Here are the details we
looked at for each reward program in the survey:
Issuing bank: The bank or financial services company that issues the credit card.
Card: The specific card issued by the bank or financial services company.
Annual fee: Fee charged for use of the card or to belong to the reward program.
Intro bonus: Extra points, cash or introductory APR when cardholder signs up for the card.
on everyday categories: Everyday categories
are generally grocery stores, drugstores and gas stations.
for other purchases: This would apply to
restaurants, travel, department stores, etc.,
as long as they are not excluded from the program.
other rebates: These include balance transfers
or interest paid on an account balance. Some cards
also offer additional rebates when you make purchases
from their designated partners.
Reward tiers: How much you need to spend to earn a certain percent return. Many programs don't pay the full rebate amount until you reach a certain level of spending.
Reward increments: What spending level you need to reach in order to earn a reward.
How rebate is redeemed: This explains whether cardholders receive a check for cash, an automatic credit statement or check, or a gift card, and whether they have to request the rebate or if it's automatically disbursed.
How often rewards can be redeemed: When a cardholder can expect to receive a reward.
Cap on rewards: This is the highest amount of cash back a cardholder can earn annually.
Expiration date on rewards: This is the date by which a cardholder must redeem or use rewards before losing them.
Comments or excluded merchants: Many programs exclude purchases at warehouse stores and other merchants or specific types of purchases. This column also includes any other program details.