Bank Rewards & Cash Back Cards

In the interest of full disclosure, One Mile At A Time earns a referral bonus for anyone that’s approved through some of the below links. These are the best publicly available offers that we have found for each card. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities. Please check out my advertiser policy for further details about our partners, including American Express, Chase, and Citi, and thanks for your support!


Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

Current offer: Earn 50,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
Annual fee: Introductory Annual Fee of $0 the first year, then $95
Foreign transaction fee: 0%

Card bonuses: 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases worldwide
Why it’s a great offer: Ultimate Rewards points can be transferred at a 1:1 ratio to Korean Air, United, Hyatt, and many other programs. The card is also great for everyday spend given that it offers double points on dining and travel. This is probably the most-used card in my wallet.


Citi Prestige® Card

Current Offer: Earn 40,000 bonus points after $4,000 in purchases made with your card in the first 3 months the account is open.
Annual Fee: $450
Foreign transaction fees: none

Card bonuses: 3x points on air travel and hotels; 2x points on dining at restaurants and entertainment; and one point for all other purchases
Why it’s a good offer: This card has a high annual fee at $450, but does offer complimentary access to American Airlines Admirals Club® lounges (through 7/23/17) and Priority Pass Select lounges, a $250 annual airline fee credit, along with a $100 Global Entry application fee credit. You can 4th night hotel benefit for any hotel stay at hotels booked through the Citi Prestige® Concierge. More importantly, Citi Prestige® Card holders can transfer their ThankYou points to airline partners.


Ink Business Preferred℠ Credit Card

Current offer: Earn 80,000 bonus points after you spend $5,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Annual fee: $95
Foreign transaction fee: 0%

Card bonuses: Earn 3 points per $1 on the first $150,000 spent in combined purchases on travel, shipping purchases, Internet, cable and phone services, advertising purchases made with social media sites and search engines each account anniversary year. Earn 1 point per $1 on all other purchases—with no limit to the amount you can earn.
Why it’s a great offer: The Ink Preferred has a fantastic, practical rewards structure. Triple points on travel, telecommunications, shipping and advertising on social-media and search engines, covers a lot of categories that are actually useful to businesses.


Chase Freedom® Card

Current offer: Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Plus earn a $25 Bonus after you add your first authorized user and make a purchase within this same 3-month period.
Annual fee: none
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 5x bonus points in rotating quarterly categories for up to $1,500 in spend
Why it’s a good offer: This is a great way to rack up 7,500 Ultimate Rewards points per quarter on a no annual fee credit card. This card complements the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card very well, given that the points from all cards can be pooled. Named a Best Card for Cash Back by MONEY® Magazine.


Chase Freedom® Unlimited

Current offer: Earn a $150 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening. Plus earn a $25 Bonus after you add your first authorized user and make a purchase within this same 3-month period.
Annual fee: none
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 1.5% cashback on every purchase. You can redeem for any amount at anytime, and there are no caps to how much cashback you can earn.
Why it’s a good offer: This is a great way to rack up Ultimate Rewards points on a no annual fee credit card. This card complements the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card very well, given that the points from all cards can be pooled. This means that this card accrues 1.5 Ultimate Rewards points per dollar spent. That’s an incredible return on everyday, non-bonused spend,


Ink Business Cash℠ Credit Card

Current offer: Earn $300 bonus cash back when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
Annual fee: $0
Foreign transaction fees: 3.00%

Card bonuses: Earn 5% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at office supply stores and on cellular phone, landline, internet and cable TV services each account anniversary year. Earn 2% cash back on the first $25,000 spent in combined purchases at gas stations and restaurants each account anniversary year. Unlimited 1% cash back on all other card purchases.
Why it’s a good offer: This is a good no annual fee alternative, given that this one has no annual fee yet still accrues 5x points in several categories.


