You’ll pay no interest on purchases and balance transfers for 12 months and then an APR of 18.24% - 29.24% Variable. The Blue Cash Preferred Credit Card's Penalty APR is 29.99%.

    The Card also has 0% introductory plan fee on each purchase moved into a plan during the first 12 months after account opening. After that, your plan fee will be up to 1.33% of each purchase moved into a plan based on the plan duration, the APR that would otherwise apply to the purchase and other factors.

    The Blue Cash Preferred® Credit Card has a welcome bonus where cardholders earn a $250 statement credit after spending $3,000 on the new card within the first six months of card membership.

  • Pros:
    • Excellent cashback bonuses
    • Generous intro APR on purchases
    • Great introductory bonuses
  • Cons:
    • Cashback cap
    • Annual fee
    • Foreign transaction fee
  • Benefits:
    • Earn $250 Back (in the form of a statement credit);
    • 6% Cash Back at U.S. Supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%);
    • 6% Cash Back on streaming subscriptions;
    • 3% Cash Back on transit;
    • 3% Cash Back at U.S. Gas Stations;
    • 1% Cash Back on other purchases;
    • Extended warranty;
    • Fraud Protection;
    • Return Protection;
    • Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance;
    • Global Assist® Hotline;
    • Pay It Plan It®;
    • American Express Experiences;
    • Terms Apply.
Card detail

Chase Freedom Flex℠ best for Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Daily use

Chase Freedom Flex℠
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
19.24% - 27.99% Variable
Our Rating:
5
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 5% Cash Back on up to $1,500 on combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate.
    • 5% Cash Back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
    • 3% Cash Back on dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services.
    • 3% Cash Back on drugstore purchases.
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
    • 5% Back on grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year (that's $600 cash back).
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Intro APR for the first 15 months that your Account is open
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    19.24% - 27.99% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Chase
  • Details:

    The Chase Freedom Flex card offers Cash Back in a wide variety of categories.

    You’ll earn 5% Cash Back on travel (through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel service, and also for Lyft rides). You’ll also get 3% Cash Back on restaurant purchases, on drugstore purchases and 1% Cash Back on all other purchases.

    Earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

    The card offers a 15-month 0% annual percentage rate for purchases and balance transfers, after which the APR is 19.24% - 27.99% Variable. The card charges no annual fee but 5%, or a $5 minimum fee, on balance transfers.

  • Pros:
    • $200 sign-up bonus
    • High cash back rewards on quarterly rotating bonus categories
    • Decent cash back rewards on select spending categories
    • 0% intro APR on purchases
    • No annual fee
  • Cons:
    • Foreign transaction fee
    • Rotating spending categories require activation
    • No intro APR on balance transfers
  • Benefits:
    • 5% Back on grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year (that's $600 cash back);
    • 5% Cash Back on up to $1,500 on combined purchases in bonus categories;
    • 5% Cash Back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards;
    • 3% Cash Back on dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services;
    • 3% Cash Back on drugstore purchases;
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases;
    • $200 Cash Back;
    • Zero Liability Protection;
    • Extended Warranty Protection;
    • Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance;
    • Cell Phone Protection;
    • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver;
    • Travel and Emergency Assistance Services.
Card detail

Chase Freedom Unlimited® best for Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Daily use

Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
18.74% - 27.49% Variable
Our Rating:
5
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 5% Cash Back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
    • 3% Cash back on dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services.
    • 3% Cash Back on drugstore purchases.
    • 1.5% Cash Back on all other purchases.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
    • 5% Cash Back on grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year (that's $600 cash back).
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Intro APR for the first 15 months that your Account is open
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    18.74% - 27.49% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Chase
  • Details:

    The Chase Freedom Unlimited® Credit Card offers 0% introductory APR period (18.74% to 27.49% Variable after that) and a sign-up bonus that’s worth far more than most Cash-Back cards offer — all for an annual fee of $0.

    The card offers 5% back on travel booked through Chase, 3% Cash Back on restaurants and drugstore purchases and 1.5% back on other purchases.

