Finding the right rewards credit card can be difficult. There is a lot of competition, and it is hard to decide which is best.
In many cases, little or no reward on everyday expenses might not make sense for you or your family.
In addition, getting the most value from your card may require technical finesse, like paying off your balance in full each month.
The best rewards credit cards reviewed for saving money
1. Chase Freedom Unlimited
Chase Freedom Unlimited is one of the best rewards credit cards reviewed for saving money. You earn a cash back bonus after you make certain purchases, such as groceries or gas.
Chase Freedom Unlimited earns at least 1% cash back on every purchase, and you can earn 5% cash back when you buy select categories of products each quarter from companies like Amazon and Starbucks.
Cashback is paid in your choice of statement credits, bank account deposits, or PayPal cash. The Chase Freedom Unlimited® card also has no annual fee for the first year and no foreign transaction fees.
This card offers flexible ways to redeem your rewards — including a rotating quarterly calendar that lets you choose when to redeem them — so it’s easy to get the most out of this card over time.
2. Chase Sapphire Reserve
The Chase Sapphire Reserve is a card that can help your credit score.
The Chase Sapphire Reserve offers a $300 annual travel credit, which can be used for flights, hotels, and car rentals up to $100 per day.
You also get access to Priority Pass Select airport lounges, which offer access to over 150 lounges worldwide in over 100 airports.
If you’re not using all this lounge access, there’s also a Global Entry fee credit that can be used toward the cost of Global Entry or TSA PreCheck.
Chase offers other benefits like a $300 credit against Uber rides and cell phone protection worth up to $600 per claim. And you’ll get an additional 10% off hotel stays through Chase’s portal called “Extended Stay America,” which gives you access to more than 3 million hotels across the country.
3. Citi Double Cash Card
The Citi Double Cash Card is one of the best rewards cards around, and it’s perfect for those who travel frequently.
The card earns 2% cash back on purchases at supermarkets and gas stations and 1% cash back everywhere else.
The double cash feature allows you to get twice that amount when you pay with your card at an office supply store or a drugstore. That makes it especially good for any business traveller who spends a lot of money in those stores.
The card also provides an annual bonus of $200 if you make at least $1,500 in purchases during a calendar year and another $200 every year after that.
You’ll earn even more when you redeem points for gift cards or merchandise through Citi’s loyalty program. That means you can earn rewards by paying your bills with this card.
4. Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card
One of the best rewards credit cards for saving money is the Wells Fargo Propel American Express Card.
This card offers 5% cash back on gas and grocery store purchases, 2% on all other investments, and 1% at office supply stores.
You also get a $100 annual fee waived if you make at least $15,000 a year in combined purchases with your Wells Fargo checking account and an eligible investment account.
The Propel American Express card has an introductory APR rate of 9.99%, which is lower than most other rewards cards. The balance transfer fee is 3%, which is also lower than most other cards.
The total annual fees for this card are $25 for the primary cardholder and $0 for additional users on the account.
This card’s rewards program is one of its greatest strengths, as it lets you earn points that can be redeemed at many different retailers across the country.
The points earned by using this card can also be used to make purchases on other websites or apps, such as Amazon or Uber. If you’re looking for a way to save money while earning some extra rewards, this may be one of your best options because it allows you to earn cash back without paying an annual fee or any setup fee.
5. Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card
The Bank of America Travel Rewards Credit Card is one of the best rewards credit cards for travel. It offers 2 points per $1 spent on every purchase made with your card, with no annual fee.
The points can be redeemed for travel rewards, including cash back, gift cards, and statement credits. The card comes with a $0 intro APR for purchases and balance transfers.
One drawback to this card is that it only gives you two points per dollar spent on purchases, so if you’re looking for more value out of your rewards, you may want to consider another card like American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card or Chase’s Sapphire Preferred Card.
In addition, while the sign-up bonus is generous at 50,000 points, they aren’t worth much since they can only be used towards travel expenses and not everyday expenses like groceries or gas.
6. Capital One Spark Miles for Business
Capital One offers a unique rewards program that allows you to apply your miles toward travel-related expenses, including airfare, hotel stays, and rental cars.
The card also comes with a host of other perks, such as employee discounts and access to airport lounges.
The Capital One Spark Miles Card has an annual fee of $0 and earns 1.5x miles on all purchases, which can be redeemed for various rewards, including gift cards, statement credits, or cash back.
You must have at least $5,000 in net assets each quarter to qualify for the 5% cash back bonus after meeting the minimum spending requirement during each billing period.
7. Discover it Miles
This is a great credit card for earning cash back rewards, especially if you already have a Discover card.
You get 1% cash back on all purchases, plus 5% back when you pay at checkout with your Discover card. The annual fee is $0 for the first year and then $50-$85 afterward.
It’s available to everyone with a Discover card and can be used at any retailer that accepts Discover cards as payment.
8. American Express Gold Card
The American Express Gold Card is our top pick for the best rewards credit card because it offers the most value for your money.
It gives you 2 points for every dollar you spend on travel and dining and 1 point for every dollar you spend everywhere else. The sign-up bonus is 50,000 bonus points if you spend $5,000 within the first 3 months of opening an account, which is a great bonus to get if you’re looking to start building up a travel rewards balance.
9. Chase Freedom Unlimited
The Chase Freedom Unlimited gives you 1 point per dollar spent on all purchases, including gas and at grocery stores.
The card also comes with a high 50,000 Ultimate Rewards points sign-up bonus when you spend $1,000 in the first 3 months after opening your account.
This means that if you’re looking to use this card as your primary way of earning points rather than just getting it for its cash-back rewards, this might be the one for you.
How to properly use a rewards credit card
Watch this video from nerdwallet to learn how to properly use your rewards credit cards and make the most of your points. And when to get rid of your rewards credit cards that no longer match your needs.
It seems that the rewards credit cards with the biggest sign-up bonuses are the most expensive, but there is still some good value in this list.
Furthermore, if you’re going to pay an annual fee and receive valuable benefits, it might as well be on a card you know you can use for free or discounted travel.
Again, remember to factor in what you’ll need in terms of meeting your spending requirements. The last thing anyone wants is to spend money on a credit card, only to end up with no rewards or a less desirable rewards system.
Now that you’ve figured out which credit cards are best for rewards, have a look at some ideas on how to make meaningful savings every day by applying these frugal living tips.