The Enhanced Business Platinum® Card from American Express OPEN

Current offer: Limited Time Offer: Earn up to 100,000 Membership Rewards® points. Offer expires January 25, 2017. Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards points after you spend $5,000 and an extra 50,000 points after you spend an additional $10,000 all on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
Annual fee: $450
Foreign transaction fees: 0%

Card bonuses: Complimentary access to over 1,000+ airport lounges worldwide; access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts; up to $200 in statement credits per calendar year towards incidentals such as baggage fees, lounge day passes, etc.; Gold membership with both Starwood and Hilton hotels; 1.5 points per dollar, on each qualifying purchase of $5,000 or more (up to 1 million additional points per year); one point per dollar for qualifying purchases under $5,000; Use Membership Rewards® Pay with Points for all or part of a flight with your selected qualifying airline, and you can get 50% of the points back.
Why it’s a great offer: While the annual fee is high the card comes with lots of benefits that help negate the annual fee, and this is a great welcome bonus on this card. Terms and limitations apply. See Rates & Fees


Premier Rewards Gold Card from American Express

Current offer: Earn 25,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $2,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
Intro Annual fee: Introductory annual fee of $0 for the first year, then $195.
Foreign transaction fees: 0%

Card bonuses: Earn 3X points for flights booked with airlines. Earn 2X points at US gas stations, US restaurants, and US supermarkets. Earn 1X points on other purchases. Terms and limitations apply. See Rates & Fees
Why it’s a great offer: Membership Rewards has many transfer partners, including Aeroplan, British Airways, Delta, and Singapore. I’d argue it may just be the most aspirational points currency now, given that you can redeem Singapore KrisFlyer miles for travel in Singapore Suites.


The Platinum Card® from American Express

Current offer: Earn 40,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $3,000 on purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months
Annual fee: $450
Foreign transaction fees: 0%

Card bonuses: 5X points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel; Lounge access with Delta, Priority Pass, and others; access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts; up to $200 a year in statement credits for airline incidental fees like checked bags fees, flight-change fees, and snacks (you need to enroll and select a qualifying airline); Gold membership with both Starwood and Hilton hotels
Why it’s a great offer: While the annual fee is high the card comes with lots of benefits that help negate the annual fee. Platinum Card Concierge is your personal resource to help secure a last minute restaurant reservation, or shop for a hard-to-find gift. The Mercedes Benz Platinum American Express card has a slightly better sign-up bonus, though it’s worth noting you can earn the sign up bonus on both cards. Terms and Conditions Apply. See Rates & Fees


Mercedes Benz Platinum Card from American Express

Current offer: 50,000 Membership Rewards points after spending $3,000 within three months
Annual fee: $475
Foreign transaction fees: none

Card bonuses: Lounge access with Delta, Priority Pass, and others; access to American Express Fine Hotels & Resorts; a $200 annual airline fee credit; Gold membership with both Starwood and Hilton hotels
Why it’s a great offer: While the annual fee is high, the card comes with lots of benefits that help negate the annual fee. Terms and Conditions Apply.


The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express

Current offer: Earn 10,000 Membership Reward® points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
Annual fee: $0
Foreign transaction fees:2.70%

Card bonuses: Get 2x points at U.S. supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1X). Earn 1X points on other purchases. Use your Card 20 or more times on purchases in a billing period and get 20% more points on those purchases less returns and credits.
Why it’s a great offer: If you make frequent transactions in a month the Amex EveryDay cards are a great option. In addition to accruing points in bonus categories, these cards offer an additional incentive based on how many times the card is used in a month. This can be quite lucrative, especially as these cards accrue Membership Rewards points.  Membership Rewards points can be transferred to airline partners for the best value, or used to pay for all or part of your flight, prepaid hotel, vacation or cruise through amextravel.com. Terms and Conditions Apply. See Rates & Fees


The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express

Current offer: Earn 15,000 Membership Reward® points after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within the first 3 months.
Annual fee: $95
Foreign transaction fees:2.70%

Card bonuses: Earn 3X points at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1X); 2X points at U.S. gas stations; 1X points on other purchases. Use your Card 30 or more times on purchases in a billing period and get 50% more points on those purchases less returns and credits.
Why it’s a great offer: If you make frequent transactions in a month the Amex EveryDay cards are a great option. In addition to accruing points in bonus categories, these cards offer an additional incentive based on how many times the card is used in a month. This can be quite lucrative, especially as these cards accrue Membership Rewards points.  Membership Rewards points can be transferred to airline partners for the best value, or used to pay for all or part of your flight, prepaid hotel, vacation or cruise through amextravel.com. Terms and Conditions Apply. See Rates & Fees


 Costco Anywhere Visa® Card by Citi

Current offer: Exclusively for Costco Members: Go Big with Cash Back Rewards
Annual fee: $0
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter; 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases; 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com; 1% cash back on all other purchases
Why it’s a good offer: The new Costco Citi cards have a great rewards structure for Costco loyalists. The bonus categories are compelling, and while it’s still not a card I’d personally use for everyday spend this is a solid option for Costco members.