    Earn a $200 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. And earn 5% Cash Back on grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year (that's $600 cash back).

  • Pros:
    • No Annual Fee
    • Generous rewards
    • 0% intro APR
    • Sign-up bonus
  • Cons:
    • Foreign Transaction Fee
  • Benefits:
    • Zero Liability Protection;
    • $200 intro bonus;
    • 5% Cash Back on grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year (that's $600 cash back);
    • 5 percent Cash Back on all travel purchased via the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal;
    • 3 percent back on dining;
    • 3 percent back at drugstores;
    • 1.5 percent Cash Back on general purchases;
    • Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver;
    • Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance;
    • Travel and Emergency Assistance Services;
    • 24/7 Fraud Protection;
    • Redeem for Cash Back;
    • Gift cards.
Card detail

Citi Double Cash best for Cash Back, No Annual Fee, Daily use

Double Cash Citi
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
18.24% - 28.24% Variable
Our Rating:
4.53
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 2% Cash Back on every purchase with unlimited 1% Cash Back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for purchases.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    18.24% - 28.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Citi
  • Details:

    The Citi® Double Cash Credit Card offers a few concrete ways in which you can better your financial situation, improve your credit card habits and enjoy cash back rewards without the fuss of tracking rotating categories.

    Earn 2% Cash Back on every purchase with unlimited 1% Cash Back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for purchases.

    The Citi® Double Cash offers a 0% percent (for 18-months) introductory APR offer on balance transfers (18.24 percent to 28.24 percent variable APR after).

    The Citi Double Cash extends a myriad of security and fraud protections.

  • Pros:
    • Flat-rate Cash Back Rewards on Everything
    • High Rewards Rate
    • No annual fee
    • Attractive Intro APR on Balance Transfers
  • Cons:
    • Losing your 1% Cash-Back Is Pretty Easy
    • Foreign transaction fee
    • Balance Transfer Fee
  • Benefits:
    • Citi Entertainment;
    • 2% Cash Back on every purchase;
    • Fraud Protection;
    • The Lost Wallet Service;
    • $0 Liability for Unauthorized Charges.
Card detail

Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express best for Cash Back, Gas, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Families, Shopping, Groceries

Blue Cash Everyday® American Express
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
18.24% - 29.24% Variable
Our Rating:
4.22
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 3% Cash Back on groceries at U.S. supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
    • 3% Cash Back on U.S. online retail purchases on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
    • 2% Cash Back on gas at U.S. gas stations on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
    • 1% Cash Back on other purchases. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $150 Earn up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal merchants by earning 20% back in statement credits on your purchases, plus $100 back in statement credits after spending $2,000, all within the first 6 months.
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Introductory APR for the first 15 months from the date of account opening
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    18.24% - 29.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    American Express®
  • Details:

    The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal merchants by earning 20% back in statement credits on your purchases, plus $100 back in statement credits after spending $2,000, all within the first 6 months. Plus, earn 3% Cash Back at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $6,000 per year in purchases, then 1%), 3% Cash Back on U.S. online retail purchases on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%), 2% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations and 1% Cash Back on other purchases. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.

    The Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express offers an introductory 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 months, followed by a variable APR of 18.24% to 29.24%.

    Your Card gives you the option to carry a balance with interest or pay in full each month. So, whether you're managing your monthly expenses or making a large purchase, you can have the payment flexibility you need while continuing to earn rewards.

    When you use your Card to reserve and pay for the Entire Rental and decline the collision damage waiver at the rental Company counter, you can be covered for Damage to or Theft of a Rental Vehicle in a Covered Territory.

    Stay in the know with exclusive access to ticket presales and Card Member-only events in a city near you. Check out Broadway shows and concert tours, family and sporting events, and more.

