On Wednesday, I mentioned you may be missing out on extra income by using cash rather than a rewards credit card. From the looks of it, Ben and I may make the switch. If you’re in the same boat, I wanted to share my research on some of the best rewards card out there right now. Here are my top three:
Citi® Double Cash Card
The Citi® Double Cash Card provides 1% cash back on every purchase you make, then an additional 1% cash back when you pay them off. So essentially you earn two percent cash rewards on every purchase, assuming you pay off your credit card every month. There’s no limit to the cash back you can earn, no annual fee, and you can redeem your rewards for a statement credit, a gift card or a check in the mail.
Many variations of this card have come and gone over the years. The current incarnation earns 5% cash back on bonus categories that change every quarter, such as gas, groceries, restaurants and Amazon.com, up to $1,500 spent per quarter. (So a max 5% bonus of $75 per quarter.) You’ll earn unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. You also get a bonus for signing up: a $100 bonus after spending $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
Capital One Quicksilver Cash Rewards
This card comes with an 1.5% cash back on all purchases, and a $100 bonus once you’ve made $500 in purchases after you get the card. Unlike the other rewards cards, you don’t have rotating categories or tiers of rewards to sign up for. You simply get the 1.5% on every purchase. There’s no annual fee on the card, the cash back you do get never expires. The card also comes with fraud protection, complimentary travel perks, shopping discounts at specific supported retailers, and even travel and roadside assistance without additional fees or subscriptions. You also get extended warranties on your purchases and purchase protection.
You’ll notice that a couple things remain consistent about the bonus cards that I like: 1) they don’t have an annual fee, and 2) they give cash rewards. Since Ben and I don’t travel all that much, the cash option versus bonus points suits us more.
However, you can find other specialty rewards cards for travel, hotels, and small businesses. For a more extensive list, check out these reviews at NerdWallet.