Costco Anywhere Visa® Business Card by Citi

Current offer: Exclusively for Costco Members: Go Big with Cash Back Rewards. Receive a reward coupon annually which is redeemable for cash or merchandise at US Costco warehouses
Annual fee: $0
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 4% cash back on eligible gas for the first $7,000 per year and then 1% thereafter; 3% cash back on restaurants and eligible travel purchases; 2% cash back on all other purchases from Costco and Costco.com; 1% cash back on all other purchases
Why it’s a good offer: The new Costco Citi cards have a great rewards structure for Costco loyalists. The bonus categories are compelling, and while it’s still not a card I’d personally use for everyday spend this is a solid option for Costco members.


Blue Cash Everyday® Card from American Express

Current offer: Earn $100 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months. You will receive cash back in the form of statement credits.
Annual fee: $0
Foreign transaction fees: 2.70%

Card bonuses: Everyday Cash Back: 6% at U.S. supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%); 3% at U.S. gas stations; 1% other purchases. Terms and limitations apply.
Why it’s a good offer: This is a great no annual fee cash back card option. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit. Cash back is earned only on eligible purchases. Terms and Conditions apply. See Rates & Fees


Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express

Current offer: Earn $150 back after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
Annual fee: $95
Foreign transaction fees: 2.70%

Card bonuses: Everyday Cash Back: 6% at U.S supermarkets on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1%); 3% at U.S gas stations; 1% other purchases. Terms and limitations apply.
Why it’s a good offer: This is an amazing cash back rate if you spend a lot of money at supermarkets, department stores, and on gasoline. Cash back is received in the form of Reward Dollars that can be redeemed as a statement credit. Cash back is earned only on eligible purchases. See Rates & Fees

Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card for College Students

Current Offer:  Earn 2,500 bonus ThankYou® Points after you spend $500 in purchases within 3 months of account opening.
Annual Fee: none
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 2x ThankYou® Points on dining and entertainment.1x ThankYou® Points on other purchases. Points earned with this card do not expire and there is no limit to the amount of points you can earn.


The Business Gold Rewards Card from American Express OPEN

Current offer: Special Offer: Earn 50,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $5,000 in purchases on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership
Annual fee: $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $175
Foreign transaction fees: 0%

Card bonuses: 3X points on one category of your choice from the following: Airfare purchased directly from airlines; U.S. purchases for advertising in select media; U.S. purchases at gas stations; U.S. purchases for shipping; U.S. computer hardware, software, and cloud computing purchases made directly from select providers. 2X points on the 4 remaining categories. 1X points on other purchases. Terms and limitations apply. 3X and 2X apply to the first $100,000 in purchases in each of the 5 categories per year, 1X point per dollar thereafter.
Why it’s a good offer: Membership Rewards has many transfer partners, including Aeroplan, British Airways, Delta, and Singapore. I’d argue it may just be the most aspirational points currency now, given that you can redeem Singapore KrisFlyer miles for travel in Singapore Suites. See Rates & Fees


The Blue for Business® Credit Card from American Express

Current offer: Limited Time Offer: 10X points at U.S. restaurants for the first six months, on up to $2,000 in purchases. Offer expires 02/01/2017. Earn 10,000 Membership Rewards® points after making your first purchase on the Card within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
Annual fee: No annual fee
Foreign transaction fees: 2.70%

Card bonuses: 2X points on all qualifying purchases on the first $50,000 for the first year. That’s an additional 1 point per dollar spent on purchases. 2X points for each dollar of eligible purchases made when you book on the American Express Travel website. 1X points for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases. 30% more points each year with the annual Relationship Bonus, your Relationship Bonus is based on the past year’s eligible purchases on the Blue for Business Credit Card. Terms & Conditions Apply. See Rates & Fees


