Best for large sign-up bonus

Apply now
On Chase's secure site
Terms Apply
Rewards rate
  • 5x 5x on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • 3x 3x on dining.
  • 2x 2x on all other travel purchases, plus more.
Intro bonus
60,000 points 
Annual fee
$95
Regular APR
15.99%-22.99% Variable
Recommended credit
Good to Excellent (670 - 850)

Best for luxury travel perks

Apply now
On Chase's secure site
Terms Apply
Rewards rate
  • 10x Earn 10x total points on hotels and car rentals when you purchase travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • 5x Earn 5x total points on air travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • 3x Earn 3x points on other travel and dining.
  • 1x Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
Intro bonus
50,000 points 
Annual fee
$550
Regular APR
16.99%-23.99% Variable
Recommended credit
Excellent (740 - 850)

Best for everyday spending

Apply now
On Chase's secure site
Terms Apply
Rewards rate
  • 5% Enjoy 5% cash back on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards®, our premier rewards program that lets you redeem rewards for cash back, travel, gift cards and more;
  • 3% 3% cash back on drugstore purchases and dining at restaurants, including takeout and eligible delivery service
  • 1.5% 1.5% on all other purchases
Intro bonus
Earn an Additional 1.5% Cash Back 
Annual fee
$0
Regular APR
14.99% - 23.74% Variable
Recommended credit
Good to Excellent (670 - 850)

Best for low cost and low interest

Apply now
On Upgrade's secure site
See Rates & Fees, Terms Apply
Rewards rate
  • 1.5% Earn 1.5% unlimited cash back on card purchases every time you make a payment
Intro bonus
N/A
Annual fee
$0
Regular APR
8.99% - 29.99% APR
Recommended credit
Fair to Good (580 - 740)

Compare the best Visa credit cards of 2022

Card name Best for Bankrate review score
Chase Sapphire Preferred Card Sign-up bonus 4.3 / 5
(Read full card review)
Chase Sapphire Reserve Luxury travel perks 4.5 / 5
(Read full card review)
Chase Freedom Unlimited Everyday spending 4.6 / 5
(Read full card review)
Upgrade Visa Card with Cash Rewards Low-cost and low-interest spending 3.1 / 5
(Read full card review)
Credit One Bank® Platinum Rewards Visa High rewards in select categories 3.6 / 5
(Read full card review)
Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card Travel rewards 4.3 / 5
(Read full card review)
U.S. Bank Cash+™ Visa Signature® Card Flexible cash back rewards 3.9 / 5
(Read full card review)
Bank of America® Travel Rewards credit card Diverse travel category rewards 3.8 / 5
(Read full card review)

A closer look at the best Visa credit cards

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Best for sign-up bonus

  • This card is best for: Beginner travelers who want to make the most out of their dining and travel purchases.
  • This card is not a great choice for: People who don’t travel often or spend more in rotating categories and at supermarkets.
  • What makes this card unique? The Sapphire Preferred not only has a great sign-up bonus of 60,000 points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first three months, but it boasts near-luxury travel benefits with a non-luxury price tag. While other luxury travel cards charge hundreds in annual fees, the Sapphire Preferred’s annual fee is only $95.
  • Is the Chase Sapphire Preferred worth it? Yes it is. As long as you dine out and travel at least semi-frequently, you can reap major rewards points with the Sapphire Preferred card and then redeem them for 25 percent more value through Chase’s travel portal.

Read our full Chase Sapphire Preferred review.
Jump back to offer details.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

Best for luxury travel perks

  • This card is best for: Frequent jet-setters who want best-in-class, luxury travel perks.
  • This card is not a great choice for: General spenders who want a low-cost, everyday spending credit card.
  • What makes this card unique? Think of the Sapphire Reserve as an upgraded Sapphire Preferred, you get all the same benefits plus higher rewards rates in certain categories, annual statement credits, TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application statement credits and so much more.
  • Is the Chase Sapphire Reserve worth it? If you can shell out the $550 annual fee and spend enough to recoup the cost via rewards and credits, the Sapphire Reserve is absolutely worth it for luxury travelers.

Read our full Chase Sapphire Reserve review.
Jump back to offer details.

Chase Freedom Unlimited

Best for everyday spending

  • This card is best for: Everyday spenders who want elevated cash back on groceries and everything else.
  • This card is not a great choice for: People who spend the most in travel categories.
  • What makes this card unique? The Freedom Unlimited has no annual fee while offering an impressive 3 percent back on dining at restaurants and drugstores. These higher rates make it easy to reap maximum rewards on everyday purchases.
  • Is the Chase Freedom Unlimited worth it? Yes, it’s worth it. As long as you target your spending on groceries, drugstores and dining with the Freedom Unlimited, you can earn plenty of cash back.

Read our full Chase Freedom Unlimited review.
Jump back to offer details.

