Author Topic: Cash Back Card Recommendations  (Read 11396 times)

fidgiegirl

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1086
Cash Back Card Recommendations
« on: October 22, 2014, 06:41:07 PM »
Going to switch, need advice.

We would like a card that we can charge almost everything we buy and get cash back.

No annual fee is a must.  Not a fan of complicated arrangements that give you varying cash back amounts in different quarters or on different types of purchases - just want a flat cash back card.

Thanks in advance.  I could be Googling and going back through all the old threads on this and agonizing over just the right card, but I have a little baby and am thoroughly overwhelmed with life and your advice is highly valued.  I just need to get something lined up before November or DH will want to keep the Delta Amex with its annual fee.

StangStache

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 63
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2014, 07:08:06 PM »
If you're not interested in rotating categories, I recommend the AMEX blue cash everyday.  No annual fees, 3% back on groceries, 2% back on gas, and 1% on everything else.  They tend to have good targeted offers too if you check your online account often enough.


cygnus

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 12
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #2 on: October 22, 2014, 07:58:37 PM »
Fidelity has a cash back card that gives you 2% on all purchases and they deposit it into your account each month. No annual fee either.

Ramparts

  • 5 O'Clock Shadow
  • *
  • Posts: 23
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #3 on: October 22, 2014, 09:25:00 PM »
The Citi Double Cash may also be worth looking at. It's effectively 2% on everything (though it's 1% when you purchase, and 1% more when you make a payment). Since you're paying it off every month anyway, it's basically 2%. I just got one, but haven't been through a full billing cycle yet, so I can't officially recommend it until then. If it sucks I'll come back and complain about it! It's worth at least comparing to Fidelity's 2% card, which I think requires a separate Fidelity account to deposit rewards into (ie: you can't just get a statement credit, but I could be wrong about that).

Right now I have:

1) Citi Double Cash - primary card for almost everything (2% on everything, but 3% foreign transaction fees)
2) Bank Americard Cash Rewards - for gas only (though rare now since I bike everywhere) (3% gas, 2% groceries, 1% everything else)
3) Capital One Quicksilver - for travel (1.5% on everything, but 0% foreign transaction fees)

Make sure you look at the details closely when you apply. For example, the Quicksilver card has at least two varieties - one with a Visa logo that has no annual fee, and one with a MasterCard logo that does have an annual fee (depends on your credit rating). Others may be similar.

daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3382
  • Location: France
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #4 on: October 23, 2014, 09:45:06 AM »
I'd suggest keeping AN amex. Maybe the BlueCash. Having an Amex is a good thing, thwy backdate account age to your first card, and can do global transfers.

Citi Doublecash is a great all rounder, as is the Quicksilver. There are limits on the Cash Rewards - think it's $1500 a quarter, where the other two are flat on everything.

Lis

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 774
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #5 on: October 23, 2014, 10:07:22 AM »
If you're not interested in rotating categories, I recommend the AMEX blue cash everyday.  No annual fees, 3% back on groceries, 2% back on gas, and 1% on everything else.  They tend to have good targeted offers too if you check your online account often enough.

Seconded. Love this card and love AMEX. Amazing customer service... I restaurant double charged me once and refused to call me back, AMEX credited me the one charge without question and fought the restaurant themselves. I was even charged three times on a vending machine (long story and a face punch), and the refunded without question again. Always super friendly on the phone. Their 3-2-1 plan works really well for me as a single person. They also offer a 6-3-1 plan for $75 which could be worth it for two people, definitely a family of three.

PloddingInsight

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #6 on: October 23, 2014, 10:19:02 AM »
I use:

  • Bank of America Cash Rewards for gas: 3%
  • American Express Blue Cash Everyday for groceries: 3%
  • Capital One Quicksilver for everything else: 1.5%

I will have to look into that citi card mentioned above, though.

PloddingInsight

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #7 on: October 23, 2014, 10:32:37 AM »
The Citi Double Cash may also be worth looking at. It's effectively 2% on everything (though it's 1% when you purchase, and 1% more when you make a payment). Since you're paying it off every month anyway, it's basically 2%. I just got one, but haven't been through a full billing cycle yet, so I can't officially recommend it until then. If it sucks I'll come back and complain about it! It's worth at least comparing to Fidelity's 2% card, which I think requires a separate Fidelity account to deposit rewards into (ie: you can't just get a statement credit, but I could be wrong about that).

Hmm...  This sounds good, but:  that card doesn't appear to have a visa or mastercard logo on it.  Is it widely accepted?

schimt

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
  • Age: 33
  • Location: New Jersey
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #8 on: October 23, 2014, 10:35:34 AM »
i'm surprised so many people use a rewards card for gas, maybe its just my area that this applies to. Most of the gas stations around me charge an additional fee for using a credit card which is more then 3% different from paying cash. Hess and Wawa gas stations have the same cost for cash and card, but generally that single price is not the best option in the area.