Business Green Rewards Card from American Express OPEN

Current offer: Earn 5,000 Membership Rewards® points after your first purchase on the Card.
Annual fee: $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95
Foreign transaction fees: 2.70%

Card bonuses: Earn double Membership Rewards® points for each dollar of eligible purchases made when you book on the American Express Travel website. Earn one Membership Rewards® point for each dollar you spend on eligible purchases. Choose rewards from over 500 leading brands in travel, gift cards, merchandise or entertainment. Terms & Limitations Apply See Rates & Fees


Citi® Double Cash Card – 18 month BT offer

Annual Fee: none
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 1% cash back when you buy. Plus 1% cash back as you pay for those purchases, whether you pay in full or over time. No Category Restrictions, No Caps, No Enrollments in Rotating Categories


Expedia®+ Voyager Card from Citi

Current offer: Earn 25,000 Expedia+ bonus points after $2,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening. Points redeemable for $350 towards your stay at a +VIP Access hotel.
Annual fee: $95
Foreign transaction fees: None

Card bonuses: 4 Expedia+ bonus points per $1 spent on eligible Expedia purchases including flights, hotels, activities and travel packages; 2 Expedia+ bonus points per $1 spent on dining out and entertainment; 1 Expedia+ bonus point per $1 spent on other purchases
Why it’s a good offer: If you frequently purchase travel through Expedia, this can be a good choice. Enjoy Expedia+ gold status each year of card membership, plus you receive a $100 Annual Air Travel Fee Statement Credit can be used toward airline incidentals on qualified airlines, or either the Global Entry or the TSA Pre √® application fee.


The Expedia®+ Credit Card from Citi

Current offer: Earn 15,000 Expedia+ bonus points after $1,000 in purchases within 3 months of account opening. Points redeemable for $200 towards your stay at a +VIP Access hotel
Annual fee: None
Foreign transaction fees: 3%

Card bonuses: 3 Expedia+ bonus points per $1 spent on eligible Expedia purchases including flights, hotels, activities and travel packages; 1 Expedia+ bonus point per $1 spent on other purchases.
Why it’s a good offer: If you frequently purchase travel through Expedia, this can be a good choice. Expedia+ silver status is complimentary for each year of cardmembership. You also earn one Elite Qualifying Hotel Night towards Expedia+ gold status for each increment of $2,500 in purchases made on the card between your January and December billing statements


SimplyCash® Plus Business Credit Card from American Express

Current offer: For a limited time, earn even more cash back: Earn up to $500 cash back as statement credits. Earn a $250 statement credit after you spend $5,000 in qualifying purchases on your Card within the first 6 months of Card Membership. Plus, earn an additional $250 statement credit after you spend an additional $10,000 or more in qualifying purchases on your Card within the first year of Card Membership. Offer Expires 01/25/2017.
Annual fee: No annual fee
Foreign transaction fees: 2.70%

Card bonuses: 5% cash back on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. office supply stores, 3% on the category of your choice from a list of eight and 1% cash back on other purchases, 5% and 3% apply to the first $50,000 in purchases per calendar year, then 1% thereafter. Cash back received is automatically credited to your statement.
Why it’s a good offer: Having the choice to customize a bonus category is smart for a card geared towards small businesses. Terms and limitations apply. See Rates & Fees


The Plum Card® from American Express OPEN

Current offer: Paying early pays off: Get a 1.5% discount when you pay early, with no cap on what you can earn back. Take up to 60 days to pay with no interest, if you pay your minimum due.
Annual fee: $0 introductory annual fee your first year, then $250
Foreign transaction fees: 0%

Card bonuses: Use the power of the Plum Card to buy big for your business; Unlock new opportunities with a spending limit that can grow with your business; Additional Employee Cards at no annual fee – and an early pay discount on employee spending. Terms and Restrictions Apply. See Rates & Fees


Barclaycard Arrival Plus™ World Elite MasterCard®

Current offer: Earn 50,000 bonus miles when you spend $3,000 on purchases in the first 90 days — that’s enough to redeem for a $500 travel statement credit; Get 5% miles back to use toward your next redemption, every time you redeem for travel statement credits
Annual fee: $89 - Waived first year
Foreign transaction fees: 0%

Card bonuses:Earn 2X miles on all other purchases; Chip card technology, so paying for your purchases is more secure at chip-card terminals in the U.S. and abroad; Complimentary online FICO® Credit Score access for Barclaycard Arrival cardmembers


BankAmericard Travel Rewards® Credit Card

Current offer: 20,000 online bonus points if you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days – that can be a $200 statement credit toward travel purchases
Annual fee: none
Foreign transaction fees: none

Card bonuses: Earn unlimited 1.5 points for every $1 in purchases. Get an additional 10% customer points bonus on every purchase when you have an active Bank of America® checking or savings account. Flexibility to redeem points for a statement credit to pay for flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars or baggage fees.