Upgrade Visa Card with Cash Rewards

Best for low-cost and low-interest spending

  • This card is best for: People with average credit scores who want to earn unlimited cash back and improve their credit.
  • This card is not a great choice for: People who want to pay off credit card debt, as it doesn’t offer a direct balance transfer or introductory APR period.
  • What makes this card unique? The Upgrade Visa Card is a blend between credit card and personal loan. At the end of each month, your balance becomes an installment plan with fixed, monthly payments. Plus, its exceptionally low minimum variable APR (8.99 percent to 29.99 percent) means there’s a chance to pay very minimal interest on your balance.
  • Is the Upgrade Visa Card worth it? If you frequently carry a balance and have trouble keeping up with monthly payments, the Upgrade Visa can be worth it, especially if you can snag an APR on the low end. However, consider the possibility of increasing monthly payments every cycle your balance isn’t paid in full.

Read our full Upgrade Visa Card with Cash Rewards review.
Jump back to offer details.

Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa

Best for high rewards in select categories

  • This card is best for: People who use their card for streaming, groceries, gas and other everyday lifestyle purchases.
  • This card is not a great choice for: Anyone who spends over $5,000 a year in the card’s 5 percent categories or who want to redeem cash back for direct deposit.
  • What makes this card unique? The Credit One Bank Platinum is an interesting card with finicky terms that exclude certain merchants from its 5 percent categories rate, but it is available to consumers with fair credit. Normally, 5 percent cash back cards require good to excellent scores for approval.
  • Is the Credit One Bank Platinum Visa worth it? It depends. The card’s restrictions on categories excludes wholesale clubs, superstores, drugstores and bakeries/confection stores, in addition to the $5,000 yearly cap, means you have to have a very specific spending plan to earn maximum rewards.

Read our full Credit One Bank Platinum Rewards Visa review.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card

Best for flat-rate travel rewards

  • This card is best for: Mid-level travelers who want higher rates of rewards than basic travel cards, but don’t want to shell out hundreds of dollars.
  • This card is not a great choice for: Beginner travelers, budget travelers, luxury travelers or people who like to transfer points to airlines.
  • What makes this card unique? Earning a flat rate for miles across multiple categories with only a $95 annual fee is pretty special in the travel rewards market, making the VentureOne a mid-level travel card in a underserved corner of the cards industry.
  • Is the Venture Rewards card worth it? Yes. If you’re a semi-serious traveler who has a few excursions planned in your future, but you don’t jet-set every other weekend, the VentureOne Rewards can help fund your trips without offsetting you in annual fees.

Read our full Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card review.

U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card

Best for sign-up bonus

  • This card is best for: Category-centric budgeters with the time and dedication to track their spending every quarter.
  • This card is not a great choice for: Hands-off spenders that want flat-rate cash back no matter where they spend.
  • What makes this card unique? The flexibility of the U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa offers consumers 5 percent back in two categories of their choice every quarter (on up to $2,000 combined, then 1 percent) and a third category in which they earn 2 percent back. This customizable rewards system and the ability to change it every quarter helps cardholders maximize their cash back throughout the year.
  • Is the U.S. Bank Cash+ worth it? Yes, for people who plan their big purchases and throughout the year can find plenty of value in the customizable 5 percent categories, plus the 2 percent back in everyday purchases on a category of their choosing.

Read our full U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card review.

The information about the U.S. Bank Cash+ Visa Signature Card has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.

Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card

Best for diverse travel reward categories

  • This card is best for: Local Bank of America customers whose idea of travel means road trips and attractions, not just getaway trips overseas.
  • This card is not a great choice for: People who want to earn maximum travel points and luxury benefits.
  • What makes this card unique? Bank of America really loosens its definition of travel compared to other issuers with this travel card. Travel purchases that can be redeemed as statement credits include zoos, art galleries, campground purchases, cruise lines, amusement parks and more.
  • Is the Bank of America Travel Rewards card worth it? If you use the travel credits to their full potential at a variety of places, then this card is absolutely worth it. Otherwise, you could find higher travel rewards rates elsewhere.

Read our full Bank of America Travel Rewards credit card review.


Bankrate insight
U.S Costco warehouse locations and U.S Costco gas stations exclusively accept Visa cards.

What is Visa?

Visa is a payment network utilized by many credit card issuers and banks. Payment networks are needed to facilitate an electronic transaction of funds between buyers and sellers, and they generally charge a small fee for each transaction.

While Visa technically acts as the facilitator for all payments made with a Visa credit card, it is not a credit card issuer or bank. It simply provides the payment network technology that credit card issuers and banks use for all cards.

Visa is at the top of the payment processing industry as the largest of the four major U.S. credit card networks. If you have a debit, credit, or prepaid card in your wallet, there’s a good chance that the card is partnered with Visa.

With over 1 billion credit cards in circulation worldwide (an estimated 798 million outside the U.S.), Visa’s international presence is undeniable. Their cards are accepted in over 200 countries and can be used with over 10 million merchants in the United States. In 2020, Visa’s worldwide credit payments totaled nearly $2 trillion, according to Creditcards.com Market Share Statistics.

