What is the best credit card? In truth, there is no one-size-fits-all card; the best credit card for you depends on your goals and lifestyle. That’s why the experts at CreditCards.com have compiled a list of the best cards in each major category, from cash back and travel rewards to balance transfers and more. Explore our top picks from our partners and find the best credit card for you.
Best Cash Back Credit Cards
Cash back credit cards are a useful tool to get paid back for the things you buy every day. Many cards offer flat cash back for all purchases, while others offer higher cash back across rotating categories like dining, groceries and shopping. We researched 682 cash back card offers and narrowed them down to our top recommendations. Browse our editor’s picks for the 10 best cash back offers from our partners and find a card that fits your spending habits.
Best Cash Back Credit Cards
- Discover it® Cash Back – Best for everyday spending
- Chase Freedom Unlimited® – Best for no annual fee
- Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card – Best for your first cash back card
- Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card – Best for choice of cash back category
- Capital One® SavorOneSM Cash Rewards Credit Card – Best for dining and entertainment
- Blue Cash Preferred®Card from American Express – Best for U.S. supermarket purchases
- Citi® Double Cash Card – Best for flat-rate cash back
- Chase Freedom® – Rotating cash back categories
- Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card – Best for sign-up bonus
- Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® Card – Best for cell phone protection
Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by CreditCards.com staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the bank’s website for the most current information.
Comparing Cash Back Credit Card Offers
Our experts at CreditCards.coach have pulled together the best cash back credit cards for you in various spending categories. Each card has different rewards and fees, but we make it easy for you to decide on which is best for your spending habits. Choosing a credit card is an important financial decision, so we lay out the pros and cons for you all in one place. We evaluated over 600 credit card offers using the criteria below to come up with our list of the top cards for cash back. Here are our findings.
- Best cash back credit cards
- Compare the best cash back credit cards of 2019
- Research methodology
- What is a cash back card?
- How to compare cash back credit cards?
- What are the different types of cash back cards
- Common cash back categories
- Average cash back rates
- Benefits and drawbacks
- How to maximize cash rewards
- Ways to redeem cash back
Whether you want to know what to look for in a cash back card or how to use it, we can help.
Compare the Best Cash Back Credit Cards
|Credit Card||Best For:||Cash Back %||CreditCards.com Rating||Annual Fee|
|Discover it® Cash Back||Everyday spending||5% on rotating categories each quarter*||4.3 / 5||$0|
|Chase Freedom Unlimited®||No annual fee||3% first year (up to $20,000), then 1.5%||3.8 / 5||$0|
|Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card||Your first cash back card||1.5%||3.4 / 5||$0|
|Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card||Choice of cash back category||3% on a chosen category||3.4 / 5||$0|
|Capital One® SavorOneSM Cash Rewards Credit Card||Dining and entertainment||3% on dining and entertainment||3.7 / 5||$0|
|Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express||U.S. supermarket purchases||6% at U.S. supermarkets**||4.3 / 5||$95|
|Citi® Double Cash Card||Flat-rate cash back||2% (1% as you buy, 1% as you pay)||3.8 / 5||$0|
|Chase Freedom®||Rotating cash back categories||5% on up to $1500 in bonus categories||3.1 / 5||$0 first year, then $95|
|Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card||Sign-up bonus||4% on dining and entertainment||4.8 / 5||$0 first year, then $95|
|Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa® Card||Cell phone protection||1.5%||3.8 / 5||$0|
*On up to $1,500 in combined purchases each quarter after enrollment, then 1%
**For the first $6,000 in purchases per year, then 1 point per dollar
Research methodology: how we arrived at the best cards
Cash back credit cards analyzed: 682
Criteria used: Cash back rate, other rewards, redemption options, redemption flexibility, cash back categories, credit needed, miscellaneous benefits and features, security, ease of application, sign-up bonus, customer service, rates and fees
After analyzing 600+ card offers, we’ve hand-selected the 10 best cash back credit cards. The Discover it Cash Back card offers generous cash back and is our top pick due to its high rewards value and flexibility in redeeming cash back.
Best Cash Back Credit Cards
The best credit card for you will depend on your personal needs and preferences. Here’s our take on 2019’s best cash back cards with pros and cons to consider for each offer. Feel free to email us at [email protected] if you have any questions!
Discover it® Cash Back
If you like the idea of working towards maximum rewards, this card is a good choice for you, because you could potentially earn up to $600 at year end by earning 5% back on select rotating categories for up to $1,500 in purchases each quarter (activation required) and the cash back match at the end of the first year. 5% categories can include Amazon.com and grocery stores. You can also receive free Social Security number alerts, a special feature of Discover cards.
While competitive, Discover as a network is not as robust as Mastercard and Visa and is accepted at fewer locations abroad. Also, you’ll need to decide if rotating categories are for you as they require a bit more legwork than a flat-rate cash back card. Finally, there’s no sign-up bonus.
Chase Freedom Unlimited®
Other cards chase the Freedom Unlimited’s first-year and ongoing cash back rewards, but this card is a tough one to beat. It offers 3% back the first year for the first $20,000 spent – in fact, we found that Americans love 3% cash back the best of rewards, at 31%. The Freedom Unlimited can be partnered with a Chase Sapphire card to take advantage of the travel boost those cards offer through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal.