What i was considering, does anyone know if a gas station gift card charges the credit card price or cash price? I have an AmEx Blue Cash Preferred which offers 6% back for grocery stores, i would like to get gas station gift cards from the grocery store.

schimt

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
  • Age: 33
  • Location: New Jersey
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #9 on: October 23, 2014, 10:36:29 AM »
Hmm...  This sounds good, but:  that card doesn't appear to have a visa or mastercard logo on it.  Is it widely accepted?

it is a master card, the logo is on the back. I have one also.

Prepube

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 245
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #10 on: October 23, 2014, 10:39:10 AM »
http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/credit-cards/. Start here, with MMM.

This question has been asked numerous times, and all the answers are here in the forums if you do a quick search.

PloddingInsight

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 308
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #11 on: October 23, 2014, 10:42:32 AM »
Hmm...  This sounds good, but:  that card doesn't appear to have a visa or mastercard logo on it.  Is it widely accepted?

it is a master card, the logo is on the back. I have one also.

Ah.  Thanks.

Lis

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 774
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #12 on: October 23, 2014, 11:54:40 AM »
What i was considering, does anyone know if a gas station gift card charges the credit card price or cash price? I have an AmEx Blue Cash Preferred which offers 6% back for grocery stores, i would like to get gas station gift cards from the grocery store.
Not 100% sure, but I'm fairly certain anything that isn't straight up cash they'll charge more for. I could be wrong, but it's something to ask whatever gas station that sells gift cards.

The vast majority of gas stations by me charge extra for credit card use, but there are two close to my parents' house that don't. Both of them have a big sign out front that says "CASH AND CREDIT - SAME GREAT DEAL." It works that they're usually the cheaper options as well.

johnny847

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3196
    • My Blog
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #13 on: October 23, 2014, 05:35:35 PM »
There are some credit cards that don't get mentioned on blogs, because they don't have commissions for referring people to sign up. Hence, it is difficult to find some good cards sometimes.

One such example is the Sallie Mae Mastercard. No annual fee, has no requirement to be a student or have a Sallie Mae loan. You can get your cash back as a statement credit.

It gives 5% back on the first $250/250/750 on gas, groceries, and bookstores (where Amazon counts as a book store) every month. So the limits are much lower than most credit cards, but unless you have a large family, it shouldn't be a problem for a Mustachian.
Of course, if you do your grocery shopping at a Sam's Club or Costco, they do not count as grocery stores - they are warehouse stores.

I would pair this up with a flat rate cash back card as mentioned previously. And perhaps a travel credit card, if you travel often enough, but those generally have annual fees.

fidgiegirl

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1086
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #14 on: October 23, 2014, 07:52:09 PM »
http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/credit-cards/. Start here, with MMM.

This question has been asked numerous times, and all the answers are here in the forums if you do a quick search.

The link is helpful, I had never explored this area of the blog before and had not thought to check there.  Plus it looks to be quite recent.

Searches on this forum are anything but quick.  I guess I should have specifically stated that I have already spent hours combing through the search threads which have not turned up the information I needed.

RWD

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3511
  • Location: Mississippi
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2014, 07:59:43 PM »
Costco has an American Express card where the fee doubles as your Costco membership. If you already have a Costco membership then it shouldn't cost you anything extra.
Quote
3% Cash back at US gas stations and on gasoline at Costco up to $4,000 per year in purchases, (then 1%)
2% cash back at US restaurants
2% cash back on eligible travel purchases, including at Costco
1% cash back on other purchases, including at Costco
http://www.costco.com/TrueEarnings%C2%AE-Card-from-Costco-and-American-Express.product.11224948.html

fidgiegirl

  • Handlebar Stache
  • *****
  • Posts: 1086
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2014, 08:05:23 PM »
Thank you everyone!  I have some options to consider and will try to remember come back and update you on the outcome.  Learning toward the Blue right now . . . would be nice to keep an Amex.  But thinking some of the others might work as well.  I appreciate your insights!

daverobev

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3382
  • Location: France
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #17 on: October 24, 2014, 08:47:44 AM »
Costco has an American Express card where the fee doubles as your Costco membership. If you already have a Costco membership then it shouldn't cost you anything extra.
Quote
3% Cash back at US gas stations and on gasoline at Costco up to $4,000 per year in purchases, (then 1%)
2% cash back at US restaurants
2% cash back on eligible travel purchases, including at Costco
1% cash back on other purchases, including at Costco
http://www.costco.com/TrueEarnings%C2%AE-Card-from-Costco-and-American-Express.product.11224948.html

Amex and Costco have fallen out of bed, at least in Canada. The US contract is up next year I believe. Guessing it'll be the CapOne TrueEarnings in time.

madage

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 405
  • Location: TX
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #18 on: October 24, 2014, 08:55:52 AM »

What i was considering, does anyone know if a gas station gift card charges the credit card price or cash price? I have an AmEx Blue Cash Preferred which offers 6% back for grocery stores, i would like to get gas station gift cards from the grocery store.