  • Pros:
    • No Annual Fee
    • Provides Gas and Grocery Rewards
    • 0% Intro Offer
    • Welcome Bonus
  • Cons:
    • Limited Redemption
    • Bonus Cash Backs Capped
    • Card not Ideal for Travelling Abroad
  • Benefits:
    • 3% Сash Back at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%);
    • 3% Cash Back on U.S. online retail purchases on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%);
    • 2% Cash Back at U.S. gas stations on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%);
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases;
    • Up to $150 back when you shop with PayPal merchants by earning 20% back in statement credits on your purchases;
    • $100 back in statement credits after spending $2,000 within the first 6 months;
    • Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance;
    • 24/7 Global Assist® Hotline;
    • American Express Experiences;
    • Fraud Protection;
    • Pay It Plan It;
    • Additional Cards;
    • Terms Apply.
Card detail

Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card best for Restaurants, Entertainment

Capital One® Savor Cash Rewards
Annual fee:
$95 annually
Regular APR:
20.24% - 28.24% Variable
Our Rating:
3.46
scorer
Credit score
Excellent (740-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 4% Cash Back on dining and entertainment and popular streaming services.
    • 3% Cash Back at grocery stores.
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $300 Cash Bonus once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    20.24% - 28.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    Capital One
  • Details:

    The Capital One® Savor Rewards Credit Card has a generous welcome offer. Earn a one-time $300 cash bonus once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

    The Card offers 4% Сash Back on dining, entertainment and popular streaming services, plus 3% back at grocery stores and 1% back on everything else.

    The APR for purchases and balance transfers is 20.24% - 28.24% Variable.

    The Capital One® Savor Rewards also charges a $95 annual fee and up to a $40 fee for late payments. The card has a balance transfer fee of 3% (none for balances transferred at the Transfer APR).

  • Pros:
    • High rewards rate on entertainment and dining
    • Decent welcome offer
    • No fees for foreign transactions
    • Access to special entertainment, events and dining
  • Cons:
    • No intro APR on purchases or balance transfers
    • Annual fee
  • Benefits:
    • $300 Cash Bonus (once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening);
    • 4% Cash Back on dining and entertainment and popular streaming services;
    • 3% Cash Back at grocery stores;
    • 1% Cash Back on all other purchases;
    • Extended Warranty;
    • $0 Fraud Liability;
    • Travel Accident Insurance;
    • Complimentary Concierge Service;
    • 24-hour Travel Assistance Services;
    • Shop With Your Rewards.
Card detail

American Express® Cash Magnet® best for Cash Back, 0 APR

Cash Magnet® American Express
Annual fee:
$0
Regular APR:
18.24% - 29.24% Variable
Our Rating:
4.4
scorer
Credit score
Good to Excellent (670-799)
  • Rewards Rate:
    • 1.5% Earn unlimited Cash Back on all purchases. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.
  • Intro Offer:
    • $200 Earn $200 Back after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 6 months of Card Membership. You will receive the $200 back in the form of a statement credit.
  • Purchase Intro APR:
    0% Introductory APR for the first 15 months from the date of account opening
  • Balance Transfer APR:
    18.24% - 29.24% Variable
  • Issuer name:
    American Express®
  • Details:

    The American Express® Cash Magnet® Credit Card is one of the best cash back credit cards. You’ll earn Cash Back on every purchase at a flat rate of 1.5 % back, no matter what you buy. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.

    The card also carries a nice welcome bonus and no annual fee. Earn $200 Back after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership. You will receive the $200 cash back in the form of a statement credit.

    The American Express® Cash Magnet® Credit Card offers an introductory 0% APR on purchases and balance transfers for 15 billing cycles, followed by a variable APR of 18.24% to 29.24%.

    Whenever you travel more than 100 miles from home, Global Assist Hotline is available for 24/7 medical, legal, financial and other select emergency assistance and coordination services, such as medical and legal referrals, emergency cash wires, and missing luggage assistance. Card Members are responsible for the costs charged by third-party service providers.

    Stay in the know with exclusive access to ticket presales and Card Member-only events in a city near you. Check out Broadway shows and concert tours, family and sporting events, and more.