The Freedom Unlimited may not be the best choice for world travel, with its 3% foreign transaction fee. Also, the balance transfer fee is high, at 3% or $5, whichever is higher. The go-to rate also starts out high.
Capital One® Quicksilver® Cash Rewards Credit Card
If you’re looking for a card with all the boxes checked, you’ll want to eye the Capital One Quicksilver Card. It has competitive ongoing rewards as well as a decent sign-up bonus. With the 1.5% back on all purchases, you don’t have to deal with the hassle of rotating categories or quarterly sign-ups. Also, you won’t have to choose between an introductory APR and rewards, because this card has both. Finally, there is no annual fee and no foreign transaction fee.
The sign-up bonus isn’t the highest, with the BofA Cash Rewards card now offering $200 back with a $1,000 spend within the first 90 days, while some luxury cards offer even larger sums. And the required credit of good to excellent is a high bar for someone whose credit isn’t the best.
Bank of America® Cash Rewards credit card
The Bank of America Cash Rewards credit card recently switched its 3% back offer at gas stations to a monthly option of one of 6 categories, which frees things up considerably. (That’s with a $2,500 maximum quarterly spend when combined with the 2% categories.) This card has a nice little sign-up bonus, and there’s also a 0% intro APR on purchases and balance transfers for 12 billing cycles (it’s 16.24%-26.24% variable after that).
The tiered rewards can be beaten by other cards, if you know in advance how you tend to spend. Also, because of the varied tiers, this card takes a little organization, including changing your 3% category each month if you want to maximize your earnings.
Capital One® SavorOneSM Cash Rewards Credit Card
The SavorOne is the little brother of the Savor card. While it comes with some lower cash back and a smaller sign-up bonus, the SavorOne still packs a mighty punch and is great for daily use.
The SavorOne offers a hearty 3% cash back on dining and entertainment, as well as 2% back at grocery stores and 1% on all other purchases. It’s ideal if you lead an outgoing lifestyle and are looking for a card without an annual fee. It also has no foreign transaction fee, which makes it suitable for use abroad.
The sign-up bonus and cash back rate on dining and entertainment are lower than its big brother, the Savor card, but this is to be expected in exchange for no annual fee.
Blue Cash Preferred®Card from American Express
The Blue Cash Preferred Card has recently introduced some unique new cash back categories like 6% cash back on select U.S. streaming subscriptions (including Netflix, Hulu and Spotify, among others), and 3% cash back on transit including taxis/rideshare, parking, buses and more. Not to mention, this card offers an unprecedented 6% cash back at U.S. supermarkets (up to $6,000 annual, then 1%).
This is the one of the few cards on our list of top cash back cards that requires an annual fee, and it is not waived the first year, unlike the Capital One Savor.
Citi® Double Cash Card
This card is exceptional in a number of ways, from its ongoing rewards offer to its balance transfer offer. Be sure to include this card in your lineup of cards to eye before making a decision.
The Double Cash’s unique ongoing rewards offer pays you 1% back when you purchase, then another 1% back when you pay your bill, which beats many of the other cash back cards out there. There’s also no annual fee, as with most other cash back cards.
There’s no sign-up bonus, and while there’s a 0% APR balance transfer offer for 18 months (it’s 16.24%-26.24% variable after that), no such luck with purchases.
With competitive rotating categories and a nice little sign-up bonus, this card is a good choice for the cardholders who like positioning their purchases strategically to maximize cash back.
Unfortunately, the Chase Freedom has foreign transaction fees, making it an unfortunate option for international travel or making purchases that go through a foreign bank.
Capital One® Savor® Cash Rewards Credit Card
The Savor card from Capital One is one of our favorite cash back cards. Not only does it offer high percentages in desirable categories, but it also comes with a competitive intro bonus offer.
The Savor’s sign-up bonus of $300 for spending $3,000 in the first 3 months is one of the best offers in the cash back card category. Additionally, if you frequently find yourself eating at restaurants or ordering food to dine in, you’ll love the Savor’s 4% back on dining. That 4% also extends to entertainment purchases such as movies, concerts, sporting events, and more. There’s also 2% back at grocery stores.
Although it is waived for the first year, you’ll be looking at a $95 annual fee after that.
Wells Fargo Cash Wise Visa®
This card’s sign-up bonus is hard to beat, and it comes with the standard 1.5% back on all purchases of many cash back cards. There’s also a higher cash back rate on qualified digital wallet purchases during the first 12 months on account opening. With the Cash Wise, you can get protection for your cellphone, and excellent credit may not be necessary, which means you might be accepted with a score as low as 670. Finally, there’s no hassle of quarterly sign-ups or changing categories.
The 0% intro APR offer is 15 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers (then variable APR of 16.24% – 28.24% applies), the latter of which must be made within 120 days to enjoy the low 3% balance transfer fee. There’s also a foreign transaction fee of 3%, which may not be the best choice for overseas travel. And there are cards that offer a better cashback rate on everyday purchases, such as the Blue Cash products from American Express.