Rewards Credit Card Review

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Why Use a Rewards Credit Card?

Nearly every person uses a credit card nowadays. Many people even have multiple cards that they use for specific purchases – one for groceries, one for gas, one for traveling and so on. If you use your credit card both responsibly and often, you should get a card that gives you something back.

Rewards credit cards are a good alternative to standard credit cards because with every purchase you make, you’ll be earning points or miles that you can redeem for exciting stuff. For instance, a credit card with rewards can earn you a free flight, a night’s stay in a hotel, some cash back or merchandise by simply swiping your credit card for purchases you make on a daily basis.

Choosing the right rewards card for you can be overwhelming because there are so many options out there. We’ve determined the best rewards cards are the Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card, the Capital One®QuicksilverOne℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card and the Chase Freedom® Card. We’ve also written some articles about rewards credit cards that can help you utilize your card to its fullest extent.

Rewards Credit Card: What to Look For

Understanding rewards credit cards and deciding what makes one a better choice than the competition can be a difficult process. There are a handful of things you should consider when choosing a rewards credit card so you can make sure you fully understand what the card will offer you, but we’ve determined the most important things are its rewards benefits, annual percentage rates, fees and penalties, key features and the member support you can expect.

Rewards Benefits
Each rewards credit card offers different benefits. These benefits usually consist of earning points, cash back or miles from every purchase you make. The rewards you earn can then be redeemed for different items.

The best rewards cards will allow you to earn rewards on every kind of purchase you make and then redeem those rewards for a plethora of different things such as airfare, hotels, merchandise, gift cards, cash back or even a credit on your statement. Additionally, the best cards will also offer a generous sign-up bonus that will award you bonus points, cash back or miles once you spend a certain amount within so many months after signing up.

APR
The annual percentage rates of a credit card will make or break it because no one wants a card with high interest rates. Top rewards credit cards will have lower standard, cash advance, balance transfer and penalty APRs. Additionally, the best cards will have a generous introductory APR offer that will apply to purchases you make, balance transfers or both. Furthermore, the longer the introductory offer, the better.

Fees & Penalties
Aside from the annual fee, credit cards have a number of other fees and penalties you should be aware of before selecting the best card for you. For instance, a credit card may have a fee for foreign transactions, balance transfers and cash advances in addition to the standard late fees over-limit fees and grace periods that you’re probably more aware of.

The best rewards cards have no annual fee or will at least waive the annual fee for the first year or two. Furthermore, the best cards have low or no additional fees. Additionally, the longer the grace period for payments, the better.

Key Features
Top-rated rewards credit cards come with a handful of key features such as travel accident insurance, rental car coverage and lost luggage reimbursement that are available when you use your card to purchase a flight, stay at a hotel or rent a car. And if you buy an item that comes with a manufacturer warranty, some cards offer extended warranties. Additionally, the best cards offer zero liability in the event unauthorized charges appear on your account.

Member Support
Being able to contact your credit card company in the event of an emergency for a lost or stolen card, unauthorized charges or emergency card replacement is extremely important. You should be able to contact a company representative by phone, email and even live chat online. Many card companies also offer 24/7 customer support so you can reach them in the middle of the night if you have to.

A rewards credit card is a great alternative to using a standard credit card. When you use it for everyday purchases at the grocery store or gas station, or for travel expenses like flights and hotels, you’ll rack up credit card rewards you can redeem for a number of attractive items.

At TopTenREVIEWS We Do the Research So You Don’t Have To.™

Disclaimer: This content is not provided or commissioned by American Express. Opinions expressed here are author's alone, not those of American Express, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express. This site may be compensated through American Express Affiliate Program.

 
 
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Yearly (Estimates)
How much do you spend each month on the following?
$ Dining Out
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$ Department Stores
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Estimated Cash Back from #1 Product:
Rank #1#2#3#4#5#6#7#8#9#10
10-9  Excellent
8-6    Good
5-4    Average
3-2    Poor
1-0    Bad
Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card Capital One® Quicksilver One℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card Chase Freedom® Card Blue Sky From American Express® Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card Capital One® Venture Rewards Credit Card Discover it® Chase Sapphire® Card Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express
Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card Capital One® Quicksilver One℠ Cash Rewards Credit Card Chase Freedom® Card Blue Sky From American Express® Citi ThankYou® Preferred Card Capital One® Venture Rewards Credit Card Discover it® Chase Sapphire® Card Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express
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Lowest Price
          