  • Pros:
    • No annual fee
    • 0% Intro APR
    • Uniform Bonus Tier
    • $200 Welcome Bonus
  • Cons:
    • Relatively Low Cash Back Rate
    • Limited Cash Back Reward Redemption
    • Limited Acceptance Globally
    • Foreign transaction fee
    • APR Penalty
  • Benefits:
    • $200 Back;
    • Unlimited 1.5% Cash Back;
    • 0% intro APR;
    • American Express Experiences;
    • 24/7 Travel Assistant;
    • Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance;
    • Purchase Protection;
    • Terms Apply.
Card detail

Short Review of Best Credit Cards for Cash Back

NameBest forCash BackAnnual FeeAPRApply
Capital One SavorOne Cash Rewards Credit Card
4.3
Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Restaurants, Entertainment, Daily use
  • 3% On dining, entertainment, popular streaming services and at grocery stores.
  • 1% On all other purchases.
  • $019.24% - 29.24% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Capital One Walmart Rewards® Mastercard®
    4.09
    Walmart purchases
  • 5% At Walmart.com, including pickup and delivery.
  • 2% In Walmart stores, at restaurants and on travel.
  • 1% Everywhere else Mastercard® is accepted.
  • $017.99% - 28.99% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card
    4.52
    Cash Back, No Annual Fee, Daily use
  • 1.5% On every purchase.
  • $019.24% - 29.24% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card
    3.61
    Fair credit
  • 1.5% Cash Back on every purchase.
  • $3929.74% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Capital One Quicksilver Student Cash Rewards Credit Card
    3.52
    International students
  • 1.5% On every purchase.
  • $017.99% - 27.99% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Journey Student Rewards from Capital One
    3.75
    Without SSN
  • 1% On all purchases.
  • $029.74% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Upgrade Cash Rewards Visa®
    4.35
    Good credit score
  • 1.5% On payments.
  • $014.99% - 29.99% RegularApply now
    On Upgrade‘s website
    Capital One SavorOne Student Cash Rewards Credit Card
    3.96
    International students
  • 3% On dining, entertainment, popular streaming services & at grocery stores (excluding superstores like Walmart® and Target®).
  • 1% On all other purchases.
  • $017.99% - 27.99% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    Upgrade Triple Cash Rewards Visa®
    3.53
    Low income
  • 3% On Home, Auto and Health categories.
  • 1% On everything else.
  • $014.99% - 29.99% RegularApply now
    On Upgrade‘s website
    WebBank Petal® 2 “Cash Back, No Fees” Visa®
    3.8
    Beginner, No history
  • 1% - 1.5%:
  • Cash Back after making 12 on-time monthly payments.
  • 2% - 10%:
  • Cash Back from select merchants.
  • $017.24% - 31.24% VariableApply now
    On WebBank‘s site
    WebBank Petal® 1 "No Annual Fee" Visa®
    4.34
    For bad credit
  • 2% - 10%:
  • At select merchants.
  • $024.24% - 33.74% VariableApply now
    On WebBank‘s site
    Celtic Bank The Owner’s Rewards Card by M1
    3.91
  • 10% You’ll get up to 10% Cash Back with select brands you hold in an eligible portfolio.
  • 1.5% On everything else.
  • $9517.99% - 27.99% VariableApply now
    On Celtic Bank‘s site
    Capital One Spark Cash Plus
    3.62
  • 5% On hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.
  • 2% On every purchase.
  • $150None *Learn more
    on our partner’s site
    Capital One Spark Cash Select - $500 Cash Bonus
    5
  • 5% On hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel.
  • 1.5% On every purchase.
  • $016.24% - 22.24% VariableLearn more
    on our partner’s site
    American Express Blue Cash Preferred
    5
    Gas, Groceries, Streaming services, Daily use
  • 6% At U.S. Supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 6% On streaming (select U.S. streaming subscriptions).
  • 3% On transit. Transit includes taxis, rideshare, parking, tolls, trains, buses, and more.
  • 3% At U.S. Gas Stations.
  • 1% On other purchases.
  • $9518.24% - 29.24% VariableLearn more
    Chase Freedom Flex℠
    5
    Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Daily use
  • 5% On up to $1,500 on combined purchases in bonus categories each quarter you activate.
  • 5% On travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • 3% On dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services.
  • 3% On drugstore purchases.
  • 1% On all other purchases.
  • $019.24% - 27.99% VariableLearn more
    Chase Freedom Unlimited®
    5
    Cash Back, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Daily use
  • 5% On travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • 3% On dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery services.
  • 3% On drugstore purchases.
  • 1.5% On all other purchases.
  • $018.74% - 27.49% VariableLearn more
    Citi Double Cash
    4.53
    Cash Back, No Annual Fee, Daily use
  • 2% On every purchase with unlimited 1% Cash Back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for purchases.
  • $018.24% - 28.24% VariableLearn more
    Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express
    4.22
    Cash Back, Gas, 0 APR, No Annual Fee, Families, Shopping, Groceries
  • 3% On groceries at U.S. supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 3% On U.S. online retail purchases on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 2% On gas at U.S. gas stations on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%).
  • 1% On other purchases. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit.
  • $018.24% - 29.24% VariableLearn more
    Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card
    3.46
    Restaurants, Entertainment
  • 4% On dining and entertainment and popular streaming services.
  • 3% At grocery stores.
  • 1% On all other purchases.
  • $9520.24% - 28.24% VariableLearn more
    American Express® Cash Magnet®
    4.4
    Cash Back, 0 APR
  • 1.5% Earn unlimited Cash Back on all purchases.
  • $018.24% - 29.24% VariableLearn more

