Many families shop at Sam’s Club to save money and stock up on their favorite items. There is an annual membership for Sam’s Club members, but most people find that it pays for itself in savings.

If you’re a loyal Sam’s Club member looking for a way to earn cash back rewards, you might want to apply for the Sam’s Club® Mastercard®. Cardholders can earn up to 5 percent cash back on purchases, depending on the type of membership they have. Unfortunately, other than the rewards you can earn on Sam’s Club purchases, this card is pretty bare in terms of additional benefits.

This article will look more closely at how the Sam’s Club Mastercard works, the potential perks of signing up and how you can make the most of your rewards.

Sam’s Club Mastercard benefits

Sam’s Club members already save money by buying groceries in bulk, but utilizing the Sam’s Club Mastercard can maximize your rewards. Here are the biggest benefits and features available to cardmembers.

Earn more cash back as a Plus member

In terms of standard ongoing rewards, the Sam’s Club Mastercard offers a stellar 5 percent cash back on gas (up to $6,000 per year, then 1 percent), as well as 3 percent back on dining ($5,000 cash rewards maximum per year) and 1 percent cash back on everything else. But, you can earn more rewards based on the membership program you’re a part of.

Sam’s Club offers three different membership programs: Sam’s Club, Sam’s Club Plus and Sam’s Business Membership. Plus members earn 3 percent cash back on eligible in-store and online purchases, but they’ll earn an additional 2 percent for being a Plus member. However, the rewards are subject to each program’s terms, including different maximum rewards and payout dates.

First-year welcome bonus

While the card’s first-year welcome bonus is nothing to write home about, it is something. New cardholders can get a $30 statement credit after making $30 in Sam’s Club purchases within the first 30 days.

No annual fee

The Sam’s Club Mastercard doesn’t come with an annual fee, and there are no foreign transaction fees. You will, of course, have to pay for your annual Sam’s Club membership to be eligible, which is at least $45 per year.

Standard Mastercard benefits

As a Mastercard credit card, you’ll receive benefits like zero liability protection, Mastercard ID Theft Protection and access to Mastercard Global Service.

Digital-first experience

The Sam’s Club Mastercard uses contact-free technology, so you can complete in-person transactions without touching cash or cards. Use Sam’s Scan & Go in-club and at the pump to complete your shopping quickly and securely.

If you prefer to shop online, you can easily make purchases through the Sam’s Club mobile app. You can also use the mobile app to track your spending, check and pay your balances and securely manage your account. If you accidentally misplace your Sam’s Club Mastercard, the app makes it easy to freeze your credit account and request a replacement.

Maximizing the Sam’s Club Mastercard

Before you apply for the Sam’s Club Mastercard, ask yourself how much you stand to earn in cash back rewards. Looking at your monthly Sam’s Club spending can help you determine how much you could earn as a Plus member, as well as your monthly spend on gas, dining and takeout.

If you’re on the fence, it may be helpful to see how the card compares to options offered by other wholesale retailers, or even a standard rewards credit card for groceries. For example, no-annual-fee cards like the Bank of America® Customized Cash Rewards credit card can help you earn 2 percent cash back at grocery stores and wholesale clubs, as well as 3 percent back on a category of your choice (including gas). Note, this card comes with a spending cap of up to $2,500 of combined 3 and 2 percent category purchases each quarter, then 1 percent, but it offers a slightly more extensive list of benefits.

The bottom line

If you regularly shop in bulk at Sam’s Club — and, in particular, spend a lot at the pump — it may be worth taking out the Sam’s Club Mastercard.

But keep in mind there’s a variety of other cards on the market that offer rewards on your grocery and gas spending — and many likely come with more perks and benefits to sweeten the pot. Before you apply, consider Bankrate’s list of the best credit cards for groceries.