Pros and cons of Visa credit cards

Pros

  • Worldwide acceptance. Visa cards are accepted in over 200 countries and territories, making it one of the most widely accepted payment networks in the world.
  • Travel benefits. The Visa benefit tiers feature an array of travel-related perks ranging from roadside dispatch at the lowest tier to lost luggage reimbursement at the highest tier.
  • Straightforward benefit tiers. There are three Visa benefit tiers: Traditional, Signature, and Infinite. Having only three tiers can make understanding benefits a bit easier, though it’s always best practice to carefully review the benefits of any card you have.

Cons

  • High annual fees on certain cards. A lot of Visa cards come with an annual fee ranging from $35 to over $500. There are also plenty of Visa cards that do not charge an annual fee, though the reward offers on these cards may not be as luxurious.
  • More focus on travel protection, less on discounts/experience. Competitors like Mastercard feature travel experience benefits like airport concierge service, a feature that isn’t offered at Visa Signature or Infinite tiers.

Bankrate insight
Visa is the largest of the four major U.S. credit card networks, processing 206 billion payments and transactions within the last year.

Why choose a Visa card?

Visa is one of the most widely accepted payment networks in the world. If you have a Visa credit card in your wallet, you can rest easy knowing that your card should be accepted by retailers all over the globe. Other payment networks can operate a bit differently. For example, Discover and American Express both process transactions and issue their own cards.

Mastercard is Visa’s major competitor. In fact, Visa and Mastercard dominate the payment processing industry in the U.S. According to the Nilson Report, both companies have had continued high-volume success, with Visa accounting for $1.94 trillion in credit card purchases in 2020 and Mastercard reaching $837 billion.

What are Visa’ benefit tiers?

All Visa cards fall under one of three benefit tiers: Traditional, Signature or Infinite. Each card tier differs in the level of protections and benefits offered. The exact benefits that come with your card will be determined by your card issuer.

Visa Traditional is the base level benefits tier. If you look down at your Visa card and it simplys says Visa then you likely have Visa Traditional benefits. Cards like the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and the Chase Freedom Unlimited card fall under Visa Traditional. Visa Traditional covers:

  • Emergency card replacement
  • Emergency cash dispersal
  • Lost or stolen card reporting
  • Zero liability protection
  • Auto rental collision damage waiver
  • Roadside dispatch

Visa Signature is the mid-level benefit tier. It includes cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card and offers fewer benefits than the Visa Infinite tier, but more than the Traditional tier. Visa Signature includes everything covered in Traditional plus:

  • Warranty Manager Service
  • Year-end budget summary
  • Travel and emergency assistance services

Visa Infinite cards, like the Chase Sapphire Reserve, provide cardholders with the highest level of protections and perks. Visa Infinite covers everything covered by Visa Signature plus:

  • Trip cancellation coverage
  • Return Protection
  • Travel emergency and accident coverage
  • Lost luggage reimbursement

It’s worth checking the terms and conditions of your Visa card to see what you’re covered for.

Visa vs. Mastercard: what’s the difference?

Visa and Mastercard are two of the four major credit card processing transaction networks. Unlike the other two processing networks, Discover and American Express, Visa and Mastercard don’t issue credit cards. Instead they both partner with financial institutions like banks that do issue credit cards and debit cards.

However, there aren’t many overt differences between Visa and Mastercard. Most differences between a Visa credit card and a Mastercard credit card will be as a result of which card issuer the card comes from.

How we chose our top-rated Visa cards

Bankrate's personal finance experts have evaluated the top Visa credit cards according to our 5-star rating system. The list of criteria for rating credit cards includes:

Rewards

Whether the card offers cash back, travel points/miles or multi-purpose rewards for eligible purchases and the potential returns based on rewards rate (1 percent cash back per $1 spent, 1 mile per $1 spent, and so on).

Perks and benefits

Whether the card offers extras such as retail discounts, extended warranties on purchases, travel insurance and financial management tools.

Annual fee

Whether the card charges an annual fee and if so, how much the card's overall value and benefits might offset the fee.

Introductory offers

Whether the card has a sign-up bonus, welcome offer or similar sign-up incentive and how much it adds to the card's overall value.

Variable APR

How the card's annual percentage rate (APR) compares with current averages as an indicator of cost and value.

Foreign transaction fee

Whether the card charges a foreign transaction fee for international purchases and how the fee affects the card's overall value.


Have more questions for our credit cards editors? Feel free to send us an email, find us on Facebook, or Tweet us @Bankrate.

Frequently asked questions

about the author
Upon graduating with a Bachelor’s degree concentrated in Finance, Joey worked at “Big Four” (Ernst and Young) accounting firm before exploring the world of credit cards. Over the past two years, he’s shared his expertise and has brought understanding to complex topics as a writer and editor for sites like Bankrate, CreditCards.com and NextAdvisor. Hi...
about the editor
Former Senior Editor Barry Bridges has been writing about credit cards, personal loans, mortgages and other personal finance products since 2017. Before joining Bankrate, he was an award-winning newspaper journalist in his native North Carolina.

* See the online application for details about terms and conditions for these offers. Every reasonable effort has been made to maintain accurate information. However all credit card information is presented without warranty. After you click on the offer you desire you will be directed to the credit card issuer's web site where you can review the terms and conditions for your selected offer.