    Cards’ description

    Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

    The Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards makes for an effortless card with a great flat rate that doesn’t charge an annual fee. It earns you an unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase, plus you can get a $200 bonus by spending only $500 on purchases within 3 months from account opening.

    Read more about Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards Credit Card

    Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

    Cardholders will get the same features as those who have the Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards, a 1.5% cash back on all purchases for no annual fee. However, this one doesn’t have the $200 sign-up bonus.

    Read more about Capital One QuicksilverOne Cash Rewards Credit Card

    American Express Blue Cash Preferred

    The Blue Cash Preferred® Credit Card is ideal for families who often shop at supermarkets because it offers a superior 6% cash back rate on food (up to $6,000 annually, then it’s 1%) and streaming services. There is also a generous 3% cash back on gas and transit. A great welcome offer is part of the deal too - $350 statement credit after $3,000 spent in the first 6 months. The $95 annual fee (after the first year) shouldn’t come as a surprise for a card with such rewards and a 0% APR intro period (on purchases for 12 months from the date of account opening, then a variable APR, 18.24% - 29.24%).

    Read more about American Express Blue Cash Preferred

    Chase Freedom Flex℠

    The 5% cash back rate on travel purchases (made through Chase Ultimate Rewards®) is the highlight of this credit card. Then, there are the quarterly rotating categories in which you earn a 5% cash back on eligible purchases, 5% cash back on travel, 3% cash back on dining and drugstore purchases, and 1% cash back on all other purchases. All this makes for an excellent no-annual-fee card, even before adding in the $200 sign-up bonus (after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months) and the 0% APR intro period for the first 15 months (19.24% - 27.99% variable after that).

    Read more about Chase Freedom Flex℠

    Chase Freedom Unlimited®

    This card is the sister card of the Chase Freedom Flex℠, it also offers 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase, 3% on dining and drugstore purchases, but it has a higher rate of 1.5% for all other purchases. However, this one lacks the rotating bonus categories. It also goes without an annual fee and with a $200 bonus for new cardholders (after you spend $500 on purchases in the first 3 months).

    Read more about Chase Freedom Unlimited®

    Citi Double Cash

    The Citi Double Cash is the most straightforward credit card with an unrivaled flat cash back rate. It earns you 1% cash back when you make a purchase and an extra 1% when you pay for it. As simple as it gets for a card without an annual fee. Nothing’s perfect so it lacks some standard rewards credit card benefits, but it does have an intro 0% APR on balance transfers for 18 months (18.24% - 28.24% variable after).

    Read more about Citi Double Cash

    Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

    The Blue Cash Everyday® Card has great rewards in popular spending categories and no annual fee. It earns you 3% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (up to the first $6,000 in a year) and 2% at U.S. gas stations and some department stores. New cardholders can also earn themselves a $200 bonus, by spending $2,000 in the first six months. You will receive the $200 back in the form of a statement credit.