Capital One® Venture® Rewards Credit Card

Current offer: One-time bonus of 40,000 miles—equal to $400 in travel—once you spend $3,000 on purchases within the first 3 months
Annual fee: $0 intro for the first year; $59 after that
Foreign transaction fees: none

Card bonuses: Unlimited 2X miles—that’s 2 miles for every dollar you spend on purchases, every day. Each Capital One mile is worth 1¢ towards any flight or hotel stay, as well as car rentals, cruises, and more.


Non-Affiliate Product Disclaimer: The information for the Chase Freedom®, and Chase Freedom Unlimited ℠ has been collected independently by One Mile At A Time. The card details on this page have not been reviewed or provided by the card issuer.

Comments

  1. So the “Mercedes Benz Platinum Card from American Express” has the global entry fee reimbursement and the $200 airline credit right? Because when I look at the landing page and I didn’t see those mentioned. I want to confirm before I charge the global entry fee.

  2. Have you done any comparative calculations on whether the cash-back cards are preferable to airline/hotel credit cards? At what point is paying cash for travel (meaning you use your cash-back card, and then buy the airline ticket with $$s) better than redeeming 25k/40k/50k points for a domestic round trip? If you spend $18,000 or $24,000 or $30,000/year on credit cards (with typical gas/supermarket spends), what’s your advice on which works out to be a better investment, the cash-back cards or airline rewards cards?

  3. I have several Amex cards I use to earn point/miles.

    What is the best Visa card for flexible points/miles? Or other card I can use for international travel?

  4. You left off the JCB Marukai Premium – 3% cash back with a low $25 annual fee that is more than offset by the spend bonus. Of course, this is only available in certain states…and I doubt they pay a referral fee.

    Similarly the Fidelity Amex pays 2% cash back with zero annual fee.

    For full disclosure you really ought to post the minimum spend needed to offset the AFs for each of these cards. For example, you lose money on the Barclays card until your spend exceed $4545/yr.

  5. No, I don’t think leaving out the JCB Marukai Card was an error. That JCB card has a notoriously low approval rate.

    Besides that, Marukai is a West Coast only chain, so applicants have to live in one of the 5 western states to be approved. Everyone else is rejected.

    Only a small % of One Mile at a Time readers would be eligible for the card.

  6. Hi OneMileAtATime team

    I was wondering if you could recommend the best credit cards for military members, as we do not have to pay annual fees for any cards from the major credit card companies. I would also be interested in the best card for travel for military members.

    I currently use the BarclayCard Arrival Plus credit card (which actually gives you 10% of your miles back per redemption, not the 5% listed above), and since my wife and I take one or two international trips per year, I have been hard-pressed to find a card that beats the Arrival Plus’ effective 2.2x points on all purchases.

  7. @ Jason Franks

    I’m not with the OMAAT team, however, I do have some experience with credit cards waiving annual fees for military members.

    American Express will waive annual fees for military. From my research, I’ve found that Chase and Citi will only waive fees if you had an account open with them prior to becoming active duty.

    I hope that helps!

    -Corey

  8. Discover it(R) Card offers a 5% cash back bonus on a different category each quarter. For example, for Jan-March of 2016 (right now), it’s gasoline and ground transportation. No annual fee, and they approved me for a $7,500 limit right off the bat. Until then my highest starting limit on any card was $5,000. Is there a downside I’ve missed?

    Since starting to read this blog, I have begun putting label stickers on the backs of my cards to keep the bonus point categories straight 🙂

  9. If I apply for, say, the Sapphire card and add my husband as an authorized user, could he then apply for his own card later? Or is he better off just applying for his own card right off the bat in order to collect the 50,000 points? Thanks!

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