Ratings
9.50
9.15
9.03
8.82
8.75
8.65
8.35
8.28
8.15
8.07
10
9
8
7
6
5
4
3
2
1
9.38
8.75
10.00
10.00
10.00
8.75
10.00
8.13
9.38
10.00
10.00
8.13
8.13
10.00
8.75
9.38
7.50
8.75
10.00
8.75
10.00
7.50
8.13
10.00
7.50
9.38
6.88
8.13
10.00
10.00
5.63
10.00
8.75
9.38
10.00
10.00
5.63
7.50
10.00
8.75
10.00
5.63
6.88
10.00
8.75
8.75
6.25
7.50
10.00
8.75
 
Rewards Benefits
Points Rewards   
  
 
Cash Back Rewards  
   
   
Miles Rewards
    
   
Sign-Up Bonus 10,000 bonus miles after $1,000 spent on purchases in first 3 months $100 bonus after $500 spent in first 3 months $100 cash back after $500 spent in first 3 months Earn 7,500 bonus points after $1,000 spent in first 3 months 20,000 bonus points after $1,500 spent on purchases in first 3 months 10,000 bonus miles $1,000 spent on purchases in first 3 months   10,000 Bonus Points after $500 spent in first 3 months 40,000 Bonus Points after $3,000 spent in first 3 months 30,000 bonus miles after $1,000 in purchases in first 3 months
Earn Rewards On
Hotels
Gas
Shopping
Dining
Groceries
Airfare
Redeem Rewards On
Hotels
 
 
Cash Back  
 
 
 
Merchandise
 
 
Gift Cards
 
 
Statement Credit
 
 
Airfare
 
 
APR
Introductory APR 0% on Purchases 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers 0% on Purchases and Balance Transfers 0%* on Purchases and Balance Transfers N/A 0% on Purchases & Balance Transfers None None None
Introductory Period Until Sept. 2014 Until Sept. 2014 15 Months 15 months 12 Months N/A 14 Months N/A N/A None
Standard APR 11.9% - 19.9% (V) 12.9% - 20.9% (V) 13.99% - 22.99% Variable 17.24% - 22.24% Variable 12.99% - 22.99%* (Variable) 13.9% - 20.9% (V) 10.99% - 22.99% Variable* 15.24% Variable 15.24% Variable 15.24% - 19.24% Variable
Cash Advance APR 24.9% (V) 24.9% (V) 23.99% Variable 25.24% Variable 25.24% 24.9% (V) 24.99% Variable * 19.24% Variable 19.24% Variable 25.24 Variable
Balance Transfer APR 11.9% - 19.9% (V) 12.9% - 20.9% (V) 13.99% - 22.99% Variable 17.24% - 22.24% Variable 12.99% - 22.99%* (Variable) 13.9% - 20.9% (V) 10.99% - 22.99% Variable* 15.24% Variable 15.24% Variable 15.24% - 19.24% Variable
Penalty APR 29.4% (V) 29.4% (V) 29.99% Variable 27.24% Variable 29.99% 29.4% (V) None 29.99% Variable 29.99% Variable 27.24% Variable
Fees & Penalties
Annual Fee $0 $0 None $0 $0* $0 intro for first year; $59 after that $0 None $0 First Year, then $95 $0 intro annual fee for the first year, then $95
Late Fee Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 None the first time, then up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35
Overlimit Fee None None None None Up to $35 None $0     None
International Purchase Fee $0 $0 3% 2.7% 3% $0 $0 3% None 2.7%
Balance Transfer Fee $0 3% $5 or 3% $5 or 3% $5 or 3% $0 3% $5 or 3% $5 or 3% $5 or 3%
Cash Advance Fee 3% or $10 3% or $10 $10 or 3% $5 or 3% $10 or 5% 3% or $10 $10 or 5% $10 or 5% $10 or 5% $5 or 3%
Returned Payment Fee Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35 Up to $35
Grace Period 25 Days 25 Days 21 Days 25 Days 23 Days 25 Days 25 Days 21 Days 21 Days 25 Days
Key Features
Balance Transfer
Zero Liability
24/7 Account Access
Account Alerts
Travel Accident Insurance
Rental Car Insurance
Extended Product Warranty
Lost Luggage Reimbursement
 
No Cap On Rewards
 
Member Support
Phone
Email
  
 
Live Chat
 
 
  
24/7 Customer Support
Emergency Card Replacement
FAQs