    Read more about Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

    Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card

    If you enjoy dining out and also spend a lot on entertainment, the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards Credit Card is your match. This card will earn you an unlimited 4% cash back on dining, entertainment and popular streaming services, 3% at grocery stores and 1% on everything else. Throw in the $300 cash bonus (once you spend $3,000 on purchases within 3 months) and you’ve got yourself a great card for a small annual fee of $95.

    Read more about Capital One Savor Rewards Credit Card

    American Express® Cash Magnet®

    Anyone who wants a simple cash back card with a high flat rewards rate and no annual fee should consider the American Express® Cash Magnet®. Apart from the unlimited 1.5% cash back on all purchases, it also offers a $200 bonus for new cardholders and a 15-month 0% APR period.

    Read more about American Express® Cash Magnet®

    What are cash back credit cards and how do they work?

    Cash back credit cards are a type of rewards cards (the other two types being points and travel). When you pay for your purchases with your cash back credit card, you get a rebate of the purchase amount as moneyback. Cash back is usually expressed in percentages.

    icon-search

    For example, take the Capital One QuicksilverOneCredit Card that offers a fixed 1.5% cash back rate on all purchases. If you buy an item for $100, you’ll get $1.5 back.

    The biggest advantage of cash back credit cards is their flexibility. It’s up to you to decide what you’ll spend that cash on. You also have a number of redemption options to choose from, the most common one being statement credit. The cash back earned is applied toward your account and reduces your credit card debt. Other options are a direct deposit to a linked checking account or you can request a check.

    This type of credit cards sometimes has certain limitations or capped amounts when earning and redeeming rewards.

    icon-search

    With the Chase Freedom Flex℠Credit Card the 5% rewards rate in the quarterly rotating bonus categories is applied on the first $1,500 spent each quarter on combined bonus purchases. The Citi Double Cash Card earns you great cash back, but you have to pay at least the minimum due on time. Also, there is a minimum redemption amount of $25 when you’re redeeming for check or a statement credit.

    Finally, some credit cards have annual fees and it’s usually the ones with the best rewards rates. The Blue Cash Preferred® from American Express® has an annual fee of $95$, but offers an unmatched 6% rewards rate on grocery purchase and streaming services subscriptions. It’s on you to determine whether the card’s annual fee will be worth it.

    How to compare and choose a cash-back credit card?

    Choosing the best credit card for your goals and needs is not an easy thing. It also can take a lot of time as there is a wide variety of options on the market and they all claim to be the best. We’ll help you with a few tips on how to make a comparison between different cash back credit cards and to find the one that fits your lifestyle best.

    First, consider your credit score. Cash back credit cards usually require a fair to excellent credit score to get approved. The higher your credit score, the more credit cards you can choose from. Those with the highest rewards rates, like the Citi Double Cash, require a credit score of at least 740. Still, there are some great cards people with fair to good credit have a chance at, like Capital One QuicksilverOne (580+), or Chase Freedom Unlimited® (670+). Some, like the Discover it® Secured, earn rewards for people with bad credit.

    After you narrow your options a bit, you can continue with the system of elimination method. Of course, you should start with the rewards program and its rates. Ask yourself what you spend most of your earnings on and then review your spending. If you’re a young adult who drives to work and goes often on dates, the Wells Fargo Propel American Express® is one to consider as it will earn you 3 points for every dollar spent on gas and dining out. If tracking quarterly categories is not a problem for you, the Discover it® Cash Back with its 5% cash back in rotating categories will give you a great value.

    In case you’re a simplicity lover and prefer low-maintenance cards, you should go for one that offers a flat cash back rate and doesn’t require you to track categories. Great choices are the Citi Double Cash and the American Express® Cash Magnet®. The first one offers a 2% cash back which is higher than the 1.5% of the American Express® Cash Magnet®, though it lacks the $200 welcome bonus (after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Card within the first 6 months). That leads us to another thing to consider, the sign-up bonus. Many cards have a one-time initial offer for new cardholders that enables them to earn a bonus by spending a certain amount of money, usually in the first few months of account opening. Consider also the amount you need to spend in order to earn it, not only the bonus amount.

    icon-search

    With the Capital One® Savor Cash Rewards, you can earn $300 if you spend $3,000 in the first three months. While with the Capital One® Quicksilver you only need to spend $500 to get the $200 bonus.