Probably depends on where you live, but around me (TX) I get the cash price with a gift card at the stations where there's a difference.

JetBlast

  • Bristles
  • ***
  • Posts: 340
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #19 on: October 24, 2014, 12:05:23 PM »
i'm surprised so many people use a rewards card for gas, maybe its just my area that this applies to. Most of the gas stations around me charge an additional fee for using a credit card which is more then 3% different from paying cash.
When I was living in California most stations charged ten cents a gallon extra for credit card. But gas was over $4.00 a gallon at the time so it still made sense to use the my B of A card at 3% back or even better 5% when it was a category on my Chase Freedom card. Of course the Valero down the block had the same price as the others but no credit card fee so that's where I went to fill up.

flashpacker

  • Stubble
  • **
  • Posts: 100
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #20 on: October 24, 2014, 01:20:20 PM »
If you happen to have over 100K combined between BoA and Merrill Edge, you can get a BoA travel rewards card that would give 2.625% back, no annual fee, and no foreign transaction fees.  Over 50K in combined balances, and it would 2.5%. This is the base rate of 1.5% plus either a 50% or 75% bonus for being part of BoA preferred rewards. You also get 30 free trades a month.  You get the rewards as a credit against travel purchases but their definition of travel is pretty broad e.g., I've credited against NYC subway fares.

johnny847

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3196
    • My Blog
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #21 on: October 24, 2014, 07:44:14 PM »
If you happen to have over 100K combined between BoA and Merrill Edge, you can get a BoA travel rewards card that would give 2.625% back, no annual fee, and no foreign transaction fees.  Over 50K in combined balances, and it would 2.5%. This is the base rate of 1.5% plus either a 50% or 75% bonus for being part of BoA preferred rewards. You also get 30 free trades a month.  You get the rewards as a credit against travel purchases but their definition of travel is pretty broad e.g., I've credited against NYC subway fares.

And to clarify, that's a flat rate 2.625% on anything, so long as you have enough travel purchases (since you only get that rate if you, as flashpacker said, redeem against travel purchases). If you don't redeem against travel purchases, you reduce your rate by 40% I think, at which point you'd be better off with a 2% card such as the Citi Double Cash or Fidelity Amex.

Dodge

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 790
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #22 on: October 26, 2014, 10:19:57 PM »
Amex Preferred - 6% groceries
Sallie Mae MasterCard - 5% gas/Amazon
Fidelity Amex - 2% everything
Quicksilver Visa - 1.5% everything

They all give statement credit, even the Fidelity gives statement credit, you just have to build up $250 worth of credits first. Otherwise you can deposit into a free Fidelity account.

johnny847

  • Magnum Stache
  • ******
  • Posts: 3196
    • My Blog
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #23 on: October 27, 2014, 08:01:10 AM »
Amex Preferred - 6% groceries
Sallie Mae MasterCard - 5% gas/Amazon
Fidelity Amex - 2% everything
Quicksilver Visa - 1.5% everything

They all give statement credit, even the Fidelity gives statement credit, you just have to build up $250 worth of credits first. Otherwise you can deposit into a free Fidelity account.

Sallie Mae Mastercard also gives 5% on groceries, but only at proper grocery stores, + some Walmarts and Targets (it varies how they're coded). It does not give 5% back on Costco, Sam's Club, or BJ's, as they are coded as warehouse stores (or something to that effect), not grocery stores.

Dodge

  • Pencil Stache
  • ****
  • Posts: 790
Re: Cash Back Card Recommendations
« Reply #24 on: October 27, 2014, 08:20:43 AM »

Amex Preferred - 6% groceries
Sallie Mae MasterCard - 5% gas/Amazon
Fidelity Amex - 2% everything
Quicksilver Visa - 1.5% everything

They all give statement credit, even the Fidelity gives statement credit, you just have to build up $250 worth of credits first. Otherwise you can deposit into a free Fidelity account.

Sallie Mae Mastercard also gives 5% on groceries, but only at proper grocery stores, + some Walmarts and Targets (it varies how they're coded). It does not give 5% back on Costco, Sam's Club, or BJ's, as they are coded as warehouse stores (or something to that effect), not grocery stores.

You're right, I forgot about this! Since the Sallie May has no annual fee, it is preferred over the $75 fee from the Amex 6% groceries card, IF you can stay below the limits.