Best cash back credit cards

Adverstiser Disclosure: The credit card offers that appear on the website are from companies from which this site receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). This site does not include all credit card companies or all available credit card offers.

If you’re in the market for a new credit card, look for cards that boast attractive cash-back percentages or travel rewards, appealing sign-up bonuses and simple redemption models.

Rewards credit cards can be divided into two general categories: travel and cash-back cards.

Travel rewards cards typically offer perks and bonuses for spending on items such as airline purchases, dining, restaurants and hotels. Cash back cards generally offer a percentage back for daily spending, cash back on specific categories and bonus cash for spending a specific amount within a certain time frame.

The card that’s right for you depends on your lifestyle and financial goals.

Here are some popular reward credit cards, according to the experts at CreditCards.com:

Most Popular Rewards Credit Cards

  • Chase Freedom Unlimited Credit Card
  • Citi Double Cash Credit Card
  • Chase Sapphire Reserve Credit Card
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred Credit Card

Reward yourself with a rewards credit card today.

Card Category Why it’s good
Chase Freedom Unlimited All-around rewards Unlimited 1.5% cash back on every purchase
Citi Double Cash No annual fee 1% cash back on all purchases; 1% cash back when you pay your bill on time
Chase Sapphire Reserve Travel and airline rewards 3 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining
Chase Sapphire Preferred Points rewards 2 points for every $1 spent on travel and dining

Chase Freedom Unlimited

This cash-back credit card offers generous rewards and a decent sign-up bonus.

Highlights:

  • Earn 1.5 percent cash back on every purchase.
  • Earn a $150 bonus after you spend $500 on purchases within the first three months of account opening.
  • Cardholders can redeem rewards for cash in any amount at any time. Rewards don’t expire as long as your account remains open.

Who should get this card

This card is a good choice for anyone who wants a straightforward rewards program. It’s also useful for anyone who already owns a Chase rewards card, since Chase Ultimate Rewards can be transferred between cards.

It comes with a 0 percent, 15-month introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers, making it a good option for someone trying to pay down high-interest debt. After the initial intro period, the card has a variable APR of 15.99 to 24.74 percent.

Its cash-back rate, while good, isn’t the highest flat-rate available. This card also has no bonus categories, a downside if you spend frequently in one area where you want to maximize rewards. Read the full Chase Unlimited Freedom card review here.

Citi Double Cash

This card has a simple rewards structure with no categories to track, no cap on cash back and no annual fee.

Highlights:

  • Earn cash back twice: 1 percent on general purchases and 1 percent when you pay your bill on time. Two percent cash-back on everything makes this an industry-leading card for cash back on general purchases.
  • Pay no interest on balance transfers for 18 months.
  • Register your purchases online through the Citi Price Rewind program and the company will search for lower prices on those items and refund you the difference on better deals.

Who should get this card

This card is good for those seeking an affordable cash-back card with generous rewards on all purchases and an easy-to-use rewards structure. There’s no chasing bonus categories, no rotating categories and no annual fee.

This card charges a variable APR of 14.49 to 24.49 percent.

If you typically carry a balance, or often fail to pay on time, this may not be the card for you. There’s also no sign-up bonus, something you’ll find on other competing cards.

Read the full Citi Double Cash card review here.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

Substantial bonus point opportunities, an annual travel credit and a top-notch rewards program makes the Chase Sapphire Reserve a popular travel and airline card.

Highlights:

  • Earn three points per dollar spent on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide, one point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Receive up to $300 in statement credits annually as a reimbursement for travel purchases.
  • Earn 50,000 points when you spend $4,000 in the first three months after opening the account. That’s $750 in travel rewards when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards program.

Who should get this card

If you spend big on travel and dining, the Chase Sapphire Reserve can be a good option.

It also offers sweet perks, as well, like access to more than 900 airport lounges worldwide and reimbursement for enrolling in TSA PreCheck.

While it has significant perks, this card’s hefty $450 annual fee can certainly eat into rewards if you’re not spending heavily on travel and dining out. It comes with a variable APR between 16.49 and 23.49 percent.

Chase Sapphire Preferred

This card’s generous rewards, stellar sign-up bonus and low annual fee are hard to beat. It’s a solid card for people scared off by the Sapphire Reserve’s big annual fee.

Highlights:

  • Earn two points per dollar on travel and restaurants worldwide and one point per dollar on all other purchases.
  • Earn 50,000 points after spending $4,000 within the first three months of opening the account. That’s $625 toward travel when redeemed through the Chase Ultimate Rewards program.
  • Earn 5,000 points when you add an authorized user within the first three months of opening an account and make a purchase.

Who should get this card

This card is ideal if you’re looking for an everyday, low-fee travel card with great perks. It’s especially useful if you’re comfortable using the Chase Ultimate Rewards program — when redeemed through the program, points are worth 25 percent more.

There’s no introductory fee for the first year. After that, the fee is $95 per year. It has a variable APR from 16.99 to 23.99 percent.

Follow me on Twitter: @MitchStrohm

This editorial content is not provided or commissioned by any of the referenced financial institutions or companies. Opinions, analysis, reviews or recommendations expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any financial institutions or companies, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any such entity. All products or services are presented without warranty. Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. This post contains references to our partners, and Bankrate may be compensated in exchange for featured placement of certain sponsored products and services, or your clicking on certain links posted on this website.

Promoted Stories