    Another very important thing to take into account is the annual fee. There are a lot of great cash back credit cards that don’t charge an annual fee, like the Blue Cash Everyday® from American Express® or the Wells Fargo Propel American Express®. These are a great option for low spenders who are not sure whether they’ll earn enough rewards to justify the cost of an annual fee.

    At last, you should consider other perks and features that might work to your benefit. If you have a big purchase coming up a card with a 0% APR intro period will work great for you. The Bank of America Cash Rewards offers an intro APR period for 15 billing cycles on both purchases and balance transfers (18.24% - 28.24% Variable after that). So, you can also use it to pay off debt on another credit card, if you do the balance transfers within 60 days after account opening. Then, if you plan on using your credit card for international travel look out for foreign transaction fees and maybe opt for a card that’s Visa® or Mastercard® rather than American Express, which is widely accepted nationwide, but not worldwide.

    Types of cash-back credit cards

    Generally, there are three types of cash-back credit cards:

    • Flat-rate cash back credit cards are the simplest type, you get a single rewards rate for all purchases. They’re suitable for those whose spending is evenly spread across several categories. Great flat-rate cards are the Citi Double Cash and the Capital One Quicksilver.
    • Tiered cards offer higher rewards rates for purchases in certain bonus categories. Fine choices within this type are the Capital One® Savor Cash Rewards which offers 4% cash back on dining and entertainment, and the Blue Cash Preferred® from American Express® which earns an outstanding 6% cash back on grocery stores and streaming services, and a 3% cash back on gas and transit.
    • Rotating bonus categories is very similar to tiered categories, except that here the bonus categories change quarterly. Each quarter you earn the tiered cash back rate on purchases in different categories. The Discover it® Cash Back and the Discover it® Student Cash Back both offer 5% cash back in rotating categories (on up to $1,500 in spending per quarter when you activate and 1% back on everything else). Some cards, like the Bank of America Cash Rewards, let you choose the bonus category.

    Common cash-back bonus categories

    The most common cash back bonus categories are the following:

    • Groceries – probably the most useful category because who doesn’t spend on groceries? Even those who don’t often prepare their food at home, still shop for groceries (milk, coffee, snacks). The best reward rate for this category is the 6% cash back offered by the Blue Cash Preferred® from American Express®. Check our top picks for credit cards for groceries to know more about them.
    • Gas – another great category, as many Americans spend a considerable amount of money on gas. The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® offers great rewards for this category with three points per dollar spent on gas purchases. Check our top picks for credit cards for gas to know more about them.
    • Dining – everyone who likes dining out at restaurants should opt for a card that has a high rewards rate for this category, like the Capital One Savor Cash Rewards (4% on dining). Check our top picks for credit cards for dining and restaurants to know more about them.

    Other popular categories include travel, transit, entertainment, subscriptions to streaming services, food delivery, etc.

    Cash back vs. travel cards

    When deciding between a cash back or a travel credit card, it all comes down to your lifestyle. If you travel regularly, it will make sense to get a travel card, as it will be far more worth it, since they usually offer higher value per dollar spent. You’ll have to do a research and compare several redemption options to find the one that offers the most value. On the other hand, cash back cards are more straightforward and flexible. Also, with travel cards, you’ll mostly find perks like travel insurance or concierge service. Cash back credit cards usually lack those, but they have interest rate free periods on purchases and balance transfers.

    Both types have their benefits and drawbacks, but you can’t have it all. Unless, of course, you take both, a travel card and a cash back card.

    Cash back credit cards that require a membership

    In order to apply for some cash back credit cards, you’ll need to have a certain membership. These are usually store credit cards like the Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi (4% on gas, 3% on restaurants, and 2% at Costco) or the Sam’s Club® Mastercard® (5% on gas and 3% on restaurants). Both don’t have an annual fee but require a membership at the respective stores. You can earn rewards everywhere with them, but you have to redeem that at the corresponding stores, Costco and Sam’s Club.

    Which Credit Card Gives The Most Cash Back?

    The credit card that will give you the highest returns in cash back is the one that fits your personal spending habits the best. If you’ve heard a colleague talking about how the Capital One® Savor Cash Rewards credit card is great, it doesn’t mean it will be great for you too. It may be for someone who often dines out and spends free time at events, but if you prefer cooking at home and watching Netflix instead, the Blue Cash Preferred® will be a better fit as it offers higher rewards rates on groceries and streaming services.

    So, our advice is to look at your receipts and statements to see what you spend the most on and then take a credit card that has higher rewards rates in those categories.

    Pros and cons of using a cash back card

    Go over this pros and cons list to better understand cash back credit cards.

    Pros

    • Simple and flexible cash back rewards – whether you own a simple, flat-rate credit card or a tiered one with bonus categories, the cash back is the highlight of these credit cards. You can take a card that has high rewards rates in the categories you usually spend a lot and you’ll earn cash back effortlessly, without having to make any changes in your spending.
    • Sign-up bonuses – most cash back credit cards have a promotional offer for new cardholders which gives them the opportunity to earn a cash back bonus with the condition they spend a certain amount in the first few months.
    • Intro APR periods – you can use the 0% APR periods to go through with a large purchase or pay off another credit card’s debt.
    • No annual fee – if you have read our credit card descriptions you must’ve noticed that many of them have no annual fees, but still offer great rewards.

    Cons

    • High ongoing APRs – after the intro period most cash back cards have high APRs and you have to be careful not to carry a balance because the cost can offset your rewards fast.
    • Less value and no travel benefits – compared to travel rewards cards, cash back offers less value per dollar spent. With travel rewards you can really max your points by, for example, purchasing through a loyalty program that values them more highly.
    • Spending restrictions in rewards categories – some cards allow you to earn high cash back rates only on a limited amount spent. The Blue Cash Preferred® earns you 6% on groceries for the first $6,000 annually, after that it’s 1%.

    Making the most of your cash back card

    To make the most out of your cash back credit card you should use it for all your purchases. If you can, get more than one card and use them strategically to maximize your rewards. Pay for your travel with the Chase Freedom (Flex or Unlimited), at restaurants use the Capital One® Savor Cash Rewards, and don’t go for grocery shopping without the Blue Cash Preferred® from American Express®.

    Of course, don’t forget to seize the welcome bonus, if there is one.

    Does Cash Back Expire?

    More often than not, you’ll find that the rewards don’t expire as long as the account remains open. While some credit cards do have rewards that expire and they can have a particular deadline until which you have to use them or they’ll expire after a certain period of card inactivity. For example, your rewards with the Citi Double Cash will expire only if you haven’t earned any cash back on purchases in the last 12 months.

    Are cash back credit cards worth it?

    This is not a yes/no question. We cannot tell for sure whether a certain cash back credit card will be worth it without details on your financial goals and needs. What we can recommend is that you don’t carry a balance on these credit cards. The ongoing APRs are usually high and even if you earn a great return in cash back, it can end up being very costly.

    Before deciding on a card with an annual fee, analyze whether all the benefits the card offers offset the annual fee, consider cash back rewards, bonuses, and other perks. The Capital One® Savor Cash Rewards has a $95 annual fee which you can justify by spending $2,375 in the dining and entertainment categories.

    FAQ

    What are other credit cards to consider?

    Some great cards that didn’t make our list are Citi Costco Anywhere Visa® and Chase Ink Business Cash®.

    What credit score do I need to apply for a cash back credit card?

    Generally, cash back credit cards require a fair to excellent credit score, with those requiring the highest credit scores also offering the best rewards. However, there are also options for people with bad credit.

    Is it bad to redeem cash back?

    It’s actually smart to redeem your cash back as soon as you can, because otherwise, it will lose value from year to year, due to inflation.
    Hanna VolkavaHanna Volkava

    Financial and product expert

    hv@myfin.us